Beneful is a line of dog foods under the Nestle Purina brand and is very similar to its Pro Plan line. It was first introduced in 2001 as a line of dog food providing nutritious, beneficial ingredients. Beneful has expanded and revamped its recipes since then, offering many varieties of dry and wet dog food as well as some nutritious treats.
When it comes to quality, how does Beneful stand up to the other brands in supermarkets and those in specialty pet stores? Is this a good choice for your dog? Let’s take a closer look at everything there is to know about Beneful to help you decide in this Beneful dog food review.
- Is Beneful by Purina a Good Dog Food?
- What Recipes Do Beneful Offer?
- Is Purina a Good Dog Food?
- In-Depth Beneful Dog Food Review
- Is Purina Beneful Dog Food Safe?
- Is Purina Beneful Dog Food Expensive?
- Final Verdict
- Who Is Purina Beneful Dog Food For?
Is Beneful by Purina a Good Dog Food?
Nestle Purina Beneful faced a class-action lawsuit in 2015 for their use of potentially poisonous ingredients, which was an unfortunate turn of events and was never proven beyond the shadow of a doubt. That said, the next year, Beneful revamped its recipes and released some new ones, using real beef and real chicken as the first ingredients, as well as cutting out any added sugar. So, while they do have a past of being not so beneficial for your dog, they have listened to their customers’ suggestions and made some changes and are now considered an affordable dog food brand that surpasses industry standards.
What Recipes Do Beneful Offer?
Dog Food Beneful has a wide range of recipes, including dry dog foods, wet dog foods, soft dog food, and a few pet food treat options that we cover in this Nestle Purina Beneful dog food review. These include:
Beneful Dog Food Review: Dry Recipes
The Originals line of Beneful dog food uses real salmon or farm-raised beef or chicken in each recipe. The main protein in this pet food is blended with whole grains and superfoods to provide well-rounded nutrition. Recipes include:
- Beneful Originals Dry Dog Food with Farm-Raised Beef
- Beneful Originals Dry Dog Food with Farm-Raised Chicken
- Beneful Originals Dry Dog Food with Salmon
Beneful Dry Dog Food Healthy Weight with Farm-Raised Chicken is a lower calorie option packed with protein to help your dog stay active and support lean muscle growth while trying to get to a healthier weight. This line has 10 percent fewer calories than the Originals recipe, but there is only one recipe to choose from.
Beneful Dry Dog Food Grain Free with Farm-Raised Chicken uses all-natural ingredients, including real farm-raised meat. They’re free from fillers, wheat, corn, gluten, and animal by-product meals and have added vitamins and minerals to round out your dog’s nutrition.
Beneful Dry Dog Food Healthy Puppy with Real Chicken uses high-protein farm-raised chicken as the first ingredient along with real peas and carrots. Each cup has 27 grams of protein and provides 23 essential vitamins and minerals to support your puppy’s health as it grows big and strong.
Beneful Dry Dog Food IncrediBites with Beef is specially formulated for small breeds. They’re nutrient-rich with no added sugars, and the first ingredient is farm-raised beef. Plus, the kibble is a perfect size and shape for little mouths.
Beneful Playful Life Dry Dog Food with Beef is a high-protein recipe for your active pet. Farm-raised beef is the first ingredient, and it’s mixed with whole grains, eggs, blueberries, and spinach. Each cup has 25 grams of protein and 23 vitamins and minerals for complete and balanced nutrition for your dog.
Beneful Superfood Blend Dry Dog Food with Salmon uses natural salmon as the number one ingredient as well as other superfoods, like kale, cranberries, and chia seeds. Some of these you can see right in the kibble. This recipe is rich in protein, omega fatty acids, and antioxidants and contains no artificial flavors, preservatives, or colors.
