General Dog Talk,  Recipes

Christmas Dog Treat Recipes

I recently co-hosted a doggie photo party with friends. We had a great time meeting everyone outside for our socially distanced event. There were dogs ranging from pugs to Irish wolfhounds! Every doggie left with a goodie bag after their photos. And the best part? We raised over $1500 for Animal Justice League, a Houston all breed (and cats!) rescue.

Here are the two recipes I made for our goodie bags:

The original recipes for these came from Capturing Parenthood (my peanut butter pressed cookies that were supposed to be Candy Cane Dog Treats) and Doggy Dessert Chef. But I can never seem to leave well enough alone. So I made some modifications on each recipe.

If you’ve read any of our other DIY dog treat recipes, you’ll know that I always taste as I’m baking. With a little sugar, these could be people cookies!

Peanut Butter & Pumpkin Pressed Dog Treats

The basic recipe on this is similar to the Peanut Butter Pumpkin Dog treats recipe I’ve used in the past. But this one was so cute! The online pictures showed a smooth dough with vibrant colors, easily rolled into candy canes. Cute!

Mine? Not so cute. First, the recipe called for oat flour. No problem. I whirred some oatmeal through my food processor. Not totally pulverized, but surely it would be fine.

It was not fine.

The dough was sticky and chunky. So what to do? I couldn’t make more oat flour, I was using the food processor for the dough. Ah ha! Almond Flour. And a little coconut flour. Now the dough is really stiff.

And then add the food coloring. Just a few drops said the recipe. Well, I added half a bottle of each to get anything approaching holiday colors. And kneading into the dough? Not so easy. The red turned out around the color of hamburger. Quite attractive.

So of course it would not roll out to form candy canes. So there I was with almost 8 pounds of dough (double batch). What to do?

No problem. I grabbed pieces of each color, and combined them into 1 inch balls. Then smashed each ball with the bottom of a water glass to flatten them. And finally, for decoration, used a tiny dog cookie cutter to make an imprint on them.

They came out adorable. And, much less work then rolling and braiding dough for a candy cane cookie. What dog moms have time for that??

The recipe below is the original recipe plus my modifications.

Peanut Butter & Pumpkin Pressed Dog Treats

Easy to make, this dense dough is versatile and easy to work with.
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes


  • 2/3 cup Pumpkin puree NOT pie mix
  • 1/4 cup Creamy peanut butter
  • 2 Eggs
  • 3 cups Oat Flour Or use a combination of oat flour, almond flour and coconut flour.
  • Red & Green Natural food coloring


  • Preheat oven to 350*. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and set aside
  • In your mixer or food processor, combine pumpkin, peanut butter and eggs and mix.
  • Gradually add flour and mix until just incorporated
  • Remove the dough from the mixer and knead until smooth
  • If coloring the dough, split the dough in half. Flatten the dough and place food coloring in the center, folding it over and kneading the food coloring into the dough until desired color is reached.
  • To make multi-colored cookies, take dough from each color, and combine into one rounded dough ball 1-2" around. Continue until you have used all the dough.
  • Place each dough ball on the prepared pan. Flatten with the bottom of a water glass. (Or whiskey glass, if you prefer!)
  • Decorate using cookie cutters pressed into dough to make an imprint. (Optional but super cute.)
  • Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the bottoms begin to brown.
  • Package and freeze, or refrigerate.


As you read above, I messed around with this recipe quite a bit. I think my biggest disappointment was the coloring of the dough. If I were to make it again, I would suggest making 2 recipes of the dough, and add the food coloring before adding the flour. That will make a huge difference in the coloring. 

Apple Cranberry Dog Treats

This recipe was so easy to make!

I had fresh cranberries left over from Thanksgiving, and apple sauce from my March pandemic prep grocery shopping. The only ingredient I didn’t have was milk or whole wheat flour.

The milk was easy — substitute almond milk. After all, dogs can eat almond flour, why not almond milk.

I didn’t have any whole wheat flour, so my choices were bread flour, all purpose flour and self rising flour. I’ll use bread flour, that will be great! Not.

Bread flour is made to have extra gluten in it. The dough turned into a stretching goo, like raw bread dough. So don’t use bread flour!

I was able to salvage the dough by using a little all purpose flour on the rolling pin, and kneaded some into the dough.

The base recipe uses ground cinnamon, but I also added ginger and tumeric. Both are good for digestion. And look how pretty the colors were! Plus I added a little honey for taste.

Overall, this dough is easy to work with and rolled out easily. I played around with the idea of using holiday cookie cutters, but in the end decided to use a bone shape.

The finished product turned out fabulous (me, the taste tester). But they will be much better when you use the correct type of flour.

Here’s the recipe!

Apple Cranberry Dog Treats

Easy to make with applesauce and fresh cranberries.
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine Doggo


  • Food processor, rolling pin, cookie cutters


  • 1 cup Fresh cranberries
  • 1 cup Apple sauce
  • 2 cups Whole wheat flour
  • 1 tsp Ground Cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup Milk (or substitute Almond milk)
  • 1 tsp honey Optional
  • 1/4 tsp Tumeric Optional
  • 1/4 tsp Ginger Optional


  • Preheat oven to 350* and line a baking sheet with parchament
  • Puree cranberries and mix in apple sauce. (I like to use a food processor to make the dough. After pureeing the cranberries and apple sauce, just mix in the rest of the ingredients.)
  • Add milk, honey (if desired), spices and flour and mix until well mixed.
  • Knead dough into a ball and roll 1/4 inch thick on a floured surface.
  • Cut out cookies using your preferred shape.
  • Place on prepared baking sheet and bake 10-15 minutes or until edges begin to brown.
  • Refrigerate or freeze cookies until you feed them to your doggie.
Keyword diy dog treats, dog cookies, healthy dog treats

For easy reference, pin this to your Pinterest board for dog treats!

HoustonDogMom Rebecca G. is a Houston-based dog lover and shelter volunteer.