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9 Best Wet Foods for Kittens

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Medically reviewed by  JoAnna Pendergrass, DVM
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best wet kitten food

Mallory Crusta / Cats.com

Every cat caregiver wants their kitten to be healthy, well-fed, and happy. For that reason, there are some debates between feline lovers regarding the right choice of wet food for kittens.

Feeding your new kitten species-appropriate cat food with high-quality ingredients is key because your kitten needs those healthy fats, vitamins, fibers, and proteins—in the appropriate proportions—to gain weight, build muscle, and have plenty of energy to run around and play.

Canned, soft & wet cat foods come in many varieties and formulations and have many different ingredients. That being said, not all kittens will react the same way to a particular canned food; some kittens may love it, and some may turn up their noses to it.

Kittens can do well on either wet or dry food, provided that the food is nutritionally balanced and complete according to standards set by the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO). So, whether to feed your kitten wet food or dry food can often come down to personal choice and your kitten’s particular food preferences.

Given the wide variety of wet food options for kittens, we went out and did extensive research to bring you our top 9 wet foods for kittens.

At a Glance: Best Wet Food for Kittens To Buy

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Want a quick look at the products reviewed in this article? In the comparison table below, we’ve highlighted some of the most important features of each product. You’ll find more detailed information about each product later in the article.

Overall Best
10.0
Picked by 31 people today!

Smalls Ground Bird Fresh Cat Food

  • Contains over 48% protein (measured as dry matter)
  • Rich in animal-sourced omega-3 fatty acids
  • Minced texture is easy for kittens to chew
GET 35% OFF ENTER "CATS35" TO GET 35% OFF YOUR FIRST ORDER
VALUE PICK
9.9
Picked by 25 people today!

Wellness CORE Kitten Turkey & Chicken Liver Recipe

  • Great flavor that will entice even the pickiest of eaters
  • High in protein and low in fat and carbohydrates
  • Pleasant odor when opening the can
BEST GRAIN FREE KITTEN FOOD
9.8
Picked by 21 people today!

Nulo Freestyle Turkey & Chicken Recipe Grain-Free Canned Cat & Kitten Food

  • Free of grains, gluten, and GMOs
  • Easily digestible
  • Lots of high-quality animal proteins
BEST FOR GROWING KITTEN
9.7
Picked by 18 people today!

Purina Pro Plan Focus Kitten Classic Chicken & Liver Entree Canned Cat Food

  • Rich in animal proteins
  • Specially formulated for kittens
  • Contains DHA for healthy brain and eye development
BEST MID-PRICE PICK
9.6
Picked by 18 people today!

Wellness Complete Health Kitten Pâté Chicken Entrée

  • Free from grains, artificial flavors, and artificial preservatives
  • Pâté texture is easy for kittens to chew and swallow
  • Made in the USA
Best For Hydration
9.5
Picked by 31 people today!

Purina Fancy Feast Kitten Classic Pâté Tender Turkey Feast Wet Kitten Food

  • Contains real turkey
  • Can be mixed with dry food
  • Affordable
Best Pate
9.4
Picked by 31 people today!

Instinct Original Kitten Grain-Free Pate Real Chicken Recipe Wet Cat Food

  • Concentrated source of animal protein and fat
  • Supplemented with DHA for brain and eye health
  • Pate texture is easy for young kittens to eat
Best For Young Kitty
9.3
Picked by 31 people today!

Blue Buffalo Healthy Gourmet Chicken Entree Recipe

  • Free of corn, wheat, and soy
  • Does not contain artificial flavors or preservatives
  • Made primarily from high-quality animal protein
Best High Protein
9.2
Picked by 31 people today!

Blue Buffalo Wilderness Kitten Salmon Grain-Free Canned Cat Food

  • Free of grains, artificial flavors, preservatives, corn, wheat, and soy
  • Real salmon is the first ingredient

Why Trust Cats.com

Before selecting our picks for the best wet foods for kittens for testing, I performed in-depth research to identify kittens’ core nutritional needs and determine what makes kitten food different from food for adult cats. After reading hundreds of customer reviews and speaking with market insiders, I selected products for hands-on testing.

