Week after week, Freddie watches me make and photograph recipes for this blog. She’s stared at us plaintively while we’ve done taste tests, protesting vociferously with her accusing eyes and surprisingly loud and expressive yowls at the unfairness of it all. Here we are, cooking and tasting and enjoying all this food. And what does she get? The same boring old cat food. Just out of a pouch, day after day. Well, except yesterday, when she caught a weasel and brought it proudly to us. (True story. It was mildly horrifying.)
So, to lessen her ire and to help protect the lives of the small woodland creatures dwelling around us, we’ve finally, just this once, let her in on the fun. Welcome to the cat food taste test.
(By the way, this is obviously a joke blog post, but it does have a slightly serious kernel – have you read the ingredients list on any cat food product lately!? For the standard brands – Felix and so on – it is literally 4% chicken or whatever meat flavour it’s supposed to be, 82% water and 2.5% crude ash! Among other things.)
As before, I feel I need a rambling disclaimer: obviously, Freddie is doing this in our kitchen and not in a lab and she is not a scientist. These are the opinions of one cat– that said, one cat who is used to the freshly killed mice and weasels of Oxfordshire and expects high quality. Also, the products used in this series are just examples – obviously each supermarket has, say, eight or nine different types of cat food or whatever the product may be, and Freddie isn’t going to try every single one because her humans are cruel and didn’t buy them all.
Finally, I should highlight that Freddie tasted all the products blind, and at the time of tasting she didn’t know which product was which. She sat in one room while her slaves prepared the samples. Any notes added regarding packaging and so on were only done after tasting, when she learned which brand had made A, B, C, D, E, or F.
The Blind Taste Test: Cat Food
A – Sheba Fine Flakes with Chicken – £5.88 per kg – 8/10
- A contender from the start: this is the food I immediately gravitated towards. Strong and meaty. Would definitely eat again.
B – Sainsbury’s ‘The Delicious Collection’ Chicken Breast – £7.06 per kg – 7/10
- A bit too heavy on the jelly and light on the chicken for my taste, but a good flavour and decent quality meat.
C – Gourmet Perle Tuna and Whole Shrimps in Gravy – £6.47 per kg – 6/10
- I question the wisdom of putting tuna and shrimp in gravy. Surely gravy is for meat rather than fish? But I did enjoy the whole shrimps.
D – Encore Pacific Tuna & Whitebait – £14.28 per kg – 9/10
- Delicious. I can’t resist a good fish dish. (Hannah’s note: I am not saying I would eat cat food but if I had to it would be this one. Here are the ingredients: Tuna Fillet 65%, Fish Broth 24%, Whitebait 10%, Rice 1%, Additives: None. No ash in sight.)
E – Gourmet Classic Soup – £22.50 per kg – 1/10
- This is apparently a ‘delicately refined broth’. I’m not buying it. I’m a cat and we don’t eat soup.(Hannah’s note: she literally would not touch this, even after I took all the other food away.)
F – Felix with Tuna – £5 per kg – 5/10
- I feel like that cat on the packet is watching me and I do not appreciate it.
Cats will eat live mice. They don’t really care what cat food you feed them, as long as it kind of looks like some sort of meat.
They do draw the line at cat soup, though.
By the way, technically Freddie isn’t our cat.
*Prices correct at time of writing.