In recent years, more consumers have placed a greater emphasis on natural diets with clean ingredients, choosing fresh and organic options over heavily processed goods. These trends in human dieting have influenced a new generation of health conscious pet parents who are seeking higher quality foods for their pets. This demand has given rise to human grade dog food, a steadily emerging category that continues to soar in popularity. 

With new brands entering the space frequently and with so many options already available on the market, navigating the world of “human grade” pet food can be challenging. Here, we provide high-level guidance for pet parents and highlight some of our top picks for human grade dog food brands. 

Our List

9 Best Human Grade Dog Food Brands to Consider

The market has no shortage of human grade pet food products, or at least products labeled as such. To help pet parents, we’ve rounded up some of the top brands we’ve found in the space. 

Best Picky Eater Human Grade Dog Food

Our pick: The Pets Table

Human Grade Dog Food from The Pets Table

Get 50% Off Your First Box (and free shipping) with code VETSTREET50 at The Pets Table!

Let’s face it, some dogs are picky eaters. Fortunately, The Pets Table knows that, and they formulated each human-grade dog food selection with this in mind. For the Freshly Made plan, each ingredient is mixed into a large cooking pot, portioned out and flash frozen to ensure all nutrients are locked it.and personalized to your dog’s plan. Your dog’s meals are made fresh according to the results of the quiz and survey each pet parent takes on The Pets Table website. We’re talking recipes like beef stew with carrots, chicken casserole with green beans, and turkey casserole with broccoli. Pet parents will appreciate that their fresh food varieties are made in the United States at an FDA-inspected human-grade facility.

Highlights

  • In addition to fresh fruits and vegetables, each meal contains an added yeast culture, which is a postbiotic for gut health in dogs.
  • Vitamins and minerals are carefully added to each batch of food to ensure your dog receives the nutrients they require.
  • All recipes are made in the United States
  • Developed with veterinarians and meets AAFCO industry requirements.
  • Ideal for picky eaters
  • Pick and choose the plan and types of foods that best meet your dog’s needs
  • Delivery to all 48 contiguous states

Things to Consider

  • They do not offer any pet treats at this time
  • Packaging isn’t very eco-friendly

Best Human Grade Air-Dried Dog Food

Our pick: Sundays for Dogs

Sundays for Dogs air-dried dog food

Use code VETSTREET35 and get 35% off your first purchase

Imagine if you could reap the benefits of feeding your dog a raw or home-cooked diet but without the hassle of food prep and cleanup. Enter Sundays for Dogs, a gently air-dried dog food that features all-natural, human-grade ingredients. This alternative to kibble is not only healthier and tastier, it’s shelf stable and ready to eat. Choose from beef or chicken recipes that feature over 90 percent fresh meat, organ and bones, rounded out by wholesome grains and antioxidant-rich fruits and veggies. Even the pickiest dogs will find the jerky-like texture and taste of this food irresistible. And if your dog has a sensitive stomach, you can rest assured knowing it contains digestive aids like pumpkin and ginger. The food is also high in omega-3 and -6 fatty acids from natural sources like fish oil and flaxseed to support your dog’s skin and coat health. What more could you and your pup need?

Highlights

  • Created by a small animal veterinarian, Dr. Tory Waxman
  • No artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives
  • No gluten, legumes, wheat, soy, rice, corn, potatoes, or meat meals
  • Made in a USDA-monitored kitchen and 100% human-grade
  • Personalized feeding instructions provided
  • Available in regular (40 oz), medium (70 oz), and large (144 oz) boxes
  • Subscribe and save 20 percent
  • Beef recipe meets AAFCO dog food nutrient profiles for all life stages, while the chicken recipe is for adult maintenance
  • Free shipping and 100% satisfaction guarantee

Things to Consider

  • Currently only two recipes to choose from: beef or chicken
  • Store in a cool dark place and finish within 8 weeks of opening for best flavor
  • Since this food is roughly twice as dense as kibble, you’ll only need to feed about half of what you’re used to (approximately ¼ cup per day per 10 pounds of your dog’s body weight). Follow personalized feeding instructions that come with the box
  • Puppies and pregnant or nursing adults may require 2-4 times the adult feeding amounts
  • Always make sure your dog has access to fresh water 

Best Human Grade Dog Food Delivery

Our pick: Ollie

Ollie human grade dog food delivery

Subscribe today and get 60% off your first box!

Ollie offers fresh, human grade dog food tailored to meet your pet’s nutritional needs, with recipes that feature real chicken, beef, turkey, or lamb as the first ingredient. Other ingredients include leafy greens, root veggies, and plant-based proteins. What separates Ollie from the competition is their personalization and convenient delivery service. To get started, you’ll need to take a short quiz about your pet. Within two weeks, you will receive a starter box with meals selected based on your pet’s age, weight, breed, activity level, and allergies or sensitivities.