All products on this list were purchased at full retail price and tested with the help of our cats on the cats.com team. While they provided their opinions on how the food tasted as well as its general appeal, I made observations on things like texture, consistency, appearance, aroma, and packing.

Throughout the research and testing process, I also consulted veterinary experts to get their opinions on what makes a great kitten food.

Our Veterinary Advisors

The Best Wet, Soft & Canned Wet Food for Kittens Reviewed

#1 Smalls Ground Bird Fresh Cat Food

Small Fresh Ground Bird

  • Made In: United States
  • Guaranteed Protein: 13% Min
  • Age Range: All Life Stages
  • Calories Per Ounce: 40
  • Typical Cost Per Day: $4.00 per day

Formulated to provide balanced nutrition for cats of all life stages, Smalls fresh food is a protein-rich and hydrating choice. Smalls is a subscription-based company that sends monthly deliveries of 5-ounce packages of frozen wet cat food to your door. Simply thaw one or two packages at a time and spoon the food directly into your cat’s bowl.

When you sign up for Smalls, you provide information about your kitten to create a custom meal plan. As your kitten grows, you can sign into the customer portal to adjust the number of packages you receive each month. Every subscription starts with a 10-pack sampler and comes with a lifetime of free treats.

Featuring chicken muscle meat and chicken liver as the main ingredients, this Ground Bird recipe is a great choice for kittens. It contains over 48% protein (measured as dry matter) and cod liver oil provides plenty of animal-sourced omega-3s like EPA and DHA. The food is energy-dense at 40 calories per ounce and full of hydrating moisture for your kitten.

Ingredients

Chicken, Chicken Liver, Green Beans, Water Sufficient for Processing, Dried Yeast, Tricalcium Phosphate, Kale, Magnesium Proteinate, Potassium Chloride, Choline Chloride, Dandelion Greens, Dried Kelp, Taurine, Zinc Proteinate, Iron Proteinate, Cod Liver Oil, Salt, Niacin Supplement, Vitamin E Supplement, Vitamin A Supplement, Copper Proteinate, Manganese Proteinate, Thiamine Mononitrate, D-Calcium Pantothenate, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Riboflavin Supplement, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Folic Acid, Sodium Selenite, Biotin.

Ingredients We Liked: Chicken, Chicken Liver, Cod Liver Oil

Ingredients We Didn’t Like: None

Guaranteed Analysis

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Crude Protein: 13%
Crude Fat: 8.5%
Crude Fiber: 1.5%
Moisture: 73%

Dry Matter Basis

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Protein: 48.15%
Fat: 31.48%
Fiber: 5.56%
Carbs: 14.81%

Caloric Weight Basis

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Protein: 34.54%
Fat: 54.84%
Carbs: 10.63%

What We Liked:

  • Contains over 48% protein (measured as dry matter)
  • Rich in animal-sourced omega-3 fatty acids
  • Minced texture is easy for kittens to chew
  • Adjust your order as needed as your kitten grows

What We Didn’t Like

  • Only available as a subscription plan
  • No phone support (text and email only)

#2 Wellness CORE Kitten Turkey & Chicken Liver Recipe

Wellness CORE Natural Grain-Free Turkey & Chicken Liver Pate Canned Kitten Food

  • Made In: United States
  • Guaranteed Protein: 12% Min
  • Age Range: Kitten
  • Calories Per Ounce: 37
  • Typical Cost Per Day: $2.66 per day

This recipe from Wellness Core is packed with protein-rich animal ingredients, including turkey, chicken liver, chicken, and turkey broth. These high-quality animal proteins will help your kitten grow and build healthy muscle tissue.

The inclusion of herring and menhaden fish oil in the diet provides the fatty acid DHA, which contributes to brain and eye development.

