Nulo Dog Food Alternatives

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The following article reviews dog food similar to Nulo for 2024. Carry on reading to find out more.

If you are a dog parent, you are probably familiar with Nulo dog food.

This premium brand offers dry and wet food made with high-quality meat and ancient grains.

The recipes are nutritious and tasty, however, some dog parents wonder if the price is too high, or if some different brands offer more varieties for their growing puppies.

We’ve decided to make a list of the best budget alternatives to Nulo dog food that may be more suitable for your pup, regarding ingredients, price, and overall quality.

So, our task was to find cheaper brands that offer as good quality dog food as Nulo’s. 

With this in mind, our top pick is Taste of the Wild Ancient Wetlands with Ancient Grains Dog Food.

This brand gets points for quality ingredients, affordability, availability, and variety.

The other brands on our list scored high as well for certain features that might be more fitting for your dog.

After testing many dog foods out there and working closely with vets and pet experts, we present to you the following Nulo substitutes.

Check out the list of our favorite Nulo dog food alternatives.

At a Glance: 6 Nulo Dog Food Alternatives

  1. Taste of the Wild Ancient Wetlands with Ancient Grains Dry Dog Food (Nulo Frontrunner Ancient Grains Adult Dog Food Alternative)
  2. Crave High Protein White Fish & Salmon Adult Grain-Free Dog Food (Nulo Freestyle Salmon & Peas Dry Dog Food Alternative)
  3. Merrick Senior Grain-Free Dry Dog Food (Nulo Freestyle Senior Trout & Sweet Potato Dry Food Alternative)
  4. Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Puppy Dog Food (Nulo Frontrunner Ancient Grains Puppy Formula Alternative
  5. American Journey Chicken & Turkey Grain-Free Canned Food (Nulo Freestyle Turkey & Sweet Potato Canned Dog Food Alternative)
  6. Front of the Pack Grass-Fed USDA Beef (Nulo Frontrunner Ancient Grain Beef, Barley & Lamb Adult Dry Dog Food Alternative)

Dog Food Similar to Nulo Reviewed

Ready to learn more about high-quality but budget-friendly dog food similar to Nulo? Choose one of these recipes and your furry friend will get tasty food loaded with premium ingredients at a cheaper price.

Taste of the Wild Ancient Wetlands with Ancient Grains Dry Dog Food

Taste of the Wild Ancient Wetlands with Ancient Grains Dry Dog Food

Key Takeaways

  • #1 ingredient is roasted duck
  • Lots of protein from different meats
  • Ancient grains high in protein and fiber for solid bones and muscles
  • Superfoods rich in antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals for overall health
  • Omega fatty acids for shiny skin and coat
  • K9 Strain proprietary probiotics to support the digestive system

Our top alternative to Nulo Frontrunner Ancient Grains Formula offers high-quality ingredients such as roasted duck, roasted quail, and smoke-flavored turkey combined with ancient grains in a formula that’s both healthy and tasty.

Taste of the Wild gives dogs of all breeds and at all life stages nutritious food with a taste of the wild they crave.

The meats give your pup plenty of protein to build muscle and stay strong.

Both Nulo and Taste of the Wild include chicken meals to provide plenty of protein.

Nulo’s kibble is rich in protein from chicken and turkey whereas Taste of the Wild’s from chicken, turkey, duck, and quail. Taste of the Wild’s recipe contains 32% crude protein, whereas Nulo’s 27%.

Furthermore, the recipes have barley and millet in common, but Taste of the Wild’s recipe has grain sorghum, quinoa, and chia seed in addition, while Nulo has flaxseed and oats.

Ancient grains like grain sorghum, millet, and barley are also excellent sources of protein and fiber that support your dog’s health. 

The two formulas use healthy omega-3 fatty acids to protect tissue and reduce inflammation, but Nulo uses flaxseed as a source of these healthy fats, while Taste of the Wild includes Salmon Oil.

