5 recipes for healthy homemade halloween dog treats

October 20, 2022 - 4 min read
cartoon spooky dog

Your dog may not be an enthusiastic trick-or-treater. But even if they're not trotting from door to door with an overflowing treat basket gripped between their teeth, you can still pamper them with canine confections right in your own kitchen.

But before you don your pumpkin-shaped chef's hat, just be aware that the following ingredients are toxic to dogs:

(FYI, this list shouldn't be considered 100% comprehensive. If you have any questions about food toxicity in dogs, be sure to consult your veterinarian.)

Dog with banana

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Read on to learn five delectable homemade dog treat recipes!

Pumpkin Spice Puppuccinos — from Lola the Pitty

For coffee-drinking humans across the land, the fall season heralds the arrival of pumpkin spice lattes. And while anything that's teeming with pumpkin-y goodness makes for an appropriate Halloween treat, dogs don't tend to be coffee-hounds. (For good reason: Caffeine can make them sick.) Fortunately, with just a little bit of ingenuity, you can perk your dog up with a canine-friendly variation on this coffee house classic.

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup of unsweetened coconut milk (goat milk or almond milk work too!)

  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon (but NOT nutmeg, which is toxic to dogs)

  • 1 cup pure canned pumpkin, aka pumpkin puree (don't use pumpkin pie filling, which is far less nutritious)

  • Splash of coconut milk (optional)

Preparations

  • Mix all ingredients together in a blender. Blend until well-mixed.

  • Optional: Add a splash of coconut milk if you'd like a thinner consistency, or if your ingredients aren't blending smoothly

  • Pour mixture into serving cups (like these) OR freeze the mixture using ice trays for 3 to 4 hours (or overnight)

(You can also dress your dog as a barista, but that's not mandatory.)

Just so you know, pumpkin is a superfood for dogs. It's filled with vitamins A, C, K, and E, as well as important minerals like iron, potassium, copper, and magnesium.

Skeleton "Bones" Dog Treats — from Irresistible Pets

Ah, skeletons, those ever-present denizens of graveyards, biology classrooms, and, of course, Halloween festivities. And what dog doesn't like to gnaw on bones?

Actually, about that: Many veterinarians believe that dogs shouldn't eat bones. But here's the good news: When "bones" aren't made of actual bones, they can be made from some pretty tasty — and safe — Halloween dog treats. Here's how to make some delicious skeleton bone snacks for your pup.

Ingredients

  • 2 and 1/2 cups of non-bleached flour (e.g. whole wheat flour or gluten-free options like oat flour, coconut flour, or rice flour)

  • 1 egg

  • 1 cup of water

  • 1 chicken bouillon cube (just make sure it's low in sodium and free of toxic ingredients like onions or chives)

And for the icing (yes, there's icing!)

Preparation

  • Pre-heat your oven to 350°

  • Use a non-stick spray on a bone-shaped, indented cookie pan like this one.

  • Mix the flour, egg, 1 cup of water, and bouillon cube in a bowl. (Leave the icing ingredients for later.)

  • Knead into a nice, round ball

  • Take a piece of dough and roll it into a cylinder a few inches long and roughly the width of your middle finger. Take this cylinder of dough, press it into one of the bone-shaped molds in your baking pan, then smooth it out until it fills out the mold.

  • Repeat until all molds are filled.

  • Bake for 30 minutes at 350°

  • Remove the treats from the oven and let them cool

Fun fact: If you do this right, these "bones" will probably have little cracks in them that make them look like real bones. But wait, you're not done yet!

  • Thoroughly mix the icing ingredients (1 cup nonfat plain yogurt and 1/2 cup water) in a bowl. Make sure there are no lumps when you're done.

  • Once the bones have cooled, place them in the icing mix until they're completely coated.

  • Place coated bones on wax paper and put them in the freezer for one hour

Voila — you've got some tasty (and frosty) skeleton bones for your pooch. Not only should your pup love it, but the yogurt will provide them with some much-needed calcium, protein, and probiotic support for digestive health.

Meanwhile, if you want to enhance the scene by dressing your dog in a skeleton costume, we won't stop you.

Banana and Coconut Bat Treats — from The Dog People

Bats are appropriately fright-inducing during Halloween celebrations, but the edibles are unlikely to do much damage. In fact, these particular winged creatures are gluten free, so they won't even trigger an upset tummy if your dog suffers from gluten sensitivity.

To get started, you'll need two cookie sheets lined with parchment, plus a food precessor.

