Today I’m going to share with you my signature homemade dog biscuit and treat recipe. These biscuits are absolutely loaded with vitamins, minerals, protein and other nutritious goodies aimed to help your dog stay healthy and tail waggingly happy.
A lot of people ask me how I keep my dog, George’s coat so shiny and thick. Undoubtedly his rock solid mystery mutt pound puppy pedigree has a lot to do with it, but I think his diet also helps. I’m a strong believer in treatment through nutrition, the crazy idea that your dog can avoid a lot of health issues simply by eating the right diet. Now I’m no veterinarian, so obviously take anything I say with a grain of salt. But I think a lot of this is simple common sense. Can you even imagine what your health would be like if you ate nothing but the same processed meal every day? For most dogs, that is their life. And I think most dog owners would agree their pet’s deserve better.
And, that’s a big part of why I developed this recipe. It’s not the simplest dog biscuit recipe. But by introducing just a few additional easy-to-find, ingredients, we’re able to provide a little extra nutrition and diet diversity to our dogs.
You’ll notice in the recipe that it does not call for grinding up vitamins or adding concentrated supplements. You’ll notice in the recipe that it does not call for grinding up vitamins or adding concentrated supplements. And while you probably wouldn’t want to eat these as the flavor is specifically tailored to the refined palate of a dog, these dog treats are safe for human consumption as they are basically just really crunchy, very smelly granola bars.
For those ingredients that can be a little trickier to find, I’ve included alternatives that you can substitute for, and for your convenience, I’ve included links to where you can find each ingredient on Amazon.
2 Cups – PB2 Powdered Peanut Butter – Powdered peanut butter is lower in fat and has less calories than normal peanut butter. It blends easily into flour, making mixing a breeze. But you can substitute equal amounts of regular peanut butter in a pinch.
2 Cups – Whole Wheat Flour – Do not use baking flour or include any form of baking powder or yeast. Rising doughs may be linked to bloat in dogs, a serious disease that can be deadly if not treated quickly. Bleached and multi purpose flour will also work in a pinch.
2 Cups – Rolled Oats – Oats are whole grain and provide a fantastic base. We will also be using the oats to make our work space less sticky when rolling.
1 TBSP – Sunflower Oil – Sunflower Oil is my go to when cooking in the kitchen. It has an exceptionally high smoke point, which makes it great for frying or grilling. It is trans fat free and loaded with linoleic acid and Vitamin E. Coconut Oil is another great option with similarly fantastic health benefits. But lard or vegetable oil could be substituted in a pinch.
4.375 Oz- Whole Sardines in Water, no salt added, drained – Both the skin and bones are edible, and supply a wealth of vitamins, as well as protein and calcium.
1 x Packet – Knox Unflavored Gelatin – Our primary bonding and hardening agent in the recipe. Gelatin provides a number of great benefits and is great for joints, hair and nails. You can substitute for 1 egg in a pinch.
3 TBSP Tiparos Fish Sauce – Supplies both vitamins and aroma. My personal go to brand is Tiparos. But there a number of other great brands out there and whatever you have on hand it likely fine. It lacks the nutritional benefit, but you can substitute for Beef Bouillon in a pinch or if you finds the odor offensive.
2 TBSP Pure Maple Syrup, Grade B – I know what you’re thinking, don’t you mean Grade A? But Grade B is better to cook with, as it is one of the darker and sweeter varieties of maple syrup. It provides a healthy dose of sweetness, as well as zinc and manganese.
- Heat oven to 350 F
- Grind oats in food processor for 2 minutes. Put a pinch or two of the ground oats aside.
- Stir in 4 TBSP of water into 1 x Packet of Gelatin. Use a small glass. Put aside.
- Add Peanut Butter, Gelatin mixture, Oil, Fish Sauce, Sardines and Maple Syrup to Ground Oats in food processor. Pulse a dozen times.
- Add Flour to food processor. Pulse a dozen times.
- Add 1 Cup of Water to food processor. Pulse a dozen times.
- Sprinkle work surface with ground oats and let dough rest for 5 minutes. Taking just a few moments will help with the stickiness and make your dough much easier to work with.
- Roll dough by hand into 1/4” balls.
- I recommend experimenting with different shapes and sizes
- Roll out a ½ sheet and use cookie cutters to make fun shapes.
- For dogs who are active chewers try rolling long, thin, snake like strips (my dogs absolutely love these little puppy taquitos).
- I recommend experimenting with different shapes and sizes
- Bake for 25 minutes on parchment-paper lined pan, until lightly brown.
- Leave in oven overnight to harden.
These homemade dog biscuits can be safely stored in an airtight container for 2 weeks or frozen for up to 3 months.
I picked up this trick from the brilliant Alton Brown, who you might be pleasantly surprised to learn, also happens to be a dog lover. He set out to develop a recipe for his own terribly terrific dog biscuits to really make them attractive to his own dog (read – extra stinky). WARNING: the technique works as advertised and my dogs absolutely loved this extra touch, but it made my house smell like a fish market for a few days.
The idea is simple.
Take some fish sauce and brush it on the biscuits while they are still warm.
I found that combining trays and stacking all the biscuits in a haphazard pile made basting much easier. Once properly stankified, insert the biscuits back into the oven to cool. Leave them in overnight to let them harden further.
Well – that’s it for the recipe. If you enjoyed this, please give our Facebook and Instagram feeds a follow, as I’m sure we’ll be posting more content soon. If you live in the Baltimore, Maryland area and you are a dog owner – give us a shout! We would love to treat your dog to a free Puptrait photo session. Remember, at the Puptrait Studio we only charge local clients for prints. Just click the photo above to schedule an appointment for a one-on-one dog portrait session.