Best Limited Ingredient Cat Food Review and Guide

cute kitty enjoying cat food

Last Updated on October 13, 2020 by Kristen Chapple

Did you know that your lovely pet friend might be allergic or sensitive to some foods? Cat allergies happen when a feline’s immune system mistakes a specific ingredient to be a threat, and initiates a response, resulting in nasty symptoms like vomiting and sneezing.

Therefore, if your little kitty is allergic, good foods that do not contain the specific ingredient that your feline is sensitive to might do the trick.

However, selecting the right limited ingredient cat food can be challenging because of the vast market collections, but you do not need to worry because we are here to help. Keep reading to discover the best limited ingredient cat food in the market and select the best option for your cat.

Our first choice is Blue Buffalo Wilderness Adult Dry Food. The food is a blend of carefully picked ingredients, which are easy to digest, and enriched with all nutrients for the whole-body health of your allergic cat.

The Best Limited Ingredient Cat Food Are:

ProductDetails
1. Blue Buffalo Wilderness Adult Dry Food

  • Proteins: 40% (minimum)
  • Fat: 18% (minimum)
  • Fibers: 4% (maximum)
  • Moisture: 9% (maximum)
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2. I and Love and You Oh My Cod! Pate Grain-Free Canned Cat Food

  • Proteins: 10% (minimum)
  • Fat: 4% (minimum)
  • Fiber: 0.75% (maximum)
  • Moisture: 78% (maximum)
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3. Natural Balance L.I.D. Limited Ingredient Diets Green Pea & Duck Formula Grain-Free Dry Cat Food

  • Proteins: 30% (minimum)
  • Fats: 12% (minimum)
  • Fiber: 4% (maximum)
  • Moisture: 10% (maximum)
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4. Blue Basics Limited Ingredient Fish & Potato Dry Cat Food

  • Proteins: 30% (minimum)
  • Fat: 14% (minimum)
  • Fiber: 6% (maximum)
  • Moisture: 9% (maximum)
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5. Nature's Variety Instinct Grain-Free Salmon Wet Food

  • Proteins: 10.5% (minimum)
  • Fat: 4% (minimum)
  • Fiber: 2% (maximum)
  • Moisture: 78% (Maximum)
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6. Halo Holistic Seafood Medley Sensitive Stomach Dry Cat Food

  • Proteins: 32% (minimum0
  • Fat: 16% (minimum)
  • Fiber: 5% (maximum)
  • Moisture: 10 (maximum)
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7. Natural Balance L.I.D. Limited Ingredient Diets Indoor Grain-Free

  • Protein: 30% (Minimum)
  • Fat: 8% (minimum)
  • Fiber: 8% (maximum)
  • Moisture: 12% (maximum)
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8. Purina ONE Sensitive Systems Adult Dry Cat Food

  • Protein: 34% (maximum)
  • Fats: 13% (minimum)
  • Fiber: 4% (maximum)
  • Moisture: 12% (maximum)
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9. Hill’s Prescription Diet Hypo Treats

  • Proteins: 22% (minimum)
  • Fat: 15% (minimum)
  • Fiber: 5% (maximum)
  • Moisture: 9% (maximum)
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1. Blue Buffalo Wilderness Adult Dry Food — Overall Best Limited Ingredient Cat Food

Coming at the top of our list is this Wilderness Adult Dry food from Blue Buffalo, one of the most reputable pet food manufacturers out there.

It is a hypoallergenic cat food that is carefully formulated to provide your feline with a diet that closely resembles what its cousins, such as leopards, get in the wild. The food also rocks a lovely flavor loved by most cats.

The main ingredient used in this food is protein, which is derived from real chicken. The high-protein content ensures your cat develops strong lean muscles, allowing you to have a little strong athlete right at your home.

To make the food balanced, it is also enriched with essential minerals and vitamins that help to promote whole-body health.

