Do you want to feed your dog a raw diet but need the convenience of kibble? Do you need shelf-stable food made with wholesome or even human-grade ingredients?
Luckily, dehydrated dog food is becoming more popular. And, it offers similar benefits to a raw diet, without the mess or stress. But which option is the best dehydrated dog food?
My personal favorite is The Honest Kitchen Dehydrated Dog Food.
It’s free of artificial fillers and preservatives. And, it includes human-grade ingredients created and processed in a human food facility.
But, they aren’t the only dehydrated dog food option out there. There are many different choices — from puppy food to one with possum as a protein.
Our Best Dehydrated Dog Food
- The Honest Kitchen Turkey Recipe Dehydrated Dog Food (Best Dehydrated Dog Food)
- The Honest Kitchen Whole Food Clusters Puppy Blend Grain-Free Dehydrated Dog Food (Best for Puppies)
- SOJOS Complete Senior Grain-Free Freeze-Dried Raw Dog Food (Best for Seniors)
- I and Love and You Stir & Boom Grain-Free Dehydrated Dog Food (Best for Small Breeds)
- Canisource Grand Cru Turkey Grain-Free Dehydrated Dog Food (Best for Large Breeds)
- The Honest Kitchen Whole Grain Chicken Recipe Dehydrated Dog Food (Best Budget Food)
- Addiction Homestyle Venison & Cranberry Dinner Raw Dehydrated Dog Food (Best Premium Food)
- Dr. Harvey’s Specialty Diet Healthy Weight Human Grade Dehydrated Dog Food (Best for Weight Loss)
- Canisource Grand Cru Pork & Lamb Grain-Free Dehydrated Dog Food (Best for Weight Gain)
- Addiction Perfect Summer Brushtail Raw Dehydrated Dog Food (Best for Allergies)
10 Best Dehydrated Dog Food Reviewed
The recipes listed below follow the AAFCO nutrient profile guidelines. Before switching your dog to dehydrated food, please consult with your veterinarian.
The Honest Kitchen Turkey Recipe Dehydrated Dog Food
- First 5 Ingredients: Dehydrated Turkey, Organic Oats, Dehydrated Potatoes, Organic Flaxseed, Dehydrated Carrots
- Guaranteed Analysis: 22% Crude Protein, 15% Crude Fat, 5% Fiber, 8.6% Moisture
- Caloric Content: 470 kcal/cup
- Key Feature: Human-grade minimally processed dog food suitable for all life stages
When it comes to dehydrated food, it’s essential to choose an option that is high in value. You also want one with quality ingredients and that’s easy to prepare. The Honest Kitchen Whole Grain Turkey Recipe meets those needs, and then more.
First, it’s crafted with human-grade and whole foods like cage-free turkey. These ingredients are raw and are air-dried over low heat to keep nutrients. The turkey includes chondroitin, which keeps joints healthy and is a high-protein source.
This formula also includes organic oats and potatoes as easy-to-digest carb sources. And, these ingredients also provide other nutrients — like potassium for strong bones.
The Honest Kitchen makes balanced diets for adult dogs of all breeds and sizes. Plus, they make this food in a human food facility! To serve, add warm water and wait three minutes for a delicious meal you’re dog is sure to love.
This formula doesn’t include by-products, preservatives, GMO ingredients, corn, wheat, or soy.
Pet owners love that this food includes raw ingredients, but is convenient to travel with and use regularly.
The Honest Kitchen Whole Food Clusters Puppy Blend Grain-Free Dehydrated Dog Food
- First 5 Ingredients: Chicken, Potatoes, Lentils, Peas, Chicken Liver
- Guaranteed Analysis: 27% Crude Protein, 16% Crude Fat, 5% Fiber, 12% Moisture
- Caloric Content: 463 kcal/cup
- Key Feature: High-protein puppy food with raw ingredients in convenient pellets
There aren’t many dehydrated foods that fit a puppy’s needs. This is because puppies need higher protein, more fats, and a healthy ratio of potassium and calcium.
