According to the American Kennel Club, most peanut butter is safe for dogs to consume, and if given right, it can be a good source of vitamins, protein, and healthy fats. Moreover, dogs seem very fond of peanut butter because of its sweet smell and taste.
Now, are you interested in giving homemade peanut butter dog treats but don’t know where to start? Worry less because this article will teach you how to make the easiest and tastiest peanut butter recipe for dogs!
How to Make Peanut Butter Dog Treats
As previously mentioned, we will guide you in making the most delicious peanut butter treats for dogs! With that, we prepared the list of ingredients and materials you will need in the process, along with the step-by-step baking procedures.
What You Need
To start our homemade peanut butter dog treats process, prepare the following materials and ingredients.
- Cookie cutter: This will help you shape your dog’s treat based on their preference or the celebration. You can get cookie cutters in the shape of a bone, heart, star, circle, flower, and more. Furthermore, some shops even offer a customized cookie cutter. From that, you can also have a cutter in the shape of your dog or their name!
- Clean bowl: You will need a clean bowl to mix your ingredients. The bowl size will depend on the number of treats you want to make.
- Measuring cup: This one is not required, but if you like your measurements to be 100% accurate, using a measuring cup may come in handy.
- You will need a rolling pin to prepare the dough before cutting. However, you can use your hand or a bottle if a rolling pin is unavailable. Just ensure that both are clean to avoid bacterial problems.
- ½ cup of natural peanut butter: Our main ingredient! Ensure to read the ingredient label if it has xylitol. Xylitol is a kind of artificial sweetener that is toxic for dogs.
- 2 cups of whole wheat or all-purpose flour: Using whole wheat flour is recommended in making dog treats. But, if it’s unavailable, you can use all-purpose flour instead.
- 1 or 2 eggs: The number of eggs varies depending on your preferences. Additionally, if your dog is sensitive to eggs, you can use applesauce or mashed bananas as an alternative.
- ¼ cup of water: You can use different types of water such as tap, distilled, and mineral.
After preparing the needed materials and ingredients, let’s proceed with baking!
Step 1: Preheat The Oven to 350°F
First, preheat the oven to 350°F. Preheating is crucial, especially for baking pastries like cookies and biscuits. If you put a biscuit or cookie dough in a non-preheat oven, the bottom part will get burned before the upper part is cooked since the heat didn’t hit them evenly. Cookies can also look flat and dry.
Step 2: Mix the Ingredients
Combine the flour, peanut butter, and eggs in the large bowl. Make sure to mix the ingredients properly to maximize their flavors. The dough should appear thick.
Step 3: Add a Little Water
Adding a little water will help moisten and soften the dough and make the step easier. Moreover, you can add a twist here and use chicken, beef, or vegetable stock – this helps in adding more savory flavors. Don’t add too much water or stock because we don’t want our dough to be soggy!
Step 4: Roll Out The Dough
Once you mix the ingredients, start rolling the dough on a lightly floured surface. You can do this on a pantry board or a clean surface. Make the dough ½ to ¼ inch thick. That length is already enough for baking and cutting them into shapes.
Step 5: Cut Into Shapes
This step is our favorite part! After rolling out the dough, it is time to cut them into any shape you want. You can cut them into flowers, hearts, bones, and more. Plus, if you have no available cookie cutter, you can also use a knife as an alternative. Just be extra careful in using them.
Step 6: Bake The Treats
After cutting them into shapes, place them on your baking tray, then bake for 15 to 20 minutes until the cookies look golden. However, note that baking time might vary depending on the size of your cookies. For example, larger cookies will need more time to be baked completely. Furthermore, don’t forget to leave a space, so they don’t stick with each other.
Step 7: Freeze or Store At Room Temperature
Once baked, let it sit and cool for a while. You can also put it in the freezer because some dogs love frozen treats more!
Step 8: Taste Test
And lastly, the most important part is taste testing! We recommend giving your dog small treats first to know whether they like them or not. This method will help you avoid wasting treats. Plus, you should also test whether the cookies are at the right temperature for your dog to eat.