Beneful Dog Food Review: Wet Recipes
Chopped Blends recipes are made up of tender, easy-to-chew bites and can be served as a meal or a topper for dry food. Each recipe has real meat and a balanced blend of whole grains and veggies. The recipes in this blend are:
- Beneful Chopped Blends Wet Dog Food with Beef, Carrots, Peas and Barley
- Beneful Chopped Blends Wet Dog Food with Chicken, Liver, Peas, Brown Rice and Sweet Potatoes
- Beneful Chopped Blends Wet Dog Food with Chicken, Carrots, Peas and Wild Rice
- Beneful Chopped Blends Wet Dog Food with Salmon, Sweet Potatoes, Brown Rice, and Spinach
- Beneful Chopped Blends Wet Dog Food with Turkey, Sweet Potatoes, Brown Rice, and Spinach
- Beneful Chopped Blends Wet Dog Food with Lamb, Brown Rice, Carrots, Tomatoes and Spinach
If you’re looking for wet dog food made for small breeds, Beneful has you covered. These recipes are made with real beef, salmon, or chicken blended with wild rice and a blend of wholesome veggies. Each three-ounce meal is free of artificial colors, preservatives, and flavors and chopped into bite-sized pieces, perfect for smaller breeds. There are three recipes:
- Beneful IncrediBites Small Wet Dog Food with Beef, Tomatoes, Carrots, and Wild Rice
- Beneful IncrediBites Small Wet Dog Food with Salmon, Tomatoes, Carrots, and Wild Rice
- Beneful IncrediBites Small Wet Dog Food with Chicken, Tomatoes, Carrots, and Wild Rice
The Medleys line comes in three flavors, each made with natural ingredients and no artificial preservatives, flavors, or colors. They can be mixed with dry food, but the generous sauce makes them a well-rounded, delicious meal on their own. Recipes include:
- Beneful Medleys Mediterranean Style Wet Dog Food with Lamb, Tomatoes, Brown Rice & Spinach
- Beneful Medleys Romana Style Wet Dog Food with Real Chicken, Carrots, Pasta & Spinach
- Beneful Medleys Tuscan Style Wet Dog Food with Real Beef, Carrots, Tomatoes & Rice
Prepared Meals are made using real lamb, chicken, or beef with a blend of whole grains and real vegetables that you can see. Dogs love the meaty chunks and gravy, and there are no artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives. Each 10-ounce tub provides complete and balanced nutrition, and your dog will love the taste. There are many flavors to choose from, including:
- Beneful Prepared Meals Beef & Chicken Medley Wet Dog Food
- Beneful Prepared Meals Beef Stew Wet Dog Food
- Beneful Prepared Meals Chicken Stew Wet Dog Food
- Beneful Prepared Meals Roasted Chicken Recipe Wet Dog Food
- Beneful Prepared Meals Roasted Turkey Medley Wet Dog Food
- Beneful Prepared Meals Savory Rice & Lamb Stew Wet Dog Food
- Beneful Prepared Meals Simmered Beef Entrée Wet Dog Food
- Beneful Prepared Meals Simmered Chicken Medley Dog Food
Superfood Blends pet food are delicious, nutritious recipes made with real fish and meat as well as real superfoods that you can see. Each recipe is rich in nutrients, including antioxidants to support a healthy immune system, protein for strong muscles, and vitamin A for healthy vision, and omega-6 fatty acids to encourage a healthy coat and skin. There are three recipes available:
- Beneful Superfood Blend Wet Dog Food with Lamb & Trout in Sauce
- Beneful Superfood Blend Wet Dog Food with Beef and Salmon, Pumpkin, Spinach, and Sorghum
- Beneful Superfood Blend Wet Dog Food with Chicken and Oceanfish, Apples, Kale and Accents of Millets
Beneful Dog Food Review: Soft Dog Food
Beneful’s soft dog food is made up of tender, meaty morsels made with real ingredients, like beef and chicken and real peas and carrots you can see. There are no artificial flavors or colors and never any by-product meals. This food has a unique texture that your dog is going to love, and the stay-fresh pouches are convenient to serve and store. Use these recipes as a stand-alone meal or mix them in with dry food for a nice treat. There are two recipes to choose from:
- Beneful Simple Goodness Soft Dog Food with Farm-Raised Beef
- Beneful Simple Goodness Soft Dog Food with Farm-Raised Chicken
Beneful Dog Food Review: Treats
In addition to the many dry dog food and wet dog food options dog food Beneful offers, there are also three dog treats to choose from.
