ExcitedCats is reader-supported. When you buy via links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no extra cost to you. Learn more.

Stella and Chewy’s Cat Food Reviews 2021 : Recalls, Pros & Cons

Review Summary

Our Final Verdict

We give Stella and Chewy’s Cat Food a rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars overall.

Introduction

Stella and Chewy’s Cat Food manufactures freeze-dried raw food, meal toppers, and raw frozen meals. They have a very good range of foods made from good quality ingredients. Their food is easy to get hold of and is generally well-received by its consumers and their humans. However, the raw food ingredients mean that this is more expensive than average cat food and has undergone a couple of recalls in its life.

However, it is a suitable brand for pet owners that want to give a raw food diet to their cat without wanting to undergo all of the effort and hassle of preparing the raw meals themselves. You can buy dry and wet foods, grain-inclusive and grain-free, and all of their complete and balanced foods are considered suitable for kittens and seniors.

While it is a high-quality food that especially benefits from the use of animal proteins, there are some concerns over high phosphorus levels in the foods.

Below we have reviewed Stella and Chewy’s product line for facts to determine whether it is any good. We have looked at the food content, range of foods, and quality of the ingredients. We also consider company reputation, recall history, and whether any controversies surround the food.

Read on to see whether Stella and Chewy’s is a good choice of cat food for your kitties.

Cat ball divider 1

At a Glance: The Best Stella and Chewy’s Cat Food Recipes:

Image Product Details
Our Favorite
Winner
Stella & Chewy’s Chick Chick Chicken Freeze-Dried Raw Food Stella & Chewy’s Chick Chick Chicken Freeze-Dried Raw Food
  • Feature iconPrimary ingredients are chicken
  • Feature iconFortified with vitamins and minerals
  • Feature iconSpecies appropriate food
  • Second place
    Stella & Chewy’s Yummy Lickin’ Salmon & Chicken Freeze-Dried Raw Food Stella & Chewy’s Yummy Lickin’ Salmon & Chicken Freeze-Dried Raw Food
  • Feature iconReal raw nutrition in the convenience of freeze-dried nuggets
  • Feature iconComplete and balanced nutrition
  • Feature iconMade with wild-caught salmon and ground bone, along with farm-raised chicken
  • Third place
    Stella & Chewy’s Marie’s Magical Dinner Dust Cage Free Chicken Recipe Stella & Chewy’s Marie’s Magical Dinner Dust Cage Free Chicken Recipe
  • Feature iconCan be used as a supplementary food
  • Feature icon35% protein
  • Feature iconPrimarily contains meat proteins
  • Stella & Chewy's Stella's Solutions Digestive Boost Chicken Freeze Stella & Chewy's Stella's Solutions Digestive Boost Chicken Freeze
  • Feature iconFreeze dried and free from grains, peas, lentils and potatoes
  • Feature iconA raw-nutrition topper for your furry friend’s favorite dry food
  • Feature iconContains all-natural ingredients
  • Stella & Chewy’s Stella Solutions Skin & Coat Duck & Salmon Freeze Stella & Chewy’s Stella Solutions Skin & Coat Duck & Salmon Freeze
  • Feature iconContains cage-free duck and wild-caught salmon
  • Feature iconFeed as a supplementary topper or main food
  • Feature icon35% protein levels
  • 3 cat face divider

    Stella and Chewy’s Cat Food Reviewed

    Who Makes Stella and Chewy’s Cat Food and Where Is It Produced?

    Stella and Chewy’s food was started by pet owner Marie Moody. Having already adopted one dog, Stella, from a local charity shelter, she returned and adopted a second, Chewy, in 1997. Chewy was a sick puppy, and Marie took the nutritional advice given to her by the vet to give her new rescue a better diet. Specifically, she started feeding a raw diet. Chewy recovered and Marie found that both her rescues thrived on this raw food recipe.

