If your dog is like either of mine, they love treats. And the variety of treats at the pet store is endless.
Unfortunately, it isn’t easy to find a soft treat that is easily breakable to use as a training treat.
Both Luna and Morgan are on the heavy side and have been put on a diet. This makes training harder because I have to limit their treats. So having an easy-to-break, soft dog treat is important.
I can break the treats into a bunch of tiny pieces and Luna and Morgan are happy they are getting treats while keeping the vet happy by limiting the actual amount of treats they are getting.
On top of this, both Luna and Morgan still need work on their outdoor, distracted training. This means I need a treat I don’t mind carrying around for walks. I’m not a fan of storebought treats for this, I just don’t like how my hands feel after a few minutes of holding them.
Plus, I need to be able to wipe my hands on my pants after Luna slobbers all over it to get the treat from me.
All this caused me to decide to make my own treat for training my dogs. I came up with Soft Peanut Butter and Pumpkin Dog Treats and my taste testers approve of it.
Read on to get the easy recipe and start making this tasty treat for your dog.
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How to make Soft Peanut Butter and Pumpkin Dog Treats
Always consult your veterinarian before giving your dog new foods.
These homemade treats are easy to make and all the ingredients are available at most grocery stores or big box stores.
The only one that may be difficult to find, depending on the time of the year, is the pumpkin.
There are three ingredients for this recipe, peanut butter, pumpkin, and whole wheat flour.
1 cup peanut butter
I use creamy peanut butter so there aren’t pieces of peanuts making the finished treat harder to break.
Also, make sure the peanut butter you use doesn’t have xylitol in it. Xylitol is poisonous to dogs and should never be given to your dog in any quantity.
I have used both Jif and store-brand peanut butter, but you can use any brand as long as it doesn’t have xylitol.
If you want to limit your dog’s sugar, I recommend using natural peanut butter that doesn’t have added sugar in them.
15-ounce can of pumpkin puree
I use pumpkin in this recipe partly because most dogs love the taste and mostly because of the health benefits it has for dogs. To learn more, read this post about the benefits of pumpkin for dogs.
I chose to use a whole, small can of pumpkin puree because it makes the measurements a little easier.
When purchasing it, make sure to get pumpkin puree and not pumpkin pie filling. Unfortunately, the two look very similar and can be easily mixed up.
Libby’s pumpkin puree, the brand most often found instore, has a slice of pumpkin pie and pumpkin pie filling has a whole pumpkin pie on it. Easy to mix up.
If you’re unsure which you grabbed, check the ingredients. Pumpkin puree only has one ingredient, pumpkin.
If you have fresh pumpkin puree, you can substitute about 2 cups for the 15-ounce can. 15 ounces is equal to 1.875 cups, but increasing it to 2 cups is fine.
2 cups whole wheat flour
Whole wheat flour is used because it has more nutrients in it than regular flour. According to Rover, white flour is highly processed and had most of its nutrients stripped from it.
If you are unable to find whole wheat flour, you can substitute white, but it would be better to use whole wheat if possible.
To make homemade peanut butter pumpkin dog treats you start by emptying the can of pumpkin into a large bowl. Then add the peanut butter and mix together.
Next, mix in the whole wheat flour. The dough will end up the consistency of play dough.
Once it’s all mixed together you need to roll it out. You can try using a rolling pin, but I just used my hands.
If you are using your hands, just take a small portion of the dough and roll it into a ball. Then squish it a little with your thumb to make it fairly thin. You don’t want them too thin or they will get crispy, but thin enough to bake quickly.
If you decide to use a rolling pin, place the dough on a floured surface and roll it out until it is fairly thin, less than a quarter inch thickness. Then you can use a pizza cutter to cut them into small pieces.
Place them on a baking sheet. They can be close together, but you don’t want them touching.
I baked mine for 10 to 12 minutes at 350°F. The goal is to have them soft, but fully cooked. They should be just starting to brown on the bottom.
Let them cool on the pan.
Notes about soft dog treats recipe
This recipe makes a large batch. You can freeze some of the dough for later by dividing the dough and placing it in individual freezer bags.
You can then thaw one at a time as you need more soft dog treats. The only downside is the texture of the dough does change once it’s been frozen. Once baked, the texture difference isn’t as noticeable, but the color of the treats is a little different.
Though this bothered me some, it didn’t bother Luna or Morgan. They both still ate the treats like they were the best thing ever.
You can also bake the entire batch and freeze the extra treats to take out as needed. They don’t change as much when frozen after baking.
To freeze the treats, place them in a single layer on a cookie sheet. Place the cookie sheet in the freezer and let freeze for several hours.
Once the treats are frozen, place them in an air-tight container. This makes it less likely the treats will freeze together in one single mass.
For crunchy treats
If you want crunchy treats, bake longer. Start with checking them at 15 minutes and add a minute or two at a time until they reach the desired crunchiness. Don’t bake so long that they burn.
I haven’t baked them until crunchy, so I can’t say for sure what length of time it will take. Also, due to the healthy fats in peanut butter, they may not become completely crunchy.
Store the homemade pumpkin dog treats in an airtight container, like a zipper baggie.
They should last 5 to 7 days when stored in the fridge, or about 2 to 3 days if stored at room temperature.
Due to these being soft dog treats, they have a higher moisture content than most treats. This will cause them to mold relatively quickly. If you want to keep them longer than 5 to 7 days, it’s best to freeze them.
For more tips on storing homemade dog treats, check out my post How To Store Homemade Dog Treats.
So, if you’re looking for an easy, delicious recipe to make for your dog, try these soft peanut butter and pumpkin treats!
These three-ingredient treats are perfect for your dog. They’ll love the taste, and they’re perfect to use as either a training treat or an anytime treat.
Make some today so your dog can have a taste!
More pumpkin dog treats
Other dog treat recipesPin For Later!
- 1 15oz. can of Pumpkin Puree (not Pumpkin Pie Filling)
- 1 cup Peanut Butter (any brand, no xylitol)
- 2 cups Whole Wheat Flour
Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Mix pumpkin puree and peanut butter
together until combined.
- Add in the flour. Mix well.
- Roll a small amount of dough into a
small ball. Press down with your thumb to flatten into a tiny cookie shape.
- Place on a baking sheet. Repeat
until the sheet is as full as you want it.
- Bake 10 minutes for soft dog treats.
- Let cool. Store in an airtight container, 2 days at room temperature or 5 days refrigerated.
Extra dough can be frozen for later use. It may change in texture and color.