Though this pâté-style food is free from grains, potatoes, or soy, it contains small amounts of certain plant ingredients, including ground flaxseed, dried kelp, chicory root extract, and alfalfa meal.

Each 3 oz can offers 108 kcals, which is about average across wet foods for kittens.

Ingredients

Turkey, Chicken Liver, Turkey Broth, Chicken, Chicken Meal, Herring, Natural Flavor, Cranberries, Menhaden Fish Oil (preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Guar Gum, Tricalcium Phosphate, Ground Flaxseed, Potassium Chloride, Choline Chloride, Taurine, Cassia Gum, Xanthan Gum, Dried Kelp, Chicory Root Extract, Yucca Schidigera Extract, Alfalfa Meal, Salt, Magnesium Sulfate, Iron Proteinate, Zinc Proteinate, Thiamine Mononitrate, Vitamin E Supplement, Copper Proteinate, Manganese Proteinate, Sodium Selenite, Niacin, d-Calcium Pantothenate, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Riboflavin Supplement, Vitamin A Supplement, Biotin, Potassium Iodide, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Folic Acid, Rosemary Extract.

Guaranteed Analysis

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Crude Protein: 12%
Crude Fat: 7.5%
Crude Fiber: 1%
Moisture: 78%

Dry Matter Basis

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Protein: 54.55%
Fat: 34.09%
Fiber: 4.55%
Carbs: 6.82%

Caloric Weight Basis

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Protein: 37.84%
Fat: 57.43%
Carbs: 4.73%

What We Liked:

  • Great flavor that will entice even the pickiest of eaters
  • High in protein and low in fat and carbohydrates
  • Pleasant odor when opening the can
  • Calorie-dense

What We Didn’t Like

  • Price is above market average

#3 Nulo Freestyle Turkey & Chicken Recipe Grain-Free Canned Cat & Kitten Food

Nulo Freestyle Turkey & Chicken Recipe Grain-Free Canned Cat & Kitten Food

  • Made In: United States
  • Guaranteed Protein: 11% Min
  • Age Range: All Life Stages
  • Calories Per Ounce: 35
  • Typical Cost Per Day: $1.98 per day

One of the cool kittens on the block, Nulo Cat Food is quickly picking up popularity. This food from Nulo contains high-quality animal ingredients such as turkey, chicken, and tuna. These lean cuts and muscle meat products pack lots of flavor. It is formulated to meet AAFCO standards for all life stages, which includes growth and maintenance.

Ingredients

Turkey, Chicken, Turkey Liver, Turkey Broth, Tuna, Natural Flavor, Guar Gum, Potassium Chloride, Agar Agar, Choline Chloride, Taurine, Cranberries, Pumpkin, Menhaden Fish Oil (Preserved With Mixed Tocopherols), Tomato, Dried Kelp, Yucca Schidigera Extract, Salt, Iron Proteinate, Sodium Carbonate, Zinc Proteinate, Thiamine Mononitrate, Vitamin E Supplement, Magnesium Sulfate, Copper Proteinate, Manganese Proteinate, Sodium Selenite, Niacin Supplement, d-Calcium Pantothenate, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Riboflavin Supplement, Vitamin A Supplement, Biotin, Potassium Iodide, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Folic Acid, Rosemary Extract.

Guaranteed Analysis

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Crude Protein: 11%
Crude Fat: 6.5%
Crude Fiber: 0.75%
Moisture: 78%

Dry Matter Basis

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Protein: 50%
Fat: 29.55%
Fiber: 3.41%
Carbs: 17.05%

Caloric Weight Basis

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Protein: 36.02%
Fat: 51.7%
Carbs: 12.28%

What We Liked:

  • Free of grains, gluten, and GMOs
  • Easily digestible
  • Lots of high-quality animal proteins
  • Natural ingredients
  • Made in the USA

