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Best Cat Food for Indoor Cats: Reviews and Rankings

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key point

  • The #1 best overall cat food for indoor cats is Purina Beyond Simply Indoor Wild-Caught Salmon.
  • When shopping for cat food for your indoor cat, keep the following criteria in mind: nutrition, calorie content, life stage, price and brand .
  • There are pros and cons to the two most widely available cat foods: dry and wet.

Experts recommend that most cats stay indoors. This is safest for local wildlife, but it also helps keep your cat safe. There are many dangers outside that can harm your cat, such as cars and predators including dogs, other felines, coyotes and birds of prey.

However, indoor cats don't always get the exercise they need. Also, indoor cats may be more likely to graze because their food is readily available. For these reasons, you may want to consider purchasing a food specially formulated for indoor cats.

Not all indoor cat foods have the right nutritional profile for your cat. We've done our expert research on the best cat foods for indoor cats below and can help you choose the best cat food for your indoor cat.

  1. Purina Beyond Simple Indoor Wild Salmon
    • Including high protein levels.
    • Salmon is the first ingredient, which contains omega fatty acids for skin and coat health.
    • Salmon is more suitable for some cats with food sensitivities.
    • grain free
    • Contains fewer calories and less fat, making it an excellent choice for indoor cats who rarely exercise.

    Check Chewy check Amazon

  2. Purina ONE Indoor Advantage Adult Dry Cat Food
    • Contains relatively high levels of protein and nutrients despite being inexpensive
    • Specially formulated for indoor cats
    • turkey is the first ingredient
    • Has a low fat content to help felines maintain a healthy body weight
    • Also includes high levels of fiber to prevent hairballs and promote healthy digestion

    Check Chewy check Amazon

Top Picks: Best Cat Food for Indoor Cats

#1 Best Overall: Purina Beyond Simply Indoor Wild-Caught Salmon

Purina Beyond Simply Indoor Wild Caught Salmon is our pick for the #1 best overall dry cat food for indoor cats. For most cats, this formula from Purina is by far the best choice. It has an unbelievably high protein level and salmon, which contains many omega fatty acids essential for your cat's skin and coat, as the top ingredient.

Also, many cats with food sensitivities do better with salmon than with other animal proteins. This recipe also does not contain grains and contains only limited ingredients. Therefore, it is very suitable for sensitive cats.

Because this formula is designed specifically for indoor cats, it contains fewer calories and fat than other formulas. In other words, this formula is best for cats who lie down all day.

The majority of reviewers (94% out of nearly 3,100) gave this product a positive rating. Negative reviews included comments from pet parents whose cats didn't like the food, and some buyers whose cats had digestive issues after eating the food.

Pros and Cons of Purina Beyond Simple Indoor Wild Salmon

advantage shortcoming
This indoor cat food is high in protein and features salmon as the main ingredient. Some cats do not like this food.
Salmon is rich in omega fatty acids that are essential for skin and coat health. Some cats have developed digestive problems after eating this food.
Many cats with food sensitivities do better with salmon than with other protein sources.
This recipe is grain-free and has limited ingredients, so it's perfect for sensitive cats.
Its formula contains fewer calories and less fat, so it's perfect for cats who lie around all day.

best overall

Purina Beyond Simple Indoor Wild Salmon

  • Including high protein levels.
  • Salmon is the first ingredient, which contains omega fatty acids for skin and coat health.
  • Salmon is more suitable for some cats with food sensitivities.
  • grain free
  • Contains fewer calories and less fat, making it an excellent choice for indoor cats who rarely exercise.

Check Chewy check Amazon

2. Best wet food: Wellness CORE Grain Free Indoor Chicken and Liver Formula Canned Cat Food

If your indoor cat likes or needs wet food, we recommend Wellness CORE Grain Free Indoor Chicken and Chicken Liver Formula Canned Cat Food.

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Wet food works best for many cats. It has a high moisture content that can prevent urinary tract infections and other common feline health problems. In addition, wet food helps keep cats feeling full longer, resulting in fewer treats and fewer calories consumed.

Chicken and chicken liver make up the first two ingredients of this meal. These ingredients provide the lean protein your feline needs to thrive. This company uses chicken broth instead of water, which is higher in nutrients. Also, turkey and turkey soup are included.

Although no grains, this food contains a lot of peas. These vegetables are high in protein, which is something to keep in mind when looking at the protein content of this food.

85% of Amazon reviewers give this product a positive rating. Negative comments come from pet parents who say their cats don't like the food or that it gives them diarrhea.

