What Is The Best Affordable Cat Food?

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There is a vast array of different cat foods on the market. It can be a challenging task to pick the right brand for your furry friend. There are a couple things you should look for when selecting your food.
Curious cat looking over a ledge

Owning a cat can come with a lot of responsibilities. There are things you constantly need to keep purchasing to keep your house clean and also to keep your cat healthy and strong. Cat litter and food are the top two things on my list that can get a little bit pricey if you aren’t making an informed decision. Don’t be fooled by the flashy advertisements and impressive guarantees on most food labels. The best affordable cat food brands aren’t always in your face and making all these false guarantees.

You can get some high quality food products for a much cheaper price if you just know what to look for. This article is going to point out some food brands that we recommend and breakdown why they are good for your furry friend.

If you have any questions please ask them in the comments below or join our Facebook group to hang out with other amazing cat owners.

Best Affordable Cat Food

Why It’s Good To Have A Food Budget

Pennies flowing out of a jar

Budgeting your money when it comes to cat food can be a good way to save for other expenses. As I mentioned before, there are a lot of expensive cat foods on the market and it can feel a little bit overwhelming when you’re staring down all the choices in the food aisle.

A good rule of thumb is to only purchase what you can afford. If you go into the aisle with a gameplan you won’t get distracted by all the fancy wording and promises. There are a lot of companies out there that guarantee they have the best product on the market. These foods are usually the most expensive and have the same ingredients as the more affordable cat food brands.

Sure there are exceptions to this rule. If your cat has any health issues likes a sensitive stomach or hairballs it can cause you to have to get a more tailored cat food recipe. So the next time you have to buy cat food, make sure you take this guide into consideration and also keep to your food budget so you don’t end up losing a lot of money.

Traits To Look For In An Affordable Cat Food

There are a couple things you should look for when purchasing an affordable cat food product. You can’t really base your cat’s diet on what you eat throughout the day. Cats are carnivorous animals and need a lot of protein to keep them healthy and strong. Cats didn’t grow up in the wild only eating plants and vegetables. Their ancestors were hunters and thrived off of eating fresh meat. I would definitely try to stay away from any foods that promise to be vegetarian. I don’t have anything against vegetarians, I just know cats aren’t meant to eat a lot of vegetables.

Here are some other things to look for in a cat food product.

A Good Amount Of Protein

Seasoned piece of meat

All cats need a good amount of protein to help build muscle and maintain a healthy coat. Now there are two different types of protein to look at. There is lean protein and there is also fatty protein.

The preferred protein would be the lean but don’t be alarmed if your cat is eating fatty protein as well. The lean is just better for them, because the fattier option will cause your cat to become overweight. There are a lot of food options out there for overweight cats and most of them are made with leaner proteins.

There is no getting around the fact that your kitty needs a solid protein rich diet. Make sure your wet food is packed with protein so your cat can grow up to be healthy and strong.

Wonderful Flavor Options

There is nothing worse than picking a cat food and having your cat absolutely hate it. You have wasted money and now you can either donate the food to an animal shelter or throw it out. All while your furry friend is meowing and scratching at your leg for some food.

Some of the best affordable cat food options on this list come in a variety pack. This way your cat will be able to sample all of the flavors and pick one or two that they really like. If you haven’t narrowed down the flavors yet, buying the variety packs are a good option.

You also want to try and stay away from the highly processed food options. These food blends may appear to be the right choice but they are packed with artificial flavors and preservatives. You can feel comfortable knowing none of the food options on this list are overly processed!

Price...Obviously

If you’re looking to get the best cat food at an affordable price you need to stay within your budget. If you just go to the store and pick out the cheapest cat food product on the market it isn’t going to give your cat the nutrients it needs. Then you will need to make up the difference by buying more supplements and nutrients. This will cause you to raise your budget to get these additional resources.

You pretty much need to pick foods that are in the middle of the pack if you want to maintain a healthy budget. I hope that all the foods I talk about will appeal to your kitty as well as your wallet.