Moreover, probiotics are included in both recipes to help support digestive health and neither product contains wheat, corn, or soy. 

On top of that, Taste of the Wild’s recipe contains blueberries, tomatoes, and raspberries rich in antioxidants that boost the immune system.

The formula is enhanced with vitamins, minerals, omega fatty acids, and proprietary probiotics that support healthy digestion, skin, and coat.

If you want dry dog food with premium ingredients and a variety of flavors that’s more cost-effective, Taste of the Wild is a fantastic choice for you.

You’ll get great value for money and your pup will be thrilled with the nutritious and flavorful kibble. 

Dog parents buying on a budget will appreciate that this formula is approximately 12.5% cheaper than Nulo’s recipe. 

Crave High Protein White Fish & Salmon Adult Grain-Free Dog Food

Crave High Protein White Fish Salmon Adult Grain-Free Dry Dog Food

Key Takeaways

  • #1 ingredient is real White Fish for building lean muscle
  • Salmon Meal, Fish Meal, and Chicken Meal are also high in protein
  • Vegetables loaded with nutrients for the energy your pup needs
  • Added vitamins and minerals to support the immune system
  • No artificial flavors, soy, wheat, corn
  • Made in the USA

We found this brand’s kibble to be the best budget alternative to Nulo Freestyle Salmon & Peas Adult Dry Dog Food.

Crave’s recipe is our runner-up for multiple reasons.

First, it includes white fish, chicken meal, salmon meal, fish meal, and pork meal as the first ingredients.

Nulo’s formula features salmon as the #1 ingredient, while Crave’s features white fish.

And that means a lot of protein for your furry buddy.

Dogs, like their ancestors, wolves, thrive on a diet rich in animal-based protein. Thankfully, both formulas are high in animal-based protein for lean muscle building.

Crave’s recipe has more crude protein (34%) than Nulo’s (30%).

Second, Crave’s kibble is enriched with healthy vegetables like lentils and split peas, although Nulo’s contains lentils, peas, sweet potato, and chickpeas too.

Vegetables like lentils and split peas are great sources of nutrients that help your dog stay healthy and active.

Third, neither brand uses ingredients like soy, wheat, or corn that may cause health issues.

And last but not least, added vitamins and minerals in both formulas to support your canine’s immune system and general well-being.

Adult dogs of all breeds can enjoy this protein-rich natural kibble that helps them stay strong and active throughout the day.

This brand is a terrific option because you get excellent ingredients, lots of meat protein, and an affordable price.

Speaking of price, Crave’s formula is 16.5% cheaper than Nulo’s.

Merrick Senior Grain-Free Dry Dog Food

Merrick Grain-Free Senior Chicken Sweet Potato Recipe Dry Dog Food

Key Takeaways

  • 77 % animal protein
  • A balanced recipe high in protein for lean muscle and healthy weight maintenance in senior dogs
  • The first 5 ingredients are Deboned Chicken, Chicken Meal, Sweet Potatoes, Potatoes, and Turkey Meal
  • Plenty of vitamins and minerals for a healthy immune system, skin, and coat
  • Omega fatty acids for shiny skin and coat
  • L-Carnitine to support the digestive system
  • Grain-free; gluten-free

If you have a senior dog that needs a diet rich in protein and abundant in nutrients, Merrick dog food is the right alternative to Nulo Freestyle Senior Dry Food.

It features deboned chicken, chicken meal, sweet potatoes, potatoes, and turkey meal as the first 5 ingredients.

In comparison, Nulo’s recipe contains deboned trout, turkey meal, salmon meal, sweet potato, chickpeas, and deboned turkey.

It’s no wonder that the amount of protein in both formulas is 30 %.

That’s helpful for older dogs because it keeps them fit and active.

Another important point is that Merrick’s and Nulo’s grain-free formulas are enhanced with Glucosamine and Chondroitin to support your dog’s hips and joints.

Aging dogs can benefit from these components because they help relieve pain and prevent further damage to their joints.