Other additional ingredients in this food include a blend of antioxidants and omega fatty acids that help to strengthen the immune system. This implies that in addition to helping your cat stay free from allergic reactions, your little feline will also be less prone to diseases.

Specs

  • Proteins: 40% (minimum)
  • Fat: 18% (minimum)
  • Fibers: 4% (maximum)
  • Moisture: 9% (maximum)

Pros

  • Prepared using meat from real chicken
  • Enriched with fatty acids for the good health of the skin and development of attractive hair
  • High fiber content for good digestion
  • Contains taurine for good eyesight and good development of the brain cells
  • Grain-free

Cons

  • Contains plant-based carbs

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2. I and Love and You Oh My Cod! Pate Grain-Free Canned Cat Food — Best Limited Ingredient Wet Cat Food

Your lovely cat deserves the best treats, and I and Love and You Oh My God! Pate Grain-Free Canned cat Good is a great option for kitties with allergies.

The food is formulated to help kitties with sensitive stomachs enjoy a tasty meal without suffering from allergic reactions. Well, even our cats that had become so picky because of reactions turned into big fans of the food.

This food is prepared using whole meat, high-quality vegetables, and fruits that help to supply all the ingredients that your cat needs without arousing allergic reactions.

The biggest percentage of the food is proteins, which are derived from chicken, cod, chicken liver, and fish broth that guarantee an ample supply of amino acids for lean muscle development.

I and Love and You further enriched the food with vitamins, antioxidants, and Omega fatty acids to help your cat develop a strong immune system and healthier skin. So, no matter the stomach sensitivity issue that your cat is having, you should not give up without trying this food.

Specs

  • Proteins: 10% (minimum)
  • Fat: 4% (minimum)
  • Fiber: 0.75% (maximum)
  • Moisture: 78% (maximum)

Pros

  • Carefully formulated for cats with severe sensitivities
  • Contains high-quality protein from cod and chicken
  • Rich in antioxidants and Omega fatty acids
  • Enriched with essential minerals and vitamins
  • Although recommended for senior cats, the food works well with kitties of most ages

Cons

  • Contains guar gum

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3. Natural Balance L.I.D. Limited Ingredient Diets Green Pea & Duck Formula Grain-Free Dry Cat Food

Our third option is this Natural Balance L.I.D. Limited Ingredient Diets Green Pea & Duck Formula, a carefully blended cat food to nourish your feline while limiting exposure to common allergens.

We liked the food because it is available in different combinations, meaning that you can select the preferred option based on the allergens that you want your cat to avoid.

Every crunchy bite of this food contains high-quality proteins, which are mainly derived from green peas, duck, and duck meal that supply all the amino acids your feline needs.

To make the food more effective in nourishing your little feline without causing allergies, it is enriched with a lot of essential vitamins and minerals. From Vitamin C and Vitamin A to calcium and phosphates, the food contains all of them, helping to promote whole-body health of your cat.

Specs

  • Proteins: 30% (minimum)
  • Fats: 12% (minimum)
  • Fiber: 4% (maximum)
  • Moisture: 10% (maximum)

Pros

  • Contains carefully selected ingredients without common allergens
  • The food is prepared with loads of proteins to supply your cat with all the amino acids it needs
  • Enriched with vital minerals, vitamins, and Omega fatty acids for a stronger immune system
  • The ingredients are easy to digest
  • No artificial flavors or colors

Cons

  • Prepared with plant proteins
  • Expensive

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4. Blue Basics Limited Ingredient Fish & Potato Dry Cat Food

This Limited Ingredient Fish & Potato dry cat food from Blue Basics is another awesome meal for cats that are food-sensitive.

The food’s main protein source is whitefish, which makes it a perfect pick for felines that are sensitive to beef and chicken. Furthermore, it does not contain eggs, dairy or grain, which are to cause allergic reactions in most cats.

If your cat has a sensitive stomach, all the ingredients used in this food are easily digestible, making it easy to absorb the nutrients and enjoy good health.