- Beneful Baked Delights Hugs Dog Treats are oven-baked snacks that are crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside. They’re made with real beef and cheese and wholesome grains.
- Beneful Baked Delights Snackers Dog Treats are made with wholesome ingredients, including natural and artificial peanut butter flavors as well as real apples, carrots, and peas. These oven-baked snacks are soft on the inside, crunchy on the outside, and have a great flavor your dog will love.
- Purina Beneful Meaty Minis Small Dog Treats With Real Chicken, Apples & Beef are designed for small dogs. They’re the perfect size for their mouths and, at only four calories apiece, you can reward them with a treat without worrying too much about extra calories. Real chicken is the first ingredient, and real apples and beef add more flavor and nutrients.
Is Purina a Good Dog Food?
Beneful dog food is made by Purina in its facilities located throughout the United States, using only ingredients that meet or exceed state and federal requirements. They have quality-assurance on-site to ensure all safety and quality protocols are met.
The best way to determine if Beneful Purina dog food and, in-turn, Beneful is a good dog food is to take a closer look at some of its products.
In-Depth Beneful Dog Food Review
Grain-free Beneful dog food is pretty popular these days, and Beneful’s grain-free line is one of the more affordable options out there. But is it a good choice for your dog? Let’s take a closer look at our Nestle Purina food review.
This pet food uses chicken as the main protein as well as chicken meal. Other ingredients include blueberries, dried pumpkin, dried spinach, and dried beet pulp. There are no grains, corn, wheat, gluten, or fillers. It delivers 23 vitamins and minerals, and the protein content is 24 percent.
The second ingredient in this pet food is pea starch, which is a healthy source of plant protein. There are other plant protein sources, too, including soybean germ meal and canola meal. While plant protein is not necessarily a bad thing, it’s not as beneficial as animal protein, and there seems to be a lot of it in here.
This Nestle Purina Beneful dog food is for small dogs. Beef is the first ingredient, and the analysis puts the protein content at 27 percent, which is pretty good for a small breed. That said, there are other protein sources, including some that are not so great. Chicken by-product meal and poultry by-product meal are both listed in the ingredients. By-product meal is different from a chicken meal because you really don’t know what meat you’re getting. By-product meal can be any part of the chicken, which may not be something you want to feed to your dog. Poultry by-product meal is an even vaguer description and doesn’t sound very appealing.
Something that is appealing about this Beneful dog food is the poultry and pork digest. Digest is clean animal tissue that’s been hydrolyzed and broken down into an easily digestible form. The Association of American Feed Control mandates that animal digest has to come from clean animal tissue, so it’s a safe ingredient.
There are quite a few grains in this Beneful dog food, and they appear at the beginning of the ingredients’ list, which means there are quite a bit of grains in this recipe. They include whole-grain corn, barley, whole grain wheat, and oatmeal. These aren’t necessarily bad for dogs, but if your dog is sensitive to grains, it’s probably best to avoid this recipe.
That said, there are some really great things about this recipe, including the high amount of protein and the 23 essential vitamins and minerals. Plus, there are lots of flavorful ingredients that your pet will love.
The Originals Purina Beneful dog food line is the basic Benefuls offerings, and this recipe features real salmon blended with vegetables and grains. The protein content is 24 percent, which meets the minimum requirement.
