The Honest Kitchen Dog Food Review 2024

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Vet recommended

Written by Adam Lee-Smith

Veterinary reviewed by:

Published: 06/13/2023, edited: 03/04/2024

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The Wag! team conducts independent research and consults pet experts to curate our recommendations. This content is supported by our affiliate pet partners and we may receive a commission on the links provided.


The Honest Kitchen markets itself as the world's first human-grade pet food company. This dog food brand produces high-quality, thoughtfully sourced pet foods using only human-grade ingredients and non-GMO produce. 

According to customer surveys, over 70% of customers that switched their pets to The Honest Kitchen saw improvements in their pet's digestion, skin and coat health, and energy levels. For its industry-leading pet food products, The Honest Kitchen has won several awards, including Pet Supplies Plus' Best Innovation Award.

The Honest Kitchen is a pawpular vet-recommended brand that's well worth considering if you're looking to switch up your fur-baby's diet. In this Honest Kitchen dog food review, we'll examine the brand's recipes, pros and cons, recalls, and much more. Let's dig in!

The Honest Kitchen product ranges

The Honest Kitchen offers over 65 varieties of dry food, wet food, toppers, and treats.

The Honest Kitchen formulates all its recipes with the help of veterinary nutritionists. All The Honest Kitchen products are made in the U.S. with ingredients sourced from around the world. 

All The Honest Kitchen dog foods meet the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) nutrient profile guidelines for all life stages, maintenance (adults), or growth (puppies). Toppers, base mixes, and treats are for supplemental feeding only. 

Let's take a look at each range, their ingredients, and what makes them unique!

The Honest Kitchen Dry Dog Food

The Honest Kitchen Dry Dog Food

The Honest Kitchen dry dog food

The Honest Kitchen's Cluster range of dry dog food is made with human-grade ingredients only, with a quality named meat source as the top ingredient. Every flavor is gently slow-cooked to preserve nutrients.  

Ingredients are carefully chosen to ensure high nutritional value. For example, The Honest Kitchen adds taurine to support heart health and probiotics to promote healthy digestion. Oats used in the Whole Grain range are nutritious and rich in vitamin B6 and iron. 

The Honest Kitchen dry dog foods consist of an average of 28.8% protein as dry matter, which is slightly above average for dry dog food. 

There are two sub-ranges of The Honest Kitchen Clusters:

  • Whole Grain recipes: This grain-inclusive sub-range contains oats and barley as the primary grains. The range consists of three Whole Grain Chicken & Oat and one Whole Grain Beef & Oat recipes, including¬† chicken recipes specifically catering to small breeds and puppies.¬†

  • Grain Free recipes: You'll find five¬†grain-free The Honest Kitchen dry foods, which replace grains with potatoes, peas, and lentils as main fiber and carbohydrate sources. The range includes six recipes with flavors including chicken, beef, and turkey.

Shop The Honest Kitchen dry dog food

The Honest Kitchen Wet Dog Food

The Honest Kitchen Wet Dog Food

The Honest Kitchen wet dog food

One of Wag!'s top picks for the best wet dog food overall, The Honest Kitchen wet dog foods are cooked with high-quality meats, bone broth, non-GMO produce, and no artificial preservatives. The main difference between The Honest Kitchen wet dog food ranges is the texture. 

The Honest Kitchen wet dog foods contain an average of 48.7% protein as dry matter, which is above average for wet dog food. 

There are two different sub-ranges and 10 products in The Honest Kitchen wet dog food range:

  • One Pot Stew recipes: One Pot Stew recipes are thicker and chunkier than Butcher Block recipes. They contain a named meat source as the top ingredient and quality healthy produce, like sweet potatoes, spinach, and carrots. There are five flavors, including beef, chicken, and turkey.¬†

  • Butcher Block recipes: Butcher Block is The Honest Kitchen's p√Ęt√© dog food, which has a smoother consistency than One Pot Stews. There are five flavors in the Butcher Block range, including Beef with Cheddar and Farm Vegetables and Beef with Lamb and Spring Vegetables.

Shop The Honest Kitchen wet dog food

The Honest Kitchen Dehydrated Dog Food

The Honest Kitchen Dehydrated Dog Food

The Honest Kitchen dehydrated dog food

The Honest Kitchen's Dehydrated range is among the brand's most unique products. Simply add water to this dehydrated food and get a bowl of delicious human-grade wet food for your pup. The Dehydrated range is one of The Honest Kitchen's most cost-effective ‚ÄĒ a 10-pound bag makes 40 pounds of dog food.¬†

The Honest Kitchen dehydrated dog food recipes contain an average of 29.4% protein as dry matter, which is average for dehydrated dog food. 