This helps keep them strong and have steady growth. This is why it’s essential to feed them puppy-specific food for the first 12-18 months of their lives.
Luckily, The Honest Kitchen makes an option for the youngsters. Their Food Clusters Puppy Blend Dehydrated Dog Food provides everything a puppy needs.
This formula starts with raw free range chicken that’s been cold-pressed and dehydrated. This provides a high-protein diet while providing fats like glucosamine for healthy muscles and joints.
Coconut oil and salmon oil include omega fatty acids — keeping your pup’s skin hydrated and coat shiny. And, they also provide DHA, which is great for brain development.
It’s dehydrated and formed into small kibble-like clusters. This makes it easier for puppies to eat without making a mess. And, while you can rehydrate the food, it’s not necessary.
This recipe is free of artificial flavors, preservatives, GMOs, meat meals, and fillers. The Honest Kitchen only offers human-grade food made in a human food facility, including this formula.
Dog moms and dads agree that this is the food closest to “kibble” feeding, while also offering raw food benefits. And, many love that the food doesn’t need to be rehydrated so feeding is easier.
SOJOS Complete Senior Grain-Free Freeze-Dried Raw Dog Food
- First 5 Ingredients: Turkey, Sweet Potatoes, Cranberries, Flaxseed, Whole Egg
- Guaranteed Analysis: 26% Crude Protein, 12% Crude Fat, 5% Fiber, 10% Moisture
- Caloric Content: 284 kcal/cup
- Key Feature: Grain-free and high-protein senior dog food with glucosamine for supple joints
Dehydrated dog food is one of the best ways to feed your senior dog. Rehydrating gives your pooch more moisture. This is excellent for older dogs who may not drink enough water.
And, it can also provide more flavor and texture, which will entice them to eat their food. But, it’s also important to choose a senior food option so your good boy can get the nutrients they need.
Sojos Complete Senior Raw Dog Food is for dogs 6+ and is perfect for seniors who need a grain-free formula. It starts with deboned turkey — offering glucosamine and chondroitin. These help protect joints and improve mobility.
Salmon is also added for omega fatty acids and vitamins that protect heart health. Cranberries, apples, and pumpkin are rich in antioxidants — boosting your dog’s immunity.
Before feeding, add water and soak the food for about two minutes. And, this food is a high-value food that’s also great on the wallet. 1 pound of dry mix yields up to 5 pounds of fresh food. It’s made without artificial ingredients, fillers, preservatives, or soy.
Pet parents love that the food gets soft enough for their senior dogs to eat easier. And, many have noted that it helps with weight maintenance too.
I and Love and You Stir & Boom Grain-Free Dehydrated Dog Food
- First 5 Ingredients: Lamb, Yellow Split Peas, Sweet Potatoes, Carrots, Cabbage
- Guaranteed Analysis: 23% Crude Protein, 11% Crude Fat, 4% Fiber, 10% Moisture
- Caloric Content: 335 kcal/cup
- Key Feature: Grain-free and low glycemic dog food for small breeds
Small dogs need plenty of protein, healthy fats, and fiber to live healthy and active lives. And, they also need to avoid high-calorie foods. This is because gaining too much weight can be detrimental to their tiny bodies.
I and Love and You Raw Grain-Free dehydrated dog food provides their nutritional needs without the fillers they don’t.
This human-grade recipe features free-range lamb and whole eggs as top ingredients. These offer 23% Crude Protein — and other vitamins like selenium for heart health.
Peas, sweet potatoes, and spinach provide vitamins like iron for energy and fiber for easy digestion. And, they also offer a boost of antioxidants for a healthy and robust immune system.
This formula uses a gentle dehydration method to preserve all nutrients. Besides being grain-free and gluten-free, this food is also corn, wheat, and soy-free.
Because this food uses low glycemic ingredients, it helps with healthy weight management. This is excellent for small dogs that are more prone to obesity. And, I and Love and You note that their food is suitable for all life stages, from puppies to seniors.