In addition, Merrick uses real whole foods from trusted farmers, so the recipe is crafted with real deboned chicken, healthy vegetables, and added vitamins and minerals.

Other ingredients like salmon meal, salmon oil, flaxseed, peas, apples, and blueberries are stacked with essential vitamins and minerals to support your adult dog’s health.

Merrick’s recipe is suitable for senior dogs of any breed because it helps them maintain weight, and provides them with all the necessary nutrients to stay healthy and strong.

Plus, it’s a bit cheaper than Nulo’s formula.

Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Puppy Dog Food

Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Puppy Chicken Brown Rice Recipe Dry Dog Food

Key Takeaways

  • #1 ingredient is real deboned chicken
  • Whole grains for healthy digestion
  • DHA & ARA for brain and vision development
  • Essential vitamins and chelated minerals that boost the immune system
  • Omega fatty acids for shiny skin and coat
  • Small-bite kibble specially made for puppies

Puppy owners need to carefully choose food to support their furry babies’ growth.

And that’s why they need a formula that’s high in protein, whole grains, vitamins, and minerals.

Blue Buffalo’s recipe is an excellent alternative to Nulo Frontrunner Ancient Grains Puppy Dry Food because it contains real deboned chicken as the # 1 ingredient.

Chicken is a great animal-based protein that gives lots of energy and builds lean muscle.

As a matter of fact, these two formulas contain 27% crude protein.

Both formulas include chicken and chicken meal, but Nulo’s has a turkey meal and deboned turkey as well and Blue Buffalo has a fish meal instead.

Fish meal is a great source of omega-3 fatty acids that support your pup’s skin.

Other ingredients that they have in common are brown rice, barley, oatmeal, dried egg products, flaxseed, blueberries, vitamins, and minerals.

Therefore, their kibble is high not only in protein but also in fiber, complex carbs, antioxidants, and omega fatty acids that improve digestion, health, skin, and coat.

Moreover, Blue Buffalo’s recipe contains sweet potatoes, cranberries, and turmeric which are beneficial for your dog’s health. 

And additional vitamins like calcium and phosphorus are excellent for your growing puppy’s bones and teeth!

Puppies of all breeds can enjoy the tasty kibble Blue Buffalo has crafted for them.

The recipe is a great choice because it contains quality ingredients that growing puppies need, it’s nutrient-dense, and it’s 23% cheaper than Nulo’s.

American Journey Turkey & Garden Vegetables Grain-Free Canned Food

American Journey Chicken Turkey Recipe Grain-Free Canned Dog Food

Key Takeaways

  • #1 ingredient is real chicken 
  • Lots of animal-based protein 
  • Added vitamins and minerals to support your pup’s health
  • Omega fatty acids for healthy skin
  • Grain-free
  • No poultry-by-product; no artificial flavors

If your pooch is a fan of wet food, we have good news for you.

American Journey’s formula is a nice choice for adult dogs of all breeds that love to eat wet food solely, or mixed with their kibble.

It’s a fantastic alternative to Nulo Freestyle Turkey & Sweet Potato Canned Dog Food

Both recipes contain turkey, however, Nulo’s has turkey broth and turkey liver too, while American Journey’s has chicken, chicken broth, and chicken liver.

Amazing flavor and plenty of protein for building muscle and energy for running.

Plus, chicken liver is a great source of zinc and copper which can prevent anemia, whereas turkey liver is very nutritious and high in iron. 

On the one hand, Nulo’s formula is enriched with sweet potatoes, peas, and flaxseed to provide nutrients for your favorite friend.

On the other hand, American Journey’s food features potatoes, flaxseed, fish oil, vitamins, and minerals.

They give your dog important fuel for everyday activities, healthy bones, skin, and coat.

The essential amino acids will make sure your pup’s fur looks shinier than ever.

And you’ll be glad to know that the formulas are free of artificial flavors, preservatives, grains, or poultry-by-product meals.

