Top 10 Homemade Dog Treat Recipes


How To Make Healthy Homemade Dog Treats

Allow me to introduce the taste-testers. I tested every one of these 10 healthy dog treat recipes on them.

About the tester:

His real name is Oakley but my brother calls him “Oxy,” which is short for Oxymoron. At 4 years he’s 60 pounds of muscle covered by a thick coat of hair, yet shivers uncontrollably when the temperature drops to below 60. Instead of barking at strangers, he wags his tail and runs up to the mailman as if he’s expecting a delivery of bones. He even gets bullied by my 12 pound Pomeranian! He also thinks that he is the ultimate lap dog. No, believes he is a lap dog. Needless to say, Oakley does not live up to the image of a large, tough dog.

About the treats:

Well here’s another oxymoron for ya. Homemade dog treats are healthy and easy to make! Some people think healthy food is synonymous with tasteless food without texture or appeal. Well, Oakley is happy to tell you that he has given the full paws up for all ten of these homemade dog treats!

These 10 fabulous recipes offer a wide variety of flavors and ingredients to choose from, including treats for dogs with special diet restrictions.

Why Make Your Own Homemade Dog Treats?

I stopped giving my dog commercially-made treats from the store ever since the U.S. FDA scientists issued a warning to consumers that certain chicken jerky products were associated with kidney failure in dogs. Since then, there have been over 800 complaints by dog owners and veterinarians.

Making your own dog treats is a smart way to control the ingredients you feed your dog. It’s one of the only ways to make sure their food is safe while also controlling fat and calories and providing a wide range of nutrients.

My dog knows the difference between fresh, healthy homemade dog biscuits and preservative-filled commercially made “treats.” Most of the ingredients in my natural dog treat recipes are probably available in your pantry.

Homemade Bone-Shaped Dog Treats

Recipe #1: Kiss Me Cookies (Oakley’s favorite)

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1 tablespoon dried parsley flakes (or 2 tbs fresh chopped parsley)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup water (+2 more tablespoons if dough is too dry)
  • 1/2 cup non-fat dry milk
  • 1 cup peanut butter

Instructions:

  • Preheat oven to 300°.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together all the dry ingredients.
  • In a smaller bowl, beat the eggs lightly. Add water and peanut butter.
  • Gently combine the dry ingredients with the wet ingredients.
  • Knead with your hands until you have a smooth ball of dough. Sometimes I use my Kitchen Aid mixer for faster results.
  • Take a rolling pin and flatten out the dough. Use a cookie cutter to cut out fun shapes. If you’re feeling lazy, just leave the dough as is and bake it like one whole cookie. You can always break it up after it’s cooked.
  • Make sure you’re using a non-stick baking sheet or spray it with oil.
  • Bake for 30 minutes or until golden. If you want the dog treats to be softer, take them out 10 minutes earlier.

*Unless noted, use these instructions for all of the other recipes below.

*If you want a shinier look, you can brush on a thin coat of egg whites before baking.

 

Parsley makes dogs’ breath smell fresh!

Homemade dog treats with parsley will give your dog fresh breath while aiding in digestion. Parsley is also high in vitamins A and C. Your dog will not even notice that there are herbs in his treat! Instead, he will be giving you extra slobbered kisses of appreciation!

Recipe #2: Peanut Butter Dog Cookies

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1/3 cup peanut butter
  • 1 1/4 cups hot water

Instructions: same as for recipe #1, except bake at 350 degrees.

Adapted from Dog Treat Kitchen, with a few adjustments.

 

Recipe #3 Pink Delight Paw Print Cookies

Remember those thumbprint cookies you always loved? Dogs love them too!

Although I believe dogs are colorblind, I’m sure you dog’s nose will be sniffing rainbows when he sees this delightful treat. This recipe includes a sugar-free strawberry jam that adds a special flavor and smell. Make sure your jam does not contain xylitol, as it is a harmful artificial sweetener and, if you make your own jam at home and want to use it for this recipe, avoid using white grape juice as grapes are one of the of foods poisonous to dogs. Instead, substitute apple juice. You can also substitute water for the chicken both if your dog is on a low-sodium diet.