There are four sub-ranges and 19 products in The Honest Kitchen Dehydrated range:

  • Whole Grain recipes: Dehydrated Whole Grain recipes contain organic oats and barley as the primary grains. One unusual product is the Whole Grain Veggie & Fruit Base Mix, which is ideal for adding home-cooked or raw protein. There are four flavors in the range: beef, chicken, turkey, and fish.

  • Grain Free recipes: This grain-free sub-range replaces grains with dehydrated potatoes, lentils, and peas as primary carb and fiber sources. The base mix for adding your own protein is also available as grain free. There are four grain-free flavors: beef, turkey, chicken, and fish.¬†

  • Gourmet Grains recipes: Gourmet Grains is essentially The Honest Kitchen's premium dehydrated sub-range. Each food contains two quality meats, quinoa, and dehydrated bone broth. For example, the Gourmet Grains Chicken & Duck Recipe consists of free-range chicken and cage-free duck.¬†

  • Limited Ingredient recipes: With only six whole ingredients, the Limited Ingredient Dehydrated range is ideal for picky eaters and dogs with sensitivity. Available in five flavors: chicken, beef, duck, turkey, and fish.

Shop The Honest Kitchen dehydrated dog food

The Honest Kitchen Meal Toppers

The Honest Kitchen Meal Toppers

The Honest Kitchen meal toppers

The Honest Kitchen range of pour-overs and toppers add flavor and nutritional value to your dog's food. 

There are 2 sub-ranges and 18 products in The Honest Kitchen meal topper range:

  • Pour Over recipes: The Honest Kitchen Pour Overs comes in many varieties, including superfood toppers and toppers to support certain aspects of your dog's health, like the immune system.¬†

  • Meal Booster recipes: Meal Boosters are formulated especially to add more protein to your dog's diet. Each variation consists of 99% meat. There are 4 flavors: chicken, beef, turkey and duck, and salmon and pollock.

Shop The Honest Kitchen meal toppers

The Honest Kitchen Dog Treats

The Honest Kitchen Dog Treats

The Honest Kitchen dog treats

The Honest Kitchen has an extensive dog treat range, with 20 products available across seven primary sub-ranges:

  • Goat's Milk N' Cookies:¬†All three vegetarian recipes list goat's milk as the top ingredient, with blueberries, peanut butter, and pumpkin as secondary ingredients. Goat's milk is nutritionally valuable and loaded with probiotics, which aid digestion.¬†
  • Bone Broth Bites:¬†These bite-sized treats contain no real meat, with bone broth as the top ingredient. Pumpkin, sweet potato, and carrots are added for nutritional value. Turkey, beef, and chicken flavors are available.¬†
  • Parmesan Pecks:¬†While these treats have parmesan in their name, cheese is seventh in the ingredient list. Grain and a quality meat source are the top ingredients. You'll find three flavors: duck & cherry, chicken & parmesan, and beef & blueberry.
  • Harvest Mini Bars:¬†Both chicken and beef recipes are made with 80% quality meat. Secondary ingredients include oats, apples, and carrots.¬†
  • Meaty Littles:¬†These tiny treats are perfect for small dogs and as training rewards. Both chicken & salmon and beef & salmon recipes are made with 80% meat. Both recipes are high in DHA omega-3 fatty acid, which supports brain development.¬†
  • Liver Chips:¬†Both chicken and beef recipes list cuts of muscle and organ meat as the top two ingredients. Cheddar cheese is added to provide flavor.
  • Cod Crisps and Ocean Chews:¬†This seafood range consists of five recipes: two cod crisps, two ocean chews, and one 100% white fish fillet. These recipes are limited ingredient with only one or two ingredients each.¬†

Why Wag! likes The Honest Kitchen

Here are some reasons why Wag! considers The Honest Kitchen to be an exceptional dog food brand. 

Recommended by Wag!'s veterinary consultant and pet nutrition expert

Dr. Georgia Jeremiah, one of Wag!’s veterinary consultants, personally recommends The Honest Kitchen dog food to her own clients: "The Honest Kitchen offers convenient dry, dehydrated and wet-food options that use high protein meat sources and are fortified with fish oils and essential nutrients such as taurine."

