Homemade Dog Treats with Pumpkin

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Simple homemade pumpkin dog treats made with pumpkin puree, whole wheat flour, and bacon. These treats are also made without peanut butter, so they’re great for homes with a peanut allergy!

aerial photo of homemade dog treats on a black plate

Your pup will love this Pumpkin Dog Treat Recipe

Bet you didn’t expect to see a pup on my website, did you? And I bet you’d be surprised these pumpkin dog biscuits are in the top 20 recipes on my entire website consistently.

That’s right– this website, which houses recipes for mostly sweets gets lots of visitors to this recipe all year long, all from people who are looking to make homemade dog treats without peanut butter for a whole host of reasons.

Is there a peanut allergy in your house? Does your dog have a peanut allergy? Do you just not like peanut butter?

It can be hard to find a recipe for dog treats without peanut butter around the internet, so many years ago during my annual pumpkin week, I used those issues to fill a gap I saw in the homemade pumpkin treats for dogs category of recipes.

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Major shoutout to my assistant Lauren whose idea it was. She’s a dog owner herself, and when she suggested I create a recipe for pumpkin dog treats, I couldn’t get into the kitchen fast enough.

Here’s the interesting part… We do not have a dog. I’m not sure we will ever have a dog, but if our boys have any say in the matter… We might.

BUT, the truth is, I’m allergic to them and I don’t love pets in general.

golden retriever in the background of a photo of a plate of homemade dog treats

The dogs on our street and in our neighborhood? LOVE THEM. Our boys ADORE this dog in particular that we borrowed for photos (hi, Reggie!), but I’m currently in the mindset of never wanting animal hair or fur in my house.

Please don’t hate me. But definitely invite me and my kids over to give lots of pets and belly rubs!

That said, I don’t particularly need or use this recipe, like, ever, but I know about 99% of the population of my readers probably do.


Pumpkin Dog Treats Recipe ingredients

Before I developed this recipe, I did some research on dog treats all over the internet. I’d say the majority of them included peanut butter.

I decided I didn’t want to do that, not only because there were one million peanut butter pumpkin dog treat recipes out there, but also because we are actually a peanut butter free home.

No, no allergies and no opposition to peanut butter (HELLO, I STILL LOVE YOU PB + CHOCOLATE), but there is a legume sensitivity in our house, so we’re straight up almond butter people…

Except in my baking cabinet where you can find a jar of natural peanut butter as well as traditional peanut butter at any given moment because, well, peanut butter recipes are still quite abundant on my website despite the foods we keep in our house (see my ultimate peanut butter cookies or no bake peanut butter pie for starters).

peanut free pumpkin dog treats

All in all, I wanted to keep this peanut-free upon principal and also internet saturation!

For this dog biscuit recipe, you will need:
 bacon
 whole wheat flour
 baking powder
 pumpkin purée
 water or milk
 egg

Of course, you can make any basic adjustment to this ingredient list, like if your dog doesn’t consume milk or you would prefer to use all-purpose flour to whole wheat.

How to make Pumpkin Dog Treats

STEP #1

These pumpkin dog treats are mega simple. You’ll see the recipe calls for 4 strips of bacon and that you’re to keep the grease.

STEP #2

Know that you don’t need a specific amount of the bacon grease, it is just part of the whole pumpkin dog treat package. The additional water or milk is for helping the dough come together, so don’t worry if you don’t have all that much grease leftover from cooking.

STEP #3

Once your bacon is cooked, you’ll pour the grease off into a medium size bowl. Chop the cooked bacon and put it into the bacon grease.

STEP #4

Next, whisk in the pumpkin and the egg until the mixture is smooth (with bacon lumps, duh).

pumpkin puree with bacon mixed in for homemade dog treats

STEP #5

Lastly, whisk together the dry ingredients (the flour and baking powder).

STEP #6

Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and then start mixing them together.

ADD MILK OR WATER TO ACHIEVE DESIRED DOUGH CONSISTENCY

STEP #7

The dough will come together just like you expect it to, similar to cut-out cookie dough, but depending on how much bacon grease you have, your dough could be on the drier side.

