Ziwi Peak Chicken Recipe

Ziwi Peak Chicken – The Best Cat Food Reviews (2024)

Last Updated on June 17, 2024 by Indy the Cat

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If there was a brand that was most synonymous with premium New Zealand pet food, it would probably be Ziwi Peak. We rarely see the brand not mentioned as a top choice for premium cat foods.

Ziwi Peak began in 2002 under founder, Peter Mitchell who was supplying quality meat products for other pet food companies. Unfortunately, he saw his high end ingredients mixed in with cheap fillers and carbohydrates to make highly processed dry cat food (psttt.. check out our article on dry foods!).

As a pet owner himself, he wanted to do better so after much experimentation, he founded Ziwi Peak, which focused on capturing the benefits of the raw diet while transforming it into a modern convenient pet food. Their signature air dried cat food is a product of his commitment to better pet nutrition.

Much like Feline Natural, Ziwi Peak sources high quality products from New Zealand focusing on free range sustainable ingredients. You will find plenty of named ingredients alongside unique sources for essential vitamins and minerals. With products spanning air dried pet food, canned wet food, treats and oral chews, Ziwi Peak has products for both canines and felines.

Beyond high end ingredients, the pet food manufacturer has a strong focus on ethics such as animal welfare and sustainable practices. Ziwi Peak also meets AAFCO standards and all their product lines follow the company mantra of being GMO free, antibiotic free, grain free, and free from sugars or glycerins (a controversial ingredient due to its sourcing and artificial nature).

In 2021, Chinese private equity firm, FountainVest Partners reached an agreement to purchase Ziwi Peak pet foods. While the business claims it will remain business as usual, it is uncertain how this may impact the company and its products in the future.


To date, Ziwi Peak cat food has not been recalled. 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 at the time of publishing, Ziwi Peak is not a member of the Association. 

Product Line Commentary

Today, we are looking at the Ziwi Peak New Zealand Free Range Chicken recipe. Like all their wet food flavours, this is an all stages formula that can be fed to kittens, adults and senior cats. The main protein in the recipe is not surprisingly… chicken! As mentioned above, all of Ziwi Peak’s formulas have a focus on free range animals, and in this case, free range chicken.

The Original New Zealand Premium Cat Food

Ziwi Peak is the the OG of New Zealand premium pet food. Predating Feline Natural and all the new brands that have hit the market in recent years, Ziwi Peak led the way long before natural pet food was mainstream. Still manufactured in New Zealand, they continue to lead the way in the high end pet food space.

With a clear focus on high quality sustainable natural sources, all key ingredients in this recipe are clearly identified, which will set them apart from the majority of other cat food brands. We always love to see the inclusion of named proteins like chicken over generic lower quality sources such as chicken by-products or chicken meal. That being said, some protein sources often get a bad rap that isn’t entirely deserved (we’ll be doing an article in the future on this!).

As we go down the ingredient list, we’ll also see chicken liver, chicken heart and chicken bone. By including various parts of the chicken, Ziwi Peak achieves a more wholesome and nutritious profile for this cat food. Chicken bones, for example will be a good source of calcium, magnesium and other key minerals. Offal inclusions are always great to see as it mimics the raw diet and provides natural sources of essential vitamins and minerals.

No Gelling Agents Here!

Like Feline Natural, all of Ziwi Peak’s wet foods are unique in that they lack conventional gelling agents. That’s right! No guar gum or no 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. The other signature ingredient in their cat food is the inclusion of New Zealand Green Lipped Mussels. One of the first, if not the first to do it, this luxury ingredient is a great source of omega 3’s and can provide natural anti-inflammatory benefits.

Almost a Perfect Ingredient List?

As cats are obligate carnivores, it’s great that there are minimal vegetable sourced proteins in this recipe. Perhaps its only blemish is the addition of chickpeas, which increases the carbohydrate percentage to a much higher amount than expected for a wet food. Ziwi Peak mentions that they chose chickpeas for its natural binding properties (to create its preferred loaf like texture) and its health benefits. It’s also another source of protein for our felines.

The question that often gets asked is… which is better? Ziwi Peak or Feline Natural? You can see our review of one of Feline Natural’s formulas here. When it comes down to the head to head, they’re extremely close. While Feline Natural has a lower carbohydrate level, it has more water and is also lower in caloric density. This is probably where we give the nod to Ziwi Peak. Their food is very calorie dense for a wet cat food.

Ziwi Peak is also available in 185g variants, which is larger than the conventional large can size (typically 170g or twice the size of the smaller can). At 245kcal per 185g can, it has an above average caloric count compared to typical wet foods in this size range. The breakdown shows it would be considered a well balanced high protein, moderate fat and moderate carbohydrate cat food.

Guaranteed analysis

Crude Protein (min) – 9%

Crude Fat (min) – 5.5%

Crude Fibre (max) – 1%

Moisture (max) – 78%

Ash (max) – 4%

Dry Matter Basis

Essential Vitamins and Nutrients Percentages

If you are interested in a full nutrient profile including percentages of vitamins, minerals and amino acids – see this pdf.

