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Home > Dogs > 8 Best Dog Foods With Grain in 2024 – Reviews & Top Picks

8 Best Dog Foods With Grain in 2024 – Reviews & Top Picks

labrador retriever eating dog food

Many modern pet owners are opting for grain-free dog food because, not only has grain-free dog food become a trend as of late, but owners fear that ordinary grain might cause weight gain. They also say  that these grains are not part of the dog’s natural diet.

While this is true to some extent, dogs are omnivores (unlike cats, which are strict carnivores), so their digestive system can process things other than meat, including grain. Many grain-inclusive foods contain important nutrients like vitamins and minerals that are important for good health.

The key is to look for high-quality foods, and we can help. Keep reading while we review several popular brands that contain grain to see which ones are healthy. We’ll give you the pros and cons of each one so you can see how they differ, and we’ve even included a short buyer’s guide so you’ll know what to look for if you continue to shop.

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A Brief Look at Our Top Picks of 2024

Image Product Details
Best Overall
Winner
Nom Nom Turkey Fare Fresh Dog Food Subscription Nom Nom Turkey Fare Fresh Dog Food Subscription
  • High-protein
  • Whole grains included
  • Human-grade ingredients
  • Best Value
    Second place
    Purina ONE SmartBlend Purina ONE SmartBlend
  • Glucosamine
  • Chicken first ingredient
  • Real fruits and vegetables
  • Third place
    Hill’s Science Diet Sensitive Hill’s Science Diet Sensitive
  • Chicken first ingredient
  • Highly digestible formula
  • Added vitamins and minerals
  • Best for Puppies
    Rachael Ray Nutrish Puppy Rachael Ray Nutrish Puppy
  • Omega fats
  • Chicken first ingredient
  • Real fruits and vegetables
  • Blue Buffalo Life Protection Blue Buffalo Life Protection
  • Omega fats
  • Chicken first ingredient
  • Plenty of vitamins and minerals
  • The 8 Best Dog Foods with Grain

    1. Nom Nom Turkey Fare Fresh Dog Food Subscription — Best Overall

    A black dog eating Nom Nom dog food

    Grain: Brown rice
    Package Size:
    150 grams

    Nom Nom is a dog food subscription service that ships premium, human-grade food straight to your door. Most of the formulas are grain-free, but the Turkey Fare recipe is not as it contains brown rice. If you’re looking for a grain-inclusive formula for your canine, it doesn’t get much better than this.

    To sign up for Nom Nom, you’ll need to go to the company’s website and create an account. You’ll answer various questions about your dog which will help them make suggestions and pre-portion the food they send you. Then, you’ll be able to select Turkey Fare as your dog’s recipe and you’ll receive pre-portioned bags to your door each month.

    This food is extremely high in protein and nutrients and it includes eggs as the third ingredient, which are very nutrient-dense and high in protein.

    We particularly like that this food is human-grade, cooked with real ingredients that you can see. Plus, many canines enjoy this food more than other commercial foods, so it is a great option for pickier dogs. We think it’s the best overall dog food with grains that you can purchase. However, it is a bit pricey considering the quality and the fact that it is a subscription service.

    Pros
    • High-protein
    • Whole grains included
    • Human-grade ingredients
    • Nutrient-dense ingredients
    Cons
    • Expensive

    2. Purina ONE SmartBlend Adult Dog Food – Best Value

    Purina ONE SmartBlend Adult Dog Food

    Grain: Whole grain wheat
    Package Size: 16.5 pounds

    Purina ONE SmartBlend Adult Dog Food is our pick as the best dog food with grain for the money. It lists chicken as its first ingredient, a great source of glucosamine that helps build strong muscles. It contains dried vegetables like carrots and peas that can help provide important nutrients, and it’s fortified with several B vitamins to help your pet stay more active.

    We like the low cost of Purina ONE SmartBlend, and our pets seem to like the taste. However, it contains corn and soy ingredients that can lead to weight gain in your pet.

