With all the recalls that have been popping up surrounding pet food and treats, having an easy peasy doggy treat recipe in your back pocket can't be a bad idea! I searched the web for a recipe that I liked, but found so many that included corn meal and/or sugar (corn is a common cause of digestion issues in doggies and extra sugar, for the most part, is just unnecessary): So, I decided to mush a bunch of ideas together and come up with my own concoction.
Most of the stuff I use can be found in your pantry. I did purchase flax meal for the sole purpose of making these treats, but everything else, I had. Some dogs may have allergies to flax seed. This can be omitted, but you may have to add more oats and/or flour.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
1/2 water boiling
1 TBSP margarine or butter
1/2 cup flax meal
1 egg (half will probably due if you are going to double or make a different variety and can use half an egg)
1 ripe banana or a jar of banana baby food
1/4-1/2 c. of peanut butter (I hate measuring out peanut butter, so I just eye ball it!)
~1 1/2 c. whole wheat flour (rice flour could substitute if doggy has a wheat allergy)
Let the oats and butter sit in the boiling water for a bit (I just let the butter soften/melt) then mix.
In a separate bowl, mash up your super ripe banana (or open your jar of baby food).
Mix together all the ingredients, save the flour.
Slowly add in your flour. It may not require all of the flour; it depends on the amount of peanut butter and egg you used.
My special helper added his magic touch here :) <3
I then kneed it with my hands until everything is incorporated, and I get a giant ball.
Now, I split the "dough" into two sections, roll them into logs and smash them down a bit. Wrap them loosely in parchment paper (you could use wax paper or whatever, but I use the same bit of parchment paper through the entire process, so...) and pop them in the freezer for about 30 mins (or longer if you forget, not that this EVER happens to me!) to firm them up.
If you would like to roll the dough out and use cookie cutters, you would add a bit more flour and roll them out on a floured surface, instead of these logs.
Once firm, I slice the log length wise, then into small pieces. Your pieces can be larger; you will just have to increase your bake time. I use them to stuff the Kong and as training treats, so I prefer the smaller size.
Place your pieces on a parchment lined baking sheet and back at 350 degrees, for about 30 minutes. After 30 mins, I turn off the oven and let them sit in the oven, with the door ajar, until it cools off.
Then they go into our (normally upright) treat container and are stored in the refrigerator. Remember, there are no preservatives or unpronounceable ingredients to keep these from molding! Don't make too many and keep them refrigerated. I actually bake one log and wrap the second log in the parchment (which it will be baked on at a later date), place it in a labeled freezer bag and save it for next time we need treats. Just let it thaw a bit before cutting into it.
Look how patiently Rudy waits! (also, normally upright). He knows when his treats are being freshly baked and waits eagerly to get one!
These treats can be adjusted for a more savory flavor by using a meat and veggie baby food and adding a bit of shredded cheese. Rudy loves those, too. I go back and forth with every batch.