Pumpkin Dog Treats

I. Love. Autumn. I love absolutely everything about the Autumn season: the cool weather, the beautiful leaves, the bountiful harvest of apples and gourds, and the comfort foods that are made with all that delicious seasonal produce. I really can’t emphasize enough how happy I am that it’s September and the first day of Fall is right around the corner. I understand that some of you (mostly students and beach bunnies) do not share my great joy at reaching September, but I’m going to go ahead and celebrate with this recipe anyway! And even if you’re already missing the sunshine of summer, I’m sure that you can still appreciate this take-off on the crowning glory of Autumn baking:  pumpkin pie!

Surprisingly, most dogs like the flavor of pumpkin as much as we humans do. (And even if your dog doesn’t go crazy for pumpkin, these treats have a touch of peanut butter to sweeten the deal.) Now, I understand that a lot of you won’t take the time to make your own pumpkin puree from scratch. Using canned pumpkin is perfectly fine, but be sure to buy “pure pumpkin puree” and NOT pumpkin pie filling. There’s actually a big difference, and you don’t want the sugar and other additives contained in canned pumpkin pie filling to go into your dog treats.

These treats are packed with flavor and are definitely tasty enough for you to enjoy right along with your dog. Plus, the wonderful aroma of these treats baking is guaranteed to put you in the mood for Fall.

Pumpkin Dog Treats

Pumpkin Dog Treats

Makes about 130 small treats

 

1 cup pumpkin puree (NOT pumpkin pie filling)

1 cup water

4 tablespoons natural, unsalted peanut butter

1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

4 cups unbleached white flour

 

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.

2. In a bowl, combine the pumpkin puree, water, and peanut butter.

3. Stir the pumpkin pie spice into the flour.

4. Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients, stirring to combine. Use your hands to knead the mixture until a smooth, homogenous dough forms. (If the dough is too sticky, add more flour.)

5. On a generously floured countertop, roll the dough out into a sheet about 1/2-inch thick. Use your desired cookie cutter to cut the dough into pieces.

6. Arrange the pieces on a baking sheet, and bake for about 9 minutes. Flip each of the treats over, return to the oven, and continue baking for 9 minutes more, until firm to the touch. Allow the treats to cool completely before serving.

 

These treats may be stored in an airtight container at room temperature, but they are best stored in the refrigerator.

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