What Is Organic Dog Food?
Despite the rise in popularity of organic food for human consumption, organic dog food is lagging behind, and there are very few organic recipes on the market.
To be classed as Organic, the ingredients found in the recipe must meet strict guidelines established by the United States Department of Agriculture or equivalent. While many brands utilize high-quality or human-grade ingredients, meeting these organic guidelines is still a significant challenge.
Organic dog food recipes can be classified into two distinct buckets. The first is certified organic dog food, which is where all of the major ingredients in a recipe are certified organic, including the meat ingredients and the vegetable content.
The other variety of organic dog food is partially organic. Partially organic recipes are, as you would imagine, made up of some organic and non-organic ingredients. It is more common to see organic plant-based ingredients in these recipes compared to organic meat ingredients.
Is Organic Dog Food Worth It?
It will come as a surprise to no one that Organic dog food is significantly more expensive than non-organic food. This is due to the higher cost of ingredients that have to conform to high standards.
From a nutritional point of view, Organic ingredients are unlikely to provide noticeably superior nutrition. For example, Organic Chicken is not a denser source of protein than non-organic Chicken.
However, where organic dog food can be advantageous is from an ethical standpoint. Animal welfare and the environment are hot topics, especially among younger generations.
Most animals that are raised on organic farms enjoy a better quality of life than on non-organic farms. Also, organic plant produce can often be less damaging to the local environment or use fewer chemicals.
Best Organic Dog Food
Castor & Pollux Organix Organic Chicken & Oatmeal Recipe Review
Castor & Pollux is a well-known brand across the United States and is probably the biggest producer of organic pet food. All of the recipes within their Organix range are certified Organic.
In addition to being Organic, the meat and fish ingredients used in these recipes are from responsible and sustainable sources. This type of ingredient-sourcing is extremely rare in the pet food world and is a refreshing option.
Read more information about Castor & Pollux’s ingredient sourcing and their organic range in our Castor & Pollux Review.
Organic Chicken and Organic Chicken Meal are the recipe’s two primary ingredients, and they are present in satisfactory portion sizes. The protein and fat provided by these ingredients should be sufficient for most dogs.
This recipe is grain-inclusive and uses a mix of grain ingredients such as Oatmeal, Brown Rice, and Barley. These three grain-ingredients provide a modest proportion of carbohydrates and fiber.
You can read more about Barley in our article Barley In Dog Food.
Purina Beyond Organic Chicken, Egg & Sweet Potato Recipe Review
Purina Beyond’s recent adventure into the Organic market is the only mainstream recipe to feature in this article. Purina Beyond is a more recent offshoot of the Purina brand and has a relatively small product range.
You can read our in-depth review of Purina Beyond here.
The above recipe is one of a very select list of organic recipes to use organic meat ingredients, which in those case are Organic Chicken and Organic Chicken Meal.
These Chicken ingredients can act as high-quality sources of animal-based protein and fat, and the portion size present would be suitable for most dogs.
Outside of this Organic Chicken content, the recipe uses a mix of Organic Cassava Root (also known as Tapioca), Organic Peas, Organic Sweet Potatoes, and other minor ingredients.
If you aren’t familiar with Tapioca, you can learn more about it here.
All of these plant-based ingredients are Organic, which is notable given that sourcing organic versions of these ingredients is likely a challenge.
Tender & True Organic Turkey & Liver Recipe Review
Tender & True is a relative newcomer to the pet food industry after it was founded in 2014. Despite its young age, they have been producing some excellent recipes, including some that are certified Organic.
The above Turkey & Liver recipe is a prime example of this. The two most abundant ingredients present are Organic Turkey and Organic Chicken Meal.
This mixture of meat and meat meal ingredients provides a satisfactory proportion of high-quality protein and fat. There is also a small portion of Chicken Liver present which can enhance the flavor of the recipe and boost levels of beneficial vitamins and minerals.
Outside of this poultry content, the recipe uses a mix of Tapioca, Peas, Chickpeas, and other plant-based ingredients. All of these plant-based ingredients are sourced from organic suppliers and can provide dogs with portions of carbohydrates, fiber, and select vitamins and minerals.
Gather Free Acres Recipe With Organic Free-Run Chicken Review
Gather often garners attention for being one of a slim number of brands that produce vegan dog food but many gloss over the fact that they produce Organic dog food.
You can read more about the Gather brand here.
The majority of the ingredients found in the above Free Acres recipe are Organic, including a large portion of Organic Chicken and Organic Dehydrated Chicken.
These Organic Chicken ingredients sum up to an impressive portion of protein and fat which sits at 30% and 15%, respectively.
Outside of the Chicken ingredients, a large portion of Organic Peas is the main plant-based ingredient. These Peas provide a mix of carbohydrates, plant-based protein, and fiber.
It is also worth pointing out that Gather recipes include some unusual ingredients that are not often seen in dog food. Examples include Krill Meal and Egg Shell Meal.
Newman’s Own Organic Chicken & Liver For Dogs Review
Newman’s Own Organics is a longstanding provider of organic dog food and has been selling recipes since 1993. While some of the other recipes shown here are only partially organic, Newman’s Own is certified organic by the USDA.
The above Chicken and Liver Dinner recipe contains a large portion of Organic Chicken and Organic Chicken Liver. This combination of traditional meat cuts and organ meat provides an ample portion of protein and fat for any dog, including those that are more active.