Where to Buy and Cost

Most online pet stores carry Ziwi Peak wet cat food and this chicken formula is a common flavour. At the time of publishing, it can be found at leading retailers including: Petbarn, Pet Circle, Petpost, and Amazon.

As a pet owner, I am sure you have started to see inflation hit your pet food bill. Different brands are pushing prices up anywhere from 5-20% (maybe even higher) in the last few months. With the recent pricing changes, Ziwi Peak is now seen priced around $75/24 cans (85g) and $100/24 cans (185g). This comes it at an expensive price of $3.10/can (85g) and $4.17/can (185g). While I am giving average prices, I do find that Ziwi Peak has a very wide price spread across different stores and websites. Petpost is one of the cheapest and carries this recipe at a much lower price of $3.49/185g can.

Like other premium foods, we don’t feed this everyday but it is part of Indy’s regular rotation. We always give the analogy, I’m not eating a ribeye steak every day so the same applies for my cat! Indy eats this approximately once a week or so and a large can is easily split into two days worth of meals. This makes the food a lot more affordable when his wet food serving portion is essentially $1.75/day. The chicken recipe also tends to be among the cheapest wet food in Ziwi Peak’s product line.

Being able to have a premium food in their diet is one of the many benefits of building a rotation diet! You can still feel good about feeding premium food as part of their routine without constantly breaking the bank.

Ingredient List

Chicken, Water Sufficient for Processing, Chicken Liver, Chicken Heart, Chick Peas, New Zealand Green Mussel, Chicken Bone, DL-Methionine, Minerals (Dipotassium Phosphate, Magnesium Sulfate, Zinc Amino Acid Complex, Manganese Amino Acid Complex, Copper Amino Acid Complex), Dried Kelp, Vitamins (Choline Chloride, Vitamin E Supplement, Thiamine Mononitrate, Niacin, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Riboflavin, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Folic Acid), Salt, Taurine.

Nutritional Information

Chicken – source of meat protein

Water – hydration

Chicken Liver – source of meat protein and as an offal, it offers a natural form of essential vitamins/minerals

Chicken Heart – source of meat protein

Chick Peas – used as an alternative binder as opposed to gelling agents and also a source of vegetable protein

Green Lipped Mussels – source of omega 3’s, anti-inflammatory benefits

Chicken Bone – source of calcium, magnesium, potassium, and phosphorus

DL-Methionine – essential amino acid – relevant for skin and fur health as well as eyes, hearts and other vital organs

Dipotassium Phosphate – source of phosphorous

Magnesium Sulfate – source of magnesium

Zinc Amino Acid Complex – source of zinc

Manganese Amino Acid Complex – source of manganese

Copper Amino Acid Complex – source of copper

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

Choline Chloride – source of choline

Vitamin E Supplement – source of Vitamin E

Thiamine Mononitrate – source of thiamine

Niacin – source of Niacin (Vitamin B3)

Pyridoxine Hydrochloride – source of Pyridoxine (Vitamin B6)

Vitamin D3 Supplement – source of Vitamin D3

Riboflavin – source of Riboflavin (Vitamin B2)

Folic Acid – source of Folic acid (Vitamin B9)

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)

Taurine – essential amino acid 

Indy’s Review

So does Indy the cat like it? 

Yes, Indy enjoys Ziwi Peak Chicken flavour and had no issues adding it to his rotation diet. He wasn’t exposed to the food until he was an adult (just after turning 1 year old).

Chicken flavour wet cat food doesn’t tend to have the strong smells as some other cat foods, thus it’s not the flavour of food that is as likely to get your cat excited (Indy included). Cats tend to love strong odours, which is unfortunate for us human can openers.

As one of the highest quality cat foods on the Australian market, it’s an easy recommendation to add this one to your cat’s rotation!

The good

  • Excellent meat/protein sources with quality named ingredients
  • Species appropriate food with minimal vegetable source proteins
  • Grain free without similar substitutes 
  • No thickening agents
  • Quickly adopted by Indy in terms of palatability 
  • Very calorie dense for wet cat food
  • The weight of their large can size (185g) is above the industry average of 170g (better value!)

The bad

  • Very expensive
  • Chickpeas are used as a binding agent (not a huge strike, but one nonetheless. Note: Ziwi Peak does have other formulas that omit chickpeas but they are even more expensive)
  • Because of chickpeas, carbohydrate % is higher than we’d like to see in a cat food
  • Recently sold to foreign investors which could alter the future of Ziwi Peak (We will monitor closely for any possible changes…)


  • Species appropriate (weight 0.3) – 9 / 10
  • Ingredients (weight 0.3) – 10 / 10
  • Recall Track record (weight 0.2) – 10 / 10
  • Price (weight 0.2) – 7 / 10

Average Score – 9 / 10

Weighted Score – 9.1 / 10

The Bottom Line: An excellent premium wet cat food that does well in all categories. Indy the Cat approved!

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

2 thoughts on “Ziwi Peak Chicken – The Best Cat Food Reviews (2024)”

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