What We Didn’t Like

  • A few customers mentioned that there is very little chicken in the can
  • Strong smell that not all cats or cat owners will like

#4 Purina Pro Plan Focus Kitten Classic Chicken & Liver Entree Canned Cat Food

Purina Pro Plan Focus Kitten Classic Chicken & Liver Entree Canned Cat Food

  • Made In: United States
  • Guaranteed Protein: 12% Min
  • Age Range: Kitten
  • Calories Per Ounce: 33
  • Typical Cost Per Day: $3.2 per day

Purina is known for setting the industry standard when it comes to high-quality wet cat food. This wet food for kittens is no exception. It is packed with several animal ingredients, including chicken, liver, and fish. This food also contains DHA for healthy brain and eye development, as well as antioxidants to support immune health. It meets AAFCO nutritional standards for growth.

Ingredients

Chicken, Liver, Fish, Meat By-Products, Water Sufficient for Processing, Artificial and Natural Flavors, Calcium Phosphate, Rice, Guar Gum, Potassium Chloride, Added Color, Salt, Taurine, Thiamine Mononitrate, Zinc Sulfate, Vitamin E Supplement, Ferrous Sulfate, Niacin, Copper Sulfate, Calcium Pantothenate, Manganese Sulfate, Vitamin A Supplement, Menadione Sodium Bisulfite Complex (Source of Vitamin K Activity), Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Riboflavin Supplement, Vitamin B-12 Supplement, Biotin, Folic Acid, Vitamin D-3 Supplement, Potassium Iodide.

Guaranteed Analysis

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Crude Protein: 12%
Crude Fat: 6%
Crude Fiber: 1.5%
Moisture: 76.5%
Ash: 3.5%

Dry Matter Basis

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Protein: 51.06%
Fat: 25.53%
Fiber: 6.38%
Carbs: 2.13%

Caloric Weight Basis

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Protein: 44.33%
Fat: 53.83%
Carbs: 1.85%

What We Liked:

  • Rich in animal proteins
  • Specially formulated for kittens
  • Contains DHA for healthy brain and eye development
  • Contains antioxidants to support the immune system

What We Didn’t Like

  • Not all kittens like the flavor

#5 Wellness Complete Health Kitten Pâté Chicken Entrée

Wellness Complete Health Kitten Pâté Chicken Entrée

  • Made In: United States
  • Guaranteed Protein: 11% Min
  • Age Range: Kitten
  • Calories Per Ounce: 66
  • Typical Cost Per Day: $2.83per day

This grain-free recipe created by Wellness contains chicken as its source of animal protein, with the first three ingredients being chicken, chicken liver, and chicken broth. The pâté texture is perfect for kittens who don’t yet have strong teeth to munch on kibble. Wellness is proudly made in North America under strict quality and sanitary standards and is backed by the Wellness guarantee. This food meets AAFCO nutritional standards for growth.

Ingredients

Chicken, Chicken Liver, Chicken Broth, Carrots, Natural Flavor, Cranberries, Guar Gum, Ground Flaxseed, Potassium Chloride, Taurine, Salt, Menhaden Fish Oil (preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Choline Chloride, Magnesium Sulfate, Cassia Gum, Xanthan Gum, Iron Proteinate, Zinc Proteinate, Beta-Carotene, Vitamin E Supplement, Thiamine Mononitrate, Copper Proteinate, Manganese Proteinate, Sodium Selenite, Niacin, d-Calcium Pantothenate, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Riboflavin Supplement, Vitamin A Supplement, Biotin, Potassium Iodide, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Folic Acid, Rosemary Extract.

