Have you heard the saying “the best way to a man’s heart is through his stomach”? Well, that may be true for some, but I’d argue if you’ve got a friend or family member with a pet, a thoughtful gift for their dog or cat might trump just about anything you could feed them. At least that’s true for us and our dog Katie!
Katie is our furry family member. Here’s a picture of her with my son and me on our holiday card this year.
She’s our six-year old glorified mutt, and I love to say “she’s a big part of our small family.” She’s sweet, adorable, and incredibly low maintenance. And more than anything else, nobody does unconditional love better than Katie!
So when it comes to holiday baking, even Katie gets a little treat. I bake up a batch of Peanut Butter Whole Wheat dog biscuits, and we set aside some for our girl and give a bunch away to our friends and family members who have dogs. Of course we use the best ingredients around to make these biscuits, but let’s not fool ourselves … they’re still treats. And while wheat in small amounts isn’t harmful to dogs, it’s not necessarily good for them either… so one batch of little treats goes a long way. 🙂
Interested in baking up a batch for your dog and sharing it as gifts? Here’s the recipe we use from King Arthur Flour’s website.
- 2 cups Whole Wheat Flour
- 1 cup rolled oats, regular or quick
- 1 tablespoon dried parsley or 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- ½ cup organic nonfat dry milk
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 large eggs
- 1 cup peanut butter, crunchy or plain
- ½ cup + 1 tablespoon cold water, enough to make a cohesive dough
- Preheat the oven to 300°F. Lightly grease a couple of baking sheets, or line them with parchment.
- Mix together the flour, oats, parsley, dried milk, and salt.
- Add the eggs and peanut butter, stirring to combine; the mixture will be crumbly.
- Add enough water to bring the dough together; depending on the season, you may need to add a bit more (winter), or a bit less (summer).
- To make biscuits using a dog-bone cutter, roll the dough about ¼" thick, and cut with a 3½" cutter (or the size of your choice). Gather and re-roll the scraps, and continue to cut biscuits until you've used all the dough.
- To make dog "cookies," drop the dough in walnut-sized balls onto the prepared baking sheets. Flatten them to about ¼".
- Bake the biscuits for about 40 to 60 minutes, baking the smaller cookies for a shorter amount of time. When finished, the biscuits will be dark golden brown, and will be dry and crisp all the way through.
- Remove the biscuits from the oven, and cool right on the pans.
Do you ever make any homemade treats for your dog or cat? If so, what are they? I’d love to hear if other folks are as crazy about their pets as we are, and if they have any great ideas for an occasional treat. Share your thoughts in the comments below!
Wishing you and all your family the very best this holiday season!
Kitchen Resources and Tips:
- Cookie cutters of all different shapes make these dog biscuits even more fun. To make sure the recipient knows they’re dog biscuits, I label them and always include some dog bone shaped biscuits. I also think including some hearts and stars make the gift extra special and the smallest cutters in these sets is the perfect size!
- A high quality baking sheet is indispensable in the kitchen. Here’s one from NordicWare that’s similar to what I have.
- If you’ve never baked with parchment paper, you should definitely give it a try. It’s so simple to use, and it makes clean-up a breeze. Here’s an unbleached parchment paper that is Green Seal Certified.