Deli Fresh Slice and Serve (Rolls)

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆

This Review Has Been Merged with
Freshpet Vital Dog Food (Rolled)

Deli Fresh Slice and Serve dog food rolls gets the Advisor’s highest rating of 5 stars.

The Deli Fresh Slice and Serve product line includes two moist 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:

  • Deli Fresh Adult Turkey, Vegetables and Rice Formula
  • Deli Fresh Adult Chicken, Vegetables and Rice Formula

Deli Fresh Adult Chicken, Vegetables and Rice Formula was selected to represent the others in the line for this review.

Deli Fresh Chicken, Vegetables and Rice

Rolled Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 38% | Fat = 25% | Carbs = 30%

Ingredients: Chicken, eggs, chicken liver, chicken broth, carrots, brown rice, peas, rice bran, dried kelp, carrageenan, natural flavors, salt, inulin, flaxseed oil, green tea extract, choline chloride, vitamin E supplement, niacin, biotin, riboflavin supplement, manganous oxide, thiamine mononitrate, vitamin B12 supplement, vitamin D3 supplement, pyridoxine hydrochloride, folic acid, calcium carbonate, zinc proteinate, iron proteinate, ferrous sulfate, zinc oxide, copper proteinate, copper sulfate, niacin, manganese proteinate, calcium pantothenate, manganous oxide, thiamine mononitrate, calcium iodate, sodium selenite

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 6.3%

Red items indicate controversial ingredients

Estimated Nutrient Content
Guaranteed Analysis9%6%NA
Dry Matter Basis38%25%30%
Calorie Weighted Basis29%48%23%
Protein = 29% | Fat = 48% | Carbs = 23%

The first ingredient in this dog food includes chicken. Chicken is considered “the clean combination of flesh and skin… derived from the parts or whole carcasses of chicken”.1

Chicken is naturally rich in the ten essential amino acids required by a dog to sustain life.

The second ingredient includes eggs. Eggs are easy to digest and have an exceptionally high biological value.

The third ingredient is chicken liver. This is an organ meat sourced from a named animal and thus considered a beneficial component.

The fourth ingredient lists chicken broth. Broths are nutritionally empty. But because they add moisture to a dog food they are a common finding in many canned products.

The fifth item lists carrots. Carrots are rich in beta-carotene, minerals and dietary fiber.

The sixth item is brown rice, a complex carbohydrate that (once cooked) can be fairly easy to digest. However, aside from its natural energy content, rice is of only modest nutritional value to a dog.

The seventh ingredient includes peas. Peas are a quality source of carbohydrates. Plus (like all legumes) they’re rich in natural fiber.

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

The eighth ingredient lists rice bran, a healthy by-product of milling whole grain rice. The bran is the fiber-rich outer layer of the grain containing starch, protein, fat as well as vitamins and minerals.

The ninth ingredient is dried kelp, a dehydrated form of seaweed also known as alginate. Kelp is most likely used here as a thickening or gelling agent.

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 four notable exceptions

First, we note the inclusion of 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 find flaxseed oil, one of the best non-fish sources of omega-3 fatty acids — essential to a dog’s health.

Next, carrageenan is a gelatin-like thickening agent extracted from seaweed. Although carrageenan has been used as a food additive for hundreds of years, there does appear to be some recent controversy regarding its long term biological safety.

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.

Deli Fresh Slice and Serve Dog Food
The Bottom Line

Judging by its ingredients alone, Deli Fresh Dog Food appears to be an above-average 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 38%, a fat level of 25% and estimated carbohydrates of about 30%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 38% and a mean fat level of 25%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 30% for the overall product line.

And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 67%.

Near-average protein. Above-average fat. And average carbs when this rolled product is compared to a typical rolled dog food.

Even when you consider the protein-boosting effect of the peas, this looks like the profile of a wet dog food containing a notable amount of meat.

Bottom line?

Deli Fresh Slice and Serve is a meat-based rolled dog food using a notable amount of fresh chicken or turkey as its main sources of animal protein, thus earning the brand 5 stars.

Enthusiastically recommended.

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Notes and Updates

11/16/2010 Original review

03/25/2014 Last Update

  1. Association of American Feed Control Officials