Purina Fancy Feast Broths: The Cat Food Taste Test

My awesome coworker Alicia recently sent me a link about Purina Fancy Feast on Eater. You can read the fun stuff here.

Apparently, Fancy Feast is Top Chef: All Stars Richard Blais’ favorite cat food, because he endorses it. Nothing screams Top Chef like cat food, which is food that (most) humans don’t even eat. And of course, I suddenly got struck by lightning, which is code for inspiration.

“Oh boy,” says one of you. “Here we go.”

Cricket and Ramps

Cricket vs. Ramp. Ramp won.

So, moving right along, this is my cat Cricket. She’s the best. Endlessly curious, hilarious, and ridiculous, Cricket has been my pal for over five years now. Whenever I eat something, she must always inspect it for me. Whether or not she approves of it is a different story.

Her favorite foods include: Bread, cake, donuts, jelly, refried beans, and yogurt. But her absolute favorite food in the world is candy corn. I’m not kidding. She goes apeshit over candy corn. Not even humans go apeshit over candy corn. People like candy corn, but they don’t go apeshit over it. She’s a very interesting creature.

Because Top Chef Richard Blais seems to like cat food, I thought I’d return the favor to Cricket — instead of her inspecting my nightly meals of Chex Mix, whiskey, and an endless tear buffet, why shouldn’t I inspect the new line of cat food that’s been marketed to her food-savvy owners, Fancy Feast® Broths?

So I went to the nearest pet store on my way home from work and bought all the Fancy Feast® Broths they had. Because I’m fucking disgusting.

Fancy Feast Broths Spread

There’s 12 of them in existence, according to their website. I could only find eight. So I bought eight. I spread them out like a hand of cards, like the biggest pimp in the world.

Fancy Feast Broths Cat Bowl

Only the proper serving bowl will do. This is her food bowl. She and I share all sorts of things. We sleep in the same bed, play with the same toys, and now share the same food. This evolution was only natural. Also, I’m 33 years old and I have Japanese cat bowls. For my cat. Jesus Christ.

This shit is getting weird real quick. I thought this blog was supposed to be about food.Fancy Feast Broths Creamy Mackerel

Creamy – With Mackerel and Vegetables in a Decadent Creamy Broth: In general, food that is described with the word “creamy” either intrigues or disgusts me. Adding the word “mackerel” to it actually ups the ante tenfold. However, I love the oily and fishy flavor of mackerel. I’m Korean. Can you blame me?

It smells like, well, canned fish. Canned stinky oily mackerel. The fish is overcooked to the point where it shreds rather than flakes. The liquid (I hesitate to call it broth) is thin and watery, but surprisingly palatable. It reminds me of fish chowder.

For every one of these taste tests, I offered some to Cricket.

Cricket: No.

Fancy Feast Broths Classic Mackerel

Classic – With Mackerel and Vegetables in a Decadent Silky Broth: If you’ve ever been to a cheap Chinese restaurant and had their soup, it often has a gloppy texture that’s almost like hot gelatin. That’s because they use a lot of cornstarch as a thickening agent to give their soup and starches some body. The “broth” in this case, has that texture.

Purina uses “modified tapioca starch” which you can find in lots of human food. It serves the same gloppening (yes, gloppening) purpose in the cat food. Again, this tastes strongly of mackerel.

My main handwritten note on this one says: The Cream version is better. Overall, I’d eat it.

Cricket: No.

Fancy Feast Broths Classic Salmon

Classic – With Wild Salmon and Vegetables in a Decadent Silky Broth: This one has a much more shredded texture to it. The salmon tastes like dry, shitty, canned salmon, which I’ve eaten a lot of, and continue to eat a lot of in my sad little existence.

It has a lot more vegetables (bits of tomato) that are easily visible, but they don’t add much flavor. The package has a slightly acrid aftertaste that stays well past its welcome…just like your mom. No, seriously, lady, get out of here. I’m eating cat food.

However, it’s still edible.

Cricket: No.

Fancy Feast Broths Creamy Salmon and Whitefish

Creamy – With Wild Salmon and Whitefish in a Decadent Creamy Broth: So this one has an interesting element to it. There are these very strange strips of an unnatural orange and white substance that I initially thought might be carrot.

However, my suspicions are that these strips might be fish cake. In fact, I’m fairly certain this is the whitefish. Because what I ate sure as hell wasn’t carrot. And trust me…this cat food eating connoisseur sure as fuck knows what carrots are. Well, at least…I think I know what carrots are. Don’t question me, people!

Also, this whole thing tastes like fish. Just like…like…your dad. Got you! I really meant your mom!

Cricket: Again, no.