This recipe is a lot of fun for your kids to help out with since they can press their thumb into the cookie dough to create an imprint.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup low sodium chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup strawberry jam, sugar free

Instructions:

  • Whisk together the flour, oats, and cinnamon.
  • Place the chicken broth, peanut butter, and water in a bowl. Microwave for 15 seconds.
  • Stir the peanut butter in with the warm liquids until well mixed.
  • Pour the dry ingredients into the peanut butter mixture and stir with a fork until dough forms.
  • Lightly spray a baking sheet with non-stick cooking spray. Using a tablespoon, scoop out rounded balls onto the prepared baking sheet. Create an indentation to flatten each cookie.
  • Bake at 325 degrees. After 15 minutes, turn off the oven but leave the cookies inside to cool.
  • Once the dog treats are completely cooled, place the jam in a microwave safe container. Microwave for 10 seconds, then stir. You want a smooth liquid consistency. If needed, microwave for another 10 seconds and stir again.
  • Using a teaspoon, gently spoon the jam into each cookie’s indentation. Let the jam cool completely before moving the dog treats.

 

Pumpkin is healthy for dogs!

Soft Homemade Dog Treats for Senior Dogs

Recipe #4 Pumpkin Puurfection

Pumpkin is loaded with antioxidants and vitamins C and E which help to reduce cataracts and heart problems. The pumpkin is also great for weight loss, since pumpkin acts as a healthy filler.

Ingredients:

  • One 15 oz. can organic pumpkin puree (NOT the spiced pie filling)
  • 3/4 cup dry, uncooked cream of wheat (or rice cereal or rolled oats if your dog is wheat-sensitive)
  • 1/2 cup dry powdered milk

Instructions: see recipe #1. Bake at 300 degrees for 15-20 minutes.

Adapted from All Natural Dog Treat.

Homemade Dog Treat Recipe for Dogs with Arthritis

Recipe #5: Apple Cinnamon Dog Biscuits

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup natural applesauce (or chopped apple)
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon parsley
  • 1 cup cold water
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil (or olive oil)
  • 5 cup brown rice flour
  • 1/2 cup powdered milk (or dry, uncooked cream of wheat)
  • 2 large organic eggs

Instructions: See recipe #1. Refrigerate dough for 1.5 hours or overnight. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes.

Cinnamon is good for dogs with arthritis or diabetes!

Cinnamon is good for your dog’s heart since it improves circulation. It has anti-inflammatory properties which help relieve pain in your dog’s joints. My senior Pomeranian (15 years old) has arthritis and loves this particular treat. Cinnamon also helps regulate blood sugar and lower cholesterol levels. If your dog is diabetic, this is the perfect treat for him.

Vegetarian Dog Treats

Recipe #6 Vegetarian Muffins

Ingredients:

  • 1 apple, shredded of finely chopped
  • 2 cups carrots, shredded
  • ¼ cup plus 2 tbs molasses
  • ¼ cup water
  • 1 cup flax seeds
  • ¼ cup dry oats
  • ¾ cup whole wheat flour

Instructions: See recipe #1. Bake for 15 minutes at 400 degrees or until browned.

Adapted from Dog Paw Print.

Recipe #7 Beef Jerky Dog Treat

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb of ground beef (preferably grass-fed), turkey, chicken, or lamb
  • 1 cup of beef liver (or chicken liver)

Instructions:

  • Chop the liver into pieces and mix it in with the ground meat.
  • Scoop the meat into a jerky gun and squeeze the meat mixture on the sheets of your dehydrator.
  • Set the dehydrator at 165 degrees for about 3-4 hours, or until the meat is dry and crunchy.

