Vital Essentials vs The Honest Kitchen

Vital Essentials vs. The Honest Kitchen

In this comparison article for Vital Essentials vs The Honest Kitchen, we'll highlight the key differences between these two pet food brands. To properly compare Vital Essentials and The Honest Kitchen, 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 The Honest Kitchen 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 The Honest Kitchen Review Page.

Guaranteed Analysis: The Honest Kitchen 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. The Honest Kitchen Dog Food

Dry Dog Food Vital Essentials The Honest Kitchen
Crude Protein 51.7% 28.8%
Crude Fat 26.4% 14.7%
Crude Fiber 2.2% 7.0%

Crude Protein Comparison For Dog Food

Protein is an extremely important part of your dog's diet. Without sufficient protein, dogs can develop a wide-range of serious health problems.

Vital Essentials dry dog foods clearly provides more protein than The Honest Kitchen. In fact, the difference between the protein content is roughly 22.87%, which is a significant amount.


Crude Fat Comparison For Dog Food

Dietary fats serves a multitude of roles in the proper development and function of our canine companions. Here are some of the benefits (not exhaustive):

  • Help produce prostaglandins, which reduce inflammation among other critical functions.
  • Aid in the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins
  • Improve skin and coat health
  • Improve the palatially of your dog's food

On average, Vital Essentials dry dog food recipes contain 11.67% more fat than The Honest Kitchen recipes. Clearly, there is a significant difference between the fat content of The Honest Kitchen and Vital Essentials.


Vital Essentials dry recipes contain 4.79% less fiber than The Honest Kitchen dry recipes. This difference in fiber content is a notable difference between The Honest Kitchen and Vital Essentials.

Vital Essentials Cat Food vs. The Honest Kitchen Cat Food

Dry Cat Food Vital Essentials The Honest Kitchen
Crude Protein 51.9% 40.7%
Crude Fat 18.2% 32.8%
Crude Fiber 3.3% 2.6%

Crude Protein Comparison For Cat Food

Protein is an extremely important part of your cat's diet. Without sufficient protein, cats can develop a wide-range of serious health problems.

When you look at the average percentages of crude protein for dry cat food, it's clear that Vital Essentials provides significantly more protein. On average, Vital Essentials guarantees about 11.18% more protein than The Honest Kitchen.


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):

  • Aid in the digestion and absorption of fat-soluble vitamins
  • Improve the health of skin/coat
  • Slow the growth of yeast infections
  • Slow the development and spread of certain type of cancers.
  • Maintain healthy blood pressure

The comparison table above shows that The Honest Kitchen dry cat foods provide significantly more fat than Vital Essentials. More specifically, The Honest Kitchen guarantees at least 14.62% more fat.


Both brands provide roughly the same amount of crude fiber.

Vital Essentials Pet Food Ingredients vs. The Honest Kitchen Pet Food Ingredients

Here are some of the controversial ingredients used only by The Honest Kitchen.

Dehydrated Garlic

Product Safety: Recall History of Vital Essentials & The Honest Kitchen?

Vital Essentials has been recalled 4 times.

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

The Honest Kitchen has been recalled once.

  • Feb. 21, 2013: Salmonella

Price Comparison: Which Brand Is More Expensive?

Dry Dog Food Vital Essentials The Honest Kitchen
Per Pound $31.24 $10.48
Per Calorie $0.0142 $0.0054
Dry Cat Food Vital Essentials The Honest Kitchen
Per Pound $38.77 $12.94
Per Calorie $0.0220 $0.0054

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 The Honest Kitchen, 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 The Honest Kitchen 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 The Honest Kitchen. 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 The Honest Kitchen Pet Foods

You can purchase The Honest Kitchen pet food products from these retailers:







Type Of Pet Foods Available

Product Vital Essentials The Honest Kitchen
Dry Dog Food
Wet Dog Food
Dog Treats 30 Treats 9 Treats
Dry Cat Food
Wet Cat Food
Cat Treats 8 Treats

Compare Pet Food Prices Across Multiple Pet Stores

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