Vital Essentials vs Taste of the Wild

Vital Essentials vs. Taste of the Wild

In this comparison article for Vital Essentials vs Taste of the Wild, we'll highlight the key differences between these two pet food brands. To properly compare Vital Essentials and Taste of the Wild, 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 Taste of the Wild vs Vital Essentials comparison, we've utilized average data to make general comparisons. If you'd like to see individual product reviews, visit our Vital Essentials Review Page or Taste of the Wild Review Page.

Guaranteed Analysis: Taste of the Wild vs. Vital Essentials

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.

Vital Essentials Dog Food vs. Taste of the Wild Dog Food

Dry Dog Food Vital Essentials Taste of the Wild
Crude Protein 52.6% 31.9%
Crude Fat 30.0% 18.0%
Crude Fiber 5.4% 5%

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 Vital Essentials dry dog foods provide significantly more protein than Taste of the Wild. More specifically, Vital Essentials guarantees at least 20.76% more protein.


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.

Vital Essentials dry dog foods clearly provides more fat than Taste of the Wild. In fact, the difference between the fat content is roughly 11.96%, which is a significant amount.


There is a relatively insignificant difference between the crude fiber content of the two brands.

Vital Essentials Cat Food vs. Taste of the Wild Cat Food

Dry Cat Food Vital Essentials Taste of the Wild
Crude Protein 55.7% 41.1%
Crude Fat 24.4% 18.9%
Crude Fiber 3.5% 3.3%

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.

On average, Vital Essentials dry cat food recipes contain 14.59% more protein than Taste of the Wild recipes. Clearly, there is a significant difference between the protein content of Taste of the Wild and Vital Essentials.


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.

There is a relatively large difference between the fat content of Vital Essentials and Taste of the Wild. On average, Taste of the Wild dry cat food recipes contain 5.53% less fat than Vital Essentials recipes.


Both brands provide roughly the same amount of crude fiber.

Vital Essentials Pet Food Ingredients vs. Taste of the Wild Pet Food Ingredients

Here are some of the controversial ingredients used only by Taste of the Wild.

Canola Oil
Pea Protein
Tomato Pomace

Product Safety: Recall History of Vital Essentials & Taste of the Wild?

Vital Essentials has been recalled 4 times.

  • July 8, 2015: Listeria monocytogenes
  • Jan. 15, 2016: Salmonella
  • Feb. 24, 2018: Salmonella
  • April 16, 2018: Salmonella

Taste of the Wild has been recalled once.

  • May 5, 2012: Salmonella

Price Comparison: Which Brand Is More Expensive?

Dry Dog Food Vital Essentials Taste of the Wild
Per Pound $26.58 $1.85
Per Calorie $0.0118 $0.0011
Dry Cat Food Vital Essentials Taste of the Wild
Per Pound $35.84 $2.25
Per Calorie $0.0204 $0.0013
Wet Dog Food Vital Essentials Taste of the Wild
Per Pound $8.43 $2.68
Per Calorie $0.0114 $0.0058

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 Vital Essentials or Taste of the Wild, 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 Vital Essentials or Taste of the Wild will depend on your shopping habits.

Pet owners who use our price comparison feature typically save more than 25% off retail prices for Vital Essentials and Taste of the Wild. 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 Vital Essentials Pet Foods

You can purchase Vital Essentials pet foods from the following stores:







Where To Buy Taste of the Wild Pet Foods

You can purchase Taste of the Wild pet food products from these retailers:










Type Of Pet Foods Available

Product Vital Essentials Taste of the Wild
Dry Dog Food 9 Recipes
Wet Dog Food 5 Recipes
Dog Treats 32 Treats
Dry Cat Food 2 Recipes
Wet Cat Food 2 Recipes
Cat Treats 8 Treats

Compare Pet Food Prices Across Multiple Pet Stores

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