Rachael Ray Nutrish, a self-labeled super premium food for dogs, trademark phrase is: Real recipes, real ingredients, real good!
How real is this claim?
We know the celebrity chef Rachael Ray can take care of business when it comes to cooking for humans; as we’ve seen on her award winning daytime-TV show.
But dog food? I’ve never seen her make dog food.
- Nutrish Zero Grain |Top pick: Turkey & Potato Recipe [See it on Amazon]
- Nutrish Dish | Top pick: Real Chicken & Veggie Recipe [See it on Amazon]
- Nutrish Peak | Top pick: Open Range Recipe [See it on Amazon]
- Nutrish Just 6 | Top pick: Lamb Meal & Brown Rice Recipe [See it on Amazon]
- Nutrish Soup Bones | Top pick: Chicken & Veggies Flavor [See it on Amazon]
- Nutrish Real Meat Treats | Top pick: Meatloaf Morels [See it on Amazon]
Now: Whether this is due to her celebrity status or actual food quality, is the question.
Compare this product with Amazon Best Sellers in the Best Dog Food category.
Why review Rachael Ray Nutrish? The dog food industry is very competitive. It’s literally a ‘dog-eat-dog’ world out there. So when a fast growing brand comes around and starts gaining significant market share and visibility, a further looking into is warranted.
Especially: If that brand is backed by one of the most famous celebrity chefs on the plant. We need to know if it’s due to quality or a result of fame, wouldn’t you agree?
There is little in the lifestyle sphere this wonder woman with a quick and easy cooking style has not touched upon: writing, cooking, television, magazines, etc.
She even taught us how to prepare healthy meals in 30 minutes or less, thus changing our lives.
Ahead: We dive deeper into her dog food brand Rachael Ray Nutrish. Looking at whether Nutrish is safe, who makes Rachael Rays dog food, where it’s made, how it rates, what products it offers, any recalls associated with Nutrish, coupons/discounts and more. Let’s rock and roll, shall we?
Is Rachael Ray Nutrish Dog Food Safe?
The company claims to have proper safety precautions in place, stating they demand the very best from their suppliers when it comes to quality and food safety. Performing thorough tests to ensure the ingredients used as well as the end products are safe for your dogs health.
Best practices: The company’s commitment to dog food safety and quality assurance has led them to actively participate in a Pet Food Industry (PFI) work group. With the goal of establishing and executing industry “best practices,” which adhere to and are in-line with the ever evolving regulations under the Food Safety Modernization Act.
Third-party audits: On top of being in the forefront of establishing industry best practices, thereby continuously challenging themselves in bettering their food safety programs; Rachael Ray Nutrish also contracts third-parties to examine their food safety programs at each of their manufacturing plants. Thus ensuring no conflict of interest is present, and an objective opinion is received.
Is any of it true? Well, so far there are very little complaints from pet owners about this brand. Additionally, no dog food recalls have been issued for any of it’s products (though there was a cat food recall it was involved in back in 2015). Additionally, all of their food meets nutritional levels established by Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) dog food nutrient profiles.
Thus: When it comes to manufacturing dog food, looks like this company is doing safety right. Though as we’ll see below, they’re not exactly the ones doing the manufacturing.
Behind the scenes: But before we get to where the kibble is produced, let’s answer an equally important question, by whom is this kibble made? What is their history and philosophy?
Who Makes Rachael Ray Nutrish Dog Food?
Now, this is where it get’s interesting. This is where we find out who wields the magic wand.
The engine behind the brand – Ainsworth Pet Nutrition
Though Rachael Ray is the celebrity face and chief recipe curator of Nutrish dog food, there is another aspect to the brand below the surface. The heritage of the manufacturer of the kibble. A company forged out of a commitment to companion animals by a man named George Ainsworth Lang, over 75 years ago.
Fun fact: George was initially inspired to his own dog food because the commercial dog food at the time was too expensive and his dog had just produced a litter of 11 puppies. He didn’t want to go broke!
He subsequently adopted a steadfast vision of feeding dogs and cats the absolute safest, highest quality foods which continues to drive the business to this day. Though the business is no longer a small regional operation, but instead a multi-tiered one that spans the continent of North America, with a diverse product line.
