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9 Best Wet Cat Foods of 2024: Canned, Soft, & Pâté Reviews

Written by: Christian Adams

Last Updated on February 19, 2024 by Catster Editorial Team

tabby cat sitting next to a food plate_Veera_shutterstock

9 Best Wet Cat Foods of 2024: Canned, Soft, & Pâté Reviews


Dr. Paola Cuevas Photo


Dr. Paola Cuevas

MVZ (Veterinarian)

The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

Learn more »

tabby cat sitting next to a food plate_Veera_shutterstock Cats can be so much fun to live with. If they aren’t entertaining their human family members, chances are that they are offering support after a long day at work or during a stressful experience that the family is going through. A cat’s loyalty alone deserves quality care and affection from their human companion. In addition to showering them with attention, making sure they are well-groomed, and taking them to the vet, one important aspect of providing your cat with quality care is giving them the best food possible. Good nutrition supports good health and a long, happy life for your cat.

But what kind of food should you be feeding your feline family member? Not just any food will do. If you don’t want to work with your veterinarian and prepare homemade food for your cat, you should avoid the budget foods at the grocery store and focus on high-quality commercial food instead. If you are interested in offering wet food to your kitty, you have come to the right place.

There are tons of great options on the market, but some are of higher quality than others for various reasons. We scoured the options and have identified this list of wet cat foods that are outperforming the rest. The following are our reviews for the best wet cat foods of the year to consider for your furry companion. Hopefully, this list will make your job of choosing the purrfect food for your cat a breeze!

Cat ball divider 1A Quick Glance at the Winners of 2024

Image Product Details
Best Overall
Smalls Fresh Wet Cat Food Subscription Smalls Fresh Wet Cat Food Subscription
  • Human-grade ingredients
  • No preservatives
  • Protein-rich diet
  • Budget Buy
    Second place
    Earthborn Canned Cat & Kitten Food Earthborn Canned Cat & Kitten Food
  • Suitable for most cats with allergies and sensitivities
  • Optimal digestion and nutrient absorption
  • Holistic formula
  • Third place
    Wellness Complete Health Canned Cat Food Wellness Complete Health Canned Cat Food
  • Features chicken and liver for protein
  • Whole-food immune system support
  • Excludes artificial ingredients
  • Instinct Original Grain-Free Instinct Original Grain-Free
  • Made in the United States
  • Natural sources of omega fatty acids
  • Made with chicken, turkey, and liver for delicious flavor
  • Tiki Cat Puka Puka Luau Canned Cat Food Tiki Cat Puka Puka Luau Canned Cat Food
  • Made with real chicken breast and broth
  • 16% crude protein
  • The 9 Best Wet Cat Foods

    1. Smalls Human-Grade Fresh Wet Cat Food Subscription — Best Overall

    Smalls is a company that immediately stands out because they use real, human-grade ingredients that won’t upset any sensitive felines. Their recipes are rich in protein to fit the dietary needs of these carnivores, plus they come in three different protein flavors so that some of the more finicky cats can choose their favorite.

    All ingredients are all-natural, cooked, and free from preservatives. The food comes in airtight packaging to keep the food fresh. Reports even show that the food helps to reduce shedding and hairballs and make your cat’s coat shinier. Even though the packaging is secure, it is a little hard to open by hand and may require some scissors. The larger size also means that you might have to split the meals into smaller portions and refrigerate the rest for later.

    To conclude, we think this is the overall best wet cat food available this year.

    • Protein-rich diet
    • Human-grade ingredients
    • No preservatives
    • Reduces shedding
    • Moderately priced
    • Large portions
    • Packaging hard to open

    2. Earthborn Holistic Canned Cat Food — Best Value

    2Earthborn Holistic Monterey Medley Grain-Free Natural Canned Cat & Kitten Food

    We think that Earthborn Holistic Monterey Medley is the best wet cat food for the money because it’s fairly priced, is designed for true carnivores, and supports growth spurts as kittens turn into adults. Grain-free and full of protein, this wet cat food features skipjack tuna and mackerel to support healthy joints and bones. Formulated with fish broth, each bite will help keep your kitty hydrated throughout the day.

    Potatoes are included to encourage healthy digestion and nutrient absorption, which is necessary for a strong immune system. The gravy in this food includes supplementation to ensure that your cat will get all the nutrients that they need as they age. As a holistic formula, this food is suitable for cats with allergy and digestion sensitivities. However, the cans are hard to open, which can make impatient cats a little cranky right before mealtime.

    • This holistic formula is suitable for most cats with allergies and sensitivities
    • Meets the nutritional needs of kittens and adult cats
    • Encourages optimal digestion and nutrient absorption
    • The cans are harder to open than most others on this list

    3. Wellness Complete Health Pate Canned Cat Food

    1Wellness Complete Health Pate Chicken Entree Grain-Free Canned Cat Food

    This wet cat food has chicken and liver as the first ingredients, followed by flaxseed for a healthy coat and carrots and cranberries for immune support. Not included in the ingredients list are grains of any kind. This formula is free of artificial colors and preservatives, which could be detrimental to your cat’s overall health.

