Meat Mates Beef Dinner

Meat Mates Beef – The Best Cat Food Reviews (2022)

Last Updated on June 17, 2024 by Indy the Cat

2024 Update: Unfortunately Meat Mates has discontinued their wet food line since 2023. We hope that they will reconsider in the future as this was one of the best cat foods on the Australian market!


If you have a canine companion, you might be quite familiar with Meat Mates dog food already. However, on the cat side of things, Meat Mates is the newest kid on the block and has quickly risen in popularity among the cat community. From the makers of Feline Natural, Meat Mates is their latest brand under the parent company Natural Pet Food Group Company.

Originally starting with dog food in 2016, the brand expanded to cat food in late 2019/early 2020. It’s a welcome addition given the track record of the Natural Pet food Company in the premium pet food space. At the time of publishing, the Meat Mates cat food lineup consists of wet canned foods, freeze dried dry food and freeze dried treats.

As a New Zealand manufactured brand, they pride themselves in sourcing quality natural New Zealand ingredients following in the footsteps of its sister companies. This is evident from the named ingredients in their products – for example, free range chicken and pasture raised animals. All their wet foods are single protein formulas making it optimal for cats with allergies.

Furthermore, Meat Mates also meets AAFCO standards and all their product lines follow the Natural Pet Food Group mantra of being GMO free, grain free, and free from artificial preservatives, fillers or flavours.


To date, Meat Mates has not been recalled, however in 2018, one of its sister brands – K9 Natural voluntarily recalled some batches of their frozen raw food. In Australia, pet food recalls are only mandatory for brands that have decided to work within the Australian Standard for Manufacturing and Marketing of Pet Food (Standard AS5812:2017). All members of the Pet Food Industry Association of Australia comply with these standards and Natural Pet Food Group is a marketing member of the Association. 

Product Line Commentary

Today, we are looking at the Meat Mates Beef Dinner formula. Beef was one of the last conventional proteins that Iwe exposed to Indy and it was mainly because we’ve seen other cats have sensitivities to beef. Unfortunately, it is a fairly common issue, so it’s something to be aware of when trying beef recipes with your cat.

Normally, since recipes are frequently the same price, we do find we are getting better value by choosing the higher caloric formulas. In the case of Meat Mates, the differences are almost negligible (88-91 kcal range for 85g cans) so you can opt for your preferred protein between the three flavours. Meat Mates is considered a premium brand of cat food, but comes in at a lower price point than its sister brand Feline Natural. Does it compromise on any fronts? Let’s dig a little deeper!

Maintaining the Standard for Premium Cat Foods

The first thing you will notice with Meat Mates is that the brand does not take shortcuts in quality. Going above and beyond the industry standard, Meat Meats continues to use quality ingredients to their advantage. Unsurprisingly, each ingredient is clearly named and all meat sources are sustainably sourced from grass-fed and/or free range animals.

The only protein in this formula is beef, and the ingredient list identifies specific organs such as beef lung, beef kidney and beef liver (and there’s more!). As cats are obligate carnivores, it’s great that there are no vegetable sourced proteins in these foods. With next to no carbohydrate in the food, this is very species appropriate for our feline friends.

Compared to most of the competition, all of Meat Mates’ wet foods are unique as they lack conventional gelling agents. That’s right! No guar gum or controversial thickeners such as Xanthan Gum or Carrageenan. While most cats do not react negatively to these gelling agents, there have been studies that these additives can cause inflammation and other issues. Therefore, it doesn’t hurt to avoid these ingredients.

A more affordable premium cat food

It’s clear that Meat Mates did not skimp on the foundations of their ingredient list. High quality protein with many supplementary ingredients found in their sister brand’s products. That being said, it’s clear that there is an obvious omission from this recipe compared to other high end foods; the ever popular New Zealand Green Lipped Mussels. This luxury ingredient is a great source of omega 3’s and can provide natural anti-inflammatory benefits. Its substitute is simply fish oils which is a staple ingredient in many cat foods on the market.

To be fair, considering the price (roughly $3 per 170g can – see below for further pricing details), this is a trade off I’m more than happy to make. Since Indy eats other foods which include green lipped mussels as part of his rotation diet, I’m happy to include variation at a lower price point.

Meat Mates Beef Dinner formula is a complete and balanced food that can be fed to all stages of cats including kittens. At 181kcal per 170g can, it has an average caloric count compared to typical wet foods in this size range. The breakdown shows it would be considered a well balanced high protein, high fat and very low carbohydrate cat food.