Best Affordable Cat Food (Top 5)

Friskies Shreds Variety Pack - 40 Can Pack

Friskies Shreds Variety Pack - 40 Can Pack

I would like to start by saying that this variety pack is our top choice when it comes to affordable cat food products. This massive 40 can variety pack comes with 4 totally different flavor combinations to make any picky cat happy. The four different flavor combinations are:

  • Beef in Gravy
  • Turkey & Cheese Dinner in Gravy
  • Ocean Whitefish & Tuna in Sauce
  • Chicken & Salmon Dinner in Gravy

I highly doubt that your furry friend is going to hate all of those dinner options. I’m sure they could pick out one, at least. All of these recipes are made with real meat and fish so you know what you’re getting is healthy.

The shreds make it easy for your cat to chew and enjoy the food. They won’t have to struggle to get a big piece of meat down. Also the gravy makes it very savory for your cat as well. They will be licking their lips when they’re done.

Pros

  • This cat food is made with real ingredients like meat and fish to give your kitty the proteins they need.
  • The shredded food in this recipe are perfect for tempting your cat to eat more. Shredding the food gives the recipe more variety in each bite.
  • Gravy and sauce options give the dish more moisture and makes it more mouth watering to your furry friend.

Cons

  • Some cat owners said that the food was actually a little bit too saucy.
  • A couple of the cans appeared to be dented or damaged upon arrival. A stronger packaging can fix this issue.

Meow Mix Savory Morsels Wet Cat Food

Meow Mix Savory Morsels Wet Cat Food

This cat food variety pack is very similar to the Friskies variety pack mentioned above. The product contains 3 different varieties of cat food for your furry friend to enjoy. I personally picked the “seafood selections” variety pack but you are free to choose whichever one you want. The options for the seafood selections are:

  • Tuna & Whole Shrimp in Sauce
  • Salmon & Ocean Fish in Gravy
  • Tuna & Crab in Gravy

The package comes with 8 of each variety for a total of 24 cups of wet food. These recipes will get your cat’s mouth watering when they hear you open the cabinet door that contains all the food.

I know that our cat Watson loves to sprint to the kitchen when we open the cabinet that has all his food and treats stored. He can tell by the sound that it is feeding time and he comes running around the corner to start snacking. It’s actually pretty comical.

This variety pack is packed with high quality proteins, and all the vitamins your cat will need, to grow up strong and healthy. The recipe is very balanced and your furry friend will be begging for more. If seafood is not appealing to your cat, there is also a chicken variety pack which is also available. Both are very good options.

Pros

  • For the seafood variety pack you are getting 100% real fish mixed in with a savory gravy to make any cat’s mouth water.
  • Recipe is also packed with the essential vitamins and nutrients your cat needs. No need to add additional supplements to their meal.
  • The variety pack will give you a lot of different flavor combinations so you can pick the best food that your cat will love. No more playing the guessing game.

Cons

  • Some cats did not like the overall taste of the gravy. Some owners said that their cat took a couple licks of the gravy then walked away.
  • Just like the Friskies, the packaging could be improved slightly because the box did have a tendency to open up during shipping.

Meow Mix Original Choice Dry Cat Food

Meow Mix Original Choice Dry Cat Food

If your cat really doesn’t like wet food then you could always substitute for dry food. One thing that you need to keep in mind when serving dry food. You need to make sure your cat is drinking enough water, because the dry food does not provide enough hydration for the whole day. You should leave out a bowl of water or even entice your cat more with a drinking fountain. The running water is appealing to felines and they will love to drink the water coming out of the fountain.

This dry food from Meow Mix is formulated to keep your cats healthy and happy. Meow Mix was smart enough to make this dry food in a way that will give your cat the proper nutrition. Your cat will still get the proper vitamins and nutrients it needs in this dry food, if they were to eat wet food. Nothing has really changed besides the moisture level.

The dry food has a bunch of different flavors present so your cat will never get bored. You shouldn’t be afraid of dry food, as long as you are proving some kind of hydration separate from the food itself.

Pros

  • The premium protein in this dry food is perfect for growing strong muscles and maintaining a healthy coat.
  • There are chicken, turkey, salmon, and ocean fish flavors all present in this dry food mixture. Your cat won’t get bored if they have this every night.
  • The cat food is made in the United States and is 100% balanced so no additional supplements are needed during meals.