So, American Journey’s recipe is a good alternative to Nulo’s based on similar quality ingredients and tasteful canned food.

Although it contains a slightly smaller amount of protein than Nulo’s food (9% vs.10%), the price is significantly smaller.

This formula is 34% cheaper than Nulo’s.

Front of the Pack Grass-Fed USDA Beef

FOTP grass fed USDA beef

What makes Front of the Pack a terrific choice, is the fact that it’s made with 90% grass-fed US Beef and organic, natural ingredients that are slowly cooked to keep in nutrients and give your dog everything he needs.

It’s a great alternative to Nulo Frontrunner Ancient Grain Beef, Barley & Lamb Adult Dry Dog Food which is made with deboned beef, chicken meal, turkey meal, and deboned lamb.

Both Nulo’s and FOTP’s recipes feature oats, however, the latter uses organic oats, in addition to organic: beets, pumpkin, blueberry, kelp, mushroom, quinoa, and pomegranate.

The superfoods are loaded with antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals that help your dog thrive.

This brand makes sure our pups get the finest ingredients and the recipe is without any fillers, artificial additives, soy, corn, or wheat.

In comparison, Nulo’s recipe has chicken fat and ground flaxseed to provide canines with omega fatty acids, but Front of the Pack’s formula is enriched with pumpkin seed oil, omega-3 fish oil, and non-GMO sunflower oil to give your dog plenty of healthy omegas to support skin, coat, heart, and brain health.

Furthermore, FOTP’s recipe has more protein (30%) and fat (20%) than Nulo’s formula (27% and 16% respectively) and it can be a good fit for active dogs who need plenty of these nutrients to stay healthy, strong, and energized.

Key Takeaways:

  • #1 ingredient is grass-fed beef
  • Organic ingredients
  • Packed with antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, and omega-fatty acids
  • High in protein to build muscles
  • Air-dried to preserve nutrients
  • Made in the USA

Both Nulo and FOTP can be good options for healthy dogs that thrive on a high-protein and fat diet, and although Nulo’s formula has more meat sources, FOTP’s formula includes more than 86% natural, hormone-free meat.

The Front of the Pack’s recipe is slowly cooked to offer all the nutritional value of fresh food but packed in a convenient kibble.

It’s no surprise that this brand’s kibble is more expensive than Nulo’s, but the ingredients and method of cooking justify the price.

How to Transition to New Food

We know how tricky it can be to serve your dog new food.

Some of our canine companions like everything, but some can be really picky.

That’s why we decided to write a mini guide on how to switch to new dog food.

The key is to make it gradually, it will take 7-9 days for your dog to transition to new food.

Start by mixing 25% of the new food with 75% of your dog’s old food for a few days.

Then mix 50% of the new food with 50% of the old food for the next few days.

After that, increase the amount of new food to 75% (around the 5th day).

In the end, give your pup 100% new food and, of course, observe his reaction to the food.

Our Verdict

Premium pet food brands like Nulo are known for using top-notch ingredients, high-quality meat, and ancient grains in their recipes.

However, many dog parents are looking for the same quality food, with similar ingredients, but at more reasonable prices.

That’s why we set up a goal of finding the best dog food similar to Nulo, but more budget-friendly.

Taste of the Wild’s recipe made it to the top of the list due to the terrific choice of ingredients, different kinds of meat, and ancient grains that contribute to your dog’s health and general well-being.

The formula is suitable for all dog breeds and at all life stages, plus it’s cheaper than Nulo’s.

As you know, choosing the right food for your dog isn’t a one-size-fits-all category, so giving you multiple options can help you make a good decision.

Photo of author


Sal is the founder and editor of Dog Food Point and an avid dog lover who is passionate everything related to dogs. With over 20 years of experience as a passionate dog lover and expert in dog nutrition, Sal is committed to sharing valuable information and advice to promote happy, healthy dogs. When he is not playing with his pooch Tara, Sal spends most of his time reading, writing, and cooking for his dogs.

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