Dog owners say that this food is a favorite amongst their picky eaters. Plus, they love that it’s a lower-calorie but high-protein option.
Canisource Grand Cru Turkey Grain-Free Dehydrated Dog Food
- First 5 Ingredients: Turkey, Turkey Liver, Green Peas, Green Lentils, Lupine
- Guaranteed Analysis: 31% Crude Protein, 16% Crude Fat, 3% Fiber, 8% Moisture
- Caloric Content: 480 calories / cup
- Key Feature: High-calorie dehydrated dog food with fatty acids for large breeds
Due to their size, large breeds need plenty of protein and fat to keep up with their muscles, joints, and bones. They also need high-quality calorie sources to nourish them for all-day work or activity.
Canisource’s Grand Cru Grain Free dehydrated turkey is perfect for large dogs. First, it has over 450 calories per cup of prepared food — which is higher than most dehydrated foods. This keeps your dog satiated without overfeeding.
This recipe starts with real deboned turkey. This provides glucosamine, taurine, and omega fatty acids — all helping to protect your dog’s joints and heart.
Green peas, green lentils, and sweet potatoes offer prebiotic fiber for healthy digestion. They also provide other vitamins, like beta-carotene for healthy eyes. And, sunflower oil adds omega-3 fatty acids for nourished joints and a shiny coat.
This grain-free dehydrated food is free of by-products, artificial colors, and artificial flavors.
Pet parents don’t like that this food is in a plastic bag with a tie. Many suggest moving it to an air-tight container. But, they do love that the kibble size is easy for all of their dogs to enjoy.
The Honest Kitchen Whole Grain Chicken Recipe Dehydrated Dog Food
- First 5 Ingredients: Dehydrated Chicken, Organic Barley, Dehydrated Potatoes, Organic Flaxseed, Organic Oats
- Guaranteed Analysis: 24.5% Crude Protein, 14% Crude Fat, 4% Fiber, 8% Moisture
- Caloric Content: 485 kcal/cup
- Key Feature: Budget dehydrated dog food option with raw ingredients
Dehydrated dog food can seem premium, but it can be cost-effective. The Honest Kitchen offers a budget option with their Whole Grains line.
It still uses high-quality meats and organic ingredients. This offers a balanced diet for dog owners on a budget. It starts with cage-free chicken, a high protein and low-fat ingredient. It also includes glucosamine for muscle maintenance and extra joint function.
Organic barley, organic oats, and dried bananas offer fiber for easy digestion. And bananas supplement potassium for strong bones.
This formula offers balanced nutrition for adult dogs and puppies. And, it’s great for all breeds and sizes. This also includes adult mothers who are gestating or lactating. To serve, add warm water and wait a few minutes before handing it over to your pup.
Like The Honest Kitchen’s other formulas, this one is 100% human-grade and made in a human food facility. While it’s not grain-free, it doesn’t include corn, wheat, or soy. It’s also free of GMO foods and by-products.
Pet owners prefer this formula for their pups who can’t eat grain-free diets.
Addiction Homestyle Venison & Cranberry Dinner Raw Dehydrated Dog Food
- First 5 Ingredients: Venison, Oats, Potatoes, Carrots, Coconut Oil
- Guaranteed Analysis: 22% Crude Protein, 12% Crude Fat, 7% Fiber, 12% Moisture
- Caloric Content: 455 kcal/cup
- Key Feature: Raw and chicken-free hypoallergenic dehydrated dog food made with venison
Sometimes, you want to spoil your pup with the best of the best. And that’s possible with dehydrated dog food.
While there are budget formulas, there are also premium options. This includes Addiction Homestyle Raw dehydrated dog food.
This formula starts with sustainable New Zealand venison. This provides potassium, zinc, and phosphorus for healthy muscles, joints, and bones. It’s also a great option for dogs who may be allergic to poultry or beef.
Coconut oil and vitamin E oil provide amino acids. These help reduce inflammation, nourish joints, and aid in your dog’s coat health.