Cons

  • The bag can be a little challenging to close after opening. Some people suggested using a bag clip to keep the bag closed.
  • This dry food is a little bit on the higher end as compared to the other wet foods discussed on this article. Just something to be aware of.

Tiki Cat Grain Free Wet Food

Tiki Cat Grain Free Wet Food

The Tiki Cat brand isn’t very popular as compared to some of the other bigger companies. When you look at their company you will notice that they like to take a more casual approach to things. Everything is luau themed and the packaging is very fun to look at.

Make sure to get you and your cat a matching Hawaiian shirt because you’re going to fall in love with this food.

Now don’t let this casual approach to food scare you away. The team over at Tiki Cat is focused on providing your cat the best food at an affordable price tag. Their meals are inspired by what cats would normally eat out in the wild.

Their shredded chicken breast recipe is definitely their most popular item and there are also other fantastic flavor combinations. The chicken is slow simmered in real chicken broth then shredded up. The chicken broth helps to maintain the foods moisture so dehydration doesn’t happen. The Tiki Cat brand is so diverse, even the pickiest eaters will find something that they love.

Pros

  • The Tiki Cat recipe is packed with lean protein. The food offers 44% more protein and that is much higher than some of the big name brands on the market.
  • Another huge feature of this food is the fact that it is grain free. There are no potatoes, corn, rice, or wheat present in their recipes.
  • Tiki Cat recipes contain a very high moisture level. This will keep your cat hydrated throughout the whole day.

Cons

  • Not a very popular brand to find in stores. They usually lose their shelf space to the larger brands already on the market. It’s best to buy online.
  • The food may appear a little bland for some cats. The lack of artificial flavors and preservatives doesn’t give the cat food a very appealing look. Still very healthy for your cat though.

Rachael Ray Nutrish Natural Wet Cat Food

Rachael Ray Nutrish Natural Wet Cat Food

I’m sure you have started seeing this wet food by Rachael Ray popping up in your pet store aisles. I think they are starting to make a larger push to capture the market. I would like to start by saying that what they are making is definitely high quality and very nutritional for your pet. Rachael Ray knows how to cook amazing meals for humans. It would only make sense that she would know how to cook amazing meals for pets as well. I believe she has both cat food and dog food.

This grain free cat food is sourced from all natural ingredients. The sauce that surrounds this food isn’t your typical gravy. Rachael Ray has developed a sauce that is so savory, it can turn any picky eater into a food connoisseur. Some of the added vitamins and minerals in these recipes include taurine, iron, vitamins A, B12, and D3. There are so many supplements packed into these recipes your cat will grow up to be super strong.

Pros

  • 100% real ingredients are packed into these flavor recipes. Rachael Ray is a master at her craft and really knows how to make a meal.
  • Her irresistible sauce will make any picky cat fall in love with this flavor combination.
  • Pet owners that are concerned about allergies don’t need to worry. There is no grain, artificial flavors, preservatives, or meat by-products in any of her recipes.

Cons

  • Some of the solid chicken pieces were hard for some cats to chew. They eventually would just lick up all the sauce and leave the meat in the food bowl.
  • If you are big into recycling, these food containers are not recycle friendly. They need to be thrown out in the trash.

Overall Conclusion

If you go into the cat food aisle without a plan it can become very overwhelming. There are so many different flavors and protein options being thrown into your face. Having an acceptable plan beforehand can help you pick the best affordable cat food recipe. You want to pick something that tastes great but also gives your cat the vitamins and nutrients it needs to grow up strong and healthy.

If I had to make a decision it would be the Friskies Shreds Variety Pack – 40 Can Pack. This food variety gives you so many options to choose from. If you know that you have a picky cat, this can make the decision process a whole lot easier. The Friskies company also makes a quality product that is very healthy for any cat.

I would love to hear what you thought in the comments below! Did any of your cat food recipes makes the list? How do you handle a cat that has a very picky appetite? Post the question or tip below and it will help everyone out in the long run.

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