That said, this recipe uses whole-grain corn as the second ingredient, which is not always easy to digest and may be hard on a dog with a sensitive stomach. There are a lot of other grains, too, including wheat and soy products.
There are plenty of vegetables in this Beneful dog food, so it does provide the vitamins and minerals your pet needs to stay healthy. It’s just not a very good option if you’re looking to avoid grains.
The Superfood Purina Beneful dog food blend is one of the best offerings from Beneful. It uses lots of high-quality ingredients and nothing artificial. Salmon is a great choice for the main protein, and it’s loaded with omega fatty acids to support skin and coat health. Salmon doesn’t have as much protein as other meats, but the chicken meal is the second ingredient, taking the protein content to 24 percent.
Right after these ingredients, though, are four grains: whole grain wheat, barley, rice, and oatmeal. These are fine for adding fiber, but this is another formula that won’t sit well with dogs that have sensitive stomachs.
This is one of Purina Beneful’s newer recipes and one of the better options if you want something that’s a little better quality than you’d find in the supermarket. This beef recipe is made with 10 natural ingredients: beef, barley, rice, chicken meal, canola meal, oatmeal, beef fat, sunflower oil, accents of apples, and other natural flavors.
This is one of the cleanest Beneful dog food recipes, and it contains no artificial colors, preservatives, or flavors.
Is Purina Beneful Dog Food Safe?
If you’ve researched Purina Beneful dog food, you might have come across information about some problems the brand had over a decade ago where some pet owners claimed the dog food was making their pets sick. While this was never actually proven, Beneful has taken it upon itself to evolve and improve their recipes using customer feedback, and a lot of things have changed for the brand over the last 15 years.
Here are some of the changes the brand has made:
- Real meat is always the first ingredient.
- Dry dog foods have no artificial flavors or added sugars.
- Some dry foods, including Originals Beef, Originals Chicken, Originals Salmon, Playful Life, IncrediBites Beef, IncrediBites Chicken, Healthy Weight and Healthy Puppy, do not use artificial preservatives.
- All the wet dog foods contain no artificial colors, preservatives, and flavors, and are made with real meat.
Is Purina Beneful Dog Food Expensive?
Purina Beneful has a variety of recipes, as you saw in this dog food review, and while some cost more than others, the Beneful brand is an overall affordable option. The quality can’t really compete with more expensive specialty food, but if you’re happy with something affordable that you can find in a hurry, Beneful is a good choice.
Purina Beneful is on par with other affordable dog foods that you’d find at the supermarket, with a few exceptions. They’re Superfood Blend and Select 10 have a slight edge on the other Beneful dog food lines and are slightly better than average. That said, if you have a dog that needs a special diet or you’re looking for something high-protein or a lot of grain-free options, the Beneful line doesn’t have many options for you.
There are also no large breed or senior dog Beneful dog food recipes, and the puppy foods aren’t formulated for large and small breeds. That said, there are a lot of options for small dogs, and the variety of wet dog foods available is really quite impressive.
When taking a closer look at the ingredients of Purina Beneful dog food, there are some good things, but there were some poultry by-product meals and whole-grain corn we could have done without seeing. Some of these recipes also use a lot of plant proteins, so even though real meat is the first ingredient, that doesn’t mean it’s always the source of the majority of the protein.
There are some nutrients that other brands have that are lacking a bit in the Purina Beneful product likes, like glucosamine and chondroitin, taurine, and pre and probiotics. Overall, this is an okay brand for a healthy dog with an average level of activity, but if you need something tailored to your dog’s specific needs, you might need to look elsewhere.
Who Is Purina Beneful Dog Food For?
If you’re looking for budget-friendly dog food that’s suitable for a healthy small or medium-sized dog, some recipes of Purina Beneful dog food meet the appropriate nutrition requirements. That said, most Beneful dog food recipes contain a substantial amount of grains and there are no large-breed of senior options, so this definitely isn’t a brand for every dog, as you see in our food brand review.