STEP #8

Any time I make these dog treats, I wind up adding a different amount of liquid based on the dough in front of me.

bowl of dough for pumpkin dog treats

STEP #9

My best tip? Stir the dough, add about ½ to 1 Tablespoon of liquid, stir more, and add more liquid as needed.

STEP #10

You want to be able to roll the dough out without it being too sticky, but you don’t want it to fall apart. I usually wind up adding about 2 to 4 Tablespoons total of liquid.

ROLL AND CUT WITH A COOKIE CUTTER

STEP #11

Turn out the dog biscuit dough onto a floured surface and roll out to approximately ¼” thick.

STEP #12

Use the desired shape cookie cutter to cut shapes (I opted for the dog bone shaped cookie cutters, of course), reroll the dough, and cut again until there is no more dough left.

STEP #13

You’ll bake your dog treats for 30 minutes, flipping them over halfway through baking. They will harden as they cool.

ENJOY, DOGGIES!

This is normally the part in my recipe post where I tell you what the flavor profile is like, how much I liked it, what my favorite part was…

But here’s the thing: I made one batch of pumpkin dog treats, tasted one, decided I needed to try again, tasted that one, and then decided I am not a dog, so my opinion isn’t so great on that topic.

These homemade dog treats without peanut butter have gone, over the years, to dozens of different dog taste testers, and the consensus always is… There are never any dog treats left.

a plate of homemade dog treats with a dog waiting for them in the background

And I have realized I can never again taste-test dog treats. The dogs are much better judges.

Health benefits of Homemade Pumpkin Dog Treats

Side note: did you know pumpkin can be good for dogs? Pumpkin without added sugar or spice can be helpful to keep things moving in the digestive tract. Pumpkin for the win!

So there you are, friends. A little addition to pumpkin week that’s one for the pups. While we may never actually own a dog, I’m happy to know that I can supply a relatively healthy dog treat recipe to one if we ever decide to.

Looking for more ways to use your pumpkin purée? Try my savory pumpkin biscuits, pumpkin ice cream, or pumpkin pie smoothie next!

Homemade Dog Treats Pumpkin FAQs

Yes! While this will always depend on your dog’s specific tolerances and tastes, there is no fundamental reason you could not feed your dog pumpkin daily.

You do not need to refrigerate your pumpkin dog treats, but if you find that they are getting stale or molding before your dog finishes them, it’s a good idea to keep them in the refrigerator.

Yes, canned pumpkin is perfectly safe for your dog. It is a great source of fiber and nutrients.

More Favorites from Fresh April Flours

Pumpkin Dog Treat Recipe

Simple homemade pumpkin dog treats made with pumpkin puree, whole wheat flour, and bacon. These treats are also made without peanut butter, so they're great for homes with a peanut allergy!
Prep Time20 minutes
Bake Time30 minutes
Total Time50 minutes
Recipe Author Lynn April
Servings: 16 dog treats

Ingredients

  • 4 strips bacon
  • ½ cup (122g) pumpkin purée
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 cups + 2 Tablespoons (323g) whole wheat flour all-purpose is fine; be sure to measure properly
  • ½ Tablespoon baking powder
  • 2 to 4 Tablespoons (30-60mL) water or milk

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350ºF (177ºC). Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Set aside.
  • Cook the bacon by your desired method until fully cooked. Remove the cooked bacon, place it on a plate or cutting board to cool a bit, then pour off the bacon grease into a medium size bowl.
  • Coarsely chop the bacon, then add it to the bowl of bacon grease. Add the pumpkin and the egg and whisk until smooth. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together the flour and baking powder.
  • Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix gently until everything is combined. Add about ½ to 1 Tablespoon of water or milk at a time until dough stays together (I usually wind up adding about 2 to 4 Tablespoons total). You will likely need to use your hands.
  • Turn out dough onto a floured surface and roll out to approximately ¼" thick. Use desired shape cookie cutter, reroll, and cut again until there is no more dough left. Bake dog treats for 30 minutes, flipping treats over halfway through baking. Store dog treats covered at room temperature. Treats may be frozen, up to 3 months. Thaw at room temperature.
Did you make this recipe?Mention @freshaprilflours on Instagram or tag #freshaprilflours!

