Fromm Four Star Nutritionals Grain-Free (Dry)

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Rating: ★★★★½

Fromm Four Star Nutritionals Grain Free dry dog food receives the Advisor’s second-highest tier rating of 4.5 stars.

The Fromm Four Star Nutritionals Grain Free product line includes six dry dog foods, each claimed to meet AAFCO nutrient profiles for all life stages.

The following is a list of recipes available at the time of this review.

  • Fromm Four Star Nutritionals Grain Free Game Bird
  • Fromm Four Star Nutritionals Grain Free Beef Frittata
  • Fromm Four Star Nutritionals Grain Free Pork and Peas
  • Fromm Four Star Nutritionals Grain Free Salmon Tunalini
  • Fromm Four Star Nutritionals Grain Free Lamb and Lentils
  • Fromm Four Star Nutritionals Grain Free Surf & Turf (5 stars)

Fromm Four Star Nutritionals Grain Free Game Bird was selected to represent the other products in the line for this review.

Fromm Four Star Nutritionals Grain Free Game Bird

Dry Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 32% | Fat = 19% | Carbs = 41%

Ingredients: Duck, duck meal, peas, turkey, russet potatoes, pea protein, dried tomato pomace, pea flour, whole dried egg, quail, chicken meal, chicken fat, salmon oil, sweet potatoes, chicken, pheasant, Wisconsin cheese, flaxseed, carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, apples, celery, parsley, lettuce, spinach, chicken cartilage, potassium chloride, cranberries, blueberries, salt, chicory root extract, Yucca schidigera extract, alfalfa sprouts, sodium selenite, folic acid, taurine, vitamins: vitamin A acetate, vitamin D3 supplement, vitamin E supplement, vitamin B12 supplement, choline bitartrate, niacin supplement, d-calcium pantothenate, l-ascorbyl-2-polyphosphate, riboflavin supplement, thiamine mononitrate, pyridoxine hydrochloride, biotin, minerals: zinc sulfate, ferrous sulfate, manganous sulfate, magnesium sulfate, copper sulfate, cobalt carbonate, calcium iodate, sorbic acid (preservative), ferrous proteinate, zinc proteinate, copper proteinate, magnesium proteinate, manganese proteinate, cobalt proteinate, probiotics: dried Lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product, dried Bifidobacterium longum fermentation product, dried Lactobacillus plantarum fermentation product, dried Enterococcus faecium fermentation product

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 3.9%

Red items when present indicate controversial ingredients

Estimated Nutrient Content
MethodProteinFatCarbs
Guaranteed Analysis29%17%NA
Dry Matter Basis32%19%41%
Calorie Weighted Basis27%39%34%

The first ingredient in this dog food is duck. Although it is a quality item, raw duck contains about 80% water. After cooking, most of that moisture is lost, reducing the meat content to just a fraction of its original weight.

After processing, this item would probably account for a smaller part of the total content of the finished product.

The second ingredient is duck meal. Duck meal is considered a meat concentrate and contains nearly 300% more protein than fresh duck.

The third ingredient mentions peas. Peas are a quality source of carbohydrates. And like all legumes, they’re rich in natural fiber.

However, peas contain about 25% protein, a factor that must be considered when judging the meat content of this dog food.

The fourth ingredient is turkey, another quality raw product.

After processing, this item would probably account for a smaller part of the total content of the finished product.

The fifth item is potato. Potatoes can be considered a gluten-free source of digestible carbohydrates. Yet with the exception of perhaps their caloric content, potatoes are of only modest nutritional value to a dog.

The sixth ingredient is pea protein, what remains of a pea after removing the starchy part of the vegetable.

Even though it contains over 80% protein, this ingredient would be expected to have a lower biological value than meat.

And less costly plant-based products like this can notably boost the total protein reported on the label — a factor that must be considered when judging the meat content of this dog food.

The seventh ingredient is tomato pomace. Tomato pomace is a controversial ingredient, a by-product remaining after processing tomatoes into juice, soup and ketchup.

