Against the Grain Cat Food Review

Against the Grain describes itself as “revolutionary, evolutionary, next generation pet food”, but is it a healthy, safe choice for your cat? Find out in our unbiased Against the Grain cat food review.

The We’re All About Cats Standard—Rating Against the Grain on What Matters

We’ve analyzed Against the Grain and graded it according to the We’re All About Cats standard, evaluating the brand on species-appropriateness, ingredient quality, product variety, price, customer experience, and recall history. Here’s how it rates in each of these six key areas.

Ratings

  • Species-Appropriateness – 8/10
  • Ingredient Quality – 7/10
  • Product Variety – 6/10
  • Price – 5/10
  • Customer Experience – 8/10
  • Recall History – 9/10

Overall Score: 7.2/10

We give Against the Grain cat food a 43 out of 60 rating or a B+ grade.

About Against the Grain

Against the Grain was created by twin siblings Brett and Chelsea Sher. The twins started their careers in the pet food industry in 2003, when their parents took over the Evangers pet food company. Evangers is a well-established private label manufacturer also known for its pet food brand of the same name.

After nine years in their parents’ business, the twins launched a pet food company of their own.

Against the Grain focuses on grain-free, meat-based foods and claims to make food that’s “second to none, and completely unique, revolutionary, evolutionary, nutritious, and wholesome”.

Sourcing and Manufacturing

While Against the Grain dog food is made in the United States in a company-owned facility, all Against the Grain cat food is made by a manufacturing partner in Thailand. Their ingredients are primarily sourced in and around Thailand.

Has Against the Grain cat food been recalled?

Against the Grain cat food has never been recalled.

What kinds of cat food does Against the Grain offer?

The Against the Grain cat food lineup is broken into two lines—Farmer’s Market and Original. Both lines include wet food only, though some come in plastic tubs and others are sold in cans.

Against the Grain uses only fresh meat, never including dehydrated or rendered meals and their foods are made without any preservatives.

Against the Grain Cat Food – Top 3 Recipes Reviewed

Product NameFood TypePrice per OunceOur Grade
Against the Grain Caribbean Club with Chicken & Cheese DinnerWet$0.36A
Against the Grain Chicken & Pumpkin Samba DinnerWet$0.36A
Against the Grain Tuna Mango Tango with Duck DinnerWet$0.48A

Against the Grain Caribbean Club with Chicken & Cheese Dinner Review

Against the Grain Caribbean Club with Chicken & Cheese Dinner Review

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Chicken appears to be the primary protein source in this canned cat food.

This Against the Grain cat food is a chicken-based food featuring shredded chicken in a thick gravy. Chicken is the first ingredient, representing roughly 85% or more of the total recipe. This ingredient is followed by water and cheddar cheese.

Cheddar cheese, or any type of cheese, is an unusual inclusion in cat food, but not necessarily a bad one. Though cats are lactose intolerant and generally shouldn’t eat dairy, cheddar and other similar cheeses are relatively low in lactose and, unless your cat is particularly sensitive, shouldn’t cause a problem.

Some reviewers observed that they barely noticed the cheese in the food, so the amount may be too scant to have any significant effect.

The food contains a small amount of palm oil as its primary source of fat, contributing to the food’s approximately 10% fat content. Remember that cats naturally consume a diet with roughly 46% fat.

The stew is stabilized with a combination of tapioca and xanthan gum. These ingredients aren’t ideal or species-appropriate, but in the tiny quantities found in this food, they should be safe for cats.

Overall, this food is high in protein with low fat and low carbohydrate content.

The food has 74 calories in each 2.8-ounce can or 26 calories per ounce.

Ingredients

Chicken, Water Sufficient for Processing, Cheddar Cheese, Tricalcium Phosphate, Palm Oil, Tapioca, Taurine, Xanthan Gum, Vitamins (Vitamin E Supplement, Niacin, Vitamin A Supplement, Thiamine Mononitrate, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Pantothenic Acid, Riboflavin Supplement, Choline Chloride, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Folic Acid, Biotin, Vitamin B12 Supplement), Minerals (Ferrous Sulfate Monohydrate, Zinc Sulfate Heptahydrate, Manganese Sulfate Monohydrate, Copper Sulfate Pentahydrate, Dicalcium Phosphate, Potassium Iodide, Potassium Chloride, Magnesium Sulfate Monohydrate, Sodium Selenite).