Highlights

  • Vet-approved recipes are gently cooked in U.S. facilities at low temperatures
  • Personalized meal plans
  • Seamless customer service and delivery
  • No fillers, artificial flavors, or preservatives
  • Meets AAFCO nutrient profiles for all life stages

Things to Consider 

  • Available in four flavor options, but turkey is out of stock due to supply chain issues
  • Fresh food requires storage considerations, like refrigeration or freezing

Best Human Grade Dry Dog Food

Our pick: Open Farm

Open Farm human grade dog food brand

20% off first auto-ship order with code VETSTREET

Open Farm’s transparency and commitment to ethically sourcing ingredients separates it from competitors. Its dry foods top this list as an excellent human grade dog food option for pet parents seeking the ease and convenience that come along with storing and serving dry foods. Available in multiple flavors, such as homestead chicken, grass-fed beef, wild-caught salmon, and New Zealand venison, their recipes also come with or without grains. Open Farm’s high-protein dry food recipes provide a solution for even the pickiest of canine diners.

Highlights

  • Variety of flavors to choose from, with meat or fish as the first ingredient
  • Available in grain-free varieties or with ancient grains
  • Rounded out with non-GMO fruits, veggies, and superfoods
  • Commitment to humanely, sustainably sourced ingredients that are 100 percent traceable
  • Meets AAFCO nutrient profiles for all life stages
  • Available in 4.5-, 12-, or 24-pound bags

Things to Consider 

  • Relatively expensive compared to typical pet food prices
  • Packaging is recyclable but only through Terracycle

Best Shelf-Stable Human Grade Dog Food

Our pick: Just Food For Dogs

Just Food for Dogs human grade dog food brand

Just Food For Dogs is committed to providing fresh food options for pets using human grade ingredients like chicken breast and thighs, ground turkey, and lamb heart. Aside from their fresh frozen recipes, the brand also has a PantryFresh line that provides convenience without sacrificing quality. Cooked in a USDA kitchen without feed-grade ingredients or preservatives, these recipes are shelf-stable for up to two years and come ready to serve, making the choice to go fresh even easier. 

JFFD’s Pantry Fresh Sampler Box enables your dog to try their Chicken & White Rice, Beef & Russet Potato, Turkey & Whole Wheat Macaroni, and Lamb & Brown Rice fresh, whole food diets. Get 50 percent off your first Pantry Fresh Sampler Box.

Highlights

  • Variety of flavors, including chicken, turkey, beef, or lamb
  • Delivery convenience and standout customer service
  • Also available in veterinary support recipes, such as Joint & Skin Support, Balanced Remedy, Renal Support Low Protein, and Critical Care Support
  • Regular recipes meet AAFCO nutrient profiles for all life stages; veterinary support recipes meet nutrient profiles for maintenance

Things to Consider

  • Refrigerate after opening
  • A 12.5-oz package costs over $6 and feeds up to a 22- or 25-pound dog per day
  • Veterinary support recipes come at a higher price 

Best Limited-Ingredient Human Grade Dog Food

Our pick: Raised Right

Raised Right Human Grade Dog Food

Get 20% off your first 16 bag box with code PETS20

Raised Right’s attention to detail and commitment to safety are outstanding. They’re a family-owned human-grade pet food company that works with world-renowned veterinarian, Dr. Karen Becker, to formulate limited ingredient recipes that are high in protein and super low in carbohydrates. In fact, most Raised Right recipes contain less than 2 percent of carbs because the company steers clear of high-carbohydrate fillers like potato, rice, oats, yam, pasta, barley, parsnips, corn, or wheat.

In addition, all of the brand’s adult dog recipes contain only 10 ingredients or less, with some having as few as just 7 or 8 ingredients. And Raised Right formulated their adult dog recipes to meet AAFCO’s requirements for a complete and balanced diet by using only whole foods and without having to add any synthetic vitamins or minerals.

Raised Right has a rigorous standard of testing to ensure high quality. Every batch they cook is lab safety tested for pathogens and they have a hold release program where they don’t ship their food unless it passes the lab safety test. Boasting AAFCO-approved, complete and balanced formulas that are lightly cooked, each whole food option is made with a single source of animal protein.   

Highlights

  • Wide variety of limited-ingredient, high-protein, low-carb recipes for dogs of all ages
  • Adult dog recipes meet AAFCO’s requirements for a completed and balanced diet
  • Most recipes contain less than 2 percent of carbohydrates because no carb-heavy fillers like potato, rice, oats, yam, pasta, barley, parsnips, corn, or wheat are used
  • Every single batch they cook is lab safety tested
  • Made with human-grade ingredients in a USDA-inspected facility
  • Choose from custom meal plans or try out sample boxes first

Things to Consider

  • Food must be stored frozen and refrigerated after defrosting
  • Bags remain fresh in the refrigerator for six days after defrosting

Best Human Grade Wet Dog Food

Our pick: Caru

Caru human grade dog food

Caru stands out from competitors as a family-oriented brand that doesn’t over-complicate its human grade dog food offering. The brand is mainly focused on providing flavorful wet stew options for dogs and cats, which can be used either as a complete meal or a meal topper. The simplicity of the product is a thing of beauty, and the brand’s no-frills approach to pet nutrition backed with purpose make it a top option to consider for pet parents.

