Gravy Train Dog Food Reviews (Ratings, Recalls, Ingredients!)

​Gravy Train Dog Food Reviews (Ratings, Recalls, Ingredients!)

About the Company

Gravy Train began selling its dog food in 1959 and became the first, and only, dog food brand to create its own gravy by adding a bit of water. Today, Gravy Train remains the only dog food brand of its kind.

Gravy Train expanded its product line in 2005 to include meaty snacks for an all-around dog food variety.

Gravy Train, a Big Heart Pet brand, aims to give your dog a unique, tasty eating experience every time he eats. From Dog Train’s crunchy kibble to its saucy gravy, your dog is sure to enjoy its meaty aroma and taste.

Is gravy train a good dog food? Of course, read our gravy train reviews and see for yourself!

Overall Rating:

Dry Food

Gravy Train Beefy Classic
    Gravy Train Small Bites Beefy Classic
      Gravy Train Meaty Classic Beef Liver & Bacon Flavor
        Gravy Train Beef Dog Food

          Meaty Snacks

          Gravy Train Jerky Strips
            Gravy Train Steak Bones Beef Flavor
              Gravy Train Beef Sticks

                Gravy Train Dog Food Reviews

                As far as lower-end, cheaper brands of dog food go, Gravy Train is average in its variety, ingredients, and nutrients. It’s packed with good vitamins, like Vitamins A, E, D3, and B12, and has a good amount of protein for your dog. Most of the ingredients are things you recognize, like corn, soybean, and animal fat.

                Where Gravy Train’s mark lowers is in its artificial ingredients, like food dyes, meat flavor, and the BHA preservative that is a known carcinogen. It also has corn and soybean meal listed as the first two ingredients. Depending on who you ask, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. They do provide protein, but they aren’t really the best protein for dogs.

                It seems that dogs prefer the flavor of Gravy Train over other brands, according to reviews from a few websites, perhaps because of the yummy gravy addition! But, I don’t see enough variety in this brand. I realize that it is a value brand, but having a few more dry dog food varieties would appeal to more dogs and owners, especially varieties for young and old dogs.


                Gravy Train dog food certainly is unique. Its one-of-a-kind formula is the only one that makes its own gravy by adding a little bit of water to your dog’s bowl. Although this doesn’t provide any extra nutritional value, it can definitely win over some picky eaters. The gravy makes it almost like a mix of wet and dry food, without making the food mushy.

                Gravy Train has been around for almost 60 years, which means it must be doing something right! Along with its wet and dry dog foods, Gravy Train introduced dog treats in 2005 to expand its brand, giving dog owners a bit more variety with the brand. And, with no recall history in the past two years, it’s a good sign of quality control.

                This dog food has a fairly good balance of ingredients, with its nutrients closely meeting AAFCO standards for dog nutrition. Gravy Train is cheaper than many other brands, but it’s free from a plethora of chemicals and preservatives that cheaper brands tend to add.


                Although its nutrients are on the mark, Gravy Train does add in some artificial coloring and flavoring, preservatives, and corn and soybean as protein. These are consistent with the ingredients of many cheaper brands of dog food, but that doesn’t make it okay.

                There is also not as much variety as some other brands as far as products go. Gravy Train has more wet food varieties than dry food, and no difference in variety for puppies and adult dogs.

                Another reason I’m on the fence about Gravy Train is its surprising lack of information about the company on its own website. For a company that has been around since the 1950s, I’d expect a good amount of information on its history, its manufacturing process, and where it originated. Instead, it has just a few sentences on its history and the company, which is a little worrisome.

                Gravy Train Dog Food Ingredients

                The Gravy Train Beefy Classic Guaranteed Analysis is as follows:

                • Crude Protein (min) 17%
                • Crude Fat (min) 8%
                • Crude Fiber (max) 4%
                • Moisture (max) 10%
                • Calcium: (MIN) 0.6%
                • Phosphorus: (MIN) 0.5%
                • Potassium: (MIN) 0.6%
                • Sodium: (MIN) 0.25%
                • Chloride: (MIN) 0.4%
                • Zinc: (MIN) 110 mg/kg

                The nutrients in Gravy Train Beefy Classic dry dog food are pretty close to the required nutrient analysis of the AAFCO Dog Food Nutrient Profile. Protein, however, is a bit lower than the minimum of 18%.