    Pros
    • Chicken first ingredient
    • Real fruits and vegetables
    • Glucosamine
    Cons
    • Plenty of corn

    3. Hill’s Science Diet Skin & Stomach Dog Food

    Hill’s Science Diet Sensitive Skin & Stomach Adult Dry Dog Food

    Grain: Barley
    Package Size: 30 pounds

    Hill’s Science Diet Sensitive Skin & Stomach Adult Dry Dog Food is our premium choice for dog food with grain. It features chicken as its first ingredient, so you know your pet is getting a high-quality protein, and Hill’s uses a special easy-to-digest formula that won’t upset your pet’s sensitive digestive system. It’s a great source of prebiotic fiber, and it also contains omega fats that promote a shiny coat. They also fortify the food with extra vitamins and minerals to ensure your pet has what it needs to stay healthy.

    We like the ingredients and didn’t have much trouble getting our pets to eat it, but it’s a little lower in protein (20%) than many of the other brands, so you might want to supplement it with some real meat treats.

    Pros
    • Chicken first ingredient
    • Highly digestible formula
    • Added vitamins and minerals
    Cons
    • Lower in protein

    4. Rachael Ray Nutrish Chicken & Rice Food – Best for Puppies

    Rachael Ray Nutrish Bright Puppy Natural Real Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe

     

    Grain: Brown rice
    Package Size: 14 pounds

    Rachael Ray Nutrish Bright Puppy Natural Real Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe is our pick as the best puppy food with grain. It contains chicken as its first ingredient and plenty of real fruits and vegetables like carrots, peas, and brown rice. Fishmeal helps provide essential omega fats that are especially important for growing puppies because they help with brain and eye development.

    We think Rachael Ray Nutrish is a fantastic brand, but it comes in a small bag. We realize this food is for puppies, but we might have continued feeding it longer if the bag was a little larger and didn’t run out so quickly.

    Pros
    • Chicken first ingredient
    • Real fruits and vegetables
    • Omega fats
    Cons
    • Small bag

    5. Blue Buffalo Life Protection Adult Dog Food

    Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Adult Dog Food

    Grain: Brown rice, barley, oatmeal
    Package Size: 150 grams

    Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Adult Dog Food is another great dog food with grain. It features chicken as its first ingredient, so it provides your pet with plenty of high-quality protein, which is an important building block for strong muscle, and it also provides energy. It also contains plenty of good grains like rice, barley, and oatmeal, along with real fruits and vegetables, which helps ensure your pet gets enough calcium and other important vitamins and minerals, omega fats, and important antioxidants.

    We love the ingredient list on the Blue Buffalo Life Protection package, and the only thing we can complain about is that some of our dogs didn’t like it and would hold out until we gave them something different.

    Pros
    • Chicken first ingredient
    • Omega fats
    • Plenty of vitamins and minerals
    Cons
    • Some dogs don’t like it

    6. Purina Pro Plan Shredded Chicken & Rice Dry Dog Food

    Purina Pro Plan Adult Shredded Blend Chicken & Rice Formula Dry Dog Food

    Grain: Rice, whole grain wheat
    Package Size: 35 pounds

    Purina Pro Plan Adult Shredded Blend Chicken & Rice Formula Dry Dog Food is available in several size packages, so you can get one for any dog you have. It lists chicken as its first ingredient, so you know your pet is getting plenty of high-quality protein, and contains fish oil that provides omega fats to help your dog have a shiny coat.

    The downside to Purina Pro Plan Adult Shredded is that it contains a lot of corn and ingredients, which can lead to weight gain, and some dogs might sort through it, picking out the meaty chunks and leaving behind the kibble.

    Pros
    • Several sizes available
    • Chicken first ingredient
    • Omega fats
    • Mixed textures
    Cons
    • Corn ingredients
    • Some dogs sort through it

    7. Nutro Natural Choice Small Breed Adult Chicken & Rice

    Nutro Natural Choice Small Breed Adult Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe Dry Dog Food

    Grain: Barley, brewer’s rice, oatmeal
    Package Size: 14 pounds

    Nutro Natural Choice Small Breed Adult Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe Dry Dog Food features chicken as its first ingredient. Also, it contains several real fruits and vegetables like pumpkin, peas, tomato, and more. These ingredients provide essential vitamins and minerals along with prebiotics that help feed your dog’s good gut bacteria so they can digest their food more efficiently. In addition, omega fats help your dog maintain a shiny coat.