Guaranteed Analysis

Crude Protein13.5% min
Crude Fat2.0 min
Fiber0.5% max
Moisture82% max
Ash1.% max

Against the Grain Caribbean Club Chicken & Cheese Dinner Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Breakdown

Against the Grain Caribbean Club Chicken & Cheese Dinner Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Breakdown

Ingredients We Liked: Chicken

Ingredients We Didn’t Like: Tapioca, Palm Oil

Common Allergens: Chicken, Dairy

Pros

  • 85% of the food consists of meat
  • Rich in nourishing animal protein
  • A moisture-rich, hydrating food

Cons

  • Expensive
  • May not have enough fat
  • Not all cats can tolerate cheese

Against the Grain Chicken & Pumpkin Samba Dinner Review

Against the Grain Chicken & Pumpkin Samba Dinner Review

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Chicken appears to be the primary protein source in this canned cat food.

This Against the Grain meal is also primarily a chicken-based food. This time, the food is supplemented with pumpkin pureé, a popular cat food additive that may help to reduce constipation and improve overall gut motility.

The first ingredient in the food is chicken, a nourishing source of animal protein. The chicken is shredded and combined with pumpkin, palm oil, tapioca, and xanthan gum. Like most Against the Grain foods, it’s low in fat overall and lacks a significant source of animal-sourced fat.

The food is fortified with vitamins, minerals, and amino acids that make it nutritionally complete and balanced.

Overall, the food is high in protein with low fat and low carbohydrates.

The food has 68 calories in each 2.8-ounce can or 24 calories per ounce.

Ingredients

Chicken, Water Sufficient for Processing, Pumpkin, Tricalcium Phosphate, Palm Oil, Tapioca, Taurine, Xanthan Gum, Vitamins (Vitamin E Supplement, Niacin, Vitamin A Supplement, Thiamine Mononitrate, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Pantothenic Acid, Riboflavin Supplement, Choline Chloride, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Folic Acid, Biotin, Vitamin B12 Supplement), Minerals (Ferrous Sulfate Monohydrate, Zinc Sulfate Heptahydrate, Manganese Sulfate Monohydrate, Copper Sulfate Pentahydrate, Dicalcium Phosphate, Potassium Iodide, Potassium Chloride, Magnesium Sulfate Monohydrate, Sodium Selenite).

Guaranteed Analysis

Crude Protein12% min
Crude Fat2.0% min
Fiber0.5% max
Moisture83.5% max
Ashn/a

Against the Grain Chicken & Pumpkin Samba Dinner Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Breakdown

Ingredients We Liked: Chicken

Ingredients We Didn’t Like: Tapioca, Palm Oil

Common Allergens: Chicken

Pros

  • Rich in animal sourced protein
  • Primarily made from meat
  • Extremely low carbohydrate content

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Relies on plant-sourced fat

Against the Grain Tuna Mango Tango with Duck Dinner Grain-Free Wet Cat Food Review

Against the Grain Tuna Mango Tango with Duck Dinner Grain-Free Wet Cat Food Review

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Tuna appears to be the primary protein source in this canned cat food.

This food definitely goes against the grain by daring to include a hint of tropical fruit. Besides mango, what’s this food made of? Let’s take a closer look at the recipe.

The ingredient list starts with wild bonito tuna, followed by water sufficient for processing, mango, and duck. Like all Against the Grain foods, this product is at least 85% meat content.

It’s accented with palm oil as a primary source of fat and thickened with a combination of tapioca and xanthan gum. These ingredients aren’t species-appropriate, but they’re present in very small amounts and shouldn’t harm your cat.

Finally, the food is fortified with a range of synthetic vitamins, minerals, and amino acids that make it nutritionally complete and balanced.

Overall, this food is rich in protein with low fat and moderate carbohydrate content.

The food has 71 calories per tray or about 20 calories per ounce.