This recipe also includes superfoods—including basil, blueberries, cranberries, papayas, and spinach. These provide antioxidants to help fight against free radicals and boost the immune system.
Addiction dog food uses a rapid-air drying process to remove harmful bacteria while staying high in nutrition.
Pet moms and dads acknowledge that this food doesn’t expand as much as others. But those that choose it are delighted that it’s made with raw ingredients.
Dr. Harvey’s Specialty Diet Healthy Weight Human Grade Dehydrated Dog Food
- First 5 Ingredients: Beef, Egg, Carrots, Sweet Potato, Oats
- Guaranteed Analysis: 19% Crude Protein, 9% Crude Fat, 8% Fiber, 11% Moisture
- Caloric Content: 445 kcal/cup
- Key Feature: Dehydrated dog food with real raw meat for weight loss
Two-thirds of dogs are overweight or obese. This can lead to health problems like diabetes and even heart failure.
But, instead of cutting out fats or buying kibble with fillers to lower calories, try Dr. Harvey’s Healthy Weight dehydrated dog food.
This company takes a holistic approach to healthy weight loss and maintenance. They use real animal proteins and healthy fats to satiate your dog. This keeps them from overeating and keeps them fuller for longer.
The first ingredient is freeze-dried free range beef. This provides B vitamins, iron, and taurine for extra energy and a healthy heart. Chia seeds include essential fatty acids and aid in weight loss by lowering cholesterol.
Pumpkin and broccoli provide prebiotics to improve digestion and help keep your dog at a healthy weight. And, probiotics offer extra digestive support.
There are no artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives.
While this food is mostly for weight loss, pet parents also love that it’s perfect for dogs with allergies.
Canisource Grand Cru Pork & Lamb Grain-Free Dehydrated Dog Food
- First 5 Ingredients: Pork, Pork Liver, Lamb, Green Peas, Green Lentils
- Guaranteed Analysis: 32% Crude Protein, 16% Crude Fat, 3% Fiber, 8% Moisture
- Caloric Content: 480 calories/cup
- Key Feature: High-calorie and high-fat dog food to aid in weight gain
While weight loss and obesity can be a problem for some dogs, others may have problems gaining weight. If you’re looking to help your pet put a few pounds on, try out Canisource’s Grand Cru Grain-Free dehydrated dog food.
It starts with pork and pork liver — offering zinc, thiamine, and iron. Thiamine helps regulate the thyroid — which is beneficial in weight gain efforts.
Green peas, green lentils, and apples are rich in fiber and prebiotics. These help your dog’s digestive system and keep them regular. And, green lentils have extra protein and are higher in calories, helping your dog pack on a bit more weight.
Some ingredients are high in antioxidants and natural vitamins, like beet extract and elderberry extract. These help boost your pup’s immune system and keep their brain sharp.
This grain-free recipe has the convenience of kibble, with the nutritional benefits of a raw diet. It doesn’t include any by-products, artificial colors, or flavors.
Dog owners have noticed great results with feeding this food to their dogs. Many note that their pups were able to start putting on weight easily after switching.
Addiction Perfect Summer Brushtail Raw Dehydrated Dog Food
- First 5 Ingredients: Brushtail, Potatoes, Carrots, Flaxseed, Coconut Oil
- Guaranteed Analysis: 22% Crude Protein, 12% Crude Fat, 5% Fiber, 12% Moisture
- Caloric Content: 455 kcal/cup
- Key Feature: Limited ingredient dehydrated dog food with marsupial novel protein
When dogs have food allergies, they need food without ingredients that can cause reactions. Usually, these formulas include novel proteins like salmon, venison, or bison. But, if you’re willing to try something new try Addiction Brushtail dehydrated food.
This hypoallergenic meal starts with premium New Zealand brushtail. This is a marsupial also known as a possum. This rare protein is less likely to trigger your pup’s allergies. And, it provides B vitamins for energy and fatty acids for healthy joints.
This formula also includes coconut oil to promote skin and coat health. Sunflower seeds add a natural source of vitamin E to reduce inflammation and protect joints.
