John Seeberg

Written by John Seeberg

Laura Ward

Reviewed by Laura Ward

Updated: May 14, 2024

Tom & Sawyer Fresh Review

Updated: May 14, 2024

Our Verdict

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Highly Recommended

Tom & Sawyer fresh cat food is made up of three recipes with ratings that vary between 4 and 5 stars. The average rating for the overall range is 5 stars

This small range of fresh food contains both animal meat and organs, along with fish.  Some human grade ingredients are used too which is a good indicator of the quality of the food.

Pros
  • Includes animal and Fish protein
  • 100% non-GMO
  • Added vitamins and minerals
  • Rich in moisture
Cons
  • Limited range
  • More expensive than some cat foods

The table below shows each recipe in the range including our rating and the AAFCO nutrient profile.

Product line Rating AAFCO
Tom & Sawyer Chicken Cacciatore 4 M
Tom & Sawyer Bento Box 5 M
Tom & Sawyer Wild West Kangaroo 5 M

Recipe and Label Analysis

Tom & Sawyer Bento Box was selected to represent the other products in the line for a detailed recipe and nutrient analysis.

Label and nutrient data below are calculated using dry matter basis.

Tom & Sawyer Bento Box

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

37.6%

Protein

45%

Fat

9.4%

CarbsCarbohydrates

Ground turkey meat, Atlantic salmon, sweet potato, egg, spinach, unsalted butter (cream: may contain colour), organic canola oil, dicalcium phosphate, vitamin & mineral premix (calcium carbonate, taurine, magnesium oxide, iron amino acid chelate, zinc amino acid chelate, vitamin E supplement, potassium iodide, niacin, manganese amino acid chelate, copper amino acid chelate, sodium selenite, vitamin B12 supplement, vitamin A palmitate, thiamine hydrochloride, folic acid, biotin, calcium pantothenate, pyridoxine hydrochloride, riboflavin, vitamin D3 supplement), hydrolyzed soy sauce (water, soybeans, rice, salt, brewing starter (aspergillus sojae)), choline bitartrate, ginger root, calcium carbonate.


Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 1.1%

Red denotes any controversial items

Ingredients Analysis

The first ingredient is ground turkey meat. Turkey is considered “the clean combination of flesh and skin derived from the parts or whole carcasses of turkey”. 1

Turkey is naturally rich in the 11 essential amino acids required by a cat to sustain life.

The second ingredient is Atlantic salmon. Salmon is an oily marine and freshwater fish not only high in protein but also omega 3 fatty acids, essential oils needed by every cat to sustain life.

The third ingredient is sweet potato. Sweet potatoes are a gluten-free source of complex carbohydrates in cat food. They are naturally rich in dietary fiber and beta carotene.

The fourth ingredient is egg. Eggs are easy to digest and have an exceptionally high biological value.

The fifth ingredient is spinach . Due to its exceptional vitamin and mineral content, spinach exhibits a remarkably high nutrient Completeness Score.  2 of 91. For cats who are predisposed to oxalate stones spinach should be avoided, due to its high oxalate content. 

The sixth ingredient is unsalted butter. Butter is a fat source in this cat food. Butter is created from milk and contains approximately 80% fat, and 50% saturated fats. Lactose from the milk does not appear in butter, due to the liquid part of the milk being separated during processing.

Butter is not an AAFCO approved ingredient, so we are surprised to see it included in this ingredients list.

The seventh ingredient is organic canola oil. Unfortunately, canola can be a controversial item. That’s because it can sometimes (but not always) be derived from genetically modified rapeseed.

Yet others cite the fact that canola oil can be a significant source of omega-3 fatty acids.

In any case, plant-based oils like canola are less biologically available to a cat than fish oil as a source of quality omega-3 fats.

The eighth ingredient is dicalcium phosphate, likely used here as a dietary calcium supplement.

From here the list goes on to include a number of other items. But to be realistic, ingredients located this far down the list (other than nutritional supplements) are not likely to affect the overall rating of the product.

This food also contains chelated minerals that have been chemically attached to protein. This makes them easier to absorb. Chelated minerals are usually found in better cat foods.

Nutrient Analysis

Based on its ingredients alone, Tom & Sawyer Bento Box  looks like an above-average Fresh product.

The dashboard displays a dry matter protein reading of 37.6%, a fat level of 45% and an estimated carbohydrate level of 9.4%.

As a group, the brand features an above-average protein content of 42.6% and an above-average fat level of 23%. Together these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 26.5% for the overall product line, alongside a fat to protein ratio of 58%.

This means this Tom & Sawyer fresh range contains higher than average protein, lower than average carbohydrate and higher than average fat, when compared to typical fresh cat food. 

One thing to note with this diet is that it is particularly high in fat and therefore unsuitable for any cats susceptible to weight gain or with a sedentary lifestyle.

Final Word

This range of food provides good sources of animal protein and is free from hormones.  Protein delivery is higher than average, carbohydrate is lower than average and each recipe is high in moisture. 

The Cat Food Advisor recommends this food.

Has Tom & Sawyer Fresh cat food been recalled in the past?

No.  Tom & Sawyer has not had any product recalls.

You can view a complete list of all cat food recalls since 2021 here.

To stay on top of any cat food product recalls, sign up for our free email alerts, here.

About

The Tom & Sawyer brand was founded by  Kristin Matthews and Peter Zakarow in 2015. The duo  work with nutritionists, vets, and labs, along with chefs, to formulate their nutritionally balanced recipes.

Tom & Sawyer source its ingredients as locally as possible. The recipes are made in its commercial kitchen,which is located in Toronto, Canada, and became FDA-registered in 2018.

Sources

1: [1. Adapted by the Cat Food Advisor and based upon the official definition for chicken published by the Association of American Feed Control Officials, Official Publication, 2008 Edition].

2: [1. Completeness Score is a measure of a food’s relative nutrient content and is computed by NutritionData.com from the USDA’s National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference]

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