The unwavering commitment to producing only quality pet food is still evident in their philosophy, stating that pet products (i.e. food, treats) is the only thing they make and plan to make. Whilst promising to only make the healthiest and safest of the kind.
Ainsworth in a nutshell: A privately-held leading producer, distributor, and marketer of pet food and products; headquartered in Meadville, Pennsylvania.
The birth of Nutrish dog food – July 2008
Following accounts of dog deaths connected to food that was filler heavy, a healthy alternative needed to be made correctly; one with simple, natural ingredients, and having real meat as the number one ingredient.
Thus, Rachael Ray partnered with the aforementioned historic American company called Ainsworth Pet Nutrition to bring to market the super premium recipes she had been making for her pit bull dog named Isaboo and provide dogs with that healthy alternative.
Philanthropy driven: She seemed to have no intentions of profiting personally from the venture, however; as she directed that all proceed from the product sales go to her Rachael’s Rescue charity for at-risk animals.
Fun fact: From 2008 to 2018 the proceeds from the sale of Nutrish pet food donated more than $27 million dollars to help animals in need.
The J.M. Smucker Co. Acquisition – 2018
“With a Name Like Smucker’s, It has to be Good®.”
Lastly, and very recently, there is a new owner of it all. A 5th generation family-run company founded in 1897 Orrville, Ohio; maker of jellies, jams, coffees, and pet food. They offered a whopping $1.9 billion dollars in cash for the Nutrish parent brand Ainsworth Pet Nutrition, which should tell you all you need to know of it’s size.
We’re pretty sure you’ve heard of Smuckers jam. . .
Reassurance: J.M. Smucker Co. has reassured pet owners that superior product quality will continue as it has over the past 10 years. Additionally, a portion of the sale proceeds will continue to go towards the Rachael Ray Foundation. Rachael Ray herself gave the deal a thumbs up.
Now: Where is the kibble manufactured specifically, in what facilities? Let’s find out!
Where Is Rachael Ray Nutrish Dog Food Made?
Made in the USA: Yes. The J.M. Smucker Company manufactures Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® manufactures their pet food in the United States.
Legal name: Ainsworth Pet Nutrition Parent, LLC subsidiary of The J. M. Smucker Company.
U.S. Headquarters: 984 Water Street Meadville, PA 16335 United States.
Officers (of Ainsworth Pet Nutrition Parent, LLC):
- CEO – Mr. Jeffrey M. Watters
- CFO – Mr. John Nicodemo
- Senior VP of Supply Chain – Mr. Gary Badrick
- Senior VP of Research & Development & Food Safety – Rudy Leschke
- Senior VP & Chief HR Officer – Ms. Tracey Staley
U.S. Manufacturing Facilities:
- Ainsworth Pet Nutrition: (1) Meadville, Pennsylvania; (1) Frontenac, Kansas
- J.M. Smucker Co.: (5) Manufacturing locations for pet food and more than 30 food processing locations across North America. Here’s a list of them all (including non-pet food):
- Bloomsburg, Pennsylvania (Pet food)
- Buffalo, New York (Pet food)
- Chico, California
- Cincinnati, Ohio
- Decatur, Alabama (Pet food)
- Grandview, Washington
- Harahan, Louisiana
- Havre de Grace, Maryland
- Lawrence, Kansas (Pet food)
- Lexington, Kentucky
- Livermore, California
- Memphis, Tennessee
- New Bethlehem, Pennsylvania
- New Orleans, Louisiana
- Orrville, Ohio
- Oxnard, California
- Ripon, Wisconsin
- Scottsville, Kentucky
- Seattle, Washington
- Sherbrooke, Quebec, Canada
- Suffolk, Virginia
- Toledo, Ohio
- Topeka, Kansas (Pet food)
Where does Rachael Ray Nutrish source their ingredients from?
Nutrish says it uses only the best, highest quality ingredients, which are carefully chosen utilizing their experience gained over a span of 80 years in the industry.
They put their ingredient suppliers through a rigorous screening process, that entails looking over their qualification and doing extensive tests on the ingredients.
