Nutro vs Essence

Nutro vs. Essence

In this comparison article for Nutro vs Essence, we'll highlight the key differences between these two pet food brands. To properly compare Nutro and Essence, we'll use up-to-date nutritional and price information.

There are many factors to consider when choosing the best pet food brand for your pet. Factors such as ingredient quality, guaranteed analysis, product safety, brand history, and cost are among the most important factors to consider.

Throughout this Essence vs Nutro comparison, we've utilized average data to make general comparisons. If you'd like to see individual product reviews, visit our Nutro Review Page or Essence Review Page.

Guaranteed Analysis: Essence vs. Nutro

According to AAFCO, all pet food labels must provide a guaranteed analysis of nutrient content. The analysis must provide guaranteed minimum percentages of crude protein and crude fat, and maximum percentages of crude fiber and moisture.

All percentages used in this comparison are averages reported on a dry matter basis.

Nutro Dog Food vs. Essence Dog Food

Dry Dog FoodNutroEssence
Crude Protein27.0%40.9%
Crude Fat15.3%19.3%
Crude Fiber4.7%5.7%
Wet/Canned Dog FoodNutroEssence
Crude Protein42.6%46.2%
Crude Fat24.2%32.6%
Crude Fiber6.1%6.0%

Crude Protein Comparison For Dog Food

Dogs require twenty-two amino acids to sustain life. Twelve of these amino acids are synthesized naturally, the remaining ten are consumed. Protein is the nutrient which provides some or all of these ten essential amino acids.

The comparison table above shows that Essence dry dog foods provide significantly more protein than Nutro. More specifically, Essence guarantees at least 13.86% more protein. For wet dog foods, Essence typically provides a little more protein (about 3.65% more).

Crude Fat Comparison For Dog Food

Fats are an absolutely vital component of a balanced canine diet. Not only do fats provide energy, but they also serve important roles in the normal development and function of your dog's body. For example, fats help dogs produce prostaglandins, which reduce inflammation among many other significant functions.

There is a relatively large difference between the fat content of Essence and Nutro. On average, Nutro dry dog food recipes contain 4.01% less fat than Essence recipes. In addition, Essence wet dog foods also provide more fat than Nutro wet foods.

There is a relatively insignificant difference between the crude fiber content of the two brands. With regards to wet dog food, Nutro and Essence also provide roughly the same amount of crude fiber.

Nutro Cat Food vs. Essence Cat Food

Dry Cat FoodNutroEssence
Crude Protein37.3%44.1%
Crude Fat17.2%18.5%
Crude Fiber5.9%4.8%
Wet/Canned Cat FoodNutroEssence
Crude Protein54.8%46.2%
Crude Fat23.1%31.8%
Crude Fiber5.1%4.8%

Crude Protein Comparison For Cat Food

Cats require twenty-two amino acids to sustain life. Eleven of these amino acids are synthesized naturally, the remaining eleven are consumed. Protein is the nutrient which provides some or all of these eleven essential amino acids.

Nutro dry recipes contain 6.80% less protein than Essence dry recipes. This difference in protein content is a notable difference between Essence and Nutro. In addition, Nutro wet cat foods also provide more protein than Essence wet foods.

Crude Fat Comparison For Cat Food

There are many ways in which dietary fat contributes to the overall health of our feline friends. Here is a short list of benefits provided by fats (not exhaustive):

  • Fats help with the digestion and absorption of fat-soluble vitamins
  • Reduce inflammation associated with arthritis
  • Slow the growth of yeast infections
  • Prevent or reduce the likelihood of certain heart problems.
  • Aid in the development of the retina and visual cortex.

Both brands provide roughly the same amount of crude fat. For wet cat foods, Essence provides significantly more fat (about 8.69% more).

As you can see, Essence and Nutro guarantee a similar amount of crude fiber. With regards to wet cat food, Nutro and Essence also provide roughly the same amount of crude fiber.

Nutro Pet Food Ingredients vs. Essence Pet Food Ingredients

Here are some of the controversial ingredients used only by Nutro.

Bone Broth
Iron Oxide
Pea Protein
Pork Plasma
Whole Wheat
Brewers Rice
Wheat Gluten
Animal Plasma
Caramel Color
Tomato Pomace
Vegetable Oil
Feeding Oatmeal
Dried Corn Syrup
Powdered Cellulose
Dried Tomato Pomace
Pea Protein Isolate
Canola Oil (Preserved With Mixed Tocopherols)

We believe that certain pet food ingredients are linked to adverse health affects; these ingredients are classified as harmful.

Here are some of the harmful ingredients used only by Nutro.

Menadione Sodium Bisulfite Complex

Product Safety: Recall History of Nutro & Essence?

Nutro has been recalled 4 times.

  • Sept. 30, 2009: small pieces of melted plastic
  • Dec. 13, 2015: Mold
  • May 21, 2009: incorrect levels of zinc and potassium
  • March 16, 2007: Melamine

According to our records, Essence has never been recalled.

Price Comparison: Which Brand Is More Expensive?

Dry Dog FoodNutroEssence
Per Pound$2.24$4.11
Per Calorie$0.0014$0.0024
Dry Cat FoodNutroEssence
Per Pound$3.36$4.64
Per Calorie$0.0020$0.0027
Wet Dog FoodNutroEssence
Per Pound$6.55$4.99
Per Calorie$0.0136$0.0090
Wet Cat FoodNutroEssence
Per Pound$7.99$5.98
Per Calorie$0.0167$0.0103

The average cost-per-lb is heavily influenced by the varying amounts of moisture present in each brand's food products (wet vs. dry food, dry vs. freeze-dried food, etc). However, the average cost-per-kcal eliminates the influence of moisture. Therefore, the average cost-per-kcal is the better metric to consider.

If you'd like to calculate the average cost-per-day or cost-pet-year of feeding Nutro or Essence, input your pet's weight into our cost analyzer widget.

Averages price data can identify whether or not there exists a significant price difference between two brands. However, the actual price that you'll pay for Nutro or Essence will depend on your shopping habits.

Pet owners who use our price comparison feature typically save more than 25% off retail prices for Nutro and Essence. In addition, we currently have some great coupons for our readers.

Disclosure: PawDiet has an affiliate relationship with stores featured (or linked-to) in this article. We are compensated for referring customers. Thank you for shopping with our retail partners!

Where To Buy Nutro Pet Foods

You can purchase Nutro pet foods from the following stores:

77 Recipes In-Stock Today

44 Recipes In-Stock Today

64 Recipes In-Stock Today

Where To Buy Essence Pet Foods

You can purchase Essence pet food products from these retailers:

12 Recipes In-Stock Today

13 Recipes In-Stock Today

Type Of Pet Foods Available

Dry Dog Food56 Recipes6 Recipes
Wet Dog Food45 Recipes6 Recipes
Dog Treats12 TreatsNone
Dry Cat Food11 Recipes3 Recipes
Wet Cat Food41 Recipes3 Recipes
Cat TreatsNoneNone

Top Rated Nutro Recipes

Dog Food
Ultra Small Breed Adult Dry Dog Food
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Cat Food
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Top Rated Essence Recipes

Dog Food
Original Ranch & Meadow Recipe For Dogs
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Dog Food
Original Air & Gamefowl Recipe For Dogs (Canned)
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Cat Food
Original Air & Gamefowl Recipe For Cats
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Cat Food
Original Ranch & Meadow Recipe For Cats (Canned)
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