Rachael Ray Nutrish Dish (Dry)

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Rating: ★★★½☆

Rachael Ray Nutrish Dish Dog Food receives the Advisor’s mid-tier rating of 3.5 stars.

The Rachael Ray Nutrish Dish product line includes two dry dog foods.

Each recipe below includes its related AAFCO nutrient profile when available on the product’s official webpage: Growth, Maintenance, All Life Stages, Supplemental or Unspecified.

  • Rachael Ray Nutrish Dish Beef and Brown Rice [A]
  • Rachael Ray Nutrish Dish Chicken and Brown Rice [A]

Rachael Ray Nutrish Dish Chicken and Brown Rice was selected to represent both products in the line for this review.

Rachael Ray Nutrish Dish Chicken and Brown Rice

Dry Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 29% | Fat = 16% | Carbs = 48%

Ingredients: Chicken, chicken meal, dried peas, brown rice, brewers rice, pea protein, poultry fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols), cranberries, flaxseed, natural flavor, dried plain beet pulp, dried carrots, salt, dried apples, dried potatoes, zinc proteinate, menhaden fish oil, vitamin E supplement, glycerin, iron proteinate, choline chloride, sunflower oil, l-ascorbyl-2-polyphosphate (source of vitamin C), brown sugar, manganese proteinate, copper proteinate, niacin, d-calcium pantothenate, biotin, sodium selenite, vitamin A supplement, riboflavin supplement, thiamine mononitrate, vitamin B12 supplement, calcium iodate, pyridoxine hydrochloride, vitamin D3 supplement, folic acid

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 4.4%

Red items indicate controversial ingredients

Estimated Nutrient Content
MethodProteinFatCarbs
Guaranteed Analysis26%14%NA
Dry Matter Basis29%16%48%
Calorie Weighted Basis25%33%42%
Protein = 25% | Fat = 33% | Carbs = 42%

The first ingredient in this dog food is chicken. Although it is a quality item, raw chicken 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 chicken meal. Chicken meal is considered a meat concentrate and contains nearly 300% more protein than fresh chicken.

The third ingredient includes dried peas. Dried peas are a good source of carbohydrates. Plus they’re naturally rich in dietary fiber.

However, dried peas contain about 27% protein, a factor that must be considered when judging the meat content of this dog food.

The fourth ingredient 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 fifth ingredient is brewers rice. Brewers rice is a cereal grain by-product consisting of the small fragments left over after milling whole rice. Aside from the caloric energy it contains, this item is 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 poultry fat. Poultry fat is obtained from rendering, a process similar to making soup in which the fat itself is skimmed from the surface of the liquid.

Poultry fat is high in linoleic acid, an omega-6 fatty acid essential for life.

However, poultry fat is a relatively generic ingredient and can be considered lower in quality than a similar item from a named source animal (like chicken fat).

The eighth ingredient includes cranberries, a nutrient-rich fruit that’s also high in fiber.

The ninth ingredient is flaxseed, 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.

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 seven notable exceptions

First, beet pulp is a controversial ingredient, a high fiber by-product of sugar beet processing.

Some denounce beet pulp as an inexpensive filler while others cite its outstanding intestinal health and blood sugar benefits.

We only call your attention here to the controversy and believe the inclusion of beet pulp in reasonable amounts in most dog foods is entirely acceptable.

Next, we find dried potato, a dehydrated item usually made from the by-products of potato processing. In most cases, dried potato can contain about 10% dry matter protein which can have a slight affect on our estimate of the total meat content of this recipe.

In addition, glycerin is used in the food industry as a natural sweetener and as a humectant to help preserve the moisture content of a product.

Next, this recipe includes sunflower oil. Sunflower oil is nutritionally similar to safflower oil. Since these oils are high in omega-6 fatty acids and contain no omega-3’s, they’re considered less nutritious than canola or flaxseed oils.

Sunflower oil is notable for its resistance to heat damage during cooking.

There are several different types of sunflower oil, some better than others. Without knowing more, it’s impossible to judge the quality of this ingredient.

We also note the use of sugar. Sugar is always an unwelcome addition to any dog food. Because of its high glycemic index, it can unfavorably impact the blood glucose level of any animal soon after it is eaten.

Next, we find no mention of probiotics, friendly bacteria applied to the surface of the kibble after processing to help with digestion.

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 Dish Dog Food
The Bottom Line

Judging by its ingredients alone, Rachael Ray Nutrish Dish looks like an 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 29%, a fat level of 16% and estimated carbohydrates of about 48%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 29% and a mean fat level of 16%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 48% for the overall product line.

And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 54%.

Near-average protein. Near-average fat. And near-average carbs when compared to a typical dry dog food.

When you consider the protein-boosting effect of the dried peas, pea protein, flaxseed and dried potato, this looks like the profile of a kibble containing a moderate amount of meat.

Bottom line?

Rachael Ray Nutrish Dish is a plant-based kibble using a moderate amount of chicken meal as its main source of animal protein, thus earning the brand 3.5 stars.

Recommended.

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
Recall History

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.

You can view a complete list of all dog food recalls sorted by date. Or view the same list sorted alphabetically by brand.

To learn why our ratings have nothing to do with a product’s recall history, please visit our Dog Food Recalls FAQ page.

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A Final Word

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

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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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However, we do receive a fee from Chewy.com for each purchase made as a direct result of a referral from our website. This fee is a fixed dollar amount and has nothing to do with the size of an order or the brand selected for purchase.

