Easy, Cheap Dog Treats You Can Make at Home

dog in the kitchen


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dog in the kitchen

Dogs' Delights

We all love treats — including our four-legged best friends. But since a healthy dog will devour many things without knowing if it's good for them, it's up to us to make sure they get the good stuff. Using these easy and inexpensive recipes and hacks to make wholesome dog treats is a smart way to do it. Just stick to whole foods in the recipes and avoid using ingredients such as salt, sugars, and corn syrup, artificial colorants, vegetable oil, nitrates, and even brewer's rice or white rice that can play havoc with their blood sugar levels.

 The Best Cheap Dog Food

peanut butter dog treats

Peanut Butter Treats

Peanut butter biscuits are always a winner. "From the moment the peanut butter scent comes out of the kitchen, they know they're in for a treat," says co-founder and editor-in-chief of Animalso Alexandra Seagal. "I also use brown rice flour because it's more nutritious and a good alternative for wheat-based products."

 Fountain Avenue Kitchen

 18 Things You Didn't Know About Peanut Butter and Jelly

apples and pumpkin

Sweet Ginger Apple Dog Treats

The go-to gluten-free recipe for Sweet Ginger Apple Dog Treats used by Emma Williams of Our Fit Pets "contains pumpkin, rich in vitamin A and potassium, which will help regulate your pup's blood pressure and improve their muscle health. Your dog won't be able to resist the sweet goodness."

 Our Fit Pets

 13 Things to Do With Pumpkin Guts

dog kibble

Training Treats

Training treats are usually smaller, easy-to-carry nuggets. "Dog treats can be crazy expensive, and dogs have definite preferences about what foods they find rewarding, so we were so excited that a member of our community shared this DIY training treat recipe with us," says Jessica Yergin, co-founder of the online dog training community Tails of Connection.

 Tails of Connection

 The Easiest and Hardest Dog Breeds to Train

chicken broth

Chicken Soup

CBD hemp oil is an approved supplement for a dog's diet, and collagen-rich chicken combined with the healthy oil nets a flavorful "soup" for a dog featuring chicken bone broth and fresh broccoli.

 Pet Releaf 

yogurt and banana

Goat Milk Yogurt & Banana Parfait

A smashing "dessert" for a dog? Better than sugary ice cream, this recipe is a three-ingredient creamy frozen treat loaded with vitamins, potassium, and fiber — just what the vet ordered on a hot day.

 Pet Releaf 

green dog treats

Apple Mint Dog Bones

These Apple Mint Dog Bones were created as a healthy treat for the holidays and beyond. The mint aids digestion and helps control bad breath, while the broth supports bone and joint health. Give it to dogs who can tolerate wheat and a tiny bit of dry milk.

 Brutus Broth

 32 Facts You Didn't Know About Dogs

oatmeal cookie

Cottage Cheese Dog Biscuit

A favorite of Kiki Kane, dog chef and Rover blogger, this treat combines five ingredients including cottage cheese and oatmeal: "I like to make this with coconut oil as a swap for the flaxseed oil for its creamy smooth flavor," Kane says.


smoked oysters
Alex Dundas/istockphoto

Egg and Oyster Delight

Oysters and eggs give a double protein punch with loads of trace minerals "This recipe provides something new and delicious to train my dogs. It's great for rewarding behavior because it's aromatic and delicious and it cuts nicely into small squares and doesn't crumble," Canadian pro dog trainer Kristi Benson says.

 Kristi Benson

beef jerky
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Beef Jerky

These treats store for weeks in an airtight container, modern homesteader Katy Willis says. Want to boost their tooth-cleaning power? Sprinkle on some seaweed powder before you dry them.

 Real Self Sufficiency 

dog in kitchen with woman chicken

Chicken Dog Treats

Real chicken, broth, parmesan cheese, and shredded carrots accompany wheat flour and egg — for dogs who have no dietary issues with the ingredients — for a savory treat by Sues Anderson, a Boston-based lifestyle blogger.

 We Are Not Martha 

mashed sweet potatoes

Sweet Potato and Leftover Turkey Homemade Dog Treats

You can do a lot with holiday leftovers, but Shelley used it to treat her dogs. She calls them "the perfect way to use up leftover Thanksgiving turkey, or any time of year with leftover chicken."

 Two Healthy Kitchens 

peanut butter and banana

Gluten-Free Vegan Biscuits

Evan Moyle, owner of doggiefetch.com caters to dogs with more stringent dietary needs. "We also wanted to make sure dogs with health issues have treat options," he says.

 Doggie Fetch 

dog treat
Denise Erickson/istockphoto
pumpkin dog treat

Baked Pumpkin Dog Treats

Pumpkin, egg, and peanut butter is whipped and baked in a standout recipe from Alex Willen, founder of Cooper's Treats.

 Cooper's Dog Treats

peanut butter banana popsicle
Marija Stepanovic/istockphoto
dog treat cupcakes

Peanut Butter Pupcakes

Peanut butter and apple pupcakes will use that mini muffin tin in the back of the pantry. Hannah Stember of Best Friends Animal Society shares a recipe that combines quick oats, unsweetened applesauce, cinnamon, and a bit of agave syrup.

 Best Friends 

plate of bacon

Cheddar-Bacon Dog Treats

The smell of these baking might tempt humans, since bacon and cheddar cheese are half the ingredients in a recipe from Good Housekeeping writer Stephanie Eckelkamp. The biscuits keep well at room temperature, too.

 Good Housekeeping 

canned salmon

Grain-Free Salmon Pumpkin Dog Treats

There are loads of nutrients in a treat created with surplus salmon. This recipe makes well over 60 per batch for around $8 or $9, says Beth Manos Brickey of Tasty Yummies.

 Tasty Yummy 

dogs eating watermelon

A Fruit or Vegetable a Day

A fresh fruit or vegetable can also be a dog treat. "Obesity is a huge problem in dogs," and overfeeding of treats is often a culprit, says Rachel Barrack of Animal Acupuncture in New York. "Try something different, like apples, bananas, carrots, cucumbers, peppers, pumpkin — no canned pumpkin pie filling — and watermelons."