Many praise tomato pomace for its high fiber and nutrient content, while others scorn it as an inexpensive pet food filler.

Just the same, there’s probably not enough tomato pomace here to make much of a difference.

The eighth ingredient is pea flour, a powder made from roasted yellow peas. Pea flour contains as much as 25% protein, a factor that must be considered when judging the meat content of this dog food.

The ninth ingredient is whole dried egg, a dehydrated powder made from shell-free eggs. Eggs are easy to digest and have an exceptionally high biological value.

The tenth ingredient includes quail, another quality raw item.

The next ingredient is chicken meal, another protein-rich meat concentrate.

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 this product.

With five notable exceptions

First, salmon oil is naturally rich in the prized EPA and DHA type of omega-3 fatty acids. These two high quality fats boast the highest bio-availability to dogs and humans.

Depending on its level of freshness and purity, salmon oil should be considered a commendable addition.

Next, flaxseed is one of the best plant sources of healthy omega-3 fatty acids. Provided they’ve first been ground into a meal, flax seeds are also rich in soluble fiber.

However, flaxseed contains about 19% protein, a factor that must be considered when judging the actual meat content of this dog food.

In addition, chicory root is rich in inulin, a starch-like compound made up of repeating units of carbohydrates and found in certain roots and tubers.

Not only is inulin a natural source of soluble dietary fiber, it’s also a prebiotic used to promote the growth of healthy bacteria in a dog’s digestive tract.

Next, we note the inclusion of dried fermentation products in this recipe. Fermentation products are typically added to provide enzymes to aid the animal with digestion.

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

Fromm Four Star Nutritionals
Grain Free Dry Dog Food
The Bottom Line

Judging by its ingredients alone, Fromm Four Star Nutritionals Grain Free dog food looks like an above average dry product.

But ingredient quality by itself cannot tell the whole story. We still need to estimate the product’s meat content before determining a final rating.

The dashboard displays a dry matter protein reading of 32%, a fat level of 19% and estimated carbohydrates of about 41%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 32% and a mean fat level of 19%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 40% for the overall product line.

And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 60%.

Above-average protein. Above-average fat. And below-average carbs when compared to a typical dry dog food.

When you consider the protein-boosting effects of the pea products, flaxseed and chickpeas (contained in other recipes), this looks like the profile of a kibble containing a moderate amount of meat.

Bottom line?

Fromm Four Star Nutritionals Grain Free is a plant-based dry dog food using a moderate amount of named meats and meals as its main sources of animal protein, thus earning the brand 4.5 stars.

Highly recommended.

Please note certain recipes are sometimes given a higher or lower rating based upon our estimate of their total meat content.

A Final Word

The descriptions and analyses expressed in this and every article on this website represent the views and opinions of the author.

Although it's our goal to ensure all the information on this website is correct, we cannot guarantee its completeness or its accuracy; nor can we commit to ensuring all the material is kept up-to-date on a daily basis.

Each review is offered in good faith and has been designed to help you make a more informed decision when buying dog food.

However, due to the biological uniqueness of every animal, none of our ratings are intended to suggest feeding a particular product will result in a specific dietary response or health benefit for your pet.

For a better understanding of how we analyze each product, please read our article, "The Problem with Dog Food Reviews".

Remember, no dog food can possibly be appropriate for every life stage, lifestyle or health condition. So, choose wisely. And when in doubt, consult a qualified veterinary professional for help.

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Have an opinion about this dog food? Or maybe the review itself? Please know we welcome your comments.

Other spellings: Fromms

Notes and Updates

10/01/2010 Original review
04/16/2014 Last Update

  • JudyandSam Simpson Norris

    We just found out that Abbie is allergic to Chicken, but Fromm doesn’t make a chicken so we are good with the Lamb & Lentils. Our pet food store, Hollywood Feed, gives samples, so you might ask about that with your food store. All that I know will let you bring it back if they don’t eat it.

