This ultimate guide lists all of the best legume free dog food in 2023.
Legumes offer numerous nutritional benefits. For instance, they tend to be a superb source of fiber and protein, both of which are crucial nutrients for dogs.
However, there may also be disadvantages to the consumption of legumes. Namely, the FDA has been researching a potential link between legumes and canine heart disease. Plus, peas and other legumes are not suitable for dogs with kidney problems due to their high purine contents.
Before writing this guide, I conducted detailed research into the impact that legumes have on dog food. As a dog owner, it is important to get to the root of the problem. I even conducted my friend Stephen, who is a former vet, for further information.
Using these details, I sought to find the best legume-free dog food. I found Nutro Ultra Adult Dry Dog Food to be the best option. This is because it uses ingredients that can contribute to your dog’s health instead of legumes. This means that it has loads of nutritional benefits.
Other products were also viable for this title. However, I chose Nutro as the top dog food because it’s a specific non-legume formula. Despite the lack of legumes, this dog food is overflowing with vitamins and minerals. Therefore, it was the obvious choice.
Without further ado, let’s get started!
Short on Time? Check Out Our List of the Best Legume Free Dog Food
- Best Overall: Nutro Ultra Adult Dry Dog Food
- Best for Puppies: Merrick Classic Healthy Grains Puppy Recipe Dog Food
- Best for Picky Eaters: American Natural Premium Legume-Free Dog Food
- Best Budget Choice: Rachael Ray Nutrish Just 6 Limited Ingredient Dog Food
- Best for Sensitive Dogs: Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Diet Dog Food
- Best for Large Breeds: Earthborn Holistic Venture Alaska Pollock LID Dog Food
- Best for Small Breeds: Stella & Chewy’s Wild Red Raw Coated Ocean Dog Food
- Best for Grains: Zignature Select Cuts Lamb Formula Dry Dog Food
- Best for Flavors: Inception Fish Recipe Dry Dog Food
- Best for Mobility: Ziwi Peak Beef Air-Dried Dog Food
10 Best Legume Free Dog Foods in 2023
- First 5 Ingredients: Chicken, Chicken Meal, Whole Grain Sorghum, Whole Grain Barley, Whole Grain Oats
- Key Feature: Bland of 14 superfoods suitable for most dogs
- Guaranteed Analysis: Crude Protein 24%, Crude Fat 15%, Crude Fiber 4%, Moisture 10%
- Caloric Content: 362 kcal/cup
- Type of Product: No Corn, No Wheat, No Soy, Pea-Free, Molasses-Free
- Life Stage: Adult
- Best For: Overall
Instead of containing legumes, Nutro Ultra features different fruits and vegetables to enhance nutrition. This includes 14 superfoods like chia seeds, kale, and coconut, which will give your dog a healthier diet.
For instance, coconut will reduce inflammation and can prevent itchy skin. So if your dog suffers from itchy skin, it may no longer experience this discomfort. Meanwhile, kale is packed with vitamins. As a consequence, kale enhances the immune system and improves vision.
Like other dog foods, Nutro Ultra is a sensational source of protein so that your dog can exercise to its heart’s content. This protein comes from chicken, salmon, and lamb. Your dog will probably appreciate this high-quality protein.
Plus, this dog food is free from ingredients that can be problematic for dogs. This includes meat by-products, corn, and wheat, which can be difficult for dogs to digest. Having a dog with digestive problems is never fun for pet owners.
Nutro Ultra is made with crunchy kibbles that most dogs will enjoy. My dog loved it. It’s easy to overlook the kibble, but the shape, size, and texture of a kibble can affect your dog’s enjoyment of its food.
Another fabulous feature of this food is that it’s a solid source of calcium and phosphorus, which helps dogs to form healthy teeth and bones. The food should contain at least 1.4% calcium and 1% phosphorus.
For instance, it has not been made with wheat, corn, or soy, which can cause digestive issues for dogs.
