Chicken Meal in Dog Food: What Dog Food Brands Don’t Want You to Know!

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chicken meal dog food

Chicken meal in dog food is one of the most popular ingredients you will often come across.

Chicken is one of the most used ingredients in pet food in general, but why is chicken meal used just as much? Throughout this post we will go through the nutritional benefits of having chicken meal in dog food as well as learn what the best types of chicken meal dog food brands are that are currently available on the market today.


What is Chicken Meal?

Chicken meal is nothing but the dried and rendered product made from a combination of clean chicken, typically the flesh and skin without the bones. Chicken meal, before added to pet food, is ground up to maintain a moisture level of no more than 10%. Chicken meal is often rendered in large vats by the mass and cooked for long periods of time to rid it of excess moisture. Chicken meal typically has more protein than chicken does alone, as much as nearly 300% more protein by volume.


How Beneficial is Chicken Meal in Dog Food?

Now that you completely understand what chicken meal is, you must be wondering just how beneficial it is in a dog’s diet.

Well, for starters, chicken meal contains a hell of a lot more protein than standalone chicken does. It can contain as much as 300% more protein. This is about 65% protein in the ingredient itself. It contains as low as 12% fat volume. Not only does it make it even more beneficial due to the amount of protein in it, but it is also low in fat as well.

A second nutritional benefit to chicken meal is that it contains essential vitamins and minerals your dog needs to thrive. Some of the essential vitamins and minerals it contains include:

  • Selenium
  • Vitamin B12
  • Phosphorus
  • Vitamin B6
  • Choline

All around, chicken meal is one of the healthiest ingredients for your dog.


Top 10 Chicken Meal Dog Food Brands

1. Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Grain Free Chicken

Blue Buffalo is one of my favorite brands to talk about on this site. Be that as it may, regardless of my own personal bias, if you take a look at the ingredients yourself, you won’t be able to deny how nutritious most of their formulas tend to be. Made with Deboned Chicken and Chicken Meal as the first ingredient, Blue Buffalo is packed full of nutritional chicken that every dog can benefit from.

First five ingredients: Deboned Chicken, Chicken Meal, Brown Rice, Barley and Oatmeal

Sizes Available: 5 pounds, 15 pounds, and 30 pounds


2. Wellness Complete Health Chicken

Wellness Complete Health formula is the same formula they have been selling for years. This formula is made using natural ingredients such as premium proteins and wholesome whole grains. The Wellness Complete Health Chicken formula uses both Deboned Chicken and Chicken meal, giving any dog the nutritional benefit associated with chicken meal while helping to build lean muscle.

First five ingredients: Deboned Chicken, Chicken Meal, Oatmeal, Ground Barley and Peas

Sizes Available: 5 pounds, 15 pounds and 30 pounds


3. Nature’s Variety Instinct with Real Chicken

Nature’s Variety Instinct is known for its high protein content and grain-free ingredients that pet owners love. The Original Grain-Free Recipe made with Real chicken uses Chicken and Chicken Meal, both coming from cage-free chicken sources. Not only is it high in quality, but Nature’s Variety sources its protein from a safe and sustainable businesses that practice safe animal handling.

First five ingredients: Chicken, Chicken Meal, Peas, Chicken Fat, and Tapioca.

Sizes Available: 4 pounds, 11 pounds, and 22.5 pounds


4. Grain Free Go! Dog Food Chicken, Turkey and Duck

Go! Dog food is perfect for dogs that are fed a more carnivorous diet. The Grain-free formula including chicken helps to provide dogs of all ages, breeds and sizes with the complete and balanced nutrition they need. While a bit on the pricey side, Go! Dog Food is well worth the expense.

First five ingredients: Chicken Meal, Turkey Meal, Salmon Meal, Deboned Chicken and Deboned Turkey

Sizes Available: 3.5 pounds, 12 pounds, and 22 pounds


5. Fromm Chicken a La Veg Recipe

If you are looking for a specially prepared blend of dog food that contains all of the nutrients your dog needs to live their best life, then look no further. This Chicken A La Veg recipe from Fromm is prepared with hand-selected chicken, chicken meal, and chicken broth, making a formula packed full of plenty of protein your dogs will love.

First five ingredients: Chicken, Chicken Broth, Chicken Meal, Oat Groats, and Pearled Barley

Sizes Available: 5 pounds, 15 pounds, and 30 pounds


6. Holistic Select Adult Health Chicken Meal and Rice Recipe

Holistic Select is specially formulated with digestive support in mind. The chicken meal and rice recipe are made with optimal levels of protein, prebiotics, and digestive enzymes to help enhance a healthy digestive system while still giving your dog the nutrition they need in order to thrive.

First five ingredients: Chicken Meal, Brown Rice, Rice, Oatmeal and Chicken Fat

Sizes Available: 4 pounds, 15 pounds, and 30 pounds


7. Whole Earth Farms Grain Free with Chicken and Turkey

Whole Earth Farms dog food is perfect for pet parents who are looking for a grain-free recipe but don’t want to spend too much money in the process. Whole Earth Farms with Chicken and Turkey is made using protein as the first ingredient and is perfect for dogs who suffer from stomach sensitivities.

First five ingredients: Chicken Meal, Dried Potatoes, Peas, Chicken Fat and Dried Sweet Potatoes

Sizes Available: 4 pounds, 12 pounds, and 25 pounds


8. Dogswell Grain Free Chicken Recipe

This premium brand of Dogswell dog food is made specifically without grains or potatoes. Using farm-raised chicken all sourced from American farms, this food is packed with plenty of protein to help build lean muscles while keeping your dog full without having to feed them too much food in the process.

First five ingredients: Chicken, Chicken Meal, Peas, Chickpeas, and Menhaden Fish Meal

Sizes Available: 4 pounds, 11 pounds, and 24 pounds


9. Chicken Soup for the Soul Chicken, Turkey and Brown Rice

This great-tasting dog food is inspired by feeding dogs the best nutrition possible. Chicken soup for the Soul is made using omega 3 and 6 fatty acids, real chicken, prebiotic fiber, plenty of antioxidants, and real animal proteins. It is all-around beneficial for dogs of any size and breeds.

First five ingredients: Chicken, Turkey, Chicken Meal, Turkey Meal, and Cracked Pearled Barley

Sizes Available: 1.5 pounds, 4.5 pounds, 13.5 pounds, and 28 pounds


10. Eagle Pack Original Chicken Meal and Pork Meal

If there is one thing Eagle Pack has learned over its 30 years in the pet food industry, it is how to make a quality and affordable brand of dog food. The Eagle Pack Original Chicken Meal and Pork Meal formula is made using wholesome grain sources, dual animal proteins, and healthy supplements to add additional nutritional support your dog will benefit from for many years.

First five ingredients: Chicken Meal, Pork Meal, Ground Brown Rice, Dehulled Barley and Oatmeal

Sizes Available: 6 pounds, 15 pounds, and 30 pounds


Chicken Meal Dog Food: The Bottomline

Well, there you have it!

Hopefully, by the end of this long post, you have found plenty of high-quality and affordable dog food options, all of which incorporate beneficial chicken meal. Remember, even if you aren’t interested in any of the formulas included in this list, you can conduct your own research to find a dog food with chicken meal that will fit the needs of your dog. Just examine the ingredients list before buying!

Until next time!


Digital marketing specialist and Internet enthusiast. When Vanessa isn't working on or other marketing ventures, she spends her time making homemade dog treats and reading up on the latest advances in the veterinarian field.

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