Homemade dog treats are easy to make. To make them low-calorie, substitute some of the ingredients such as egg whites for whole eggs and lean meat without the fat. Two types of treats you can create with little fuss are a basic dog biscuit and a trail mix.
Preheat oven to 200 degrees F. Gather lean cooked chicken or beef, cooked sweet potatoes, cooked green beans and fresh apple. Rinse off any salt or seasonings on the meat and vegetables. You will want approximately one cup of each ingredient, once cut into pieces.
Cut cooked lean chicken or beef into bite-sized pieces. Trim off any fat. Cut the cooked sweet potato or carrots, green beans and apple into similar-size pieces. Place the ingredients into a bowl and mix.
Spray a cooking sheet with a small amount of cooking oil. Spread the mixture onto the sheet. With a spoon, separate any pieces that are clinging together.
Bake the mixture until it is dry, stirring every 15 to 20 minutes. It will take approximately 40 to 50 minutes. You can also use a dehydrator. Let the mixture cool and refrigerate it in a sealed container. Because it is now dry, you can take it on hikes or to a play area with your pup.
Basic Dog Biscuits
Choose organic flour for your base. Whole wheat, barley and oat flour are some possible choices. You can find the flours at your local health food store.
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Place a cup of flour in a bowl. Add 1/4 cup chicken broth or beef broth and mix. Add 1 egg white and continue mixing until all the ingredients are blended.
Knead the mixture until it forms a ball. If it's crumbly, add more broth. If it's too wet, add more flour. Turn the dough onto a floured surface. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough out until it is half an inch thick. Cut out biscuits using a cookie cutter. You can find a cookie cutter shaped like a dog bone at your local pet store.
Place the biscuits on a greased cookie sheet and bake in the oven. Cook for 30 minutes. Check to see if they are browning too much. All ovens vary slightly in temperature. Cool on a cookie rack and then refrigerate.
Try some optional ingredients. A few bacon bits will give the biscuits a taste your doggie will like and have few added calories when used sparingly. A tablespoon of peanut butter is another option, or a few tablespoons of canned pumpkin.
- Roll the dog-biscuit dough in the shape of a narrow tube and cut the pieces into half-inch rounds for smaller dog bites.
- Do not use grapes, raisins or onions in your trail mix. Your pup may have an allergic reaction.
Pauline Gill is a retired teacher with more than 25 years of experience teaching English to high school students. She holds a bachelor's degree in language arts and a Master of Education degree. Gill is also an award-winning fiction author.