Nutro Ultra is a suitable choice for adult dogs who are on a legume-free diet. On top of that, it can be a suitable choice for dogs who need additional vitamins and minerals thanks to the high concentration of superfoods.
- First 5 Ingredients: Deboned Chicken, Chicken Meal, Brown Rice, Barley, Oatmeal
- Key Feature: Legume-free puppy food suitable for most dogs
- Guaranteed Analysis: Crude Protein 28%, Crude Fat 16%, Crude Fiber 3,5%, Moisture 11%
- Caloric Content: 406 kcal/cup
- Type of Product: No Corn, No Wheat, No Soy, Pea-Free, With Grain
- Life Stage: Growing
- Best For: Puppies
Merrick Classic Healthy Grains is a legume-free formula devised for puppies. This food doesn’t contain peas or lentils, which makes it suitable for legume-free diets. It’s also suitable for puppies of all breeds, making it a versatile option.
This formula is also made with grains, which can improve your dog’s digestion. These ancient grains include quinoa. This ingredient adds fiber to a puppy’s diet, which helps to regulate bowel movements.
Merrick Classic is also a good source of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). This omega-3 fatty acid is great for a puppy’s neural development. Therefore, it can be a good idea to ensure that growing puppies receive sufficient DHA.
Aside from DHA, Merrick Classic is also rich in other omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. These fatty acids will give your adorable puppy healthy skin and a gleaming coat.
Another great feature of this dog food is that it contains impressive levels of glucosamine and chondroitin. These supplements are needed for healthy joints, cartilage, and hips. Such high levels of these minerals are rarely found in products even though they can massively benefit puppies.
Yet, the main ingredient of this food is chicken, an ingredient that most puppies adore. This deboned chicken also increases the protein content of Merrick Classic, which will allow puppies to grow strong muscles from a young age.
Ultimately, Merrick Classic is a good option for puppies on a legume-free diet. It’s important to bear in mind that this food contains whole grains, which may not be suitable for all puppies.
First 5 Ingredients: Deboned Turkey, Oatmeal, Turkey Meal, Brown Rice, Ground Grain Sorghum
Key Feature: Legume-free premium formula
Guaranteed Analysis: Crude Protein 25%, Crude Fat 14%, Crude Fiber 4,5%, Moisture 10%
Caloric Content: 364 kcal/cup
Type of Product: No Corn, No Wheat, No Soy, Pea-Free, Flax-Free
Life Stage: Adult
Best For: Picky Eaters
American Natural Premium has a legume-free blend that’s packed with nutrition.
It’s made with menhaden fish oil. Consequently, this fish premium dog food is packed with omega-3 fatty acids, which gives your furry friend healthy skin and a shiny coat. Not to mention, omega-3 can improve your dog’s joints, which is ideal for dogs with joint problems.
Instead of legumes or chicken, American Natural Premium dog food is made with pumpkin and turkey. Pumpkin is considered a superfood for dogs as it is loaded with vitamins. This includes vitamins A, C, and E, which will improve immune function.
Your dog will likely love the taste of this dog food, especially if it appreciates turkey. My precious dog devours turkey! Moreover, this turkey has increased protein content, which will help your dog to achieve its required intake. An adult dog’s diet should contain between 15% and 23% protein.
American Natural Premium features a minimum of 25% protein. This protein will help your dog to develop lean muscles. Not to mention, it builds healthy nails and fur. Protein also gives dogs energy, which is useful if you have an active canine companion!
Another great feature of American Natural Premium dog food is that it contains both prebiotics and probiotics that enhance immune health. This healthy bacteria is designed to protect dogs from foreign invaders and can even alleviate digestive issues.
