We’ve rated NutriSource Cat Food on ingredient quality, species-appropriateness, recalls, and more. Read our NutriSource Cat Food review to learn how this brand stacks up.
The Cats.com Standard—Rating NutriSource Cat Food on What Matters
We’ve rated the brand on six key criteria for quality. Here’s how it rates in each of these six crucial areas.
- Species-Appropriateness – 5/10
- Ingredient Quality – 7/10
- Product Variety – 7/10
- Price – 6/10
- Customer Experience – 8/10
- Recall History – 9/10
Overall Score: 7/10
In total, we give NutriSource Cat food a 43 out of 60 rating or a B grade.
About NutriSource Cat Food
NutriSource was founded in Perham, Minnesota in 1964. The company has been family-owned for three generations starting with Darrell Nelson. After falling out of a tree, Darrell kept on playing which earned him the nickname “Tuffy.” When he started his own pet food company with his son Kenny in 1964, they named it Tuffy’s Pet Foods.
Today, NutriSource is part of the KLN family of brands headed by CEO Kenny Nelson. Company headquarters are still located in Perham, MN but the brand has expanded to include a variety of human and pet products. Other pet food brands belonging to the KLN family include Element, Supreme, Premium Tuffy’s, and Tuffy’s Gold.
Sourcing and Manufacturing
NutriSource claims to be dedicated to the long-term health of family pets. Their products are made with high-quality sources of animal protein as the first ingredient, though we couldn’t find any specific information regarding the sourcing of these ingredients.
As a US-based brand, NutriSource manufactures their dry foods in company-owned facilities in Perham, MN. The company claims to manufacture their wet foods in the USA as well, but we couldn’t find any specific information about its production.
Over NutriSource’s nearly six-decade existence, the brand hasn’t had a cat food product recalls. The only recall in brand history occurred in 2009. NutriSource PureVita Salmon Entrée Dog Food was recalled for potentially elevated levels of vitamin D. There were no reports of illness or injury.
What Kinds Of Cat Food Does Nutrisource Offer?
NutriSource offers a generous selection of dry foods, canned foods, toppers, and treats. These recipes are available in the following two product lines: NutriSource and PureVita.
Every NutriSource formula starts with a high-quality source of animal protein. The NutriSource product line includes both grain-free and grain-inclusive fomrulas while PureVita is a limited ingredient line containing seven grain-free dry and canned foods.
What Do Customers Think Of Nutrisource Cat Food?
NutriSource offers a variety of wet and dry foods from both product lines on Amazon as well as other pet retailers like PetFlow. Their products carry an average 4.5 to 5-star rating. NutriSource dry foods seem much more popular on Amazon with the Chicken and Rice Formula having nearly 500 ratings.
The majority of customers are pleased with NutriSource cat food. Many have found that their cats prefer it compared to other brands and several found that it helped their overweight cats achieve a healthy bodyweight. Owners of cats with food allergies also appreciate PureVita’s single source protein recipes.
When it comes to negative comments, several customers found that NutriSource cat food exacerbated GI issues and contributed to gas and smelly stools. As always, there are also comments about some cats simply not liking the food and several customers found it to be a little pricey.
Let’s take a look at a few reviews from some of the most popular recipes from NutriSource.