Pros and Cons of Wellness CORE Grain Free Indoor Chicken and Chicken Liver Formula Canned Cat Food

advantage shortcoming
The first two ingredients in this wet food are chicken and chicken liver for lean protein. Some cats do not like this food.
This recipe includes chicken broth instead of water for a higher nutrient profile. Some cats develop diarrhea after eating this food.
Turkey and turkey soup are also included.
This food does not contain grains.
It includes plenty of peas, which are high in protein.

best wet food

3. Best food for kittens: Blue Buffalo Freedom Indoor Kitten Chicken Recipe

Blue Buffalo Freedom Indoor Kitten Chicken Grain-Free Kittens provide the professional nutrition indoor kittens need as they grow and develop. This recipe contains high levels of important nutrients, including DHA and ARA, fatty acids found in breast milk that support the development of cognition and retinal function.

This grain-free treat contains delicious boneless chicken and chicken meal as the first two ingredients, which pack plenty of protein your kitty needs to thrive. This recipe also includes wholesome natural sweet potatoes and carrots, blueberries and cranberries. It's enriched with BLUE's exclusive LifeSource Bits, a blend of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals that indoor kittens need to thrive.

Plus, this food contains no grains, chicken (or poultry) by-products, soy, artificial flavors or preservatives. Therefore, this food is suitable for cats who are sensitive to these problems.

Most reviewers (88%) left positive reviews. Several reviewers have reported that their kittens have gotten sick after eating this food. Others said their kittens didn't like the food.

Pros and Cons of Blue Buffalo Freedom Indoor Kitten Chicken Recipe

advantage shortcoming
This dry grain-free food for indoor kittens contains DHA and ARA, fatty acids found in breast milk that support cognitive and retinal function development. Some kittens have gotten sick after eating this food.
Boneless chicken and chicken meal are the top ingredients in the protein kittens need to grow and develop. Some kittens don't like this kind of food.
It also includes natural sweet potatoes and carrots, blueberries, cranberries and LifeSource Bits, BLUE's proprietary blend of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals.
It contains no grains, chicken (or poultry) by-products, soy, artificial flavors or preservatives.

best for kittens

4. Best for Seniors: Nutro Wholesome Essentials Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe Senior Dry Cat Food

Nutro Wholesome Essentials Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe Premium Dry Cat Food is our pick for the best dry cat food for aging indoor cats. It contains high levels of taurine and antioxidants that may help prevent some of the more common age-related diseases. Taurine, for example, is essential for heart health, but many felines don't get enough of it as they age.

This recipe includes chicken and chicken meal as the first two ingredients. Therefore, this food is based on lean chicken meat and is high in protein. It's rich in omega-6 fatty acids to help your senior cat maintain healthy skin and coat.

We love that this food does not contain any GMO ingredients. It is also free of corn, wheat, soy protein, chicken by-product meal, artificial preservatives, flavors and colors.

Over 3,000 Amazon customers have reviewed this product, with 93% of the reviews being positive. Several reviewers have reported that their cats have gotten sick after eating this food. Problems include vomiting, hairballs, and possible allergic reactions. Some pet parents say their cats don't like the treat.

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Pros and Cons of Nutro Wholesome Essentials Chicken and Brown Rice Recipe Premium Dry Cat Food

advantage shortcoming
This cat food for aging indoor cats contains high levels of taurine and antioxidants that help prevent some common age-related diseases. Some cats get sick after eating this food.
Chicken and chicken meal are the first two ingredients in this high-protein meal. Some cats do not like this food.
Omega-6 fatty acids help maintain healthy skin and coat.
It is free from GMOs, corn, wheat, soy protein, chicken by-product meal, artificial preservatives, flavors and colors.

best for seniors

Best Cat Food Reviews and Rankings for Indoor Cats 1

5. Best for Hairballs: Blue Buffalo Hairball & Weight Control

Blue Buffalo Hairball & Weight Control is one of the best dry cat foods for indoor cats. It can help remove hairballs in felines, whether they are house animals or felines. Plus, it helps cats achieve and maintain an optimal body weight.

It features boneless chicken as the main ingredient and provides high levels of lean protein. To prevent hairballs and promote weight loss, this formula contains plenty of fiber, including psyllium husk and cellulose. Omega fatty acids are also included to improve skin and coat health.

Like all Blue Buffalo recipes, this recipe contains LifeSource Bits. These small pellets contain a precise blend of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals to help keep your cat healthy.