- First 5 Ingredients: Lamb Meal, Brown Rice, Brewers Rice, Dried Plain Beet Pulp, Chicken Fat
- Key Feature: Nutritious legume-free option suitable for dogs with an aversion to certain foods
- Guaranteed Analysis: Crude Protein 20%, Crude Fat 13%, Crude Fiber 4%, Moisture 10%
- Caloric Content: 325 kcal/cup
- Type of Product: Limited Ingredient Diet, Gluten-Free, Pea-Free, No Corn, No Wheat, No Soy
- Life Stage: Adult
- Best For: Budget
An amazing feature of Rachael Ray Nutrish is that it doesn’t contain any fillers. This means that your dog won’t eat any ingredients that don’t provide nutritional value. Instead, the ingredients have been carefully selected to provide excellent nutritional value. It is also free from legumes, hence its inclusion on this list.
Instead, this limited-ingredient formula contains just 6 ingredients alongside additional vitamins and minerals. This is ideal for dogs with allergies, as it makes it super simple to check whether this food is suitable for your fantastic furry friend.
These ingredients include taurine, which enhances heart health. Taurine also contributes to brain function and should fend off diseases. This way, it can enhance the overall health of your canine companion.
Like most dog foods, it is rich in protein. However, this protein comes from high-quality lamb, which tends to be popular with dogs. Moreover, this protein will help dogs to form strong muscles and promote healthy organs.
Plus, it is made with brown rice. You might assume that this is another filler ingredient, but brown rice is a carbohydrate that’s low in sodium. Too much sodium in a dog’s diet can lead to a range of health problems, none of which are fun for pets and owners alike. Yet, brown rice is also high in fiber, which will encourage normal digestion.
First 5 Ingredients: Salmon, Menhaden Fish Meal, Sweet Potatoes, Tapioca Starch, Potatoes
Key Feature: Limited ingredient diet suitable for sensitive dogs
Guaranteed Analysis: Crude Protein 24%, Crude Fat 10%, Crude Fiber 4,5%, Moisture 10%
Caloric Content: 373 kcal/cup
Type of Product: Limited Ingredient Diet, Sensitive Digestion, No Corn No Wheat No Soy, Grain-Free, Pea-Free, Chicken-Free
Life Stage: Adult
Best For: Sensitive Stomach and Allergies
Penultimately, Natural Balance has created a fantastic formula that’s free from grains and legumes. The lack of grains is great for dogs who struggle to digest these ingredients.
This limited-ingredient formula contains salmon and canola acid, which are rich in omega fatty acids. These omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids help keep a dog’s fur in top form. Moreover, they contribute to radiant skin.
The salmon also gives the dog food a dishy flavor. Though some dogs may prefer red meat or poultry, many dogs, such as my furry friend, love the taste of salmon.
Another key ingredient of Natural Balance is sweet potato. This ingredient is not only delicious, but it’s a good source of energy. Therefore, it’s sure to be advantageous to energetic dogs. This sweet potato is also gluten-free and easy to digest, which is fantastic for dogs with digestive problems.
Plus, Natural Balance contains taurine, which contributes to heart health and brain development. It even contains immune-boosting vitamin E. Caring for a sick dog is never fun, so these immune system-supporting ingredients can be invaluable.
Overall, Natural Balance may be a good choice for dog owners who want a legume-free food that’s still high in omega fatty acids.
- First 5 Ingredients: Alaska Pollock Meal, Pumpkin, Tapioca, Sunflower Oil (Preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Flaxseed
- Key Feature: Legume-free diet suitable for dogs of ages and sizes
- Guaranteed Analysis: Crude Protein 26%, Crude Fat 13%, Crude Fiber 9%, Moisture 10%
- Caloric Content: 325 kcal/cup
- Type of Product: No Corn No Wheat No Soy, Limited Ingredient Diet, Grain-Free, Gluten Free, Pea-Free, Non-GMO, Chicken-Free
- Life Stage: Adult
- Best For: Large Breeds
Up next, Venture by Earthborn Holistic is a limited-ingredient formula that’s free from grains and legumes.
This grain and gluten-free dog food avoids ingredients that commonly cause digestive issues among canines. This includes wheat, soy, and corn. Therefore, Earthborn Holistic Venture may be a suitable choice for dogs with digestive issues.
