Against the Grain Cat Food Review

Against The Grain Cat Food Review 2023 – Is Against the Grain a Good Cat Food?

Vet-Checked • Pet-Tested • Owner-Approved

Kate Barrington

Researched & Written by

Kate Barrington

At EasyPet, we are committed to presenting the most accurate and up-to-date information to assist you in your pet care journey. When appropriate, we consult licensed and practicing veterinarians to fact-check our professionally written articles.

Against the Grain Logo

Against the Grain is a pet food brand known for its grain-free, meat-based food for dogs and cats, unique processing methods, and the inclusion of fresh, sustainable ingredients.

Against the Grain was started in 2003 by twins Brett and Chelsea Sher, whose parents are at the helm of the popular pet food brand Evangers. The Sher siblings started their own brand of pet food after they realized that most of the pet food available in the market used inferior manufacturing processes, non-unique ingredients, and gave cost more priority than the pet.

As the name suggests, Against the Grain manufactures bio-available pet food, which is also cost-effective. Located in Wheeling, Illinois, the food is manufactured at the Evangers plant and goes through strict safety and quality standards. No other food is manufactured at the Evangers plant, besides Against the Grain and Evangers itself. Since the production isn’t outsourced, the food that is made is high-quality and nutritious. All pet food produced in the kitchen is human grade, and the production meets or exceeds the quality and safety requirements.

Types of cat food

Against the Grain currently makes two lines of cat food. They are all canned, but vary between gravy and dry meals, using hand caught fresh fish.

The dry food line is called New Generation Super Food, and the recipes include:

  • Chicken Mayflower with Turnip Dinner for Cats
  • Tuna Toscano with Salmon & Tomato Dinner for Cats
  • Tuna Mango Tango with Duck Dinner for Cats
  • Chicken & Polyhauai’i Berry Dinner for Cats
  • Tuna Aubergine with Seabass & Eggplant Dinner for Cats

The gravy food line is called Human Quality Cat Foods, and the recipes include:

  • Big Kahuna with Crab & Talipia
  • Bimini Brunch with Krill & Egg
  • Chicken & Pumpkin Samba
  • Captain’s Catch with Sardine & Mackerel
  • Caribbean Club with Chicken & Cheese
  • Shrimp Daddy with Tuna & Salmon
  • Aloha Tuna with Seaweed & Crab

As is evident from the names, all these meals are made from high quality fish and meat. Not only are they delightful to your cat’s taste buds, but also good for their health and easy on your pocket. Each recipe contains over 85 percent of meat, making them protein-rich and highly nutritious for your kitty.

What makes Against the Grain different?

There are several factors that differentiate Against the Grain from other pet food brands. Some of them are:

Grain- and gluten-free

It is widely known that several pets are allergic to grains. Not all cats are intolerant to gluten present in grains, but some cats can be heavily intolerant, and without proper care, it can be lethal. This is because cats are predatory by nature; they are meant to eat meat, not grains. It is only natural that they will be intolerant to grains and gluten. Despite this, several pet food brands manufacturing grain-based food, which cause diarrhea, irritable bowel syndrome, asthma, and allergic skin reactions. It can even be fatal in the worst cases.

Against the Grain cat food recipes are completely free from any kind of grain, so your kitty can enjoy his meals without any health problems. The protein-rich food is free from growth hormones or antibiotics and can be safely consumed by all kitties above five weeks of age.

Bottom-up approach

A remarkable aspect about Against the Grain is the bottom-up approach they follow with their formulas. Most pet food manufacturers follow a top-down approach, i.e., they first think about how to make the process cost-effective and then think about the quality of food. Against the Grain, on the other hand, first comes with a nutritious pet food formula and then manufactures it in the most cost-effective manner, so that the quality of the meal is never sacrificed.

Hand filled cans

The filling of the cans is automated and mechanized at most pet food manufacturing plants. Against the Grain products are not only made from handpicked fish and meat, but the cans are also hand filled to keep the freshness intact. When you buy any Against the Grain product, you don’t have to wonder if the meat inside is fresh. The moment you open a can, you get to know the quality of the product inside. There is no case of “mystery meat” here. The content inside is just what is mentioned on the pack.

Fresh ingredients

There is minimal use of chemicals in all Against the Grain products. All of their products are minimally processed, the processing methods are such that they keep the integrity of the proteins, vitamins, and natural enzymes intact. Not only are the products grain and gluten free, but are also made from fresh handpicked ingredients. Besides, the manufacturing process is sustainable and makes use of green resources. The fresh-caught fish-based cat canned foods are dolphin-safe and turtle-safe, and the meat products are GMO and anti-biotic free. The packaging uses a large amount of recycled products, to deliver an end product that is not only safe for your pet but also for the environment.

Recall history

Until the present time, there has been one instance of recall of Against the Grain products. In February 2017, one batch of canned dog food from 2015 was recalled because it could have contained pentobarbital, a drug used for euthanasia. A similar recall was made by Evangers – that manufactures Against the Grain products – shortly after. There have been no other recalls of Against the Grain products so far.

Where to buy

Against the Grain authorized partners are select pet stores, online retailers, and veterinary practices around the world, both online and offline. Non-authorized retailers like Chewy, Amazon, Petsmart, Walmart, Jet, Petco, and eBay also stock Against the Grain products.

What customers think

The reviews for Against the Grain Chicken & Pumpkin Samba Dinner Grain-Free Canned Cat Food on Chewy are mainly positive with a few negatives. The product has a 4.5 rating out of 5, with 89 percent of cat owners recommending it. Some of the reviews are as follows:


“Shelley has yet to leave any of this chicken and pumpkin samba behind. The chicken is plentiful with small diced pumpkin mixed in. I will order this one again.” – Kalola

“I have three picky cats and tried every food imaginable. ATG products have all been a huge hit that all three kitties love, which is a hard find. Thank you for quality products.” – HoundDogMom


“I love this company’s cheese pizza so I thought I’d try their cat food line for my cats. Well, my cats only lick up the liquid and leave all the rest behind, so it was a waste of money for me. I think the pumpkin was a turn off but they still wouldn’t eat the chicken.” – Bean

“I bought this in spite of the fact that my cats usually don’t seem to like Pumpkin. After reading the reviews however, I decided to give it a try. Should have gone with my first thoughts. I also tried the chicken and cheese due to good reviews. I must say – it looks pretty healthy, but again, the kitty cats just aren’t sold on Against the Grain products for reasons only known to them. Two stars ONLY because of the good ingredients.” – TenneSue

Against the Grain Chicken & Pumpkin Samba Dinner Grain-Free Canned Cat Food

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

First 5 ingredients: Chicken, Water Sufficient for Processing, Pumpkin, Palm Oil, Tapioca

Like all Against the Grain products, Chicken & Pumpkin Samba Dinner is made of 85 percent meat; the remaining 15 percent consists of pumpkin, tapioca, and other vitamins and minerals.

The human grade chicken and pumpkin are hand-packed to ensure the maximum freshness and quality. The ingredients are sourced from regional farms, and the product is manufactured in the state of the art facility in Illinois.

This product is free from preservatives, salt, GMO, antibiotics, or growth hormones. This ensures that it can be consumed safely by even the most sensitive kitties. This can be used either as a complete meal, or as a topper for dry food. It’s easy for cats to eat and digest.

Against the Grain manufactures healthy, wholesome food for your feline companions. Try from a variety of flavors to surprise your kitty with a new meal every day and keep her happy.

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