                Gravy Train dog food ingredients include dyes Red 40, Blue 2, and Yellow 5 and 6, which have been known to cause hypersensitivity and cancer in humans. It also contains BHA (Butylated Hydroxyanisole), a preservative on the list of Known Carcinogens and Reproductive Toxicants of California Proposition 65. Gravy Train’s first two listed ingredients are corn and soybean meal. These have been known to cause allergic reactions and digestive issues in dogs.

                Overall, Gravy Train meets nutrient standards, but its ingredients leave a lot of room for improvement. I’d prefer to see more meat ingredients for protein rather than corn and soybean. And, definitely less artificial flavoring and food dyes.

                Gravy Train Dog Food Recall History

                There was a massive Gravy Train Dog Food recall in 2018 when euthanasia drugs were find in bunch of The J.M. Smucker Company Inc. dog foods, such as Gravy Train, Kibbles ’N Bits, etc. Dog food was recalled after pentobarbital, used to euthanize animals, was found in it. Dog that ended up eating the contaminated food experienced seizures, skin bumps and sadly, some had died.

                This obviously was some bad effect on the Gravy Train Dog Food since it's almost impossible to buy it now. 

                Alternatives to Gravy Train: Dry Food

                Taste of the Wild High Prairie Grain-Free Food
                  Blue Buffalo Adult Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe
                    Diamond Naturals Beef Meal & Rice Food
                      Nutro Ultra Chicken, Split Pea & Carrot Recipe

                        Alternatives to Gravy Train: Canned Food

                        Purina Pro Plan Savor Adult Beef & Vegetables Entree Slices
                          Weruva Funky Chunky Chicken Soup with Pumpkin
                            Merrick Chunky Grain-Free Big Texas Steak Tips Dinner
                              Blue Buffalo Freedom Grillers Hearty Beef Dinner

                                Final Thoughts

                                Gravy Train dog food has a taste that’s almost unbeatable for a dog’s palate. The added gravy makes this dog food unique compared to others on the market. Gravy Train offers four varieties of dry dog food and nine varieties of wet dog food. All of them have raving taste reviews by dog owners (based on their dogs’ opinions, of course!).

                                The ingredients in Gravy Train are worrisome. Because it has corn and soybean meal as the main proteins, your dog could be missing out on some valuable meat-based protein and might suffer from side effects, like allergies and digestive problems. And due to the addition of artificial colors and flavors and the preservative, BHA, this dog food may not have the nutritional benefits you seek for your pooch.

                                But, if you’re looking for a value brand with good nutrients and a beloved taste, Gravy Train is a good choice. Gravy Train is available in both stores and online.

                                dog food brand review
                                Comments ( 4 )
                                Add Comment
                                • PitOwner

                                  Gravy Train has discontinued canned dog food after a recent recall.

                                • Davonne

                                  gravy train made my dogs have to go to the bathroom more often than usaul and my dogs legs were hurting more. oh my dogs would not eat if needed

                                • Victoria

                                  Because two of my friends have had serious issues with their dogs health after eating Gravy Train, I would never, never use it with my little dogggie. The ingredients are so poor and unhealthy, and I feel that any food, for humans or dogs that takes care to make the ingredients panel difficult to impossible to read, has much to hide.

                                  I suggest that all pet owners carefully read the ingredients listed on any bag or can, and then make wise choices. If you cannot read the information you not purchase. Also, avoid grains, fillers and “flavored” ingredients.

                                  Also, always check for recalls prior to purchasing any brand of pet food. Your pet is family, so treat them as such.


                                • Lawrence Lein

                                  I don’t get you people. Just because you hear some bad about a product you turn against it. I thought gravy train went by the wayside like other products. I gave the family dogs gravy train for years when I was growing up. People get off your high horse and give products another chance, because it maybe cheaper dog food but what the hell cheaper or spoiling your dog with expensive dog food.