I haven’t posted a recipe in a a while, and so today I decided to get back in the saddle after my last epic recipe failure. I love making dog treats, and my dogs love it, too, so there was no reason to let one bad experience stop me from creating something delicious for the fur-kids.
For today’s recipe, I decided to make something that I could “sneak” a bunch of healthy ingredients in to. I came up with a few ideas, looked at Catherine’s ImmuneIQ results just to be sure I wasn’t using anything she had an intolerance to, and got to cooking. Here are the ingredients:
1/3 cup chicken stock from 1 pound Chicken Gizzards and Hearts – we’re going to make an awesome broth that’s packed with protein and a ton of minerals.
3/4 cup Coconut flour – it’s healthier than other carbohydrate sources, great for dogs, and packed with nutrients.
1 1/2 tablespoons Coconut Oil – Coconut Oil is excellent for dogs! There are so many benefits, and you can read about them in our post on the benefits of coconut oil for dogs.
1/4 cup Milled Flax Seed – Flax is great for dogs. Flax seed meal is an excellent source of Omega 3 fatty acids, is good for the coat and arthritis. It’s also an excellent source of fiber.
1 grated Apple – Apples are a good source of fiber as well as vitamin A and C.
1 1/2 cup Spinach – Spinach is full of nutrients! It’s packed with iron, fiber, calcium, potassium, and vitamins A, B6 and K. The flavonoids and carotenoids contained in spinach work as anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer forces.¹
2 ounces Goat Cheese – This cheese is delicious and is high in calcium and protein, the amino acid tryptophan, phosphorus, riboflavin or vitamin B2, and potassium. You can read more about how awesome goat cheese is for dogs in our post “Bosc Pear and Goat Cheese Treat Recipe.”
2 Eggs – packed with protein and dogs love them.
So, our recipe is packed with good stuff. Now on to the fun part, the cooking. First, I made a broth from the gizzards and hearts. I put a little bacon grease in a heavy pot, and added my chicken parts. I cooked the giblets until the meat was cooked, then added a few cups of water and let the pot simmer a while. It smelled really great. I’d never made a stock from the gizzards and hearts before, though I hear it’s pretty standard to do so. After the goop simmered a while, I scooped out the offal and set it aside to cool before bagging it up and putting it in the fridge (I’m sure I’ll find a use for it later).
Next, I decided to wilt the spinach in the stock. Now, here I made a critical error in my recipe, and I will change it next time. What I did was add a couple of handfuls of spinach to the stock, let it wilt, then pulled it out. What I should have done was measure out the amount of stock I needed, chop up the spinach, and then wilt it in the stock and leave it in. Hindsight and all. My pieces of spinach were huge, making the resulting treats difficult to cut. C’est la vie.
Next, I mixed the grated apple, egg, goat cheese, flax, egg, and spinach. Once that was all mushed together, I added the stock and then slowly added the coconut flour. When I made these treats, I, sadly, only used one egg and my treats were too “loose,” cracking and falling apart. I have modified the recipe so that you don’t suffer the same fate.
After everything was all mixed together, I pressed the “batter” into a greased and floured cookie sheet and put it into the 350 degree pre-heated oven, where it remained for about 15 minutes. When the edges started to brown, I pulled the tray out of the oven and let the treats cool on the pan. After the tray was cooled, I cut them into squares as the dogs waited (mostly) patiently.
Time for the taste test. I actually tried some myself, because, let’s face it, I want to try everything I make, except of course anything with pureed liver. Bleh. The treats taste mostly of hearty chicken and coconut flour, which is semi-sweet, and the apples helped to bring out the sweetness. The taste is fairly interesting, but I didn’t make them for mysef. The dogs knew what was going on, so they were just watching me, ready for their reward (for which they had done nothing).
I took a little video of the 3rd or 4th treat I gave each of them. I know Catherine likes a treat when she will “stand up” on her hind legs. They both loved these treats! I’ll definitely be making them again, with the few modifications I mentioned.
I put the rest of the treats in my “pupperware” and in the fridge. I expect them to last about a week, but they’ll be gone long before that. “Pupperware” is totally awesome. I have a few of these – they’re bone shaped and stack together. You can get yours online for just $3.99. They come in clear with lid colors of clear, pink, red, and black. Click here to get some for yourself:
1. For about Spinach for dogs, read this article on howstuffworks.com: 10 Fruits and Veggies that Aid in Dogs’ Nutrition