    It is designed to support optimal digestion so your kitty will not end up with bloating and gas problems after a meal. Wellness Complete Health Pate is supplemented to balance all your cat’s vitamin and mineral needs as time goes on. Featuring a healthy dose of taurine in each bite, you can rest assured that with this pâté your cat will maintain strong heart muscle functionality and a healthy immune system.

    We think this is the best pate for cats in addition to being our 3rd pick.

    • Features chicken and liver for protein
    • Includes whole-food immune system support
    • Excludes artificial ingredients of any kind
    • A little more expensive than other options on this list

    4. Instinct Original Grain-Free Wet Canned Pate Cat Food

    3Instinct Original Grain-Free Pate Real Chicken Recipe Wet Canned Cat Food

    This is a whole-foods option for your cat that is sure to have them running to mealtime. The included chicken, turkey, and liver not only have superior taste but are also high-quality sources of protein to keep your cat strong throughout life. Peas, carrots, and blueberries are included to protect the eyes, brain, and immune system.

    This best canned cat food is formulated with omega fatty acids in the form of fish oil to help protect the heart and slow the development of kidney disease, which can be important for cats of geriatric age because they have a high prevalence of the disease. Made in the United States, this food is free of soy, wheat, and animal by-products. The one downside to this pâté is that it’s a little thicker in texture than some kittens and older cats can handle. This problem can be solved by mixing it with a little bit of water, which is one of the reasons why this food is still a leader on our list for best pâté cat food.

    • Made with chicken, turkey, and liver for delicious flavor
    • Includes natural sources of omega fatty acids
    • Made in the United States
    • The thicker texture might be hard for kittens and old cats to eat

    5. Tiki Cat Puka Puka Luau Grain-Free Canned Cat Food 5Tiki Cat Puka Puka Luau Succulent Chicken in Chicken Consomme Grain-Free Canned Cat Food

    Tiki Cat Puka Puka Luau cat food is packed with flavor and nutrition. This formula is made with real chicken breast that is hormone-free and simmered in broth until tender. Featuring 16% crude protein, this food will keep your cat’s muscles, bones, and cardiovascular system healthy, no matter their age. The texture is that of a consommé, which most cats love.

    But the texture can be tough for kittens with tiny teeth to properly chew. Blending it before serving would avoid this problem. Supplemented with the perfect blend of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants to meet the nutritional needs of all cat breeds. However, no whole-food source of omega fatty acids is mentioned in the ingredients list.

    • Made with real chicken breast and broth.
    • Features 16% crude protein.
    • The food may be too textured for young kittens.
    • Does not include a whole-food source of omega fatty acids.

    6. CORE Natural Chicken & Chicken Liver Canned Cat Food

    Wellness CORE Chicken and chicken liver

    Another Wellness high-quality product makes it to our selection of best-wet cat food. The Wellness CORE Natural Grain-Free Chicken  & Chicken Liver Pate Canned Cat Food is a grain-free option that provides high-quality protein to your furry friend. The first 3 ingredients are chicken, chicken liver, and chicken broth. It’s presented in a pâté-like texture for ease of chewing and the recipe includes antioxidant-rich cranberries along with vitamins, balanced minerals, EPA and DHA omegas, and essential taurine to support the immunity, urinary tract health, and general well-being of your beloved kitten.

    • Enriched with antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, omegas and taurine
    • 100% grain-free
    • Features a soft texture that is easy to chew
    • No wheat, artificial flavor or coloring
    • Some of the protein is from pea
    • Does include  “natural” flavors

    7. Merrick Purrfect Bistro Grain-Free Canned Wet Cat Food 6Merrick Purrfect Bistro Grain-Free Chicken Pate Canned Cat Food

    What’s unique about Merrick Purrfect Bistro canned cat food is that it includes yucca schidigera, which has been shown to reduce the offensive odor of fecal and urine waste. The food is made up of 78% moisture to ensure that your kitty stays hydrated, no matter how hot it is outside. Deboned chicken is the main source of protein here.

    Dried cranberries and alfalfa meal enhance the antioxidant power of this formula overall. You won’t find any artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives in the ingredients list. When it comes to flavor, we found that our cats could take this formula or leave it. They certainly didn’t come running when we popped a can open, but they didn’t stick their noses up at it either.

    • Made with yucca schidigera to reduce feces and urine odor
    • Formulated to support optimal hydration
    • Some cats may not appreciate the flavor or texture

    8. Blue Buffalo Healthy Gourmet Pate Indoor Adult Wet Cat Food 8Blue Buffalo Healthy Gourmet Pate Chicken Entree Indoor Adult Canned Cat Food

    This formula is made specifically for adult cats, so kittens should be fed another option from this review list instead. Your fully grown cat will love the thick gravy that envelops the pâté. This food is made with real meat and liver, sweet potatoes, and brown rice for great all-around nutrition.