Additionally, this formula is also loaded with protein, which will help your dog to build strong muscles. 96% of this protein comes from just 3 ingredients. Namely, these ingredients are from wild-caught Alaska pollock, pumpkins, and flaxseeds. As a result, your dog will consume only high-quality ingredients.
Another fantastic feature of this dog food is that its bag is made from up to 30% plant-based plastics. This makes it a good option for dog owners who are searching for sustainable packaging. Moreover, this bag is resealable, allowing you to keep the food fresh for as long as possible!
It also contains lots of omega-6 fatty acids that will benefit your dog’s skin. These fatty acids are also required for immune function, which should stop your fur baby from becoming sick.
An additional ingredient is sunflower oil, which is a superb source of vitamin E. This antioxidant will protect your dog’s cells from free radicals. Moreover, vitamin E will improve eyesight, which is particularly useful for older dogs. It also contains pumpkin, which is likewise rich in antioxidants.
Earthborn Holistic Venture is made for dogs of different breeds and sizes. Therefore, this versatile formula is suitable for a wide range of dogs. Having purchased the wrong dog food before, I can attest to how useful it is to have such a flexible product.
- First 5 Ingredients: Trout, Whitefish, Whitefish Meal, Sweet Potato, Tapioca
- Key Feature: Grain & legume-free ocean recipe suitable for most dogs
- Guaranteed Analysis: Crude Protein 30%, Crude Fat 14%, Crude Fiber 5%, Moisture 12%
- Caloric Content: 399 kcal/cup
- Type of Product: High-Protein, Pea-Free, Natural, Grain-Free, Raw
- Life Stage: Adult
- Best For: Small Breeds
Penultimately, Stella & Chewy’s is a legume and grain-free dog food. This food is made with 6 sources of animal protein, which will likely make your dog happy.
This protein is great for tissue repair. The protein derives from six different types of fish. Specifically, these types are salmon, herring, mackerel, cod, trout, and whitefish. This fish forms 86% of the protein.
Stella & Chewy’s is also an outstanding source of omega fatty acids. This is thanks to the use of salmon oil, chia seeds, and pumpkin seeds, which will give your dog a lovely-looking coat.
These kibbles have also been coated with raw meat that has been freeze-dried to preserve the nutrition. Not to mention, dogs are bound to appreciate the taste of these kibbles.
Another useful feature of Stella & Chewy’s is that it contains glucosamine and chondroitin which is great for joint protection.
As dogs get older, their joints are more fragile. This food can help prevent these joint issues.
Because this dog food is made from fish, it’s suitable for dogs with poultry allergies. Moreover, it may simply be a good choice for dogs who prefer the taste of fish over poultry or red meat.
- First 5 Ingredients: Lamb, Lamb Meal, Oats, Millet, Sunflower Meal
- Key Feature: Grain-inclusive dog food suitable for most dogs
- Guaranteed Analysis: Crude Protein 25%, Crude Fat 17%, Crude Fiber 5,5%, Moisture 10%
- Caloric Content: 380 kcal/cup
- Type of Product: Pea-Free, Chicken-Free, With Healthy Grains Like Oats, Millet and Quinoa, Non-GMO,
- Life Stage: Adult
- Best For: Grains
Zignature has a tasty lamb formula that’s completely free from legumes. This recipe also avoids other ingredients that can cause digestive issues for dogs, such as potatoes and chicken. So if your dog struggles to digest these foods, Zignature may be a viable option.
Instead, this formula is made with grains, which are great for adding fiber and protein to a dog’s diet. Whilst not all dogs can easily digest grains, they are suitable for most dogs. These grains include oats, quinoa, and millet.
These grains are non-genetically modified organisms (GMOs). Foods containing genetically modified ingredients have proven to cause allergic reactions. Therefore, the lack of GMO grains may benefit your canine companion.
However, the primary ingredient of Zignature is real lamb. This ensures that your dog consumes high-quality ingredients. Most dogs love the taste of lamb. Mine certainly do! Therefore, your dog should enjoy the flavor of this formula.
