Time to Make the (Doggie) Doughnuts

As you may or may not know, Friday June 7th is National Doughnut Day. (This great American holiday is celebrated on the first Friday of every June.) Some doughnut shops, like Dunkin’ Donuts and Krispy Kreme, celebrate this very special day by offering a free doughnut to each customer. This year I decided to save myself some calories, forego any people-food doughnuts, and make doggie doughnuts instead.

This recipe is super easy to prepare, but you are going to need a doughnut baking pan. I typically try to steer away from using special equipment, but a doughnut pan can be picked up at any hobby store or baking supply shop for just a few dollars. I used a Wilton pan that makes six good sized doughnuts, but you can use whatever size that you have available. When using a doughnut pan it’s really important to remember to flip the doughnuts over halfway through the baking time so that both sides get evenly browned.

Making these doughnuts without any icing is more “healthy” and takes a little less time and energy, but the icing looks so ridiculously cute that I put in the extra effort. I used colored white chocolate coating, but you could use melted carob chips, natural peanut butter chips, or yogurt chips, depending on what your dog likes best.

These doughnuts were about the size of your average “people” doughnut, so they’re a good size for large dogs. The finished doughnuts are soft enough that they can be broken into pieces for medium or small dogs.

Carob Doughnuts

Carob Flavored Doggie Doughnuts

Makes about 9 doughnuts

 

1 cup skim milk

1 teaspoon lemon juice

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

3 tablespoons honey

2 cups whole wheat pastry flour

1/4 cup carob powder

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

Optional: About 3/4 cup of white chocolate chips (never real chocolate!!!!), yogurt chips, carob chips, or natural peanut butter chips

 

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.

2. Whisk together the milk, lemon juice, vanilla extract, and honey.

3. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, carob powder, baking powder, and baking soda.

4. Pour the liquid ingredients into the dry ingredients, and stir to combine.

5. Spoon the dough into a prepared doughnut pan. I then used my finger to smooth the top of each doughnut out and make sure that the dough was pressed in well.

6. Bake for 8 minutes, flip each doughnut over in the pan, and then continue baking until toothpick inserted into the doughnut comes out clean, about 8 minutes more.

7. Allow the doughnuts to cool completely. Meanwhile, prepare the icing, if using.

8. Bring a small pot of water to a simmer over medium to medium-high heat. Place the coating chips in a glass or metal bowl just large enough to fit on top of the pot of simmering water. Place the bowl onto the pot. Be sure to stir frequently with a rubber spatula as the chips melt to prevent them from scorching. Be very careful, because if the coating gets overheated and scorches it becomes virtually inedible. If the water begins to boil vigorously enough to actually touch the bowl, remove the bowl from the pot and turn down the heat before replacing the bowl. To avoid overheating, be sure to remove the bowl from the heat as soon as the yogurt coating is completely melted.

9. Once completely cool, briefly submerge the smooth top side of each doughnut in the melted coating and gently shake side-to-side over the bowl of coating to allow any excess to drip off the doughnut. Place the coated doughnuts on a sheet of wax paper. The doughnuts are ready to serve as soon as the coating is firm.

 

These treats should be stored in the refrigerator but are best when allowed to come back to room temperature before serving.

Carob Cookies

Although dogs aren’t able to eat the chocolate candies that we humans so appreciate receiving for Valentine’s Day, these little carob cookies make a sweet substitute. I can pretty much guarantee that your dog will love the rich carob flavor, and you can enjoy the cookies right along with your dog if you want to!

The recipe is so simple that you can have these cookies mixed, cut out, and baked in less than half an hour—perfect for those times that you find yourself needing to whip something up at the last minute.

Carob Cookies

Carob Cookies

Makes about 25 2-inch cookies

 

1/2 cup carob powder

1 cup whole wheat flour, plus more if needed for dusting

1/4 cup honey

2/3 cup water

1. Preheat the oven to 325°F.

2. Combine the carob powder and flour.

3. Add the honey and water, and stir to combine. Knead by hand until a smooth dough forms.

4. Roll the dough out to about 1/2-inch thick, lightly flouring the countertop and/or rolling pin if needed. Cut the dough into pieces using your desired cookie cutter, and arrange the treats on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

5. Bake until the treats are firm to the touch, about 12 minutes.  Allow to cool completely before serving.

 

These treats may be stored at room temperature, but if it’s particularly hot or humid where you live, it’s better to keep them in the refrigerator.

Dogs-Love-Em Carob Brownies

Most people have heard somewhere along the way that chocolate is toxic to dogs. This is true.  However, there is a rather tasty substitute for chocolate that is perfectly safe for canine consumption. It’s called carob. Carob is the edible pulp of a pod harvested from a Mediterranean evergreen known as the carob tree. Carob is naturally sweeter than chocolate, and it does NOT contain theobromine, the chemical found in cocoa pods that makes chocolate poisonous to dogs.

Carob is commonly sold powdered, in chips, or as a syrup. These brownies call for carob powder, which can be used interchangeably with cocoa powder in most human food recipes. In my small town I was able to find carob powder at both the health food store and the regular grocery store, so I don’t think you’ll have any trouble hunting it down. I found that the price of carob powder is comparable to that of quality cocoa powder and it’s just as easy to work with.

Carob Brownies

Carob Brownies

Makes about 24 servings

 

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, sifted

1/4 cup carob powder

1 teaspoon baking powder

4 eggs

1/4 cup vegetable oil

1/4 cup natural, unsweetened applesauce

2 tablespoons honey

 

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.

2. Combine the flour, carob powder, and baking powder.

3. Add the eggs, oil, applesauce, and honey, and beat well to combine.

4. Immediately pour the batter into an 8 x 8 baking dish. Bake until the brownies are fully set and firm to the touch, about 20 minutes.

5. Allow the brownies to cool completely before cutting into 2-inch squares.

 

NOTES: This is one treat that it’s easy to enjoy right along with your pets–which makes it a great recipe to make for a doggie birthday party or play date. I’m not ashamed to say that I ate one of these brownies, and it was actually pretty good. Not as sweet and flavorful as a real chocolate brownie (obviously) but still enjoyable.

 

These treats should be stored in the refrigerator. You can transfer the uneaten brownies to an airtight container for storage, or simply leave the cut brownies inside the baking pan and cover tightly with plastic wrap before placing in the fridge.