Making easy homemade dog treats this holiday season is a great way to get the whole family involved in holiday baking.
Plus, it’s a lovely homemade holiday gift for anyone you know who has a dog – teachers, coworkers, relatives, and friends. And of course, your dog will thank you!
What I especially love about this homemade dog treats recipe is that you can work around any food allergies your dog or kids may have. That’s why I made this easy homemade dog treat recipe with sunflower butter instead of peanut butter.
My daughter, Lucie, has a peanut allergy, so we don’t let our dog have any treats made with peanut butter. That’s because my daughter shouldn’t touch anything made with peanuts.
You see, our dog, Nellie, loves licking people. So if she licked Lucie after snacking on a treat made with peanut butter, Lucie would probably break out in hives. Not something I want to happen during the busy holiday season!
However, if there aren’t any peanut allergies in your family, go ahead and make this with your favorite natural peanut butter brand.
Making easy homemade dog treats
Before making this homemade dog treats recipe, I did check to make sure that all the ingredients are OK for most dogs to have. However, make sure you check the ingredients list to make sure your four-legged friend isn’t allergic to a specific ingredient.
Sunflower butter is OK for dogs to have – and my dog Nellie is CRAZY about it. (The only nut butter dogs should stay away from is any with macadamia nuts.) However, check the label of the sunflower butter brand you buy to make sure everything else in it is OK for your dog.
I also wanted to keep this healthy homemade dog treat recipe dairy free, so I used coconut milk instead of cow’s milk. Use full fat (not lite) if you’re using canned coconut milk. Make sure the coconut milk is unsweetened, if you buy it by the carton.
To cut the treats, I used a dog bone shaped cookie cutter from the Wilton Dog, Bone and Paw Print Cookie Cutter Set. Wilton also has a dog-shaped and a paw-shaped cookie cutter if you regularly make healthy homemade dog treats. You can use them for people cookies, too!
Gift wrapping ideas for your easy homemade dog treats
I packaged my easy homemade dog treat recipe several ways. I put some in a Santa mug, so while doggie is having her treat, mom or dad can have a nice cup of tea. I also put some healthy homemade dog treats in a cute holiday cellophane bag with a holiday gift tag – all store bought.
Packaging and decorating the easy homemade dog treats gifts is another activity you can get the kids involved in without spending too much money. For example, if you have a supply of large canning jars, have the kids carefully place a handful or two of these homemade dog treats in a jar.
Or you can use plastic cold cut tubs or just a plain ziplock bag. Decorate the homemade doggie gift package with a bow, holiday stickers, or ribbon, and a homemade gift tag. (Pinterest has links to all sorts of printable gift tags.)
Don't forget to include ingredient info on the tag so everyone knows this homemade dog treats recipe is dog and allergy friendly.
Easy Homemade Dog Treats
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Line cookie sheets with a silicon mat or parchment paper.
- In a medium bowl, stir together whole wheat flour and baking soda until thoroughly combined. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, mix together sunflower butter, coconut milk and molasses. Add the flour mixture and stir until thoroughly combined into a dough.
- Turn out dog treat dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth.
- Coat your rolling pin with whole wheat flour and roll out to 1/4 inch thickness.
- Cut rolled dough with dog boned shaped cookie cutters. Place 2 inches apart onto the prepared cookie sheets.
- Bake in preheated oven for 10-20 minutes until lightly brown. (Check treats after 10 minutes and 15 minutes to make sure they don’t get over cooked. Cooking time will depend on size and thickness of your dog treat.)
- Remove cookie sheets from oven and let cool for 5 minutes. Then place dog treats to cool on wire racks.
- Store your homemade dog treats in an airtight container and place them in the refrigerator or freezer. If frozen, allow the treat to thaw for 10 – 20 minutes prior to serving to your dog. Treats can last for up to 2 months in the refrigerator and 6 months in the freezer.
- Serving size: 1 dog treat
Originally published on November 14, 2016. Updated with new pictures and information.