  • JudyandSam Simpson Norris

    RPK- mine like all the Fromm grain Free except the Salmon. Our vet wanted her on a kangaroo but they will not eat it. Allergies seem to be at bay now with the Zyrtec, so we’ll see…..

  • JAM

    Thanks for the info! We have an appointment with a veterinary ophthalmologist later this month and hopefully will get to the bottom of this; we are now transitioning to grain-free (Surf and Turf) but could go with any Fromm formula if that turns out to help.

  • JudyandSam Simpson Norris

    Raw is not an option with Abbie since she has the auto immune disease. She does love her lamb & lentils, eats it up more than any other I have tried. I’ll check the ingredients on the Natures

  • Dori

    As a kibble I like Nature’s Logic. I know a lot of other posters on dog sites like it too. I’ll try to come up with some others for you. I eventually had to switch to raw foods for my girls because one of my dogs (Katie my Maltipoo) has so many food issues that it was crazy. I will say that she can eat the Nature’s Logic Sardine formula for a few days in a row without scratching herself raw. I then switch her back to raw for a few days. I like to feed rotational proteins within the same company and also with other brands. I’ve never had an issue though with any of my dogs on Nature’s Logic Sardine formula. The list of Katie’s allergies is too long to type. You might check it out. It’s probably a little more expensive then some other brands but if you could get your pooch off Zyrtec then the money all balances out.

  • JudyandSam Simpson Norris

    We tried California kangaroo, but they both would not eat it. Any suggestions ???

  • Dori

    Hi JudyandSam. Fromm Lamb & Lentils contains peas, pork fat and pork liver. Maybe if you can find a food without those ingredients also you might be able to get her off the Zyrtec.

  • JudyandSam Simpson Norris

    We had to finally do allergy testing on Abbie -2-wks ago. Found out she is allergic to the following: Foods: soybean, white potatoes, chicken, rabbit, yeast. Pork and peas only showed a 1/6 category, so those -2- aren’t as bad as the first few.
    Weeds: short and giant ragweed, dandelion, goldenrod, marsh elder.
    Trees: maple, red cedar, elm
    Grasses: Johnson
    Epidermals: sheep wool
    Insects: black ant, flea

    She is currently on Zyrtec 10mg daily and it has made a world of difference in the itching, scratching and biting. We feed her Fromm Lamb & Lentils and she loves it !!!,

  • JudyandSam Simpson Norris

    she’

  • JudyandSam Simpson Norris

    Mike, why did Fromm drop to a 4.5 star food ???? It was a 5 star food. That’s all mine will eat, Fromm Lamb & Lentils….. And Abbie, my Blue. Merle Cocker has Auto Immune Hemolytic Anemia and allergies. She is also on Zyrtec daily.

  • kcbdal

    My boxer used to pass gas a lot and has a very sensitive stomach. I feed her a blend of Fromm’s grain free and half Natural Balance Synergy. This was a terrific combination and she hasn’t had gas since. It doesn’t seem to matter at all which Fromm food she gets. I have also switched from Synergy to another salmon based food and it has been terrific. Canidae didn’t help and I discovered she can’t have liver in any product.

  • JudyandSam Simpson Norris

    Be sure to check to see where toses treats are made. DO NOT BUY ANY TREATS FROM CHINA !!!!! I only buy the Fromm treats , give them cooked carrot slices and apple slices.

  • JudyandSam Simpson Norris

    Should be on the bag or call Fromm and ask. They are very helpful !!!

  • JAM

    My 1-1/2 year old papillon/poodle mix is very high-energy and has always been indifferent to his premium commercial kibble; he is very healthy but just could not keep weight on. On the advice of my groomer I switched him to Fromm a month ago and the difference is amazing! He eats with gusto and has gained healthy weight. I love that Fromm uses no wheat or corn, and am thinking of switching him from Gold Small Breed Adult to a completely grain-free formula. The other issue he has is constant tearing (I can control the staining, but he still tears.) Any recommendations or advice?