Fancy Feast Broths Classic Tuna

Classic – With Tuna and Vegetables in a Decadent Silky Broth: This batch has a weird sour flavor from the fish. When you overcook tuna until you’ve destroyed every bit of its endangered dignity, it turns sour. At this point, I care less and less about eating this bullshit and more and more about how my life is a huge fucking mess and why did I drink that vodka on an empty stomach?

Cricket: Nope. She actually ran away from this one.Fancy Feast Broths Creamy Tuna

Creamy – With Tuna and Vegetables in a Decadent Creamy Broth: I’m getting sick of this shit. This is my actual dinner. I have real food in the refrigerator, it’s getting late, and I’m seriously mowing down on cat food like I’m homeless.

All my note says is, My mouth tastes like the bottom of my fishtank.

Cricket: No. Go away.
Fancy Feast Broths Tuna Anchovies and Whitefish

Classic – With Tuna, Anchovies, and Whitefish in a Decadent Silky Broth: Okay, first of all, knock it off with the silky part. It tastes like starch. Does anyone even eat silk? Why do we say food is silky? That’s fucked up. And what the hell is with this weird fish cake whitefish bullshit? But hey, at least there’s some old chewy anchovies in this one. Which I’m good with — Korean food has a lot of anchovies in it. My comparisons of cat food to Korean food probably aren’t that flattering to Korean food. I sully my own heritage by my bad eating decisions and horrendous cuisine comparisons.

Also, on the website, I noticed that customers are rating this cat food. And none of them have eaten it. How can you rate cat food you haven’t eaten? What is wrong with the world? This is all marketing!

Now I wonder, do they make the marketing department eat this stuff so they know what to say? Because they better.

Cricket: Nope. Seriously, leave me alone.

Fancy Feast Broths Classic Tuna Shrimp and Whitefish

Classic – With Tuna, Shrimp, and Whitefish in a Decadent Silky Broth: I’ve eaten a lot of really weird things in my life, as you can see, but the shrimp in this package is one of the strangest things I’ve ever eaten. I think it’s on the same level with the Jambalaya in my MRE and Bum Wine Pairing. Seriously. It had the texture of vacuum-sealed seafood, with a fishy flavor that wasn’t quite shrimp, or any other edible creature, for that matter. It was dry, packed in liquid, yet it dissolved on my tongue, with a flavor that wasn’t shellfish-like at all.

I am not entirely convinced it’s real shrimp, but it sure looked like it, plus, you Purina misers only gave me one. One lousy shrimp. This is horseshit. It’s all horseshit.

Cricket: She bit me this time.

Fancy Feast Broths Cricket Reaction

Even Cricket knows better than to eat food that was actually made for her and endorsed by Top Chef Richard Blais.

I’m sorry, Cricket. I’ll get you some candy corn now. Like, a lot of it.

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  14 comments for “Purina Fancy Feast Broths: The Cat Food Taste Test

  1. February 3, 2015 at 4:32 PM

    I’ll be honest, I was terrified to read this. But what I’ve come away with is this: your Japanese cat bowl is AMAZING, and your cat has good taste. You? You might not have good taste. But you do make me laugh.

    • Dennis Lee
      February 3, 2015 at 4:38 PM

      You might be even more amazed to find out I have TWO of those bowls. I know where to find more, too.

      I’m glad I could crack you up.

  2. T
    February 4, 2015 at 8:18 PM

    ….I think I love you.

    • Dennis Lee
      February 5, 2015 at 10:44 AM

      You’re not going to love me once you smell my disgusting cat food breath. Nobody will.

      …nobody.

      • T
        February 5, 2015 at 3:24 PM

        Probably true.

        But thank you for entertaining a large amount of slightly drunk idiots. We get together to drink and read your blog. It’s what we do now.

        • Dennis Lee
          February 6, 2015 at 11:05 AM

          I’m really flattered. Thank you.

  3. Rebecca
    February 25, 2015 at 10:32 AM

    I think the Cricket vote needs to be included in all future food misadventures.

    • Dennis Lee
      February 25, 2015 at 10:56 AM

      She won’t eat much stuff. Mostly sweets, plain bread, and a little dairy now and then. She’s so weird.

  4. Sarah Auzina
    February 25, 2015 at 12:54 PM

    Cricket is the cutest thing ever. I have a calico problem. My Oliver also likes refried beans!

    • Dennis Lee
      February 25, 2015 at 2:05 PM

      There’ll be more of Cricket, if I can get her to sit still enough for a photo. There are some good ones though. Thanks for saying hi!

  5. Emma
    February 26, 2015 at 5:24 PM

    All I could think while reading this was “would eating them hot make any difference?”

    • Dennis Lee
      February 26, 2015 at 10:14 PM

      You know, I wondered that too. It honestly might have helped. HOWEVER. You don’t heat cat food up for cats so I wanted to enjoy the full cat experience.

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