In a side-by-side offering, we simultaneously presented our dogs with the high quality store-bought treats we keep on hand and these homemade blueberry dog treats. In this fun taste test, they chose these ones first every time.
Of course, they ARE dogs, so then they also want the the treat in the other hand. But they definitely know the difference and make their preference known. They know good food when they smell it and taste it. And these treats are definitely good food.
When our Chicken and Rice for Dogs recipe took off, it was just the inspiration we needed to post more recipes for dogs. Doug really enjoys baking, so he set out to create some fun snacks for our dogs.
Our dogs love fresh blueberries. Doug started researching and developing a recipe for blueberry dog treats. He added peanut butter and old-fashioned oats, and our dogs went crazy for these treats.
Everyone at our house loves these. The dogs love to eat them, of course. We love knowing exactly what's in them - whole foods like blueberries, rolled oats, eggs, and whole wheat flour. And what's not in them - preservatives and mystery ingredients.
They wag, we smile. We're all winners.
Here's a quick rundown of ingredients you'll need to make these drool-inspiring blueberry dog treats:
- fresh blueberries, of course
- old fashioned rolled oats
- peanut butter (make sure it does NOT contain xylitol, which is toxic to dogs)
- whole wheat flour
- fine sea salt
- warm water
See recipe card for quantities.
In the Making (and Eating)
So you know you're on the right path, are a couple photos of what ours look like in the process.
All the dry ingredients are mixed together. This is right before water is added to form a dough.
Here Doug has the dough all rolled out onto our floured cutting board. This step is right before he cuts the dough into little squares.
Here's our girl Cassie trying SO HARD to be patient.
And here's our friends' gorgeous GSP, Callie. Word is these treats are the only thing that can get her to come inside some evenings. (Photo credit: Samantha Mapel)
Hint: When our dogs got a little overzealous taking treats, we found this How to Teach Your Dog to Take Treats Gently video. This technique has been a real finger-saver!
Parchment paper is a game-changer in the kitchen. For this recipe, we use it to line the baking sheet pans. It allows the treats to bake evenly without sticking to the pan. We prefer it over pan spray for a few reasons: eliminates unnecessary calories, no scraping to remove treats from pan, and a really easy cleanup. Plus, you can stretch your pennies and use the same sheet for a couple batches.
The bench knife, also known as a bench scraper or bench cutter. It's a star utility player that's great for cutting the treats into squares, transporting multiple treats from cutting board to pan, and making cleanup a breeze. It even has a ruler if you want to measure your cuts. You can scrape up almost all the flour before wiping the counter, so you don't get that gross wet flour layer on your dish cloth. Yuck! 😛
We used a stoneware pan on the day we took these photos, but we also use and highly recommend half sheet pans from USA Pan. They are absolutely wonderful and made in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
Because we use fresh blueberries (instead of hydrated or freeze-dried) in this recipe, it is recommended to keep these dog treats in the refrigerator. The higher moisture content from fresh berries may cause them to mold if stored at room temperature.
These will keep for a couple weeks when refrigerated, although they never last that long here!
Get the bench knife/scraper/cutter. Maybe not for today's batch, but definitely for next time. It's a helpful kitchen tool you will use again and again for so many recipes.
- 1 cup fresh blueberries frozen blueberries work if thawed
- ¾ cups rolled oats
- 4 tablespoons peanut butter should not contain xylitol, which is toxic to dogs
- 2 ½ cups whole wheat flour
- 2 eggs
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
- ¼ cup warm water
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Place blueberries in large bowl. Use a large fork or wooden spoon to mash them so they become slightly broken up so the juices are distributed and blueberry pieces roll out well in the dough.
- Add the oats and stir into the blueberries until mixed well.
- Add flour, eggs, salt, peanut butter, and cinnamon. Mix well with a wooden spoon or with your hands so the dough ingredients are well-mixed. The dough will be crumbly and not hold together yet.
- Add ¼ cup of warm water to the dough and mix well enough to distribute all the ingredients. Then add small quantities of water until the dough holds together in a ball. Do not overmix, and do not add too much or the dough will become sticky and not roll out well. If you do happen to add too much, adding some additional wheat flour may help to mitigate the stickiness.
- On a large, clean surface, sprinkle some additional wheat flour to roll out your dough. Roll the dough to about ⅜ of an inch thick. Don’t roll it so thin otherwise the treats may burn or become too dry. They can be slightly thicker, but will require a longer baking time.
- When rolling the dough, expect the edges to be very uneven. To cut the treats, the easiest way is to use a bench knife. Use the knife to cut ‘strips’ about ¾” to 1” wide, then cut the other way to make squares or rectangles. With the uneven dough from the edges, just reconsolidate the dough, re-roll, and cut it again. It’s hard to beat the control and speed of a bench knife but a pizza cutter is a good substitute. Cookie cutters are an option as well, but you want to find a small one so the treats aren't too large.
- Place the treats on a full-size cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. They don’t really expand, so they don’t have to be spaced far apart at all.
- Bake for 35-40 minutes at 350 degrees F or until the biscuits are mostly hard, but still a little soft.
- Cool for at least 10 minutes before sharing them with your pups!
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