A look at their websites ingredients page discloses some of the following:
- real beef raised on U.S. farms
- real bison raised on U.S. farms
- real chicken raised on U.S. farms
- real duck
- real lamb
- real quail
- real salmon
- real trout
- real turkey raised on U.S. farms
- real venison
- white fish
Thus: The ones they specifically highlight as being raised on USA farms we can conclude are not sourced globally, while the rest it is safe to assume do not come exclusively from the U.S.
Now: You’ve learned who makes Nutrish and where they do so, as well as under what quality controls. Next, let’s see where your dog can get his paws on a bag.
Who Sells Rachael Ray Nutrish Super Premium Dog Food?
You can find Nutrish dog food all over the place, even Dollar General carries the brand. Which shouldn’t take away from it’s quality, but rather just highlight it’s availability.
Important: At present, Nutrish is only distributed and sold in the United States. If you find a product selling outside the USA, it’s most likely a fake and of significantly lower quality!
Where to buy Rachael Ray Nutrish dog food?
You’ll most likely be able to pick up a bag of Rachel Ray’s dog food at your local grocery store in the US, and if not for some reason, you will not have to travel far to find a carrier. Unless of course you live in the woods or somewhere very rural. This is one of the most widely available brands, being carried by a significant amount of retailers, in-store and on the internet.
To find your nearest location: If you’re in search of getting your hands on a pouch of this palatable dog food, simply visit their Where to Buy – Search Tool and you’ll be presented with in-store and online options.
Rachael Ray Nutrish dog food is also available online at retailers such as Amazon.com, Walmart.com, Jet.com, and Chewy.com
Pro tip: It’s always good to call the store first and check availability, before making the trip.
How Does Rachael Ray Nutrish Dog Food Rate?
Dognutrition.com rates Rachael Ray Nutrish dog food with an impressive 4 out of 5 possible stars. Nutrish does things right when it comes to quality ingredient selection, especially the meat aspect. Opting for real meat, and from U.S. and European farms as much as possible and avoiding artificial ingredients. Additionally, they offer one of the most thorough FAQs on each of their product lines that we’ve seen from any of the big dog food makers around.
Which Rachael Ray Nutrish Dog Food Is Best?
As with any other dog food brand, you’ll have certain formulas that just seem to outsell the rest. It;s no different with Nutrish. But keep in mind that what works for other pet owners may not necessarily be the best choice for your pup.
Your pup is pretty unique!
Which is why it’s so hard to generalize “best” recommendations, as only you and your vet know your dog inside and out. That being said, the options at the top of this post have proven themselves worthy with pet owners across the nation.
Note: Don’t forget to check out our handy Dog Food Calculator tool, in case you’re stuck on how much to feed.
Important: Please speak with your vet before introducing new/different foods into your dogs diet.
Can puppies eat Rachael Ray Nutrish dog food?
Yes. In fact Nutrish offers 39 products targeted at the puppy life stage with a smaller kibble size, in the wet, dry, and treats forms. But it’s still important to check the bag/labels beforehand, as all formulations vary. They don;t use poultry by-product meal, artificial flavors, artificial colors, and/or artificial preservatives in the making of their puppy food (or any other product for that matter).
Recommended puppy choice:
- Nutrish Bright Puppy Real Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe [See it on Amazon].
Rachael Ray Nutrish Super Premium Dog Food Formulas:
- Nutrish (super premium dog food)
- Nutrish Zero Grain (grain-free recipes)
- Nutrish Dish (whole ingredient recipes)
- Nutrish Peak (protein-rich recipes)
- Nutrish Just 6 (limited ingredient recipes)
- Nutrish Soup Bones (supplemental)
- Nutrish Soup Bones Minis (supplemental)
- Nutrish Real Meat Treats (supplemental)
You’ll notice the following letters accompanying each recipe below. This is the recipes pertinent AAFCO nutrient profile (if we’re able to locate it on the company’s website).
- All Life Stages
Important: We feel it important to state that many websites do not reliably indicate which Growth or All Life Stages recipes are deemed safe for large breed puppies.
Now: You may see it on some of the recipes below, but we typically do not include this data in our reports. Make sure you examine the actual packaging for this information.
How much does Rachael Ray Nutrish dog food cost?