Zignature’s protein is animal-based. As a result, it will give your dog all the energy it needs. Not to mention, this will fuel your dog’s muscles. So if you have a long walk planned, Zignature will help to energize your dog.
This formula is also a decent source of taurine, which isn’t always found in other brands. Taurine is useful for heart and brain functions. Zignature is also quite high in omega-6 fatty acids, which will give your dog a dazzling coat of fur!
Ultimately, Zignature is a good option for dogs on a legume-free diet. It’s important to bear in mind that this food contains lots of grains, which may not be suitable for all dogs.
- First 5 Ingredients: Ocean Whitefish, Catfish Meal, Oats, Millet, Sunflower Oil (Mixed Tocopherol Preserved)
- Key Feature: Legume-free, fish recipe suitable for all life stages
- Guaranteed Analysis: Crude Protein 25%, Crude Fat 15%, Crude Fiber 6%, Moisture 12%
- Caloric Content: 401 kcal/cup
- Type of Product: No Corn No Wheat No Soy, Chicken-Free, With Grain
- Life Stage: Adult
- Best For: Flavors
Do you have a picky dog? If so, the multiple flavors that Inception comes in might benefit your dog. This food is available in four different flavors, namely chicken, pork, fish, or chicken & pork. Therefore, your dog will likely enjoy at least one of these delicious flavors.
These flavors are all high in protein, which is vital for active dogs. However, each flavor has slightly different nutritional qualities. For instance, the fish flavor is high in omega-3 fatty acids, which will alleviate aching joints.
Inception Dog Food is not just free from legumes. It also doesn’t contain potatoes, wheat, corn, or soy, which are often considered filler ingredients. Not to mention, your dog may experience digestive distress after eating these foods.
This food is made with oats that are high in linoleic acid. This is a type of omega-6 fatty acid that benefits the immune system and skin health.
Because it contains millet, Inception is also rich in iron and phosphorus. Phosphorus is brilliant for building healthy teeth and bones while the iron is needed to make red blood cells. Millet is also a good source of B vitamins, which boost the general health of a dog.
Plus, Inception has enriched its dog food with extra taurine and l-carnitine. L-carnitine is a useful amino acid that is often used to treat heart diseases. Therefore, it can be beneficial to ensure that your dog is eating this amino acid.
It’s worth bearing in mind that Inception’s dog food can be a little expensive. This is likely due to the high-quality ingredients that have gone into this food. So if you want to ensure that your dog is eating the finest ingredients, you may have to pay more money.
- First 5 Ingredients: Beef, Beef Heart, Beef Kidney, Beef Tripe, Beef Liver
- Key Feature: Grain-free grass-fed beef recipe suitable for most dogs
- Guaranteed Analysis: Crude Protein 38%, Crude Fat 30%, Crude Fiber 2%, Moisture 14%
- Caloric Content: 312 kcal/cup
- Type of Product: High-Protein, Natural, Limited Ingredient Diet, No Corn No Wheat No Soy, Grain-Free, Pea-Free, Non-GMO
- Life Stage: All lifestages
- Best For: Mobility & Vitality
Our final pick is Ziwi Peak Air-Dried Dog Food, which has earned this spot for its quality ingredients.
Ziwi was formulated with free-range meats and poultry, which improves its quality. Free-range meat tends to be higher in protein and nutrients than meats farmed through other methods. It is rich in chrondroitin and glucosamine that may help alleviate join pain.
Ziwi emphasizes the importance of ethical farming, which will delight many dog owners. The ingredients have been ethically sourced from farms in New Zealand, thus ensuring that the ingredients are of exceptional quality.
This formula also omits filler ingredients, such as legumes, grains, and potatoes. Instead, it focuses on only the foods that your dog needs. Moreover, the absence of these ingredients should prevent food allergies.
Plus, Ziwi uses an innovative air drying method that locks in nutrients. This not only makes it a healthy option but a convenient one too. This is because you can simply scoop and serve this air-dried food.