Why Make Homemade Peanut Butter Dog Treats
You may think, “Why do I need to bake it myself when I can just buy them online?” Well, it’s because making homemade peanut butter treats has more benefits than buying them at the market! Here are some of them:
- Affordable: If you are on a tight budget but want to do something new for your dog, baking treats on your own is a top recommendation! Homemade peanut butter dog treats are cheaper than the ones sold in the market.
- Easy and convenient: As observed in the ingredients, materials, and steps we mentioned, it is evident that making your own peanut butter dog treats is easy and convenient. You can make it anytime you like! Moreover, you can also give it as a gift to your fellow pet owners!
- Safer: Since you know all ingredients used, you can guarantee that it will not contain anything that might cause a food reaction or allergy from your dog.
- Fun and relaxing: If you’re fond of baking, this activity is like hitting two birds with one stone. You get to enjoy your hobby and make something for your dog simultaneously. This activity can also serve as an additional family bonding.
- Your dog loves it: And last but not the least, your dog will surely enjoy these homemade treats! It is proven that dogs seem to be attracted to peanut butter‘s sweet flavor and smell.
Are you now convinced to make your own peanut butter dog treats? But before you begin, let’s go through first to the following safety tips you need to know.
Peanut Butter Dog Treat Recipe Safety Tips
To avoid any unwanted accidents and health issues from happening, we prepared some safety tips for you:
- Before giving your dog a peanut butter treat, verify if they are not allergic to it. Even though peanut butter is safe for dogs, some dogs react badly to peanut butter.
- Most peanut butter does not contain xylitol. However, since some brands still have them, better read the ingredient list carefully. Reading the label can also help you know whether it contains other bad ingredients for your dog.
- Keep your dogs away from the oven, stove, or kitchen. Dogs don’t understand the danger brought by hot stoves. Thus, you must keep them safe and away from it. You can do this by placing a dog gate or barrier on the kitchen entrance or giving them toys to divert their attention while you’re baking.
- Don’t use baking containers that have BPA. According to the studies conducted by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, BPA is safe if low-dose exposures; however, it can cause health issues if exposed in the long run.
- Be aware of other harmful ingredients. Xylitol is not the only thing that is toxic for your dog. For example, chocolates, raisins, and grapes are also bad.
- Don’t give them too many peanut butter treats. Peanut butter contains healthy fats and vitamins, but too much consumption can lead to obesity and pancreatitis.
Peanut Butter Dog Treat Recipe: FAQs
Do you still have questions? Here are the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about peanut butter dog treats:
As previously mentioned, yes, peanut butter is safe for dogs! Just don’t forget to give it in moderation, and make sure to use peanut butter brands that don’t contain xylitol. According to an article by Preventive Vet, here are some of the brands that have xylitol:
– Krush Nutrition (appears to be discontinued)
– Go Nuts, Co.
– Nuts ‘N More
Storing peanut butter treats in airtight storage and then placing them inside the fridge can make them last for up to 2 months. You can also freeze the treats for up to 8 months.
Since too much peanut butter consumption is bad for your dog, the rule of thumb is no more than 10% of your dog’s calories should come from their treats. Moreover, small dogs should not eat more than 1/2 tablespoons of peanut butter daily, and larger or older dogs should not eat more than 1 tablespoon daily.
Yes, you can use all-purpose flour as an alternative to whole-wheat flour. However, whole-wheat flour is still recommended since it has more nutrient content. In addition, if your dog is allergic to wheat or flour, you can also use rice flour or coconut flour instead. Aside from the slight consistency changes, the rest would be the same.
Peanut butter can serve as an occasional treat and not an everyday treat. Even though you follow the minimum amount of peanut butter treats a day, feeding it to your dog daily might not be your best choice because of its high-fat content.
After learning how to make peanut butter dog treats, it’s clear to see how easy and convenient it is! Before you go to your kitchen, don’t forget about the safety tips we shared, and remember to give your dog peanut butter treats in moderation.