Guaranteed Analysis

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Crude Protein: 11%
Crude Fat: 6%
Crude Fiber: 1%
Moisture: 78%

Dry Matter Basis

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Protein: 50%
Fat: 27.27%
Fiber: 4.55%
Carbs: 18.18%

Caloric Weight Basis

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Protein: 37.2%
Fat: 49.28%
Carbs: 13.53%

What We Liked:

  • Free from grains, artificial flavors, and artificial preservatives
  • Pâté texture is easy for kittens to chew and swallow
  • Made in the USA
  • Contains DHA for healthy brain and eye development

What We Didn’t Like

  • A bit on the expensive side

#6 Purina Fancy Feast Kitten Classic Pâté Tender Turkey Feast Wet Kitten Food

Purina Fancy Feast Kitten Classic Pâté Tender Turkey Feast Wet Kitten Food

  • Made In: United States
  • Guaranteed Protein: 11% Min
  • Age Range: Kitten
  • Calories Per Ounce: 32
  • Typical Cost Per Day: $1.86 per day

This Purina Fancy Feast food contains turkey and liver as its first two ingredients, creating a tasty flavor that kittens will love. It is packed with the vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that kittens need for optimal growth and health. Even better, this food is formulated with milk and broth to provide the moisture your kitten needs to stay well hydrated.

Ingredients

Turkey, Liver, Meat By-Products, Poultry Broth, Milk, Fish, Egg Product, Artificial and Natural Flavors, Tricalcium Phosphate, Guar Gum, Minerals [Potassium Chloride, Magnesium Sulfate, Zinc Sulfate, Ferrous Sulfate, Copper Sulfate, Manganese Sulfate, Potassium Iodide], Added Color, Salt, Vitamins [Vitamin E Supplement, Thiamine Mononitrate (Vitamin B-1), Niacin (Vitamin B-3), Calcium Pantothenate (Vitamin B-5), Vitamin A Supplement, Menadione Sodium Bisulfite Complex (Vitamin K), Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (Vitamin B-6), Riboflavin Supplement (Vitamin B-2), Vitamin B-12 Supplement, Biotin (Vitamin B-7), Folic Acid (Vitamin B-9), Vitamin D-3 Supplement], Taurine. C-6621.

Guaranteed Analysis

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Crude Protein: 11%
Crude Fat: 5%
Crude Fiber: 1.5%
Moisture: 78%
Ash: 3.5%

Dry Matter Basis

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Protein: 50%
Fat: 22.73%
Fiber: 6.82%
Carbs: 4.55%

Caloric Weight Basis

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Protein: 45.56%
Fat: 50.3%
Carbs: 4.14%

What We Liked:

  • Contains real turkey
  • Can be mixed with dry food
  • Affordable
  • Milk and broth enhance the food’s moisture content

What We Didn’t Like

  • Texture may be too tough for some kittens

#7 Instinct Original Kitten Grain-Free Pate Real Chicken Recipe Wet Cat Food

Instinct Original Kitten Grain-Free Pate Real Chicken Recipe Wet Cat Food

  • Made In: United States
  • Guaranteed Protein: 12% Min
  • Age Range: Kitten
  • Calories Per Ounce: 42
  • Typical Cost Per Day: $2.96 per day

Formulated with over 50% dry matter protein and 27% fat, this canned food provides the nutritional foundations that support kitten growth and development. It has a smooth pate texture which is easy for young kittens to eat and many kittens find the flavorful blend of chicken, salmon, and beef flavors appealing. The food is supplemented with DHA for healthy brain and eye development, and it’s high in moisture to support your kitten’s hydration.

Ingredients

Chicken, Chicken Broth, Salmon, Beef Liver, Egg Product, Dicalcium Phosphate, Tuna Fish Oil, Pumpkin, Tomato, Kale, Cabbage, Guar Gum, Broccoli, Potassium Chloride, Cranberries, Blueberries, Parsley, Salt, Taurine, Minerals (Zinc Proteinate, Magnesium Proteinate, Copper Proteinate, Manganese Proteinate, Iron Proteinate), Choline Chloride, Vitamins (L-Ascorbyl-2-Polyphosphate, Vitamin E Supplement, Thiamine Mononitrate, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Riboflavin Supplement, Vitamin D Supplement, Folic Acid, Vitamin B12 Supplement).