    It includes no soy or wheat, making it a good option for cats with food sensitivities. There isn’t anything special about this food compared to the others on our reviews list, but it is affordable, and it does contain all the vitamins, minerals, and amino acids that your adult cat requires to thrive.

    • Comes with an affordable price tag
    • Includes no allergens
    • Nothing makes this a unique food that stands out from the competition
    • The pull-tabs on the cans sometimes break before they get fully opened

    9. Blue Buffalo Wilderness Wild Delights Canned Cat Food Blue Buffalo Wilderness Grain-Free Canned Cat Food

    Another Blue Buffalo product makes it to our top ten. The Wilderness Wild Delights is a high protein and grain-free, formula. Based on chicken and turkey, this formula is based on real meat and uses no animal by-products meals as a source of protein. It is also free from any grain, gluten,  corn, wheat, soy, artificial flavors or preservatives. Enriched with taurine, vitamins, and minerals.

    The only reason this product is so low on our list is the fact that it does contain potato starch which is not necessary for your cat, the potatoes starch takes up valuable space that could be better filled with real meats.

    • Real chicken and turkey
    • No by-product meals
    • Grain free, gluten free
    • Includes potato starch as an ingredient

    3 cat divider

    Buyer’s Guide: How to Choose the Best Wet Cat Food

    Choosing the best canned wet food for your cat can feel overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be. This buyer’s guide should help make the process of choosing a new food easy and even enjoyable overall. Here are a few tips to follow when comparison shopping.

    Pay Attention to Texture

    It’s important to keep in mind that wet cat food comes in multiple types of textures, some of which your feline buddy may not enjoy. Also, some textures might not be suitable for your cat based on their age or the condition of their health. So, the texture should be one important aspect to focus on when comparing different foods to one another.

    If your cat is used to eating dry food and human food snacks, they will probably enjoy the shredded and minced food options the best. If your kitty is incredibly young or really old and doesn’t have a full set of teeth, a pâté option would probably be most suitable. Then there are consommé options that are ideal for cats that are just learning to chew solid foods.

    Sample Before Committing

    Consider testing out a few different food options from our reviews list before choosing just one to continue feeding your cat in the future. Doing so will allow you to determine whether your kitty likes the taste and can handle the texture. You will have an opportunity to inspect the quality of the packaging and ease of managing the leftovers.

    Buy just a couple cans of each food option that you’re considering for your cat. Then, try each out for a couple of days to see how your cat reacts. Take note of how easy it is to open the can and how long it takes to get the food out. In the end, you should have a clear idea of which one stands out from the crowd.

    Consult Your Veterinarian

    Consulting with your veterinarian is one of the most important things that you should do before deciding which canned wet food to feed your cat. Let them know the types of foods that you are considering so they can help you determine whether they are appropriate for your furry family member. Your vet can recommend specific ingredients that will support the health of your cat, while advising you on which ingredients can prevent future health problems. At the very least, your vet will provide you with peace of mind and give you confidence in the food choice that you end up making for your cat.

    Hepper 360 Cat Feeder, Stainless Steel, Anti-Chew...
    • NO MESS - The 360° tray on this cat food and water bowl set has a raised design to catch and...
    • WHISKER FRIENDLY - Shallow and wide metal containers with flat bottoms ensure your kitty can enjoy...
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    Feeding your cat a high-quality diet is important for keeping them healthy and happy. But it goes beyond the food you choose; the dishes they use also matter. The Hepper NomNom Cat Bowl is our favorite for its unique, five-star design that protects from whisker fatigue and promotes good posture which also aids in better digestion. As an added bonus, it’s beautifully crafted and offers a modern take on the traditional cat bowl that fits seamlessly with all home stylings. Learn more about the NomNom by clicking here.

    At Catster, we’ve admired Hepper for many years and decided to take a controlling ownership interest so that we could benefit from the outstanding designs of this cool cat company!



    cat paw dividerConclusion

    All the best wet cat food brands and options featured on our reviews list are made of quality ingredients that you can feel good about feeding your feline companion. Our favorite pick is the Smalls Human-Grade Fresh Cat Food, which is made with gourmet ingredients. A close runner-up is Earthborn Holistic Monterey Medley, as it is priced fairly and supports the health of both kittens and full-grown adults. Our third pick is Wellness Complete Health Pate Cat Food because it is full of quality ingredients and lacks anything artificial. It’s also easy on digestion.

    The one you choose should come down to your budget, your ingredient preferences, and your veterinarian’s recommendations. Which of the wet cat foods on our reviews list most interest you? Have you and your cat tried any of them? If so, what did you both think?

    Next on your reading list:

    Featured Image Credit: Veera, Shutterstock

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