    In 2003, Stella and Chewy’s was launched from a small kitchen in Brooklyn, New York. The company has grown significantly since then and its main factory is now located in Wisconsin. They have expanded to include cat food and while they only manufactured raw food in the early days, they have expanded their product line to include other foods and dietary plans too.

    They aim to meet the budget and dietary requirements of a wider range of pet owners and pets.

    Stella and Chewy’s states that its food is manufactured in the USA using ingredients that are sustainably and ethically sourced. This means that the ingredients do not necessarily come from the USA, but that they are put together in the Wisconsin food plant.

    Stella & Chewy's

    Which Types of Cats Might Do Better with a Different Brand?

    Stella & Chewy’s claims that its cat food is suitable for cats of all ages, sizes, and dietary requirements. It has been developed to meet the dietary needs of all life stages, although the high phosphorus levels in some foods mean that kitten owners may want to look elsewhere.

    Cats can develop a condition called hyperphosphatemia, which is a disturbance in the electrolytes of the blood, and is caused by elevated levels of phosphorus, typically in a cat’s diet. Hyperphosphatemia is more common in kittens as well as cats with kidney problems, bone diseases, and calcium deficiency.

    Therefore, if your cat suffers from any of these conditions, you should look for foods that are low in phosphorus. Specifically, those foods that are labeled as suitable for renal support should have a suitably low amount of phosphorus. Look for those foods with controlled levels of phosphorus so that you can manage your cat’s intake. We suggest .

    Discussion of the Primary Ingredients (Good and Bad)

    • Meat Proteins—In most of their foods, the top three ingredients are meat-based. For example, the top three ingredients in the salmon and chicken freeze-dried raw food are salmon with ground bone, chicken with ground bone, and chicken liver. The next ingredient in this particular food is also chicken gizzard. As obligate carnivores, cats should get the majority of their protein from meat sources, rather than plant and vegetable sources. Stella and Chewy’s claims that each of their recipes contains at least 98% meat, bone, and organ.
    • Enhanced with Probiotics—Probiotics are good bacteria that help to fight off bad bacteria. In particular, they help maintain good gut health. They can treat and prevent diarrhea and some strains can even keep your heart healthy. All cats can benefit from food that is fortified with probiotics, but especially those with a sensitive or upset stomach. Stella and Chewy’s adds probiotics to its ingredients to aid your cat’s digestion.
    • Wild-Caught Salmon—Salmon is a good source of omega-3, an excellent source of protein, and it is high in B vitamins, all of which are beneficial to cats. However, farm-raised salmon can be fed antibiotics in a bid to try and prevent illness. They are also more likely to contain pesticides and other contaminants including carcinogenic dioxins. While farm-raised salmon is less expensive, it is not as beneficial as wild-caught. Stella and Chewy’s fish recipes use wild-caught salmon to give the greatest benefit to your cats.
    • Cage-Free Poultry—Similarly, the company only uses high-quality chicken and poultry. Cage-free systems are usually cleaner, less likely to spread disease, and have fewer infestations. It is also less stressful and more humane for the bird.
    • Organic Fruit and Vegetables—Stella and Chewy’s recipes are fortified with fruit and vegetables. These offer additional vitamins and minerals that are difficult to get from meat alone. They are included in small percentages, according to the manufacturer, and this would mimic the cat’s diet in the wild because they would eat the whole of their prey, which includes the content of their stomach.

    Want to see more cat food reviews? Check out our review page here!

    Stella & Chewy's Stella's Solutions Digestive Boost Chicken Freeze-Dried Raw Cat Food

    Mimics a Cat’s Wild Diet

    One of the great benefits of feeding a raw food diet is that it can more closely mimic the natural diet of a wild cat. Wild cats would be obligate carnivores, and so pet cats are also obligate carnivores. This means that they must get protein from meat sources. Cats cannot live on a vegetarian or vegan diet. What’s more, a cat would feast almost solely on meat. They would hunt rodents and small animals as well as birds. They would not only consume the meat of their prey, but they would also eat everything including the organs and even some of the bones.