Guaranteed Analysis

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Crude Protein: 12%
Crude Fat: 6%
Crude Fiber: 1%
Moisture: 78%

Dry Matter Basis

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Protein: 54.55%
Fat: 27.27%
Fiber: 4.55%
Carbs: 13.64%

Caloric Weight Basis

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Protein: 40.58%
Fat: 49.28%
Carbs: 10.14%

What We Liked:

  • Concentrated source of animal protein and fat
  • Supplemented with DHA for brain and eye health
  • Pate texture is easy for young kittens to eat
  • Mixture of animal flavors is appealing to many kittens

What We Didn’t Like

  • Gum thickeners cause loose stools in some cats
  • Expensive, nearly $0.50 per ounce

#8 Blue Buffalo Healthy Gourmet Chicken Entree Recipe

Blue Buffalo Healthy Gourmet Chicken Entree Recipe

  • Made In: United States
  • Guaranteed Protein: 10% Min
  • Age Range: Kitten
  • Calories Per Ounce: 31
  • Typical Cost Per Day: $4.82 per day

A healthy choice for your kitten, Blue Buffalo Healthy Gourmet Chicken Entrée is made with high-quality ingredients and is perfect for a young kitty. With 122 kcals in every 3 oz can, this food is exceptionally calorie-dense. As evidenced by the inclusion of chicken and chicken liver as the first two ingredients, it contains plenty of the animal protein that your kitten needs.

Ingredients

Chicken, Chicken Liver, Chicken Broth, Dried Egg, Fish Oil (source of DHA-Docosahexaenoic Acid), Natural Flavor, Flaxseed (source of Omega 3 and 6 Fatty Acids), Ground Brown Rice, Guar Gum, Carrots, Sweet Potatoes, Potassium Chloride, Taurine, Salt, Carrageenan, Cassia Gum, Cranberries, Choline Chloride, Iron Amino Acid Chelate, Zinc Amino Acid Chelate, Vitamin E Supplement, Thiamine Mononitrate (Vitamin B1), Copper Amino Acid Chelate, Manganese Amino Acid Chelate, Sodium Selenite, Niacin Supplement (Vitamin B3), Calcium Pantothenate (Vitamin B5), Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (Vitamin B6), Riboflavin Supplement (Vitamin B2), Vitamin A Supplement, Biotin (Vitamin B7), Potassium Iodide, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Folic Acid (Vitamin B9).

Guaranteed Analysis

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Crude Protein: 11%
Crude Fat: 7.5%
Crude Fiber: 1.5%
Moisture: 78%

Dry Matter Basis

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Protein: 50%
Fat: 34.09%
Fiber: 6.82%
Carbs: 9.09%

Caloric Weight Basis

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Protein: 35.24%
Fat: 58.35%
Carbs: 6.41%

What We Liked:

  • Free of corn, wheat, and soy
  • Does not contain artificial flavors or preservatives
  • Made primarily from high-quality animal protein
  • Contains fish oil as a natural source of DHA for brain and eye development

What We Didn’t Like

  • Relatively high in carbohydrates – not grain-free

#9 Blue Buffalo Wilderness Kitten Salmon Grain-Free Canned Cat Food

Blue Buffalo Wilderness Kitten Salmon Grain-Free Canned Cat Food

  • Made In: United States
  • Guaranteed Protein: 10.5% Min
  • Age Range: Kitten
  • Calories Per Ounce: 34
  • Typical Cost Per Day: $2.92 per day

This great-tasting food from Blue Buffalo has a very nice flavor that kittens will enjoy. It contains real salmon as its first ingredient, followed by chicken and fish broth. As with other Blue Buffalo foods, this kitten food does not contain any artificial flavors, preservatives, corn, wheat, or soy. It also doesn’t contain lots of gravy that can create an oozing mess when opening the can.

