Rachael Ray Nutrish tubbed dog food receives the Advisor’s mid-tier rating of 3.5 stars.
The Rachael Ray Nutrish product line includes six dog food tubs, 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.
- Rachael Ray Nutrish Chicken Paw Pie
- Rachael Ray Nutrish Hearty Beef Stew
- Rachael Ray Nutrish Beef Stroganwoof
- Rachael Ray Nutrish Savory Lamb Stew
- Rachael Ray Nutrish Tail-Waggin Turkey
- Rachael Ray Nutrish Chicken Muttballs with Pasta
Rachael Ray Nutrish Hearty Beef Stew was selected to represent the other products in the line for this review.
Rachael Ray Nutrish Hearty Beef Stew
Canned Dog Food
Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content
Ingredients: Beef broth, beef, dried egg product, chicken, pea protein, natural flavors, ground tapioca, potatoes, carrots, green peas, tricalcium phosphate, guar gum, salt, caramel color, potassium chloride, choline chloride, taurine, l-ascorbyl-2-polyphosphate (source of vitamin C), zinc proteinate, vitamin E supplement, iron proteinate, niacin, copper proteinate, calcium pantothenate, thiamine mononitrate, manganese proteinate, riboflavin, pyridoxine hydrochloride, vitamin A acetate, calcium iodate, folic acid, biotin, vitamin D3 supplement, vitamin B12 supplement
Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 9.1%
Red items when present indicate controversial ingredients
|Estimated Nutrient Content|
|Dry Matter Basis||41%||14%||38%|
|Calorie Weighted Basis||37%||30%||34%|
The first ingredient in this dog food is beef broth. Broths are nutritionally empty. But because they add moisture to a dog food they are a common finding in many canned products.
The second ingredient is beef. Beef is defined as “the clean flesh derived from slaughtered cattle” and includes skeletal muscle or the muscle tissues of the tongue, diaphragm, heart or esophagus.1
Beef is naturally rich in all ten essential amino acids required by a dog to sustain life.
The third ingredient is dried egg product, a dehydrated form of shell-free eggs. Quality can vary significantly. Lower grade egg product can even come from commercial hatcheries — from eggs that have failed to hatch.
In any case, eggs are easy to digest and have an exceptionally high biological value.
The fourth ingredient is chicken, another quality raw item.
The fifth ingredient lists 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.
After the natural flavors, we find tapioca, a gluten-free, starchy carbohydrate extract made from the root of the cassava plant.
The eighth ingredient includes 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 ninth ingredient includes carrots. Carrots are rich in beta-carotene, minerals and dietary fiber.
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 three notable exceptions…
First, we find 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.
Next, caramel is a natural coloring agent made by caramelizing carbohydrates. It’s used by pet food manufacturers to impart a golden brown tint to the finished product.
However, the concentrated version of this ingredient commonly known as caramel coloring has been more recently considered controversial and found to cause cancer in laboratory animals.2
In any case, even though caramel is considered safe by the FDA, we’re always disappointed to find any added coloring in a pet food.
That’s because coloring is used to make the product more appealing to humans — not your dog. After all, do you really think your dog cares what color his food is?
And lastly, this food 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.
Rachael Ray Nutrish Tubbed Dog Food
The Bottom Line
Judging by its ingredients alone, Rachael Ray Nutrish tubbed dog food looks like an above-average wet 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.
As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 41% and a mean fat level of 15%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 36% for the overall product line.
And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 28%.
Near-average protein. Below-average fat. And above-average carbs when compared to a typical wet dog food.
When you consider the protein-boosting effect of the pea protein and peas, this looks like the profile of a wet product containing a moderate amount of meat.
Rachael Ray Nutrish tubs is a meat-based wet dog food using a moderate amount of various species as its main sources of animal protein, thus earning the brand 3.5 stars.
Please note certain recipes are sometimes given a higher or lower rating based upon our estimate of their total meat content and (when appropriate) their fat-to-protein ratios.
Rachael Ray Dog Food
The following list (if present) includes all dog food recalls since 2009 directly related to this product line. If there are no recalls listed in this section, we have not yet reported any events.
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A Final Word
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Notes and Updates
07/03/2015 Last Update