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

Notes and Updates

03/26/2016 Last Update

  • Michelle Medeiros Perry

    My two dogs love her good especially dish also there coats are so healthy and shine since I switched to her food

  • TownWhiner

    Had been feeding my poodle this food for a month.He would not eat the vegetables but enjoyed the kibble.Recently i had purchased a bag and found dead ants all over the kibble.I have contacted the company and i was asked for the information on the bag.I was asked if i would like to be refunded as i told them i refused to feed it to my dog.The last email i got was one asking if i changed his food which i did.They have not gotten back to me since and have not issued me a refund.The issue i have with all of this is the fact that i dont know if those ants died as a result of ingesting the kibble or due to not having water and being sealed in the bag from the factory.I had just purchased the bag and it was my dogs first feeding when i noticed a few dead ants all over one of the kibble.I dont have a ant problem so i dont know where the ants came from.I have a photo that i will be posting of this kibble.What makes me nervous is all the stories of barbiturates being found in dog foods.If the food killed the ants what is in it?I have switched my dog to a better brand but i have kept the bag of Rachel Ray Dish as i plan to have it analyzed eventually.Terrible experience with customer service and i will be contacting the better business bureau.

  • Carol Chandler Hunsucker

    My dogs have been eating Nutrish for a month. They enjoy it but I seem to be buying alot more dog food than I did on the last brand I used, Sportmix Wholesome. I’m concerned that they will gain weight since they are eating more.

  • michael leatherman

    we have a 3year old pit bull she has had skin alergy for the last 2 years we started feeding her nutrish beef and brown rice in the last 2 months she has an 80% turn around we thank you and our baby girl does also thank you so much

  • Tammy Carveth

    Pretty much all dog and cat food has sugar to encourage the animal to eat it

  • Secret Squirrel

    Tried a 4pound bag when I ran out of Taste of the Wild.
    My Golden retriever ate it immediately. I never saw her do that with any dry food.
    If it’s reasonable, and good for her I’ll keep buying it.

  • Jamie Berry Brown

    My 12 year old mix was a very very picky eater. He would go days with out eating if he didn’t like the food. We have changed brands so many times I can’t count. I bought the Rachel Ray dry food and he loved it at first. Now not so much. Sometimes I feed him wet. But I don’t understand why there is sugar in it. That’s one thing I don’t like.

  • Holly Di Nuzzo

    My dogs love this food

  • deanlee

    Sorry, but when I see salt and sugar in dog food, I move along.

  • Sarah

    Take a look at drharveys.com read testimonials and you can even speak to Dr Harvey himself. Great holistic products. My dog has kidney issues as well.

  • SandraS

    The first time my dog had this I got it because I was out of her normal and couldn’t make the trip to the far away store that sold her good food. She loved it and dog food advisor gave it 4 stars. The second time I bought the food she couldn’t stop itching after eating it. I noticed advisor was down to 3 1/2 stars. I warn people about R.Ray food because over the years it seems that it starts out positive then goes down to cheaper ingredients that make my dog itchy and miserable.

  • mahoraner

    I didn’t experience that, but also i didn’t feed her any more than the sample.
    I’m sorry for your experience ):
    If your looking for something with a similar price, iams naturals grain free, newmans own, eagle pack, and fromm are all around the same price, and are still great (if not better).

  • Barbara Cannon

    i got the sample also and my old dog with bad appetite went nuts for it. i gave her the sample over a few days, then a couple days ago bought a big bag. i thought it was a good idea to keep giving it to her…..BUT i am worried that maybe something is not right with it. she has started having nightmares, and now last night a seizure and this morning a seizure. i have to say she is old and has kidney disease that is why she has a bad appetite. It could also be why the seizures. she has been to the vet so don’t lecture me. vet does not know but it could be the food. i recent;y got her eating again and gaining weight back, but now i am scared of this dog food. i have to watch and see but i took the Dish dog food away from her. she has eaten a lot in the last couple days since i set it on the floor. maybe 2 to 3 cups. any body else have nightmares or seizures after a few days of eating

  • Amateria

    Now every time you show it to her she’ll be like oh my gosh yes! Here comes the real food! Gimme!

  • mahoraner

    i know im the only one who has posted on this article. But i wanted to mention that i got a sample of this in the mail, Although im not going to feed it full time, i gave her a handful as a treat and she went crazy. She literally gobbled the whole handful down in 3 seconds, and licked my hand clean.
    And usually shes picky, the only reason she eats the wellness is because

    So if anyone has a super picky dog, i would try this.
    Although i would only recommend it if your dog is the “i’d rather starve myself to death” kind of picky.
    And if they’re the “i’ll only eat a few bites” kind of dog” i would suggest mixing this with a better quality food.

  • mahoraner niall

    Im happy to see that companies are finally understanding that people who dont want to go further than the grocery store still want high quality food for their dogs, Of course this isnt the best food, but when you compare it to dog chow and pedigree, this is the obvious winner

    Another food to add to the list of Good quality grocery store dog foods
    along with:

    Kirkland
    Bjs,
    Pure balance
    Iams naturals
    Beyond
    rachael ray zero grain
    fresh pet
    dogs well
    and now nutrish dish

    Also i have seen “i and love and you”, wellness, and castor and pollux rolling into my local grocery store, and they just got a bigger fridge for fresh pet (they were getting so much they had to put some in the human meat section, hahha) but i have boycotted c&p since purina bought them, but it is still better than the other junk dog “foods”

    But i am happy to see that people are now given options

    Weather your on a budget, or your rich, or you want food without going to a pet store, im happy to say that there are now plenty of foods to fulfill all those things and still are good quality