Ingredients

Tuna, Water Sufficient for Processing, Mango, Duck, Tricalcium Phosphate, Palm Oil, Tapioca, Xanthan Gum, Taurine, Vitamins (Vitamin E Supplement, Niacin, Vitamin A Supplement, Thiamine Mononitrate, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Pantothenic Acid, Riboflavin Supplement, Choline Chloride, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Folic Acid, Biotin, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Minerals (Ferrous Sulfate Monohydrate, Zinc Sulfate Heptahydrate, Manganese Sulfate Monohydrate, Copper Sulfate Pentahydrate, Dicalcium Phosphate, Potassium Iodide, Potassium Chloride, Magnesium Sulfate Monohydrate, Sodium Selenite).

Guaranteed Analysis

Crude Protein10% min
Crude Fat0.5% min
Fiber0.5% max
Moisture87% max
Ash2.0% max

Against the Grain Tuna Mango Tango with Duck Dinner Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Breakdown

Ingredients We Liked: Duck

Ingredients We Didn’t Like: Mango, Palm Oil, Tapioca

Common Allergens: Fish

Pros

  • Primarily made from meat ingredients
  • Rich in protein
  • Low carbohydrate content

Cons

  • One of Against the Grain’s most expensive foods
  • Low fat content

What do customers think of Against the Grain cat food?

Most customers like Against the Grain cat food. Most positive reviews discuss the food’s quality, while negative reviews typically address palatability issues. Let’s see what a few customers have to say about it.

Positive Reviews

“This is quality cat food. It’s basically white shredded chicken with pumpkin. I don’t like that it contains tapioca and xanthan gum, both of which shouldn’t be in pet food (and why I didn’t give it 5 stars), but good luck trying to find food without at least one questionable ingredient. The cats love it, and it’s a great consistency, so I’ll definitely buy this again.” –  Teri, reviewing Against the Grain Chicken & Pumpkin Samba Dinner

“Baby Snu Kitty here. Now THIS stuff rocks! Is this Caribbean style food? Hooman Mommy, can we move to the Caribbean??? Like NOW!!!”BSnu, reviewing Against the Grain Carribean Club with Chicken & Cheese Dinner

Negative Reviews

“I bought this in spite of the fact that my cats usually don’t seem to like Pumpkin. After reading the reviews however, I decided to give it a try. Should have gone with my first thoughts….. Also tried the chicken and cheese due to good reviews. I must say – it looks pretty healthy, but again, the kitty cats just aren’t sold on Against the Grain products for reasons only known to them. Two stars ONLY because of the good ingredients…” TenneSue, reviewing Against the Grain Chicken & Pumpkin Samba Dinner

“TThey sniff it and walk away. I don’t know why. It looks like decent shredded white meat. It is supposed to have cheese in it but I didn’t see any and my cheese loving cat surely did not detect any. In any case, I will not buy it again. It’s too bad Chewy does not offer some kind of mix and match case so we don’t waste our money on things they will not eat.”Greposh, reviewing Against the Grain Carribean Club with Chicken & Cheese Dinner

How much does Against the Grain cat food cost?

Against the Grain cat food is a little more expensive than the average cat food. According to the company’s feeding guidelines of three cans or tubs per day for a 10-lb cat, it would cost from $3.10 to over $5 per day. This puts it among some of the most expensive brands on the market, including Weruva, Tiki Cat, and NomNomNow.

Overall, is Against the Grain a good choice?

Although Against the Grain doesn’t claim to use human-grade ingredients and tends to include more plant ingredients than Weruva or Tiki Cat, the three brands are similar.

Like Weruva and Tiki Cat, Against the Grain foods are rich in meat and loaded with protein, making them a species-appropriate pick for your carnivore. Though their recipes nail carnivore-appropriate protein content, they tend to be a bit lean. You might want to rotate Against the Grain with another fattier food.

Where to Buy Against the Grain Cat Food

You can buy Against the Grain cat food in independent pet retailers and online through stores including Amazon and Chewy.

Shop for Against the Grain Cat Food on Chewy

About the author


Mallory Crusta is a writer and adventurecat enthusiast on a mission to make cats’ lives extraordinary. She’s one of the founders of Wildernesscat – a site for happy, healthy, and adventurous cats who are fueled by nature. Visit Wildernesscat for radically natural cat nutrition, home remedies, and lifestyle inspiration.