Contains human-grade ingredients only

The Honest Kitchen is the world's first human-grade dog food, with many other brands following in the brand's footsteps to create the best quality food pawssible for pups. 

All its dog food variations, including its kibble clusters, are made with 100% human-grade ingredients, including quality meats and whole, real produce. Low-temp cooking and slow dehydration ensure The Honest Kitchen's foods have high nutritional value. 

Committed to thoughtful, environmentally conscious production

The Honest Kitchen lives up to its name by being transparent about its business practices. The Honest Kitchen has a B Corp Certification, which lets consumers know the brand meets high environmental, social, legal, and transparency standards. 

For example, over 60% of The Honest Kitchen's packaging is recyclable or made from renewable materials. The Honest Kitchen sources 100% of its virgin paperboard from Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) compliant sources. The brand is also transparent about where it cooks and sources its ingredients, with 87% of its ingredients coming from North America. 

Refund policy

The Honest Kitchen has an excellent returns policy, ensuring customer satisfaction. Products purchased through its website can be returned for a full refund within 90 days if at least half a bag of food is left. Simply contact The Honest Kitchen for a refund to receive a free shipping label for your return.

Concerns & considerations

There are some concerns and considerations to think about before purchasing The Honest Kitchen dog food.

Higher quality means higher prices

The Honest Kitchen produces premium human-grade dog food, which means it's more expensive than many competitors. At the time of writing, a six-pack of 10.5-ounce Slow Cooked Chicken One Pot Stew costs $25.74 on The Honest Kitchen's website. A one-pound bag of Grain Free Chicken Clusters currently costs $7.99.

Lack of recipes for puppies

The Honest Kitchen only offers a few puppy food options. Only two of the brand's 55 variations are specifically formulated for puppies. That said, many of The Honest Kitchen's foods are suitable for all life stages, meaning you can feed them to puppies, adults, and senior dogs.

What pet parents say about The Honest Kitchen

"Our 15 yr old Yorkie had quit eating almost anything, including people food. She lost over 2 lbs in one month (weighed 10 lbs in December). A friend gave me 2 of these meals & Daisy loved them. Found them on sale at a local pet supply store so I stocked up."

"We have two very picky german shepherds that will not eat kibble without a topper of some sort. This dehydrated chicken meal and also the grain free version were a hit! They love mealtimes now."

Read more reviews on Chewy.

The Honest Kitchen brand history

Lucy Postins founded The Honest Kitchen in San Diego in 2002. Lucy began experimenting with recipes for her Rhodesian Ridgeback, Mosi, who had recurring skin issues and ear infections. She believed Mosi's health issues were related to his diet. 

Lucy noticed there were no human-grade whole-ingredient dog foods on the market, so she decided to cook up her own. After feeding Mosi dehydrated human-grade food, his skin and ear health improved significantly. 

Realizing other pets could benefit from a similar diet, Lucy founded The Honest Kitchen. As the first human-grade pet food brand, The Honest Kitchen overcame many hurdles for recognition, including winning a court battle against the Ohio Department of Agriculture for the right to commercial free speech. 

Over 20 years later, The Honest Kitchen has offices across the US and still uses the same human-grade ingredients from trusted sources in all its products. The Honest Kitchen's headquarters are in San Diego.

The Honest Kitchen recall history

The Honest Kitchen has had one recall in its history.

On February 21, 2013, The Honest Kitchen voluntarily recalled five lots of Verve, Zeal, and Thrive pet products due to potential Salmonella contamination. 

This recall affected products made between August and November 2012 and those sold online after August 2012. The Honest Kitchen issued the recall after learning one of its suppliers was recalling parsley due to possible Salmonella contamination. 

The Honest Kitchen's recall was precautionary to ensure product quality and the safety of its customers. There were no reports of illness in relation to this recall.

All product images sourced from The Honest Kitchen's website. Copyright The Honest Kitchen.


Is The Honest Kitchen dehydrated dog food raw?


How long is The Honest Kitchen dehydrated dog food good for after rehydrating?


The Honest Kitchen‚Äôs dog food contains taurine ‚ÄĒ is it safe for dogs?


Is The Honest Kitchen dog food available outside the U.S.?


Is The Honest Kitchen formulated to meet AAFCO standards?


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