Of the 8,000+ Amazon customer reviews, 93% are positive. Negative comments include cats who do not eat the food, some who continue to develop hairballs, and others who vomit after eating the food.

Pros and Cons of Blue Buffalo Hairball and Weight Control

advantage shortcoming
This recipe is designed to promote weight loss and hairball control. Some cats do not like this food.
It contains high amounts of fiber from psyllium husk and cellulose. Some felines continue to grow hairballs.
Contains omega fatty acids to improve skin and coat health. Others vomited after eating the food.
The formula includes BLUE's proprietary LifeSource Bits, small granules containing a precise blend of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals.

best for furballs

6. Best Premium Choice: ACANA Indoor Entrée Adult Dry Cat Food

ACANA Indoor Entrée Adult Dry Cat Food is our choice for the best premium dry food for indoor cats. It includes a high amount of meat, starting with boneless chicken and chicken meal. Herring and boneless rabbit are also included for a higher protein content. You'll find a lot more meat in this recipe than other recipes, which is largely why it's so expensive.

This food contains high levels of nutrients that can improve your cat's health. For example, this formula includes L-Carnitine to help your feline maintain a healthy weight. EPA, DHA and Taurine are also included.

We love the inclusion of omega fatty acids. These fatty acids help maintain the health of the skin and coat.

The only major downside to this food is the price. However, this food contains high levels of protein and animal meat. You are paying for higher quality ingredients.

89% of the 2,300 Amazon reviewers gave this product a high rating. Pet parents have left negative reviews saying their cats won't eat the recipe or they throw up after eating it.

Pros and Cons of ACANA Indoor Entrée Adult Dry Cat Food

advantage shortcoming
This premium dry food for indoor cats contains high levels of protein from chicken, chicken meal, herring and boneless rabbit. This recipe is expensive.
L-Carnitine can help your cat maintain a healthy weight. Some cats will not eat this food.
EPA, DHA and Taurine are also included. Some cats vomit after eating this food.
Omega fatty acids help maintain healthy skin and coat.

7. Best Budget Pick: Purina ONE Indoor Advantage

Purina ONE Indoor Advantage Adult Dry Cat Food is our best budget option for indoor cats. Despite its low cost, it contains relatively high levels of protein and nutrients. So while this food does cost less, it is still high quality and an appropriate choice for most cats.

Purina created this formula specifically for indoor cats. With turkey as the first ingredient, it has high levels of lean protein. It has a lower fat content, which helps felines maintain a healthy weight. Plus, the formula is high in fiber, which prevents hairballs and regulates digestion in cats. And it's free of artificial flavors and preservatives.

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Of the nearly 20,000 Amazon customer reviews, a whopping 95% are positive. Customers who left negative reviews said their cats would not eat the food, or would vomit after eating it.

Pros and Cons of the Purina ONE Indoor Advantage

advantage shortcoming
This inexpensive dry food for indoor cats has relatively high protein and nutrient levels. Some cats do not like this food.
Turkey is the first ingredient with high levels of lean protein. Some cats vomit after eating this food.
It has a lower fat content, which helps cats maintain a healthy weight.
High levels of fiber help prevent hairballs and regulate digestion.
It is free from artificial flavors and preservatives.

best budget

Purina ONE Indoor Advantage Adult Dry Cat Food

  • Contains relatively high levels of protein and nutrients despite being inexpensive
  • Specially formulated for indoor cats
  • turkey is the first ingredient
  • Has a low fat content to help felines maintain a healthy body weight
  • Also includes high levels of fiber to prevent hairballs and promote healthy digestion

Check Chewy check Amazon

8. Best for high-energy cats: Solid Gold Let's Stay in Chicken Dry Cat Food

Solid Gold Let's Stay In Chicken Dry Cat Food is the perfect food for active and playful indoor cats. While it's designed for indoor cats, it doesn't have the fat or calorie reduction features of other indoor formulas.

It has a high content of fiber, which prevents hairballs. Additionally, probiotic support regulates your cat's digestive system and may help cats with minor digestive issues. Although it can be difficult to find foods that contain probiotics, many cats do well on probiotics.

This food does not contain any controversial ingredients such as soy, wheat and corn. Instead, this recipe relies heavily on ground chicken and turkey. Also include quick energy sources like lentils and peas.

Of the nearly 2,100 Amazon customer reviews, 90% are positive. Negative reviews indicate that some cats don't like it and some cats get sick (vomit) after eating it.