The Chicken Liver is an excellent supplement to the core Chicken ingredient as it can enhance the flavor of the recipe and boost the levels of beneficial vitamins and minerals.
The recipe does not contain plant-based ingredients in any major quantities but does contain a small portion of Organic Pea Flour, Organic Alfalfa, and Organic Guar Gum. These ingredients provide a small portion of carbohydrates, fiber, and micronutrients.
Evangers Organic Chicken & Turkey Dinner Review
Evangers is a brand with a strong focus on wet/canned pet food recipes which is unusual. Most dog food brands tend to focus on dry dog food as this is the most popular variety.
While most of Evanger’s product range is non-organic, they do have several organic recipes within their Organics range, and the above Chicken & Turkey Dinner is a prime example.
The recipe’s only major ingredients are a portion of Organic Chicken, Organic Turkey, and Organic Liver. This combination of organic meat ingredients results in an extremely impressive portion of protein and fat.
What is even more impressive is that Evangers maintains this Organic trait to all of its minor ingredients, including a portion of Organic Guar Gum, Organic Coconut Oil, Organic Banana, and more.
These minor ingredients serve a variety of purposes, such as acting as a binding agent to provide consistent texture, providing a small portion of carbohydrates, and providing beneficial vitamins and minerals.
Stella & Chewy’s Beef Recipe With Pumpkin & Quinoa Raw Coated Kibble With Wholesome Grains Review
Stella & Chewy are best known for their frozen and freeze-dried products, but they also produce a range of grain-free and grain-inclusive dry dog food.
While Stella & Chewy’s meat and fish ingredients are not organic, all of their fruit and vegetable ingredients are 100% organic which makes their recipes partially organic.
You can read our detailed review of Stella & Chewy’s here.
The above recipe from Stella and Chewy is one of their grain-inclusive offerings. While grain ingredients may put many off, this recipe is worth considering and offers a mix of impressive nutrition and ingredients.
The two primary ingredients are Beef and Lamb Meal, which, when combined, form a large portion of animal-based content. However, this isn’t all, and there are also smaller portions of Pork Meal, Beef Liver, and Beef Fat.
Once all of these high-quality animal ingredients are combined, they provide a proportion of protein and fat that is extremely satisfactory for most dogs.
Being a grain-inclusive recipe means that it contains a range of grain ingredients, including Oatmeal, Barley, and Quinoa. These ingredients provide a modest proportion of carbohydrates and fiber.
Honest Kitchen Dehydrated Whole Grain Beef Recipe Review
Dehydrated dog food is The Honest Kitchen’s bread and butter, and they’ve almost perfected the subject. They have one of the broadest product ranges of dehydrated food along with other smaller ranges of other varieties.
If you want to learn more about why The Honest Kitchen is a leader in this space, head over to our The Honest Kitchen Review.
There are both grain-free and grain-inclusive dehydrated recipes available from The Honest Kitchen, but we’ve chosen to highlight one of their grain-inclusive recipes – Beef.
The recipe’s primary ingredient is a large portion of dehydrated Beef. Most of the other recipes highlighted in this article are poultry-based, so we thought it important to offer some alternatives.
Beef is a high-quality ingredient to any dog food recipe and can act as a dense source of animal-based protein and fat. Sadly, this Beef isn’t Organic, but this doesn’t surprise us, given how expensive Organic Beef can be.
However, much of The Honest Kitchen’s plant-based ingredients are Organic, including a large portion of Oats and Barley, which are present in this recipe. These grain ingredients are preferred over others by many as they are seen as less processed.
Lastly, there is also a small portion of Organic Flaxseed present which can boost the levels of the Omega 3 Fatty Acids in the recipe.
Wysong Adult With Organic Chicken Review
Wysong is a unique pet food brand as they also produce food for animals other than dogs and cats. Despite this broad focus, they still produce high-quality dog food recipes, including some organic wet dog food recipes.
The above Adult With Organic Chicken is an excellent example of this. The recipe only includes two major ingredients, which are Organic Chicken and Sweet Potato.
This large portion of Organic Chicken provides a large portion of protein and fat that would be satisfactory for all dogs, especially those that are more active.
The Sweet Potato provides a small portion of carbohydrates and fiber and is joined with some small portions of Blueberries, Barley Grass, and Kelp.
Carna4 Grain-Free Duck Review
Carna4 is a small Canadian pet food brand that most dog owners will not be familiar with. They have a tiny product range when compared to many of their competitors, but this shouldn’t put you off them as the recipes that they do offer are very high-quality and appealing.
One of the key benefits of Carna4 is that they provide vast amounts of information about their ingredients and the exact nutrition of their recipes on their website. This transparency is leaps and bounds above the vast majority of their competitors and is an endearing trait for the ever more conscious consumer.
While most dog food recipes with poultry focus on Chicken and Turkey, Carna4 has a Duck recipe. Duck can still provide similar nutrition to Chicken but tends to contain a higher ratio of fat. However, this higher fat ratio can make it more enticing to dogs.
Alongside Duck, the recipe contains other ingredients like Pork Liver, Eggs, Sprouted Barley Seeds, Herring, Sweet Potato, and more. Eggs are worth pointing out as they are very nutritionally dense, and the nutrition they provide is effortless to digest.
This digestibility means that it can be easily utilized by a dog’s digestive system rather than being wasted. This extensive mix of ingredients provides a very satisfactory and balanced nutritional profile that is suitable for the majority of dogs.