    In this way, a cat would eat some small amounts of fruit and vegetable, grass, and other ingredients, because they would be present in the stomach of rodents and other meals.

    Stella and Chewy’s has diversified its range but has stuck to the principle of offering a cat-appropriate diet that is suitable for an obligate carnivore like your cat.

    Raw Food Benefits

    A lot of cat food is made by heating and cooking meat. This process greatly diminishes the nutrients and other beneficial content of the ingredients. Manufacturers attempt to replace the nutrients through supplementation, but this is unreliable and many essential vitamins and minerals are lost.

    Raw food not only more closely mimics what a cat would eat in the wild, but it helps ensure that they are getting all of the essential and beneficial components of the food that they eat.

    Stella & Chewy's Chick Chick Chicken

    This can improve gut and digestive health, and urinary health. It can lead to a cat with greater energy levels, fewer hairballs, and a healthier-looking coat. It can even lead to healthier teeth and gums.

    To Rehydrate or Not to Rehydrate

    Some freeze-dried raw foods need rehydrating before feeding, which means mixing them with a little water and stirring. The process is simple and it makes the food more palatable and enjoyable for your cat while making it easier to digest and eat. Not all Stella and Chewy’s food needs rehydrating in this way, but if you do need to, you should mix half a cup of warm or cold water with one cup of food.

    Bone Content

    There has been some controversy surrounding the bone content in Stella and Chewy’s cat food. If you check the primary ingredients of the different foods, they state chicken with ground bone or salmon with ground bone.

    Bone is beneficial to cats, chiefly because it would be the main source of calcium for cats in the wild. However, it is important to remember that cats would not usually feast solely on chicken in the wild. They would be more likely to consume mice or rabbits. Mice and rabbits are approximately 10% bone while chickens are about 30% bone.

    The increased amount of bone means that cats get more calcium, but they also get more phosphorus, and, as we discussed earlier, too much phosphorus can be very bad for your cat.

    divider-catclaw1

    A Quick Look at Stella and Chewy’s Cat Food

    Stella & Chewy's Yummy Lickin' Salmon & Chicken Dinner Morsels Freeze-Dried Raw Cat Food

    Pros
    • High in animal proteins
    • Contain probiotics
    • Cage-free poultry and wild-caught salmon
    • Organic fruit and vegetables
    • Species-specific ingredients
    Cons
    • Expensive
    • High phosphorus content
    • Two major recalls

    Recall History

    Unfortunately, Stella and Chewy’s foods have been recalled twice. In July 2015, the company’s dog food was recalled for potential Listeria contamination. In December of the same year, dog food and cat food were recalled for the same reason. There have not been any recalls since this time.

    cat + line divider

    Reviews of the 3 Best Stella and Chewy’s Cat Food Recipes

    1. Stella and Chewy’s Chick, Chick Chicken Freeze-Dried Raw Food

    Stella & Chewy's Chick Chick Chicken Dinner Morsels Freeze-Dried Raw Cat Food

    Stella and Chewy’s Chick Chick Chick Freeze-Dried Raw Food is an all-natural recipe that lists its primary ingredients as being chicken, chicken liver, and chicken gizzard. Additional ingredients include organic fruit and vegetables that fortify the ingredients with extra vitamins and minerals. The overall protein level is 45%, which is higher than most other foods but is common in freeze-dried raw food like this.

    The food can be rehydrated by adding half a cup of warm water for each cup of dry food. Allow the food to mix for one minute before feeding. This can help ensure that your cat is getting the moisture it requires, and if you feed dry, do ensure that you provide plenty of water with each meal.

    The ingredients are high quality but the food is expensive. The kibble, or morsels, are large, and more sensitive cats will struggle to eat the pieces easily. The high level of protein means that this is a rich food so you should take care to introduce it slowly to avoid vomiting and other GI complaints.