Blueberries, cranberries, papayas, and rosemary contain healthy antioxidants for a strong immune system. And, they also include other vitamins like vitamin A for eye health.
This recipe is free of gluten, corn, chicken, by-products, and artificial preservatives.
This food is perfect for allergies. Pet parents with dogs who have Inflammatory Bowel Disease also recommend it since it’s made with one protein and is legume and pea-free.
Buying Guide for Dehydrated Dog Food
Wondering why you should buy dehydrated dog food? Here’s what you need to know.
What Is Dehydrated Dog Food?
Dehydrated dog food is food that isn’t processed like kibble. It has a similar consistency to freeze-dried dog food. It’s air-dried or dehydrated to preserve its nutritional value.
It’s never cooked over high heat, only lower heat long enough to remove the moisture. So the ingredients aren’t completely “cooked.”
This gives dehydrated food similar benefits to a raw diet. And, it’s shelf-stable and takes less time to prep.
Benefits of Dehydrated Dog Food
Dehydrated pet foods offer many of the same benefits that raw food does but in a more convenient way.
First, dehydrated food isn’t processed like kibble. The cooking process gently heats ingredients without compromising their nutrient value. And, it also eliminates harmful bacteria from the raw meats.
The dehydration procedure also helps to begin the digestive process. This makes it easier on your dog’s digestion system, unlike raw meat (which can be challenging for older pets).
Along with easier digestion, it also has a high bioavailability of nutrients. This means that your dog will get more nutrients than they would with dry kibble.
Dehydrated food is also shelf-stable and contains more food than you may think. For example, it’s usually sold in smaller sizes like 1, 5, or 10 pounds.
But, once you add water, this can stretch to even more food — usually triple to quadruple the dry weight. And, because of its small size, it’s easy to store anywhere.
Dehydrated Dog Food vs. Freeze-dried vs. Dry Kibble
Yes, there is a difference between dehydrated and freeze-dried food. And, both of these are different from regular kibble.
Dehydrated food happens by drying out the moisture from ingredients at low temperatures. Most dehydrated dog food is “cooked” or prepared in ovens with degrees of around 140º F to 175º F.
This is different than dry kibble, that’s cooked and dried out in high temperatures. Cooking the food at a lower temperature also keeps the extra nutritional content.
Freeze-dried raw food is a quicker process than both kibble and dehydrated food. Instead of baking, freeze-dried food removes moisture from the food in a freeze dryer.
This freeze dryer sucks out the moisture with frigid temperatures. Before starting the drying process, they freeze the food, so the water in the ingredients turns to ice.
But, freeze-dried dog foods use lower temperatures for drying out ingredients.
Freeze-dried food is the most nutritious out of the three. But, it’s not as shelf-stable as dehydrated food and can be more costly.
Dehydrated food doesn’t have to be hard to get.
The Honest Kitchen dehydrated dog food is available in most areas, with plenty of formulas to choose from.
And, you’re bound to find a flavor and option that works for your dog’s needs.
Of course, the other options on this list work well, too, especially if your dog has specific needs or if you want a more premium option.
Want to know more about dehydrated dog food? Here are some common questions and their answers.
Is dehydrated dog food better than kibble?
In general, yes. It’s less processed, includes high-quality ingredients, and is also shelf-stable. And, unlike kibble, it’s not usually cooked, helping to keep more nutrients in the food. It’s also better if you have a picky dog since they prefer moist and wet foods.
Is dehydrated food better than raw food?
It can be. It’s safer because companies dehydrate or air-dry ingredients to reduce bacteria. This could keep your dog from getting sick from harmful bacteria. And, it has a longer shelf-life, which is beneficial for most dog owners.
Is dehydrated dog food safe?
Dehydrated dog food is one of the safest options on the market. When dehydrated dog food brands make their formulas, they remove moisture from the ingredients.
This makes the food shelf-stable without the need for artificial preservatives. And dehydrated food includes high-quality ingredients, with the convenience of kibble.
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