Ingredients

Salmon, Chicken, Fish Broth, Chicken Liver, Pea Flour, Natural Flavor, Guar Gum, Fish Oil (Source Of Dha-Docosahexaenoic Acid), Flaxseed, Potassium Chloride, Taurine, Salt, Dried Potato, Choline Chloride, Carrageenan, Cassia Gum, Magnesium Sulfate, Iron Amino Acid Chelate, Zinc Amino Acid Chelate, Thiamine Mononitrate (Vitamin B1), Vitamin E Supplement, Copper Amino Acid Chelate, Manganese Amino Acid Chelate, Sodium Selenite, Niacin Supplement (Vitamin B3), Calcium Pantothenate (Vitamin B5), Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (Vitamin B6), Riboflavin Supplement (Vitamin B2), Vitamin A Supplement, Biotin (Vitamin B7), Potassium Iodide, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Folic Acid (Vitamin B9), Preserved With Mixed Tocopherols.

Guaranteed Analysis

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Crude Protein: 10.5%
Crude Fat: 7%
Crude Fiber: 1.5%
Moisture: 78%

Dry Matter Basis

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Protein: 47.73%
Fat: 31.82%
Fiber: 6.82%
Carbs: 13.64%

Caloric Weight Basis

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Protein: 34.43%
Fat: 55.74%
Carbs: 9.84%

What We Liked:

  • Free of grains, artificial flavors, preservatives, corn, wheat, and soy
  • Real salmon is the first ingredient

What We Didn’t Like

  • A bit expensive

Why Is Quality Wet Food Essential for Kittens?

Kittens need the best nutrition that they can get to get a healthy start in life and develop into healthy, happy adult cats. As long as the food meets AAFCO’s standards for complete and balanced nutrition for growth or all life stages, a kitten will do fine eating dry or wet food. Here are some specific benefits of feeding your little tiger wet food:

  • Wet or commercial raw food, with its approximate 70% water content, can deliver the moisture that your kitten needs to stay healthy and well hydrated. High-moisture foods are also more satiating and help your kitten feel less hungry. Dry foods tend to be high in carbohydrates, which can increase the risk of obesity and other health issues, such as diabetes.
  • The soft texture of wet foods makes it easy for kittens to chew and swallow. This is especially important for kittens that have been recently weaned and are just beginning to eat solid food.
  • High-quality wet foods have a high amount of animal protein, such as chicken or turkey. This protein is essential to a kitten’s healthy growth and development.

What Should You Consider When Shopping for Wet Canned Cat Food?

As there are many brands of canned cat food, certain brands may differ from one another. There are some things you should consider before purchasing canned cat food:

Protein, Vitamins, and Minerals: Wet food should contain one or more types of high-quality animal protein, which will be the main ingredient in your kitten’s diet. The food should also contain all of the vitamins and minerals, in the right proportions, to promote healthy growth and development in kittens. AAFCO has a page on its website that provides a good starting point for understanding what goes into pet food.

Click here for a list of the best Natural & Holistic cat foods.

Taurine: Taurine is an amino acid that plays a critical role in several body functions, such as vision and digestion. It is an essential amino acid for cats, meaning it cannot be produced in the body and must be obtained through the diet. Taurine is found only in animal-based proteins, hence the need for animal proteins in a cat’s diet. Make sure that your kitten’s wet food contains taurine.

Also Read: Taurine Deficiency in Cats: Causes, Symptoms & Treatment

Omega Fatty Acids: Omega fatty acids are critical for healthy brain and eye development in kittens. These fatty acids can be found in seafood, such as salmon.

Click here for a list of the best grain-free cat foods.

Choose quality over quantity: The quality of your kitten’s diet is far more important than the size of the container it comes in. Although buying in bulk may save you money, always make sure that the food is of the best quality that you can afford. Also, be aware that, although canned food has a long shelf life, it spoils quickly once opened. Follow your vet’s feeding instructions for your kitten and use an opened can within a few days to prevent spoilage.