When it comes to the dry dog food selection, Nutrish typically comes out to around $1.61 per pound. As far as the wet dog food selection is concerned, Nutrish typically comes out to around $4.11 per pound. So a higher price for the wet food and a below average price on the dry food.
Nutrish Original Formula
- Rachael Ray Nutrish Little Bites [A] [Dry]
- Rachael Ray Nutrish Bright Puppy [A] [Dry]
- Rachael Ray Nutrish Real Beef and Brown Rice [A] [Dry]
- Rachael Ray Nutrish Real Chicken and Veggies [A] [Dry]
- Rachael Ray Nutrish Turkey, Brown Rice and Venison [M] [Dry]
- Rachael Ray Nutrish Chicken Paw Pie [A] [Trays / Wet]
- Rachael Ray Nutrish Hearty Beef Stew [A] [Trays / Wet]
- Rachael Ray Nutrish Rustic Duck Stew [A] [Trays / Wet]
- Rachael Ray Nutrish Beef Stroganwoof [A] [Trays / Wet]
- Rachael Ray Nutrish Savory Lamb Stew [A] [Trays / Wet]
- Rachael Ray Nutrish Chicken Muttballs with Pasta [A] [Trays / Wet]
Nutrish Zero Grain Dog Food
- Nutrish Zero Grain Turkey and Potato [A] [Dry]
- Nutrish Zero Grain Salmon and Sweet Potato [A] [Dry]
- Nutrish Zero Grain Beef, Potato and Bison [A] [Dry]
- Nutrish Zero Grain Chicken and Sweet Potato [A] [Dry]
Nutrish Dish Dog Food
- Rachael Ray Nutrish Dish Beef and Brown Rice [A] [Dry]
- Rachael Ray Nutrish Dish Chicken and Brown Rice [A] [Dry]
- Rachael Ray Nutrish Dish Grain Free Chicken & Potato Recipe with Veggies & Fruit [A] [Dry]
Nutrish PEAK Dog Food
- Rachael Ray Nutrish Peak Open Range Recipe [A] [Dry]
- Rachael Ray Nutrish Peak Northern Woodlands Recipe [A] [Dry]
Nutrish Just 6 Dog Food
- Rachael Ray Nutrish Just 6® Lamb Meal & Brown Rice Recipe [M] [Dry]
- Rachael Ray Nutrish Just 6® Grain Free Turkey Meal & Pea Recipe [M] [Dry]
Nutrish Soup Bones Dog Food
- Rachael Ray Nutrish Soup Bones Real Beef & Barley Flavor [S] [Dry]
- Rachael Ray Nutrish Soup Bones Real Chicken & Veggies Flavor [S] [Dry]
- Rachael Ray Nutrish Soup Bones Real Turkey & Rice Flavor [S] [Dry]
- Rachael Ray Nutrish Soup Bones Mini Real Beef & Barley Flavor [S] [Dry]
- Rachael Ray Nutrish Soup Bones Mini Real Chicken & Veggies Flavor [S] [Dry]
Nutrish Real Meat Treats
- Rachael Ray Tasty Real Meat Treats Turkey Bacon Recipe [S] [Dry]
- Rachael Ray Tasty Real Meat Treats Sausage Bites [S] [Dry]
- Rachael Ray Tasty Real Meat Treats Meatball Morsels [S] [Dry]
- Rachael Ray Tasty Real Meat Treats Burger Bites [S] [Dry]
- Rachael Ray Tasty Real Meat Treats Savory Roasters Chicken [S] [Dry]
- Rachael Ray Tasty Real Meat Treats Meatloaf Morsels [S] [Dry]
- Rachael Ray Tasty Real Meat Treats Deli Cuts [S] [Dry]
- Rachael Ray Tasty Real Meat Treats Pawsta [S] [Dry]
- Rachael Ray Tasty Real Meat Treats Savory Roasters Beef [S] [Dry]
- Rachael Ray Tasty Real Meat Treats Turkey Burger Bites [S] [Dry]
Below is a list of all (if any) recall incidents tied to this brand. It encompasses an analysis of all dog food recalls dating back to 2010, as well as further back; pointing out any releases directly related to this product line.