“My cats ate this food for several years, until I adopted a new picky eater who didn’t like it. I briefly switched to a couple of other dry cat foods that were also grain free, but all of my cats gained quite a bit of weight. One also developed some urinary tract issues (I don’t know if they were related). I switched back to Pure Vita about a month ago and the cats are getting back to their healthy weight, they play more, and they seem quite happy. Even the picky eater likes it now! I also love the fact that it is a truly recloseable bag with a Ziploc seal. Never had a problem with the food getting iffy at the bottom of the bag.” – Sheina reviewing NutriSource PureVita Grain-Free Salmon and Peas Dry Food
“My previous cat was allergic to chicken and the one I have now just doesn’t like it. This is one of the few cat foods that actually does not have any chicken products in it at all. A lot will say the protein source is something like fish, but when you read the ingredients, it will list chicken, or it will say ‘natural flavors’ which often means chicken broth.” – Joschmo reviewing NutriSource PureVita Grain-Free Salmon and Peas Dry Food
“I recently switched on the advice from a pet store saying this was good. I gave my cats horrible gas, diarrhea and they were clearly uncomfortable. I was told keep it up for a week as they are transitioning, even though I mixed it in with the other food. Still 2 weeks in it’s still problematic and I had purchased a big bag and I am unable to return it sadly.” – Tina Mees reviewing NutriSource Chicken and Rice Formula Dry Food
“I’m a Bengal Cat breeder and have been raising cats for 25 years. I bought some different types of cat foods to test out on my cats, this brand was one of them. I put it in a bowl in front of most of my cats and not ONE CAT would eat it. They would smell it and walk away. NO ONE would touch it. When I smelled it, it had a horrible smell, I wouldn’t eat it either. The ingredient list seems fine, but the product itself has a VERY unappealing smell. I feel sorry for any cat forced to eat this food. Don’t bother.” – Karen Waugaman reviewing NutriSource Chicken and Rice Formula Dry Food
What Did Our Test Cats Think?
At the time of purchase, I was having a difficult time finding NutriSource dry foods, so I purchased two of their most popular wet food recipes: Lamb & Lamb Liver Select and Country Select.
While I feed my cats dry food as their staple diet, I supplement it with a wide variety of wet foods. Like any cat, they all come running when they hear me peel open a can. The experience was no different with NutriSource and they seemed particularly interested based on the aroma.
All three cats enjoyed the food – even my cat Biscuit, who has chicken allergies. She was able to safely enjoy the Lamb & Lamb Liver food with no problem. I was a little disappointed that NutriSource only offers pate texture foods, but my cats have never been particularly picky.
NutriSource Cat Food – Top 3 Recipes Reviewed
|Product Name||Food Type||Main Protein Source||Calories||Price||Our Grade|
|NutriSource Cat & Kitten Chicken & Rice Dry Food||Dry||Chicken||476 kcal/cup||$3.29 per lb||B-|
|NutriSource Grain-Free Lamb & Lamb Liver Select Canned Food||Wet||Lamb||185 kcal/can||$0.42 per oz||B+|
|NutriSource PureVita Grain-Free Salmon & Peas Dry Cat Food||Dry||Salmon||475 kcal/cup||$5.15 per lb||C|
How Much Does NutriSource Cat Food Cost?
There’s a significant difference in price per ounce between NutriSource dry food and wet food. Both of the dry food recipes reviewed cost under $0.25 per ounce, the Chicken and Rice formula being the cheaper of the two. At $0.53 per ounce, NutriSource wet food is much more expensive.
To feed a 10-pound cat NutriSource wet food, it would cost you a little over $3.00 per day. NutriSource dry food is much more economical. Depending which recipe you choose, it should cost between $0.31 and $0.46 per day.
Overall, Is Nutrisource Cat Food a Good Choice?
The NutriSource brand has a nearly six-decade history in the pet food industry. Within that time, they’ve had only a single recall and only for one of their dog food products. The brand is well liked among customers and it’s nice that they only sell their products in independent pet food stores.
When it comes to the quality of NutriSource cat foods, there’s room for improvement. None of the ingredients are particularly bad, but there’s an abundance of plant ingredients and concerningly high levels of dietary fiber. It’s difficult to say whether this will cause digestive issues, but it could certainly be a problem for some cats.
Overall, NutriSource definitely isn’t the most species-appropriate choice for cats. Even their wet food formulas which are higher in protein and moisture still contain unnecessary plant ingredients. NutriSource is similarly ranked to Health Extension and Wellness, though NutriSource’s wet food is significantly more expensive than either of these brands.
Where Is Nutrisource Cat Food Sold?
NutriSource is committed to supporting local businesses by selling their products only in independent pet food stores. If you prefer to shop online, you can find NutriSource products at Amazon.com, PetFlow.com, PetCareRX.com, and various feed stores.