    Calorie Breakdown:

    Stella and Chewy’s Chick, Chick Chicken Freeze-Dried Raw Food

    Pros
    • Primary ingredients are chicken
    • Fortified with vitamins and minerals
    • Species appropriate food
    • Easy to rehydrate
    Cons
    • Expensive
    • Large morsels
    • Needs gradual introduction
    thematic break

    2. Stella and Chewy’s Marie’s Magical Dinner Dust Cage-Free Chicken Recipe Freeze-Dried Raw Cat Food Topper

    Stella and Chewy’s Marie’s Magical Dinner Dust Cage Free Chicken Recipe Freeze-Dried Raw Cat Food Topper

    Stella and Chewy’s Marie’s Magical Dinner Dust Cage-Free Chicken Recipe Freeze-Dried Raw Cat Food Topper contains, as its main ingredients, duck, turkey, turkey liver, and salmon.

    The recipe is free from grains, does not contain peas, which are often used as a cheap alternative to grain, and as well as being used as a dry food topper to enhance the nutrition and flavor of your cat’s favorite kibble, can also be fed on its own.

    It can be fed dry but is best rehydrated with warm or cool water. The recipe is high in protein, with a 35% protein ratio and it has a good combination of omega-3 and omega-6 acids. The food is rich to most cats so you will have to take it slowly. It is also expensive compared to other foods. It can also turn to mush when mixed with water, so mix carefully to avoid creating a fish soup.

    Pros
    • Can be used as a supplementary food
    • 35% protein
    • Primarily contains meat proteins
    Cons
    • Expensive
    • Can turn to mush
    thematic break

    3. Stella and Chewy’s Stella Solutions Skin & Coat Duck & Salmon Freeze-Dried Raw Cat Food

    Stella and Chewy’s Stella Solutions Skin & Coat Duck & Salmon Freeze-Dried Raw Cat Food

    Consisting primarily of cage-free duck and wild-caught salmon, Stella and Chewy’s Stella Solutions Skin & Coat Duck & Salmon Freeze-Dried Raw Cat Food can be fed as a topper, which is a good way of enhancing your cat’s existing food while avoiding the high cost of feeding this freeze-dried raw food alone.

    If you are looking for a high protein (35%) freeze-dried food, however, this is a high-quality option. The ingredients have been chosen to give your cat a big boost on omega-6 fatty acids, which are especially good for coat and skin conditions.

    It can help with conditions ranging from allergies to dermatitis, or just to give an old cat’s coat a bit of sheen back. The food is expensive and turns to mush when rehydrating if you’re not careful.

    Pros
    • Contains cage-free duck and wild-caught salmon
    • Feed as a supplementary topper or main food
    • 35% protein levels
    Cons
    • Expensive
    • Can turn to mush

    cat face divider 2

    What Other Users Are Saying

    Take a look at what others are saying about Stella and Chewy’s cat food range here:

    • TheCatNipTimes – “We just tried Stella & Chewy’s Raw Coated Cat Kibble and my cats loved it!”
    • We’reAllAboutPets – “If you’re looking to increase the quality of your cat’s diet but you’re not sure you’re ready to upgrade all the way to raw, we heartily recommend Stella & Chewy’s freeze-dried morsels or raw-coated kibble.”
    • Amazon – You can also see what other genuine buyers think of Stella and Chewy’s cat foods. Click here to read some of these reviews.

    cat paw divider

    Conclusion

    Stella & Chewy’s was started by one pet owner that wanted to offer a healthier and more sympathetic diet for her rescue dogs and while the company has grown to include a much wider range of foods and more options, they have retained the same ethos.

    The company’s range of cat foods is species-appropriate and the manufacturer claims that 98% of ingredients come from meat, bone, and organs, which mimics the wild diet of a cat. These ingredients are fortified with vegetables and fruit, which would be found in the stomach of the wild cat’s prey.

    Although the food is expensive, it is worth the investment for the improved health and nutritional benefits that it offers, and Stella & Chewy’s also has a range of food toppers that can be fed as a supplemental type food on top of existing wet or dry food.