Note: If you don’t see any recall below, it means either of these two things. 1. There have been no recalls directly related to this product line. 2. We have not yet updated the section to reflect a recent recall.
Recalls related to Rachael Ray Nutrish dog food:
- None: Let’s hope it stays that way!
Worth mentioning: Five varieties of the Rachael Ray Nutrish cat food was recalled in June of 2015.; for potentially elevated levels of Vitamin D.
Also: For a company that’s been in business as long as Nutrish’s parent has, this is a truly impressive record, one that reflects on their commitment to not dwell too far of course and stick to making what they know how to make best, pet food/products.
But: There have been many complaints by concerned pet owners that Nutrish has maybe lost it’s way and is becoming another sub-par commercial dog food brand. No recalls have been officially issued however, and we are keeping our eye on these consumer complaints for any patterns.
Note: Should any of the above change, we’ll be sure to keep you posted, simply sign up for our free recalls newsletter at the end of this post.
The Bottom Line
Wow, kudos on making it this far!
That was a lot of information to take in, so let’s review it one last time before you go.
What makes Nutrish dog food a nutritious choice?
The formulation of recipes by pet food experts inspired by Rachael’s kitchen, utilizing wholesome and simple ingredients (like real meat and veggies). Avoidance of any fillers, via a strict ingredient selection process during which each selected ingredient must meek taste standards as well as serve a specific purpose.
Why did Rachael Ray get into the pet food business anyway?
She probably wanted to make money and jump in the fast growing pet food industry. The marketing story stresses the importance of her wanting her dog Isaboo to “eat as well as the rest of her family.” But she couldn’t find good choices, ones that tasted good while provided the nutrition needed.
Whichever you believe, at the end of the day, a portion of the proceeds do go to her foundation helping animals in need, so it’s not such a bad thing she got in after all.
Note: If you’d like to request a donation from the Rachael Ray Foundation, visit the Bestfriends.org website, where you’ll find more info on applying and hopefully receiving a grant for your shelter.
What does the future hold for Nutrish?
Only time will tell, but probably expect to see more growth, as the acquisition by J.M. Smucker Co. is no small event. Smucker is a huge conglomerate with vast resources and manufacturing facilities, scaling and meeting demands should therefore not be a problem; neither should research and development.
What we’d like to see: More focus on recent consumer concerns, and more wet dog food offerings. A primary concern is that J.M. Smucker’s own brand of pet food, previously unrelated to Nutrish, was subject to recalls. Pet owners are worried the quality of Nutrish dog food may suffer as a result of the acquisition and diminishing trust is not being addressed properly.
Note: Regarding our brand analysis or product reviews; we do not accept money, samples, or gifts from pet food companies or manufacturers for special favors or considerations.
We welcome our readers to share coupons and discounts with us that we may have missed in our search.
Nutrish offers coupons and discounts when you switch to their brand for the first time. [See here].
Now: Should you make a purchase by clicking the buying tip below, you will help us keep the lights on; as we will receive a referral fee from the online store. (Which in no way inhibits our independence and objectivity).
Notes, References & Updates
Please review the below when analyzing this article further.
- Descriptions and analysis expressed on this site are strictly the views and opinions of the author.
- Dognutrition.com do not test any dog food products.
- The accuracy of the information herein is dependent heavily on and correlated with the integrity of information provided by the dog food company in question.
- We strive to get all the info correct, but we do not and cannot guarantee it’s completeness or accuracy. Additionally, we do not have the resources to ensure the material is kept up-to-date on a daily basis.
- Each analysis is offered in good faith and is intended to help you make a more informed buying decision when it comes to purchasing dog food.
- Due to the unique biological identity of each dog, none of our analysis are meant to suggest or guarantee that feeding a particular dog food will result in any specific response in their diet or offer any specific health benefits.
- Rachael Ray – CBS TV Show
- Hypercompetitive Rivalries in the Pet Food Industry
- Manufacturing and Safety at Nutrish Pet Food
- FDA.gov – Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA)
- The Meadville Tribune – Sale of Ainsworth Pet Nutrition
Have an experience with this dog food you’d like to share? Or perhaps the post itself? Please know we rely on the tips of our readers and welcome your comments.