This dog food comes in a variety of different flavors, which is great for picky dogs. It can be hard to find food that pleases your dog; trust me, I know! Thanks to this range of flavors, it’s easy to find something that will appeal to your dog’s taste buds. These flavors include chicken, beef, lamb, or venison.
Legume Free Dog Food Buying Guide
To ensure that the dog food you buy is the best option for your furry friend, you must carefully consider your options. To help you, we’ve highlighted some of the most vital considerations.
Check the Ingredients
Often, dog food brands aren’t labeled as legume-free. Therefore, it can be tricky to determine whether or not a formula is free from legumes.
The best way to determine a formula contains legumes is to interrogate the packaging. I don’t mean literally! Instead, you should check for any signs that highlight whether or not it’s legume-free.
Moreover, you should read the ingredients to identify legumes. Legumes that are commonly used in dog food include peas, lentils, chickpeas, and kidney beans. Though these legumes can offer health benefits to dogs, a legume-free diet may be suitable for your furry companion.
You should also look for legume alternatives. Pumpkin and tapioca are two of the best legume replacements thanks to their high nutritional values.
Vitamins and Minerals
One of the reasons why legumes are frequently included in dog food products is that they are rich in vitamins and minerals. These legumes tend to be high in protein and fiber, the latter of which can aid digestion.
Some legume-free brands will not contain these qualities.
To improve your god’s overall health, you should ensure that its food contains vitamins and minerals. Aside from antioxidants, some of the most essential vitamins for your dog are:
- Vitamin A: Vitamin A is beneficial for eye health and it contributes to cell growth.
- Vitamins B: There are lots of B vitamins that can benefit your dog. This includes regulating metabolism.
- Vitamin D: This vitamin is required to regulate calcium and phosphorus.
- Phosphorus and calcium: To ensure that your dog has healthy teeth and bones, make sure that your dog is receiving these minerals.
- Magnesium: This is needed for numerous bodily functions, including muscle health.
When you are picking legume-free dog food, you should ensure that it contains antioxidants. These antioxidants fight free radicals, which will prevent cell damage. As a result, your dog will continue to look young and healthy!
To guarantee that your dog is receiving sufficient antioxidants, you should check for ingredients like:
- Sweet potatoes
As mentioned above, it’s vital for dogs to receive sufficient protein. Protein often forms the main part of a dog’s diet.
This is because it offers numerous benefits, such as forming lean muscle. Furthermore, protein contributes to healthy skin, nails, and hair. Essentially, protein keeps your dog’s body functioning normally and provides it with energy.
Consequently, you should invest in food that is rich in protein. This protein should come from high-quality sources, such as real meats. This will not only be healthier for your dog, but it will likely appreciate the taste of genuine meat.
Steer Clear of Fillers
Fillers are defined as ingredients that are added to dog food that contain no nutritional value. Instead of these fillers, high-quality ingredients could have been used. However, fillers are often cheaper for manufacturers to include.
Some experts believe these fillers are necessary in dog food. Meanwhile, other experts object to their inclusion.
Ultimately, it’s important to avoid any fillers that can be unhealthy for your dog. For instance, if your dog struggles to digest grains, you should steer clear of this filler ingredient.
As any dog owner can confirm, food can be expensive. Generally, it’s costly to care for dogs. As a dog owner, I don’t want to tell you how I’ve spent so much money on food, toys, beds, and bills!
It’s particularly costly if you have to buy diet-specific food. To ensure that you aren’t spending a fortune on your dog, you may need to compare the price of various dog foods.
Remember to take into consideration the value per weight. Though it may seem more cost-effective to purchase small bags of dog food, it can be more budget-friendly to invest in larger bags.
After conducting research and testing products, I found Nutro Ultra Adult Dry Dog Food to be the best legume-free dog food overall.
The reason for this is that it’s high in vitamins, omega-3 fatty acids, and protein, which can massively benefit dogs.