Particularly, the food contains pumpkin and further swaps chicken/beef with fish. The result is a nutritious blend that helps your cat to reduce most allergic reactions like vomiting and hairballs.

The enrichment used in this food is also remarkable. Every bite that your cat takes is rich in proteins, vitamins, and essential minerals to strengthen health systems in your cat. Other additions that make the food standout include antioxidants and Omega fatty acids.

Specs

  • Proteins: 30% (minimum)
  • Fat: 14% (minimum)
  • Fiber: 6% (maximum)
  • Moisture: 9% (maximum)

Pros

  • Prepared with high-quality ingredients such as pumpkin and fish for a healthy digestive system
  • Made with all-natural ingredients
  • Prepared with no preservatives or artificial flavors
  • Enriched with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that your feline needs for good health

Cons

  • Contains pea proteins

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5. Nature’s Variety Instinct Grain-Free Salmon Wet Food

Salmon is tasty, and irresistible not just to people, but also to felines like your cats. This is why Instinct formulated this food, a high-protein wet meal, which has become very popular for adult cats.

We liked the food because it contains no corn, wheat, or soy, making it a great option for cats with allergies. Our cats, including the picky ones, loved this food and started gaining healthy weight days after shifting to it.

As age catches up with most cats, they start suffering from digestion related disorders, and this food is formulated to help them.

With high-fiber content from broccoli and cabbages, probiotics, and moisture, your elderly cat will easily digest all the food you give it. The meal’s formula has also made it one of the top recommendations for cats with urinary issues and smelly poop.

Because Instinct puts a lot of focus on whole foods, we liked the balanced nature of this cat food because you can use it for whole-body cat health. It contains a rich blend of vitamins, minerals, Omega fatty acids, taurine, and antioxidants that your feline needs to be healthy and happy.

Specs

  • Proteins: 10.5% (minimum)
  • Fat: 4% (minimum)
  • Fiber: 2% (maximum)
  • Moisture: 78% (Maximum)

Pros

  • Carefully formulated with limited ingredients for kitties with allergies
  • Prepared as whole-cat food for good overall health of your cat
  • Enriched with vitamins, minerals, Omega fatty acids, and taurine
  • No corn, soy or wheat

Cons

  • Expensive

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6. Halo Holistic Seafood Medley Sensitive Stomach Dry Cat Food

If you have a sensitive cat and want to give it a special treat that will promote good health, one of the top options is this Halo Spot’s Stew Natural, a food prepared to make your lovely pet feel natural and loved.

The food is prepared with salmon and whitefish as the first ingredients, which are rich in most amino acids that your cat needs. The flavor is also enriched with dried eggs, which are liked so much, especially by adult cats.

As a meal formulated to help cats with a sensitive stomach, the high-fiber content also caught our eyes. With every crunchy kibble containing 5% fiber, you are sure that your kitty will extract most of the nutrients and easily pass the waste out. The fibers are derived from high-quality non-GMO carrots, blueberries, and sweet potatoes.

We also noted that the food is rich in vitamins, antioxidants, and minerals that help to promote a healthy immune system, fuller hair, and good circulation system. To get better results from the food, make sure to also provide your kitty with a lot of clean water. 

Specs

  • Proteins: 32% (minimum)
  • Fat: 16% (minimum)
  • Fiber: 5% (maximum)
  • Moisture: 10 (maximum)

Pros

  • Prepared using whole salmon and whitefish
  • Made with novel ingredients that are easy to digest
  • All the ingredients are non-GMO
  • Free from antibiotics and growth hormones
  • Enriched with vitamins and minerals for whole-body health

Cons

  • Might not work for cats that do not love taking water

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7. Natural Balance L.I.D. Limited Ingredient Diets Indoor Grain-Free

Natural Balance makes our list of best limited ingredient cat food again with this L.I.D Limited Ingredient Diets Indoor cat food, which is formulated to help your cat remain healthy, strong, and overcome other medical conditions. With its crunchy and lovely turkey flavor, even the pickiest cat will find this food irresistible.

