If there is one thing my dogs absolutely love, it is homemade treats. And, if it’s pumpkin peanut butter dog treats…even better. It always gives me piece of mind knowing I use wholesome ingredients instead of the who-knows-what that are in some of the dog treats I see at the pet store.
If you are looking for a fun dog treat to try this fall (anytime honestly) you should give these pumpkin peanut butter dog treats a try. These are always a huge hit in my household and it’s such a simple recipe to follow or modify to your preferences. Plus, making your own dog treats and trying new recipes can be a lot of fun even if you don’t consider yourself a baker.
Why Pumpkin? What are the Benefits of Pumpkin for Dogs?
- Digestive Health: Pumpkin is a good source of dietary fiber, which can help regulate digestion in dogs.
- Weight Management: The fiber content in pumpkin can also help dogs feel fuller for longer periods, which can aid in weight management by reducing the likelihood of overeating.
- Hydration: Pumpkin has a high water content, which can contribute to your dog’s overall hydration, especially in treats like frozen pumpkin cubes.
- Nutritional Content: Pumpkin is rich in vitamins and minerals, such as vitamin A, vitamin C, potassium, and a good source of fiber. These nutrients can contribute to your dog’s overall health, including their immune system, skin, and coat.
- Low in Calories: Pumpkin is relatively low in calories, making it a great ingredient for adding volume and texture to meals and treats without significantly increasing calorie intake.
Health Note: When incorporating pumpkin into your dog’s diet, it’s important to do so in moderation and to choose plain, canned pumpkin puree without added spices or sugars.
Also, make sure to check the peanut butter you are planning to use. Some peanut butter brands include xylitol which is highly toxic to dogs. Plus, peanut butter can have added sugar so make sure it is a natural peanut butter that is low in ingredients.
Pumpkin Peanut Butter Dog Treats
To make these homemade peanut butter pumpkin dog treats, you’ll need a few simple ingredients that are safe for dogs to consume. Like I stated before, pumpkin is a great choice because it’s not only tasty for dogs but also provides some nutritional benefits. Here’s an easy recipe and the ingredients you’ll need:
- Silicone molds (this is not absolutely necessary but will make your treats 10x cuter)
- Large Mixing Bowl
- Measuring Spoon (tbsp)
- Spatula for mixing
- Food Processor (if you choose to blend the oats into a fine powder)
- Baking Sheet
- 1 cup of Canned Pumpkin Puree (make sure it’s pure pureed pumpkin, not pumpkin pie filling)
- 2 cups of Rolled Old-Fashioned Oats or Oat Flour (I used Oat Flour)
- 2-3 tablespoons of Natural Peanut Butter (make sure it’s xylitol-free, as xylitol is toxic to dogs)
- 1 cup of Plain Greek Yogurt
- Optional: Honey (in tiny amounts, as excessive sugar can be harmful to dogs)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
- In a large bowl, combine 1 cup of canned pumpkin puree, 2 cups of rolled oats (or oat flour instead of whole wheat flour), and 2-3 tablespoons of peanut butter. You can adjust the quantities depending on how many treats you want to make. If you want to ground up your oats, use a food processor to avoid dog digestive issues.
- If you’re adding honey, you can include a teaspoon of honey for flavor. Remember, this is optional and should be used in moderation.
- Mix the ingredients thoroughly until you have a dough-like consistency. If the mixture is too wet, you can add a bit more oat flour to achieve the right texture. I also had a lightly floured surface because my mixture was a bit wet and sticky.
- Once the dough is mixed well, you can start shaping the treats. If you have silicone molds, fill up the mold with the mixture. If you do not you can roll the dough into small balls or dog biscuits. You could also use a rolling pin and your favorite cookie cutters to create different shapes.
- Place the treats on parchment paper on a baking sheet or tray. If you are using molds, place the mold on top of the baking sheet.
- Put in the oven for approximately 20 minutes. NOTE: baking time will vary on the thickness and shape of your treats. The thicker the treat, the longer it will need. Keep an eye on the treats and determine if they need a shorter/longer amount of time.
- Let the treats cool off after taking them out of the oven. The treats will have a sponge-like consistency.
- If you want to get fancy (similar to the ones in the picture) dip half the treats into plain Greek yogurt.
- Place in the freezer for an hour.
- Now, your dog is ready for these delicious treats. See, easy peasy.
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If you are looking for more easy recipes for homemade dog treats check out our popular dog-friendly carrot cake recipe.
How Long Will Pumpkin Peanut Butter Dog Treats Last?
This will vary. Treats kept in the freezer will last longer than treats kept at room temperature. I would generally say these are safe to keep up to a week.
How to Store the Pumpkin Peanut Butter Dog Treats
There are several ways you can store your pumpkin peanut butter dog treats.
- If you dipped your treats in yogurt: Store in an airtight container and keep the treats in the freezer. The freezer will keep the yogurt solid.
- If you kept your treats plain: Store in an airtight container or ziplock bag and keep them at room temperature.
How Can I Modify this Recipe?
- Fruit and Vegetable Additions: Incorporate dog-friendly fruits and vegetables like finely grated carrots, apples, or blueberries for added flavor and nutrition. Just be sure to use safe options, and avoid adding any toxic ingredients.
- Shape and Size Variations: Change the size and shape of the treats based on your dog’s size. Smaller treats for smaller dogs and larger treats for bigger ones.
- Texture Variations: Adjust the texture by adding more or less liquid ingredients. For crunchier treats, bake them a bit longer.
- Decorate and Personalize: After baking, you can decorate the treats with a dog-friendly yogurt or carob drizzle for a special touch. Just ensure any toppings are safe for dogs.
A little Necessary Disclaimer: Remember to always consider your dog’s dietary needs and any allergies they might have when making treats. Additionally, consult with your veterinarian before introducing new treats or ingredients into your dog’s diet, especially if your dog has specific health concerns.
I ended up giving these to my dogs as a semi-healthy snack throughout the week instead of the store bought snacks that contain processed ingredients and artificial flavors. Plus, I feel like it was the perfect way to celebrate the start of the fall season. Make sure to try these out with your own pups. I guarantee they will be a big hit.