Pure Gold Pros and Cons Let's Stay in Chicken Dry Cat Food

advantage shortcoming
This recipe was created for active and playful indoor cats. Some cats won't eat it.
Unlike other indoor cat recipes, it does not reduce fat or calories. Some cats vomit after eating.
High levels of fiber help prevent hairballs.
Probiotics can help cats with minor digestive issues.
It is free of soy, wheat and corn.
Ground chicken and turkey provide protein, while lentils and peas provide quick energy.

Best for High Energy Cats

Choosing the best: what to look for

There are many factors to consider when choosing an indoor cat food. These formulas are all different, so not all of them will work for your cat. Nutrition, calorie content, life stage, price and brand are important factors to consider.

Let's look at each of these factors in turn.

Nutrition

Cats need precise nutrition to thrive. As obligate carnivores, they require large amounts of meat rich in protein and amino acids to survive. Many nutrients they need are found only in meat, such as taurine. Therefore, a high-meat cat food is usually best.

Of course, the type of protein also matters. All protein sources should be named. "Chicken" and "beef" are great, but "meat" is not a meaningful label.

Calorie content

Indoor cats generally move less than outdoor cats. As a result, they often have problems with excessive weight gain. For this reason, many indoor formulas contain fewer calories.

However, this is not true of all indoor cats. Some indoor cats are still very active and need more calories. So, in this case, you'll want to choose an indoor formula that's lower in calories.

stage of life

Cats don't always need the same nutrients. Kittens need different nutrients than adults simply because they are growing. As you can imagine, a cat's nutritional needs change over time. So you may have to change their food as they get older.

If your cat is still growing, choose a kitten formula. Adult cats need adult formula, while older cats may benefit from a senior cat food. But not all cats need high-grade food, mainly depends on their current health status.

price

The prices of different cat foods vary widely. You can find cat food for as little as $3 a pound, and some for as little as $20 a pound. Fortunately, most cats do just fine with food priced somewhere in the middle.

You don't want the cheapest food out there (it's cheap for a reason). However, you do need to keep your budget in mind. There are some quality budget options like the ones we mentioned in our review above.

brand

Always research brands before buying any food. Most cat owners are clueless about the different brands, aside from the advertisements. Don't let this be you. A particular food may seem perfect, but the brand itself may be sending out red flags.

For example, some brands tend to use lower quality ingredients or source from sketchy suppliers. Some even source ingredients from countries like China. Additionally, some brands experienced more recalls, which made them less safe.

Different Types of Indoor Cat Food: Pros and Cons Compared

Before choosing a food for your cat, you should determine what type of food is best for your cat. There are several options on the market, including dry food, wet food, raw food, veterinary diets, and frozen fried foods. Since we're only including the most popular options, dry and wet, we'll only cover the pros and cons of both types.

  • Dry Food – Dry food remains the most popular choice for cats in many situations. When you're shopping for food, most of the options are usually dry food.
  • Wet food – While not as popular as dry food, wet food contains more water and is therefore better suited for many cats.

dry food

advantage shortcoming
affordable low water content
Allow free feeding usually contain less protein
adequate supply
There are many different options available.
longer shelf life

wet food

advantage shortcoming
higher water content more expensive than dry food
usually high in protein it takes more storage space
Usually low in fillers it does not allow free feeding
Long shelf life before opening
appease picky eaters
For cats with dental problems

Validation Reviews: User Experience

Indoor cat food can often correct several problems common to indoor cats. For example, indoor cats gain excessive weight and develop large hairballs.

For this reason, many indoor cat foods are high in fiber to prevent hairballs and low in calories to prevent weight gain. Many clients report that they do a good job of these.

Customers primarily report that Nutro seems to work best on cats' stomachs. One of them reported that it was the only food their cat could tolerate. Therefore, this option is a great choice for cats with sensitive stomachs.

Many cat owners love Purina Beyond cat food for its rich nutrition. However, some people reported that it was a little too big for their cat's mouth. This may be something to consider if you have smaller cats.

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  • The Best Cat Trees – For Single Cats and Multiples – The right cat tree can provide hiding space, lookouts, and maybe even a scratching post.

Best Cat Food for Indoor Cats: Reviews & Rankings FAQs (FAQ)

How to tell if cat food has been recalled?

As of February 1, 2023, none of the foods mentioned in this review have been recalled, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's Recalls and Withdrawals website.

What happens if I feed my indoor cat regular cat food?

In general, indoor cats are not as active as outdoor cats. This inactivity can lead to obesity. This is why most indoor cat foods contain less fat and calories.

Thanks for reading! Have some feedback for us? Contact the 10hunting.com editorial team.

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