Do you want to make your own cat food? This is the homemade raw cat food recipe that we use and recommend. It also includes instructions on mixing your own raw cat food supplements and where to buy the supplements you need to get started.
When we started our journey into raw feeding, we really didn’t know where to start, perhaps you’re feeling the same way right now?
This is the homemade raw cat food recipe we made when we first transitioned our cats from commercial raw food. It uses ground meats and is similar in texture to many commercial raw cat foods. This helps ease the transition from a commercial raw diet to homemade raw cat food. One of the benefits of this raw recipe it that it’s easier to include the organ meat in the cat’s meals when it’s mixed together. We continue to use this raw cat food recipe as part of our rotation of meals, we also feed chunks of meat which give cat’s teeth and jaws a better workout.
There are many different homemade raw cat food recipes available on the internet, but we follow one that was developed by Laurie Goldstein and Carolina Lima, co-owners of the Raw Feeding for IBD Cats Facebook group. You can find the original recipe ‘Balanced Raw Recipe with Nutritional Analysis’ on their website.
Please note: Using eggshell as a bone substitute, this raw cat food recipe is balanced and complete for adult cats only. Growing kittens need additional calcium and phosphorus. For kittens, you must replace the eggshell with calcium hydroxyapatite (freeze dried bone).
Homemade Raw Cat Food Recipe
We purchased a basic mincer (meat grinder) to mince the protein and muscle/organ meat. You could also use a food processor to turn the boneless meat into mince. This recipe does not use whole bone for the calcium source so a powerful (and expensive) meat grinder is not required.
We advise against purchasing pre-ground mince from your butcher or supermarket. There is a higher risk of bacteria in pre-packaged mince.
737g (1 pound, 10 oz) boneless protein e.g. chicken, turkey, kangaroo, beef etc.
85g (3 oz) heart
45g (1.6 oz) liver
45g (1.6 oz) kidney
1 tsp (6.1g) finely ground eggshell powder OR 26 capsules of Calcium Hydroxyapatite (freeze-dried bone)
7 capsules of 500mg salmon oil
1/2 tsp vitamin supplement
1 large egg yolk
Note: for kittens you MUST use Calcium Hydroxyapatite instead of eggshell.
How to Make Your Own Cat Food
Based on a 55g (2 oz) portion size, this recipe makes 18 individual meals. This provides an adult cat with enough raw cat food for nine days based on feeding two meals per day.
This is the process we follow when making the raw recipe.
SET UP: raw cat food recipe preparation
It is easier to get everything ready and have what you need within arms reach before you start. We use a plastic chopping board with an absorbent kitchen cloth underneath which soaks up any meat and organ juices and minimises mess.
TIP: A red coloured chopping board is better than a white one if you’re a little squeamish.
STEP 1: cutting raw meat and organs
Cut the raw boneless meat and organs (heart, liver and kidney) into pieces that will fit through the feeder on the meat grinder. Mince everything and place in a large stainless steel mixing bowl.
TIP: Slicing organs is our least favourite part of the process, it’s also the messiest – so we deal with them first. We also use a carving fork and tongs to minimise the ‘icky’ factor of handling raw meat and organs.
STEP 2: add salmon oil and egg yolk
Using a push-pin, pierce the salmon capsules and squeeze the oil onto the raw meat and organs, and add the egg yolk.
TIP: Alternatively you can melt the salmon oil capsules in hot (not boiling) water and the water/melted salmon oil can be added to the food.
STEP 3: add eggshell and vitamin powders
Place the powders (ground eggshell OR freeze dried bone, and vitamin supplement) together in a glass jar and shake to combine, then add to the raw meat and organs. If required, add a small amount of water to ensure the supplements are mixed evenly throughout the raw food.
This homemade raw cat food recipe includes ground eggshell powder and a vitamin supplement mix. This ensures the recipe is nutritionally balanced.
**If you have pre-prepared your ground eggshell powder (or are using freeze dried bone) and your vitamin supplement mix, go straight to Step 4.
STEP 3A: make ground eggshell powder (adult cats only)
Finely ground eggshell powder works well as a calcium substitute, and is easy to prepare. Save your eggshells, wash them throughly to remove the egg residue and leave them to dry.
Once dry, place on a baking tray and bake them in the oven (150 C / 300 F for 10-15 minutes) until they are brittle.
We buy organic eggs (which are date stamped) from the supermarket. To be on the safe side, we break off the bits of eggshell that have ink on them.
Next, place the eggshells in a clean coffee grinder (we used a Nutri Bullet which worked well too), and pulse until they resemble a finely ground powder. Wait 10 minutes for the dust to settle before opening the grinder, then transfer the eggshell powder to a glass jar and store in the pantry.
REMEMBER: If you are making this raw cat food recipe for growing kittens, you must use freeze dried bone. Substitute 26 capsules of Calcium Hydroxyapatite (freeze-dried bone) instead of the eggshell powder.
STEP 3B: vitamins for raw cat food recipe
To ensure this recipe is nutritionally complete, you must add 1/2 a teaspoon of the vitamin supplement mix to every batch of homemade raw cat food.
The vitamin supplement mix includes:
- 1,000mg Taurine – 50 capsules
- 150mcg Standardised Kelp – 20 tablets
- 10mg Chelated Manganese – 10 capsules
- 400iu Dry Vitamin E – 5 capsules
- 50mg B Complex – 2 capsules
To combine, add all supplements (including gel caps) to a clean coffee grinder (or NutriBullet) and pulse until finely ground. Again, wait for the dust to settle before opening the grinder, then transfer to an airtight glass jar.
–> Scroll down, to read where to buy supplements for this homemade raw cat food recipe.
STEP 4: recipe mixing and packaging
Mix everything together thoroughly using a fork or spatula. Once the raw cat food recipe is well combined, spoon meal-sized portions into zip-lock freezer bags (expel as much air as possible when sealing) and freeze until required.
TIP: We use a permanent marker to label all the zip-lock bags so we can easily identify the raw protein source in the freezer e.g. a capital K on the outside of the zip lock bag = Kangaroo, T = Turkey, B = Beef etc.
If you are feeding multiple cats or preparing raw food in bulk you may prefer to use plastic freezer food containers or Ball Mason freezer glass jars instead of zip-lock bags.
STEP 5: defrosting raw cat food – ready to eat
Place a meal sized portion in the fridge for 12 hours to defrost. We usually get the morning portions out the freezer the evening before and defrost overnight. We get the evening portions out the freezer that morning to defrost during the day.
If you forget to take the raw cat food out the freezer, you can defrost quickly in warm water. Simply submerge the zip-lock bag in warm (not hot) water for 10-15 minutes to bring it to ‘mouse body’ temperature.
NEVER use the microwave to defrost raw food as it can destroy essential nutrients.
Where to Buy Supplements
Australian law doesn’t require full disclosure of ingredients in nutritional supplements, which makes us cautious particularly with Charlie, who has Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) and food sensitivities.
We purchase our raw cat food supplements directly from iHerb in the United States who offer fast and direct shipping to Australia and elsewhere in the world. We personally recommend their products and service.
Click here to view the supplements and products we use in the homemade cat food recipe and save 5% on your order. Use code “GSP403” at checkout.
Note: One capsule of the Natural Factors Wild Alaskan Salmon Oil is 1000mg.