The main ingredient used to prepare this food is protein, which is derived from turkey, turkey meal, chickpeas, and peas. The combination of both animal and plant proteins help to ensure your feline enjoys a rich supply of amino acids for good health.

Furthermore, the food is enriched with chlorine chloride, acid pyrophosphate, minerals, and vitamins that help to strengthen your cat’s systems.

Another thing that makes the food stand out is the enrichment with taurine and Omega fatty acids. Taurine is recommended by vets and pet nutritionists because it helps to promote good eyesight, strong heart muscles, and development of brain cells.

With continued use of this food, your cat will enjoy a high supply of Omega fatty acids that promote healthy skin development.

Specs

  • Protein: 30% (Minimum)
  • Fat: 8% (minimum)
  • Fiber: 8% (maximum)
  • Moisture: 12% (maximum)

Pros

  • Contains limited ingredients carefully formulated for the needs of your sensitive indoor cat
  • Made with high-quality proteins from turkey
  • Enriched with fibers that promote good health of the cat’s digestive system
  • Carefully balanced with vitamins, minerals, Omega fatty acids and taurine

Cons

  • Pricey
  • May result in smelly poop

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8. Purina ONE Sensitive Systems Adult Dry Cat Food

If you have a cat that is sensitive to some ingredients, but the amount you want to spend is low, one of the best limited ingredient meals is this Purina ONE Sensitive Adult Dry Cat Food.

The dry kibble is prepared using a rich blend of animal and plant proteins, allowing your little feline to get all the nutrients it needs for healthy muscles, strong bone marrow, and circulatory systems.

The food is prepared with high-quality protein sources, including turkey, chicken by-products, and oatmeal. Besides supplying your feline with all the proteins it needs, the food is also rich in Vitamin E, folic acid, and minerals. So, you can feed your lovely kitty with the food without worrying about causing allergic reactions.

Like most Purina ONE cat foods out there, the minerals, especially calcium, magnesium and phosphorus, are carefully balanced to help address or reduce urinary tract related issues. 

Furthermore, the dry food contains a rich blend of Omega fatty acids and antioxidants that help to strengthen its immune system, and nourish the sensitive skin.

Specs

  • Protein: 34% (maximum)
  • Fats: 13% (minimum)
  • Fiber: 4% (maximum)
  • Moisture: 12% (maximum)

Pros

  • The food is carefully formulated for cats with sensitive systems
  • Contains turkey as the primary ingredient for the supply of high-quality proteins
  • Comes with loads of Omega fatty acids for healthy skin and shiny coat
  • Enriched with essential minerals and vitamins for your cat

Cons

  • Contains chicken by-product
  • Contains plant-based carbs

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9.  Hill’s Prescription Diet Hypo Treats

If your cat is suffering from severe allergies, it advisable to go for advanced foods that are carefully formulated to make digestion super-easy. This Hill’s Prescription Diet Hypo Treats contains hydrolyzed proteins, which have already been broken down to make digestion and absorption into the cat’s body easy.

By breaking down the proteins, they are taken by the cat’s body as different components as opposed to their original forms that cause allergies. Hill’s developed this tasty and crunchy food targeting cats that use prescription diets for gastrointestinal issues. 

The main ingredients used to prepare the food include hydrolyzed chicken liver proteins and brewers rice, which ensure your kitty can enjoy good health without suffering from allergies. In addition to the proteins, the food is also enriched with EPA and Omega fatty acids that help to nourish the cat’s skin and fur.

To make the food a reliable option for whole-body health, it also contains essential vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Note that to use this food, you will need a prescription from a vet. 

