The Best Semi-Moist Cat Food

what's the best semi moist cat food

Cats, as anyone who has ever found themselves owned by one can attest, are finicky little things.

Despite having nine lives, they’ll convince you that they’re going to die if you don’t get them exactly the right food. (Mouse that’s been running around goodness knows where? Yup, that’s fine, no problem – what do you mean I’m expected to eat the bargain basement kitty kibble?! What kind of monster are you?!)

And of course, pets of all shapes and sizes become part of the family, and your independent, self-centred kitty is no different.  You want the best for them, because you want them to feel loved, so that maybe, just maybe, they’ll be a little more affectionate. (But not too much – you don’t want something clingy and needy. That’s why you got a cat, not a dog, after all.)

With more cats now living indoors, both for their own safety (as cats really don’t understand traffic) and for the continuation of local bird and wildlife species, getting your pet the right mix of nutrition can be a challenge.

Wet vs Dry Cat Food

Wet, or moist, cat food is generally better for all-round health, as it typically has a higher meat content, and is more nutritious.  Cats often prefer it, too.

However, wet cat food, particularly if you have several cats, can take up a lot of space. In the summer, canned pet food can really pile up, especially if your pet doesn’t eat it all at once. (Mine don’t – they prefer to eat little and often.)

Also, moist cat food isn’t ideal for indoor cats, who don’t have access to the variety of edible textures that help keep those tiny teeth in tip-top condition.

Dry food provides the crunchy texture to help with dental health and hygiene, and is less pungent in hot weather.  It is also better value for money, as you get more for your dollar than with wet food, and is easier to store, and it’s much faster to ‘prepare’.

However, unless you commit to finding the best-quality dry food, many kitty kibbles are quite low in nutritional quality (this is true of most dry pet foods generally.)

So how about something in between? Is it possible to get the best of both worlds?

Semi-Moist Cat Food

While it is very hard to find actual semi-moist cat food these days, many pet food brands will market “cat food toppers”, which are essentially the same thing, although, if you intend to feed these exclusively, rather than adding them to (usually) wet food for a little added nutrition and texture, you will, of course, need to use more than the recommended amount.

Semi-moist cat food, as well as meeting your cat’s need for nutrition and texture, provides something a bit different for them to engage with. This is particularly important for indoor cats, who lack the opportunities for stimulation afforded to cats who can be given the freedom to come and go at leisure.

The Top 5 Semi Moist Cat Food Reviews

These are the top five cat food toppers, or semi-moist cat foods available.  Of course, bear in mind that cats are as individual as we are, and your cat may not care at all for the highest-rated, best-quality-ingredients food available. It’s about finding what works best for your feline friend.

#5: Blue Wilderness Grain Free Tasty Toppers

Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein Grain Free, Natural Wild Cuts Adult Wet Cat Food Pouch, Chicken 3-oz (pack of 24)

Many cats are sensitive to grains and cereals, as they are not a natural part of the feline diet, so buying grain free food, where possible, is desirable. Of course, as grains are used – in human food, too – as cheap bulking agents, grain free food is more expensive. This item features 24 pouches.

Some cats refuse to eat the semi-moist chunks, and will just lap the gravy they come in. If this is the case with your cat, it would be better to find a high quality wet cat food that they will eat, as they won’t be getting sufficient nutrition.

While this semi-moist topper features high quality ingredients, and is both appealing to many cats with digestive issues, the pouches do not contain a lot of food, and so work out quite expensive. Even more so if you have more than one cat, and are feeding this as a standalone semi-moist food rather than mixed with canned food or kibble.

Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein Grain Free, Natural Wild Cuts Adult Wet Cat Food Pouch, Chicken 3-oz (pack of 24)
51 Reviews
Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein Grain Free, Natural Wild Cuts Adult Wet Cat Food Pouch, Chicken 3-oz (pack of 24)
  • PACKED WITH REAL CHICKEN: This grain free cat food contains more of the chicken cats love to provide the energy your adult cat needs to stay...
  • MEATY MORSELS IN GRAVY: This high protein cat food features tender bits of real chicken in a savory gravy no feline can resist
  • NATURAL CAT FOOD: All BLUE canned cat foods are made with the finest natural ingredients enhanced with vitamins and minerals

#4: Wellness Trufood Complements

Wellness Trufood Complements, 1.75 Ounce, Shredded Chicken Breast in Broth for Adult Cats, Pack of 24

Again, like most semi-moist foods, this is intended as an addition to either kibble or canned food, so, if you are feeding it exclusively, you’ll need to use several pouches in  a day.

The pouches are quite small, and can be messy to feed.  However, cats do seem to enjoy this food, probably because it is made with 70% whole prey-foods, giving it a much more cat-appealing scent, and a higher and tastier protein element.

The use of a high percentage of whole prey-food means that the texture and digestive elements are closer to what your cat would eat if they were free-ranging in the wild. This makes Wellness Trufood ideal for indoor cats, who are completely dependent on humans for the necessary variety in their diet.