Nutrition Disclosure

All nutritional values are approximate and provided to the reader as a courtesy. Changing ingredients and/or quantities will alter the estimated nutritional calculations.

Serving: 1dog treat | Calories: 81kcal | Carbohydrates: 12g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 0.01g | Cholesterol: 14mg | Sodium: 81mg | Potassium: 85mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 0.3g | Vitamin A: 1210IU | Vitamin C: 0.3mg | Calcium: 31mg | Iron: 1mg

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78 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Twinkie and Keno loved these! I’m making a second batch to give to my neighbors dogs.

    1. using reg flour what is the correct measuring? I do not bake or even cook much so need all the help I can get ..thank you

  2. 5 stars
    In addition to my earlier comment, my husband is a rural mail carrier. He has lots of dog friends now on his route. Your recipe has saved his skin more than once! 😀

  3. 5 stars
    I love this recipe! I make these every Christmas to give out to all of our doggie friends and they are a hit! The recipe makes a ton of treats so there are always plenty to go around 🙂

  4. 5 stars
    My dog goes nuts for these! I made a very slight variation to the recipe and didn’t use any bacon. I added a little olive oil for some healthy fat and sprinkled a tiny bit of ginger in (kinda pumpkin spicey).
    I will be making these all the time now. If I don’t, my dog might not forgive me.

  5. 5 stars
    Thank you so much for excluding peanut butter. my dog does not like it. getting ready to make this now

  6. 5 stars
    Thank you for sharing this recipe! It’s hard to find recipes without peanut butter and my dog doesn’t like peanut butter. Lol

  7. 5 stars
    I am baking this tomorrow for Mikey’s Chance Canine Rescue bake sale. My 3 dogs will be the taste testers. Bacon and pumpkin……think it will get high paws all around

  8. 5 stars
    I added extra pumpkin and I haven’t meet a dog yet that doesn’t like them. I think they are perfect!

  9. My dog is the fussiest dog ever!! She doesn’t like pumpkin but I sneak it in her food. Won’t try p-nut butter! Is bacon ok for dogs? I thought they shouldn’t eat pork? I would love to try making these cookies but ???

  10. 5 stars
    The first time I made them was a single batch, hey were hard and crunchy. MY GERMAN SHEPHERDS LOVED THEM. So I doubled the batch next time and they came out cake like, soft. THEY STILL LOVED THEM. Thanks for sharing your recipe

  11. What is wrong with you! Bacon is highly toxic to dogs, high in fat, high in salt not to mention the preservatives. And it can hasten pancreatitis in certain individuals.

    1. Hi, Kelly. There is nothing wrong with me 🙂 bacon in small quantities is fine for dogs whose bodies can handle it. There are 4 slices in 16 treats, so each treat has about 1/4 of a slice of bacon in it. You could also use uncured bacon if you’re that concerned. Otherwise, just don’t make them for your dog! No need to be rude.

    2. Kelly, even though your comment is a bit abrasive, there is some truth to it, but there is a simple remedy that can allow bacon to be used in which furry friends will still love it. Simply boil your bacon in water for a few minutes first before using Lynn’s recipe. This will remove about 90% of the fat and just about all of the salt, sugar, sodium phosphates, sodium ascorbate, and sodium nitrate. You are left with a healthy bacon product that your dogs will still enjoy.

  12. I was hoping to include some nut-free dog treats in with my christmas cookies this year because one of the human recipients has a severe nut allergy. Excited to try this recipe! I’m planning to swap out the bacon for salmon because one of the dog recipients is a yorkie and I’m worried that even 1/4 slice of bacon could have a harmful amount of salt for her

  13. 5 stars
    This is a great recipe. Very simple to make i know my dogs are going to love them. I made them special today for my little dog Stella who turned 10 . I also used a cute snowman cookie cutter for Christmas these are going to be so cute in their stockings. Thanks for sharing this.