Click here for a list of the best organic cat foods.

How To Chose the Right Food for Your Kitten?

While there are many good kitten diets out there, you should do some research first to ensure the best feeding experience for your kitten. While choosing the best canned cat food for purchase, you should consider the following:

Read The Labels- Reading the label of wet cat food is key to having better knowledge of what’s in the food that you’re considering for your kitten. However, pet food labels aren’t always easy to understand. AAFCO has a great resource on its website for how to read food labels. Make sure that the label has the AAFCO seal stating that the food meets the nutritional standards for growth.

Cost and Budget – Purchase the highest quality kitten food that you can reasonably afford. Don’t let the term ‘premium’ tempt you into spending more money, though. ‘Premium’ is often just a marketing term and doesn’t necessarily mean that the food is superior to any other food.

After reading this article, don’t worry if you’re still feeling overwhelmed about selecting a food for your kitten. Your veterinarian will be your best resource for deciding which food will be best for your kitten.

Check out our review for the best high-protein, low-carbohydrate canned cat foods here.

View Sources
Cats.com uses high-quality, credible sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the claims in our articles. This content is regularly reviewed and updated for accuracy. Visit our About Us page to learn about our standards and meet our veterinary review board.
  1. https://www.vet.cornell.edu/departments-centers-and-institutes/cornell-feline-health-center/health-information/feline-health-topics/how-often-should-you-feed-your-cat

  2. https://healthypets.mercola.com/sites/healthypets/archive/2011/04/07/largest-study-confirms-what-pet-cats-really-want-to-eat.aspx

Note: The values in our nutrient charts are automatically calculated based on the guaranteed analysis and may not represent typical nutrient values. This may lead to discrepancies between the charts and the values mentioned in the body of the review.
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About Mallory Crusta

Mallory is an NAVC-certified Pet Nutrition Coach. Having produced and managed multimedia content across several pet-related domains, Mallory is dedicated to ensuring that the information on Cats.com is accurate, clear, and engaging. When she’s not reviewing pet products or editing content, Mallory enjoys skiing, hiking, and trying out new recipes in the kitchen. She has two cats, Wessie and Forest.

7 thoughts on “9 Best Wet Foods for Kittens”

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  1. Jenny azcat

    Great. Was getting just the regular cans of blue buffalo – healthy gourmet for a couple months, I have two cats, one is 9 and the second one is 10 years old. They seemed to like what i was getting for them, but the smell is just terrible!!! It really smelled like something rotted. So I tried this one FREEDOM -(for Mature cats) and wow my cats are going insane over this one LOL – doesn’t have too bad of a small like that other one I had, and my cats both act like they been starving for days when its time to eat this, LOL
    Hope it stays good for them, keeps them healthier for their ages and a bit cheaper to purchase too : )

    Reply
  2. George Young

    I am a cat foster Mom, Latest foster has 3 beautiful kittens who are now 5 weeks, old, they try to bury Royal Canin kitten food, and they do eat Purina Kitten chow.. litter training is coming along slowly.. any suggestions, They still nurse from mom a bit..

    Reply
  3. Meg McLeod

    Can I feed my 6 month old kitten freeze dried rabbit.
    I had a vet tell me that it’s the closet to a natural diet
    In the wild and kittens or Cubs would eat that as well.
    I saw that Stella freeze dried has a rabbit blend. I read your review. It sounded healthy for my kitten. Currently she is on core kitten. I would like to get her off of cooked meat and give her something more appropriate.

    Reply
    1. small mallory photoMallory Crusta Post author

      Hi Meg, thank you for commenting. Unfortunately, I’ve not found good freeze-dried raw foods that are formulated with kittens in mind, so I would consult your veterinarian about kitten-specific foods that meet your goal of providing a fresher diet.

  4. CD

    Purina for kitten food? This food contains by-products. Since when is this great food? Goes to show you, you can’t trust everyone’s reviews.

    Reply