Guaranteed analysis

Crude Protein (min) – 8.3%

Crude Fat (min) – 7.5%

Crude Fibre (max) – 1.6%

Moisture (max) – 81.5%

Taurine (min) – 0.1%

Dry Matter Basis

Additional Nutritional Profile Information

  • Taurine – 0.4%
  • Omega 3s – 0.6%
  • Calcium – 2.6%
  • Phosphorus – 1.7%
  • Potassium – 0.9%
  • Sodium – 0.5%
  • Chloride – 0.4%
  • Magnesium – 0.11%

Where to Buy and Cost

Unlike Feline Natural, Meat Mates is carried by a smaller subset of online pet stores and retailers. At the time of publishing, it can be found at leading retailers including: Pet Circle, Coles, PetHouse and occasionally Amazon.

Meat Mates is usually priced around $55/24 cans (85g) and $70/24 cans (170g). This comes in at a moderate price point of $2.30/can (85g) and $2.91/can (170g). Moreover, purchasing the larger cans offers significant value given that Feline Natural is usually priced at over $90/$100 for 24 big cans.

Given its price point, it’s a clear win for the budget and feline nutrition. This is one of the many benefits of having a rotation diet! You can still feel good about feeding various types of food as part of their diet without constantly breaking the bank. After all, it’s not like we eat ribeye steak every night! Additionally, a 170g can can be split into 2 meals, which makes the food a bargain for many cat owners.

Ingredient List

Beef, Water Sufficient for Processing, Beef Lung, Beef Heart, Beef Kidney, Beef Liver, Beef Tripe, Beef Spleen, Fish Oil, Flaxseed Flakes, Dried Kelp, Dipotassium Phosphate, Taurine, Salt, Vitamin E Supplement, Magnesium Oxide, Zinc Proteinate, Copper Proteinate, Manganese Proteinate, Thiamine Mononitrate, Folic Acid, Vitamin D3 Supplement

Nutritional Information

Beef – source of meat protein

Water – hydration

Beef Lung – source of protein (considered as muscle meat in the raw diet)

Beef Heart – source of protein (considered as muscle meat in the raw diet)

Beef Kidney – source of protein and as an offal, it offers a natural form of essential vitamins/nutrients

Beef Liver – source of protein and as an offal, it offers a natural form of essential vitamins/nutrients

Beef Tripe – source of protein (considered as muscle meat in the raw diet)

Beef Spleen – source of protein and as an offal, it offers a natural form of essential vitamins/nutrients

Fish Oil – source of omega-3 fatty acids

Flaxseed Flakes – source of fibre

Dried Kelp – source of magnesium, protein, vitamin A, iodine, bromine, and phosphorous. Minor source of fibre

Dipotassium Phosphate – source of phosphorous

Taurine – essential amino acid 

Salt – source of salt (interesting inclusion as we would have thought there is enough natural sodium in some of the other ingredients such as the offal)

Vitamin E Supplement – source of Vitamin E

Magnesium Oxide – source of magnesium

Zinc Proteinate – source of zinc

Copper Proteinate – source of copper

Manganese Proteinate – source of manganese

Thiamine Mononitrate – source of thiamine

Folic Acid – source of Vitamin B9

Vitamin D3 Supplement – source of Vitamin D3

Indy’s Review

So does Indy the cat like it? 

Yes he loves it! Introduced in his kitten phase, this remains a regular staple in his rotation diet. Costing 30% less than Feline Natural at regular price, it’s hard not to give Meat Mates the edge for the best cat food from the Natural Pet Food Group.

Stock has been hard to come by, but we highly recommend this one for your feline family member!

The good

  • Excellent meat/protein sources with quality named ingredients
  • Very species appropriate food with no non meat protein sources
  • Grain free without similar substitutes 
  • Well balanced with low carbohydrate
  • No thickening agents
  • Quickly adopted by Indy in terms of palatability 

The bad

  • Less expensive than Feline Natural but still reasonably pricey
  • Average caloric count


  • Species appropriate (weight 0.3) – 10 / 10
  • Ingredients (weight 0.3) – 10 / 10
  • Recall Track record (weight 0.2) – 9 / 10
  • Price (weight 0.2) – 8 / 10

Average Score – 9.3 / 10

Weighted Score – 9.4 / 10

The Bottom Line: Almost as good as Feline Natural, but significantly more budget friendly. A clear favourite for one of the best cat foods on the market.

If you spot an error in this article, please do not hesitate to let us know!

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