Ingredients

  • 2 bananas (peeled and sliced)

  • 1 egg

  • 2 cups oat flower (pulverized rolled oats)

  • 1 cup coconut flour

  • 1/4 cup coconut oil

  • 1/2 cup unsweetened dried coconut flakes

Optional:

  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

  • 1/2 tsp coconut extract

Preparation

  • Pre-heat oven to 350°

  • Toss the bananas (peeled and sliced) into your food processor

  • Add the coconut oil (and the optional vanilla extract and/or coconut extract if so desired)

  • Blitz with food processor until smooth

  • Add egg, baking powder, coconut flakes, and both flours

  • Pulse your food processor until you have dough

  • Turn dough out onto floured surface

  • Work dough with your hands, adding additional flour as needed until the dough can be rolled out

  • Divide dough in half; dough should be one quarter of an inch thick

  • Let loose your inner culinary artiste and cut the dough into bat shapes. (Or you could just use bat-shaped cookie cutters like these — whatever flaps your wings!

  • Transfer the shaped dough to the parchment-lined cookie sheet, then bake at 350° for 30 minutes

  • Allow time to cool. Then let your pup enjoy some batty goodness.

Good news: Bananas and coconuts are both extremely healthy for dogs. Bananas are chock full of vitamins (including vitamins C and B6), plus they're high in potassium, biotin, copper, and fiber. Coconut contains antioxidants to boost the immune system, and even has anti-inflammatory properties. Just make sure you give these treats to your dog in moderation, as fruit contains sugar and coconut can cause gastrointestinal trouble if you feed it to your dog in large enough quantities. (If you're curious which fruits and vegetables are dog-friendly and which ones aren't, the American Kennel Club has a fairly comprehensive list.)

Sweet Potato Jack o' Lanterns — from The Daily Wag

  • Your dog should definitely appreciate the smiling, toothy grin staring out from this pumpkin-shaped treat — though it just so happens that said treat will be made of sweet potato.

Ingredients

  • 1 pound of sweet potatoes (about 2-3)

  • 2 tbsp coconut oil

  • 1 tsp cinnamon (NOT nutmeg, which is toxic to dogs)

  • 1 tsp turmeric

Preparation

  • Preheat your oven to 450°

  • Peel your sweet potatoes and cut them into circles

Now it's time to prove you don't need a pumpkin to put your jack o' lantern carving skills to the test.

  • Use a small paring knife to cut two triangular eyes into each circular slice

  • Follow up by giving them a smiling mouth

  • Coat the bottom of a roasting pan with the coconut oil, then place the smiling treats inside the pan

  • Dust the treats with the turmeric and cinnamon

  • Bake in your oven's middle rack for 30 minutes, or until slightly browned

That's it! Let the treats cool and serve them to your furry friend.

By the way, sweet potato is super healthy for your dog. It's high in fiber, low in fat, and contains important vitamins and nutrients like vitamin A, vitamin C, calcium, potassium, and iron. Also, can we just take a moment to sing the praises of turmeric? It's chock full of important vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, and has been clinically shown to possess anti-inflammatory properties and support joint health in dogs. Just make sure you give it to your pup in small doses.

Oh, and please feel free to adorn your pup's noggin with some pumpkin headgear. We won't tell anyone.

Tibetan Mastiff laying on the floor

Frozen Pumpkin Apple Dog Treats — from My Brown Newfies

This one is pretty darn easy. You'll just need a few simple ingredients, a freezer, and a mold like this one to achieve some spooky shapes. (Your pup might not grasp the aesthetic value of a ghost or human skull on Halloween, but you certainly will.)

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup of plain canned pumpkin, aka pumpkin puree

  • 2 medium-sized apples

  • 1 cup of chicken broth

Preparation

  • Wash and peel the apples. (Also make sure to remove the core and seeds, both of which can be toxic to dogs.)

  • Dice the apples

  • Mix the apples, pumpkin puree, and chicken broth together in a food processor or blender

  • Spoon the mixture into molds once smooth

  • Freeze for three to four hours (or overnight), then serve to your furry friend

It bears repeating that pumpkin contains a number of vitamins and minerals that are super healthy for your dog. In fact, there's no reason to limit your dog's pumpkin intake to All Hallow's Eve. Apples are extremely beneficial as well: They're a terrific source of vitamin A, vitamin C, potassium, and antioxidants.

By the way, in case the pumpkin hat isn't enough, here's an entire pumpkin outfit for your dog. You're welcome.

And bon appétit!


David Teich
Lead Editor

David oversees content strategy and development at ManyPets. As Lead Editor, he focuses on delivering accurate information related to pet care and insurance. David’s editorial background spans more than a decade, including a pivotal role at Digiday, where he wrote content and managed relationships with media and tech companies. As an Associate Editor at Cynopsis Media, David wrote the Cynopsis Digital newsletter and interviewed executives and digital marketing experts in the TV industry. His background also includes film journalism. His diverse experiences in journalism and marketing underpins his role in shaping content within the pet care industry.