    The downside to Nutro Natural Choice is that the package is quite small, and even a tiny dog will go through it pretty quickly. We also noticed that some dogs don’t like it and will hold out until they can get another kind of food.

    Pros
    • Chicken first ingredient
    • Real fruits and vegetables
    • Omega fats
    Cons
    • Small package
    • Some dogs don’t like it

    8. Royal Canin Small Puppy Dry Dog Food

    Royal Canin Small Puppy Dry Dog Food

    Grain: Brown rice
    Package Size: 13 pounds

    Royal Canin Small Puppy Dry Dog Food is the last brand on our list of reviews. It’s another puppy food containing plenty of fish oil, so it’s high in healthy omega fats that are important for a growing puppy. It also features a formula that’s easy to digest, so it shouldn’t result in diarrhea or constipation, which can be a serious problem for small dogs.

    The downside to Royal Canin is that it doesn’t contain any real meat and relies on chicken by-products to provide the protein. It also has plenty of corn ingredients which can lead to weight gain, and foods high in corn tend to leave the dog hungry sooner.

    Pros
    • Omega fats
    • Easy to digest
    Cons
    • No real meats—just chicken by-products
    • Lots of corn

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    Buyer’s Guide: Selecting the Best Dog Food with Grain

    Why Would I Give My Dog Food With Grain?

    As we mentioned earlier, dogs are omnivores, and their digestive system can break down many kinds of food, including grains, so there is no reason to try to limit your pet’s food to a meat-only variety. Many grains are high in nutrients like calcium that can help build strong bones and vitamins that will help boost your immune system. Grains can also help provide the fiber that regulates the moisture in the digestive tract, reducing the frequency of constipation and diarrhea.

    What Grains Are Good for My Dog?

    When looking for a brand of dog food containing grain, we recommend checking the ingredients list. Choose a brand with one of the following grains listed near the top and avoid brands that use corn or soy instead. Corn and soy digest quickly, which can lead to weight gain.

    • Whole wheat
    • Barley
    • Oats
    • Brown rice
    • Millet
    • Quinoa
    • Sorghum
    • Rye
    white boxer dog eating
    Image By: Pixel-Shot, Shutterstock

    What Other Ingredients Are Important?

    Dog Food Protein Content

    One of the most important things to look for when choosing a new food for your dog is real meat like chicken, turkey, or beef listed as the first ingredient. It will ensure your pet gets plenty of high-quality protein that they can use for energy and building strong muscle. Foods high in protein also tend to keep your pet feeling full longer than brands that rely on corn and soy.

    Dog Food Omega Fat Content

    Omega fats are important for pets of all ages. These important facts are essential for brain and eye development in a puppy and they help your dog maintain a shiny coat and healthy skin throughout life. As your dog ages, the omega fats will help reduce inflammation which can help a dog with arthritis feel more comfortable.

    Dog Food Prebiotics Content

    Foods containing prebiotics or probiotics will help balance your dog’s digestive system, reducing the frequency of constipation and diarrhea. Some experts also suggest that a stronger digestive system leads to a better immune system. Most brands containing probiotics will list it on the package, as will some containing prebiotics, but any brand containing real fruits and vegetables will be effective as a prebiotic.

    Labrador dog eating
    Image By: Olena Yakobchuk, Shutterstock

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    Conclusion

    When choosing your next dog food with grain, we highly recommend our pick for the best overall. Nom Nom Turkey Fare dog food lists turkey as its first ingredient, and it also contains plenty of vitamins and minerals as well as omega fats. Its simple subscription service ensures you always have enough dog food on hand, although the cost can be a bit steep.  Another smart choice is our pick for the best value. Purina ONE Smart Blend Adult Dog Food also features chicken as its first ingredient and also contains plenty of fruits and vegetables, which provide important vitamins and minerals as well as prebiotics and fiber. This brand is also easy to find in most grocery stores or pet shops.


    Featured Image Credit: Jaromir Chalabala, Shutterstock

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