If you don’t have a dehydrator, spread the mixture on a greased baking sheet and bake at 250 degrees for 4-6 hours. If you don’t have a jerky gun, consider using strips of meat rather than ground to maintain a jerky-like texture. Do not marinate the meat with any sauce such as soy sauce because dogs don’t need to eat excess salt and trust me, they will love these treats just the way they are!

Recipe # 8: Chicken Dog Biscuits

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb chicken giblets
  • ½ cup of the broth reserved from boiling the chicken giblets
  • 3 tbs coconut oil
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup cornmeal

Instructions:

  • In a large saucepan, bring 1 quart of water to a boil and cook the chicken giblets.
  • In a blender, combine the cooked giblets, ¼ cup of giblet broth, olive oil, and eggs. Blend until the ingredients are mixed but still a little chunky.
  • Pour mixture into a large mixing bowl, add the flour and cornmeal, and mix thoroughly.
  • Drop spoonfuls of the mixture onto greased cookie sheets and bake at 450 degrees for 20 minutes.

Store the biscuits in the freezer and take out as needed. They can be stored for up to three days in the refrigerator.

Recipe adapted from Pennies on a Platter.

Low Fat and Low Phosphorus Dog Biscuits

Recipe #9: Veggie Treats

Ingredients:

  • 2 1/2 cups rice flour or brown rice flour
  • 1 cup cooked vegetables (winter squashes, zucchini, or sweet potatoes)
  • 1 tsp dried parsley
  • 6 tbsp low sodium, low fat vegetable broth
  • 1/2 cups cold water

Instructions: See recipe #1. Bake in preheated oven at 350 for 25 minutes. Feed to your dog up to a week and freeze leftovers.

Kidney and Liver Disease Diet Restrictions for Dogs

If your dog has kidney disease, it should be fed a low phosphorus diet. Vegetables that are low in phosphorus include squashes, zucchini, and sweet potatoes.

Dogs with liver or chronic pancreatic disease are not restricted to flour or phosphorus. However, it’s important to limit fat intake. These Veggie Treats are perfect for them since they don’t contain fat or animal protein.

Vegan Dog Diets

Recipe #10 Peanut Butter and Banana Dog Biscuits

Ingredients:

  • 1 banana (mashed)
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1 cup oats
  • 1/2 cup apple sauce
  • 1 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Instructions: See recipe #1. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes, until edges browned. Cool and refrigerate.

Adapted from Doggy Dessert Chef.

What if my dog is gluten-intolerant?

If your dog is allergic to wheat, try substituting amaranth flour, rice flour, millet flour, quinoa flour, almond flour, corn flour/starch/meal, oat flour, or potato starch/flour.

How to Store Dog Treats!

In general you should store dog treats the same way you would homemade cookies for people. Your treats may mold or spoil much faster in humid or very hot climates.

Since the dog treats have no preservatives, it is important to make sure they are crisp and dry. Softer cookies will not last as long. Store your homemade dog biscuits in a tight canister or tight zip lock bag.

  • If left outside in a cool environment, hard cookies can last up to 2 weeks.
  • If left in the refrigerator, they will last up to 2 months.
  • If it will take some time for your dog(s) to eat all these up, it is a good idea to freeze any that will not be eaten within a reasonably short time.

 

More Recipes for Your Beloved Dog!

Why not treat your dog to healthy, safe food all the time and learn How To Make Homemade Dog Food?

Since many beloved dog owners emailed me and mentioned that their dogs have an allergy to wheat, I compiled 10 Wheat-Free Dog Treat Recipes for you.

 

About Turtlewomen : Author of this Article

I’m on a mission to spread the message that true health and vibrancy starts with food, not medicine. Hippocrates said it best, “All disease starts in the gut.”

As a board certified Holistic Health Coach, I help my clients become their healthiest self by reducing inflammation and allergens that can cause weight gain, bloat, gas, skin issues, digestive problems, sugar addiciton, and lack of energy.

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