Highlights

  • Slow-cooked in small batches with responsibly sourced ingredients
  • Serve as a complete and balanced meal or a topper
  • No artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives. Also free of wheat, gluten, corn, soy, or animal by-products
  • Made in the USA
  • Meets AAFCO nutrient profiles for maintenance

Things to Consider 

  • Serving size will depend on your pet’s weight and whether fed alone or with dry dog food
  • Can be gently heated

Best Dehydrated Human Grade Dog Food

Our pick: The Honest Kitchen

Honest Kitchen grain free chicken recipe for dogs

30% off orders $30+ at The Honest Kitchen with code VS30

The Honest Kitchen was one of the first brands to help pioneer the human grade movement, and did so with one aim: improving our pet’s health. Their dehydrated food selection delivers on the brand’s promise to deliver good food sourced with simple, clean ingredients. Choose from recipes like whole grain chicken, turkey, beef, or fish. They also offer grain-free and limited-ingredient options.

Highlights 

  • Available in a variety of proteins, like chicken, turkey, beef, or fish
  • Minimally processed whole foods; no preservatives or fillers
  • Easy to store and use
  • Available in 2-, 4-, 7- and 10-pound boxes, as well as 1.75-oz cups. To put things into perspective, a 10-pound box makes about 40-pounds of food
  • Complete and balanced for puppies and adults
  • Made in the USA with U.S. and globally sourced ingredients

Things to Consider

  • You’ll need to mix the dehydrated food with warm water, stir and wait 3 minutes, then serve
  • Serving size will depend on your dog’s age, weight and activity level
  • Price point is a little high

Best Human Grade Dog Food Topper or Mixer

Our pick: Portland Pet Food Company

Portland Pet Food for dogs

This Pacific Northwest-based company sources only all-natural human grade ingredients locally, and has a steady reputable offering that can suit even the pickiest of eaters. Their ready-to-eat meal pouches come in savory flavors like pork and potato or turkey and yams, and their biscuits are available in pumpkin, bacon, or gingerbread flavors.

Highlights

  • Shelf-stable homestyle meals and toppers
  • Transparent and ethical ingredient sourcing from within the USA
  • Contains no preservatives, artificial flavors or colors, or supplements
  • Pouches are shelf-stable for two years, microwavable, earth-friendly, and BPA free
  • 5 percent of net profits go to local non-profit animal shelters and programs

Things to Consider 

  • Does not meet AAFCO requirements to be considered a complete and balanced diet; intended for intermittent or supplemental feeding only
  • One 9-oz meal pouch is nearly $7, but you can take advantage of subscribe and save options or get more bang for your buck with variety packs
  • Portion size will vary based on your dog’s age, size, and activity level
  • To recycle pouches, you need to request a recycling envelope and send it to TerraCycle with a prepaid shipping label; the Portland Pet Food Company site says this program is currently unavailable

What Is Human Grade Dog Food?

Dog mouth open very hungry

The pet food industry is loosely regulated, and what is currently deemed safe and suitable for animals by government agencies, in terms of how ingredients are handled and manufactured, differs from how food is deemed safe for human consumption. The term “human grade” looks to provide clarity by using the FDA’s human standards for food ingredient safety and applying them to the ingredients within your pet’s food.

Human grade does not mean that the product is designed or intended for use by humans or that a product is nutritious for both humans and pets. However, facilities that process or package ready-to-eat, human-grade pet food products must be registered as both FDA food and FDA feed facilities, and all individual ingredients that are used to make human-grade pet food must be fit for human consumption.

The Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) has strict guidelines and testing standards on what constitutes a safe and nutritious pet food, including being unadulterated. The term “human grade” may have a certain implication, but the organization notes that this label doesn’t actually have a bearing on the overall safety of a pet food product, and that its own standards of pet food testing should be used.

According to AAFCO, for a pet food to be considered human grade, “every ingredient and the resulting product must be stored, handled, processed, and transported in a manner that is consistent and compliant with [current good manufacturing practices (cGMPs) for human foods] and those applicable federal human food laws as required by ingredient, process and/or facility type.”

Is Human Grade Food Good for Dogs?

Human grade dog food is available in fresh, wet, dry, canned, or even freeze-dried options. Just because you see the term “human grade” on the packaging does not automatically mean a pet food is nutritious. You should use the same criteria as you would to select any type of dog food to determine whether a human grade dog food is good for your individual dog.

Human Grade Dog Food: What to Look For

Owner giving dog food in the house human grade dog food

In your quest for the best human grade dog food, perhaps the most important thing to look for is a statement of nutritional adequacy that indicates the food has met the minimum safety and nutrition standards put out by AAFCO. 

Beyond the label, pet parents can also evaluate brands individually by looking for: 

  • Preferred format (dry, wet, freeze-dried, etc.)
  • Transparency in ingredient sourcing and manufacturing
  • Supporting research that touts the food’s benefits 
  • Positive reviews from other pet parents