Specs

  • Proteins: 22% (minimum)
  • Fat: 15% (minimum)
  • Fiber: 5% (maximum)
  • Moisture: 9% (maximum)

Pros

  • Offers cats suffering from food sensitivities an opportunity to enjoy charming treats
  • The main ingredients are hydrolyzed to prevent causing allergic reactions
  • Comes with loads of Omega fatty acids
  • Balanced with minerals and vitamins for a healthy cat

Cons

  • You must have a doctor prescription to buy this food

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Buying Guide

Although buying food for sensitive cats can be challenging, the above nine top limited ingredient cat food reviews take you a step closer to identifying the best one.

Notably, the foods might cost you more than the standard ones because of the work involved in preparing them. In this guide, we will tell you the most important things to consider when buying limited ingredient cat food.

What A Limited Ingredient Diet Means

Like people, cats might be allergic to one or a few ingredients that are found in their foods. Limited ingredient cat foods are made without specific components that are known to cause allergic reactions. The effect is lowering the risk of your feline developing allergic responses after taking the food.

Most limited ingredient cat meals are prepared with hydrolyzed proteins, implying that they are broken down into smaller components that your feline’s immune system will not recognize as allergens. However, the quality and amount of nutrients in the food remain the same.

Common Allergens In Cat Food

Although it is not possible to have 100% hypoallergenic food, analysis indicates that some ingredients are more likely to result in allergic reactions than others.

Grains like corn and dairy products are known to result in most intolerances and allergies in cats. It is also important to point out that most cats are obligate felines, which means they have evolved to rely mainly on meat as opposed to grains.

As cats age, the enzymes for digesting dairy products start ebbing out, resulting in serious allergies. Also, some parts of meat, such as fat tissues, which are used to make cat food are also known to trigger allergic reactions.

Other causes of allergic reactions include seafood, artificial fillers, and preservatives.

How Food Allergies Are Diagnosed

If you suspect that something in a cat’s food is causing your kitty’s trouble, seek urgent help from a vet. Seeking expert help is crucial because sensitivity in your cat can also result from other causes, such as intestinal parasites, infections, and dermatitis.

You can also carry a definitive diagnosis through the process of elimination, which involves offering your cat different foods, and noting how it responds to them.

Once you note the specific ingredient that your cat is allergic to, check for limited ingredient cat food with very low levels or without that particular content.

Nutrient Consideration

While the primary goal of limited ingredient cat food is selecting what will not result in allergic reactions, it is also important to ensure that the meal contains all the nutrients for your feline. So, here is what to look for:

Proteins

Go for high-quality proteins that can supply your kitty with all the amino acids needed for lean muscle development. The best proteins are sourced from animal meat. So, if the food also contains some plant proteins, the bulk of it should come from animal sources.

Fat

Cats are active animals that require a high supply of calories. As obligate carnivores, the best sources of calories are animal fats and proteins.

Carbohydrates

Although a cat’s system is not designed to process carbohydrates, plant-based carb sources are added in cat foods to help supply additional calories and fibers. So, if you select food that contains plant-based carbs, ensure that the bulk of them are animal-based. Again, carb sources such as potatoes are better compared to wheat and corn.

Other enrichments

In addition to high-proteins and carbs, you should also check for the food that is enriched with vitamins, minerals, Omega fatty acids, and taurine that promote whole-body health.

Dry Vs Wet Food

The good thing with limited ingredient cat food is that it is available in both wet and dry options. Although dry foods are cheaper than wet foods, canned options are, in most cases, considered more appetizing.

Wet cat food may also help your feline take more liquids, promote better digestion, prevent urinary tract infections, and keep the animal hydrated.

Final Thoughts

Buying the food for your allergic or sensitive cat can be challenging not just because of the different brands in the market, but also the need to know which ingredient causes problems to your feline.

The limited ingredient cat food we have brought out in our reviews in this post capture the best that the market has to offer. The foods are also made by the best brands out there and rock a wide price range.

While we stand with the nine best limited ingredient cat meals in our reviews (they sparkle in every sense), the Blue Buffalo Wilderness Adult Dry Food is our favorite. It is formulated with your allergic cat in mind and balanced with other ingredients for whole-body health.

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