Wellness Trufood Complements, 1.75 Ounce, Shredded Chicken Breast in Broth for Adult Cats, Pack of 24
42 Reviews
Wellness Trufood Complements, 1.75 Ounce, Shredded Chicken Breast in Broth for Adult Cats, Pack of 24
  • Grain Free: Grain Free, Complete And Balanced Everyday Nutrition For Your Cat.
  • Quality Ingredients: Delicious, Simple Recipe, Using 8 Ingredients Or Less, Made With Real Shredded Chicken.
  • All Natural: Contains Only Premium, All Natural Ingredients With No Wheat, Artificial Colors, Flavors Or Preservatives.

#3: Instinct Healthy Cravings

Instinct Healthy Cravings Grain Free Real Chicken Recipe Natural Wet Cat Food Topper by Nature's Variety, 3 oz. Pouches (Case of 24)

This is a grain free meal topper – again, if you are feeding it exclusively, as a semi-moist food, you will need to use several packets a day to ensure your cat is getting sufficient nutrition.

This cat food seems to be much more appealing to a broad spectrum of catitudes than other varieties, and offers a greater range of flavors.

Again, as with all of these kinds of “complementary” foods, there is not a lot in a pouch, which does make it quite expensive if you’re having to feed it as an exclusive food for a picky kitty.

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Instinct Healthy Cravings Grain Free Real Chicken Recipe Natural Wet Cat Food Topper by Nature's Variety, 3 oz. Pouches (Case of 24)
109 Reviews
Instinct Healthy Cravings Grain Free Real Chicken Recipe Natural Wet Cat Food Topper by Nature's Variety, 3 oz. Pouches (Case of 24)
  • GRAIN FREE CAT FOOD TOPPER WITH CAGE FREE CHICKEN: Instinct Healthy Cravings wet cat food topper is the perfect natural cat food topper or...
  • NATURAL WET CAT FOOD TOPPER WITH SAVORY GRAVY: Grain free cuts of cage free chicken in a savory gravy. Made without grain, potato, corn,...
  • EASY TO SERVE WET CAT FOOD POUCH: Healthy Cravings pouches are convenient, easy open pouches that make serving quicker and easier than...

#2: Wellness Natural Pet Food

Wellness Core Simply Shreds Grain Free Wet Cat Food Mixer Or Topper, Flaked Wild Salmon & Tuna Recipe In Broth, 1.75-Ounce Pouch (Case Of...

Offering a grain-free, protein focused food, this is, again, intended as an addition to either canned cat food or kibble, so, if you are feeding it exclusively, you will need to use several pouches per day.

This is a high-quality pet food that  comes in several varieties, including plain chicken (contrary to the stereotype, a lot of cats don’t like fish flavored cat food!), and it is clear, as soon as you open the pouch, that the focus of this food is meat, rather than something rehydrated.

It’s the kind of cat food you can easily see how you would make yourself, if you were so inclined, which is exactly what you’re looking for.

Wellness Core Simply Shreds Grain Free Wet Cat Food Mixer Or Topper, Flaked Wild Salmon & Tuna Recipe In Broth, 1.75-Ounce Pouch (Case Of...
66 Reviews
Wellness Core Simply Shreds Grain Free Wet Cat Food Mixer Or Topper, Flaked Wild Salmon & Tuna Recipe In Broth, 1.75-Ounce Pouch (Case Of...
  • Grain Free: Simply Shreds Can Be Used As A Mixer, Topper, Or Snack To Be Added To A Complete & Balanced Food Diet
  • Carageenan Free: Simple Protein Focused Recipe, Using 4 Ingredients Or Less, Made With Real Flaked Salmon & Tuna In A Broth
  • All Natural: Contains Only Premium, All Natural Ingredients With No Meat By Products, Artificial Flavors, Colors Or Preservatives

#1: Halo Mix ‘n’ Mores

A freeze-dried food, this simply needs a little water added to bring out the full, unimpaired flavor of good quality raw meat.

This is particularly appetizing to older cats, who are often reluctant to eat, and can therefore provide much-needed reassurance for anxious humans.

Again, this is intended as a complementary food to kibble or canned cat food, so you will need to use several pouches a day if you are feeding exclusively.

Halo Mix 'n Mores Freeze-Dried and Cage-Free  Salmon & Turkey Food for Pets, 6 oz.
24 Reviews
Halo Mix 'n Mores Freeze-Dried and Cage-Free Salmon & Turkey Food for Pets, 6 oz.
  • 6 Oz Pouch Freeze-Dried, Not Dehydrated
  • Morewhole Salmon & Turkey, No Grains!
  • Moredigestible Protein, No “Meals”!

In Summary

Until pet food companies bring back actual semi-moist cat food (which they are starting to do in the UK, although it is currently limited to just a couple of the leading brands), meal toppers are the only “semi-moist” option available.  As they are intended to be used as an occasional addition to a main food, they do become expensive to feed exclusively, particularly if you have more than one cat.

Hopefully the British trend will spread to the USA too, and give us more options on how to feed our pets.

Last update on 2020-02-19 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API