Holiday Fun Festive Recipes For Your Furry Friends

Holiday Fun: Festive Recipes for Your Furry Friends

As the holiday season approaches, the spirit of joy and celebration fills the air, extending warmth and cheer to every member of our families, including our beloved dogs. We all love a holiday feast, so we’ve curated a collection of pet-friendly treats that are safe and delicious for your four-legged companions. 

Please Note: With any homemade dog treats, avoid sugar substitutes at all costs, feed any human-quality foods in moderation, and consider that some breeds are predisposed to gastric upset or issues such as bloat, which some vegetables can cause. For this reason, it is highly recommended to speak to a veterinarian before feeding any of the following treats to dogs.

Gingerbread Cookies

When we think of holiday treats, gingerbread often stands out as a classic favorite. However, traditional gingerbread, with its rich spices and sweeteners, is unsuitable for our canine friends, especially because of nutmeg, which is harmful to dogs. 

But don’t let this dampen your festive spirit! You can still share the joy of gingerbread treats with your furry companion by adapting the recipe to be dog-friendly. Here’s what you’ll need:


  • 1 ¼ cups water
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • ½ cup molasses
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 3 cups organic whole wheat flour
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh ginger


  1. Start by taking two large bowls. In the first bowl, mix water, olive oil, molasses, and honey. In the second bowl, mix flour, cinnamon, cloves, and finely chopped ginger.
  2. Gently fold the dry ingredients into the wet mixture. Stir them until they are fully combined, forming a dough.
  3. Split the dough into two equal parts. Wrap each part with plastic wrap and place them in the refrigerator. Let them chill for at least 3.5 hours.
  4. Take one portion of the dough out of the fridge. On a flat surface, roll it out to a thickness of about ¼ inch.
  5. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  6. Use your gingerbread cookie cutter to cut out the biscuits from the rolled dough. Arrange these cut-outs on a baking tray.
  7. Place the tray in the oven and bake the biscuits for 10-15 minutes.

Candy Cane Treats

While the traditional candy cane is not suitable for dogs, you can bring its spirit to your four-legged friend with these homemade candy cane treats. These treats not only require very few ingredients, but they also turn out colorful and full of holiday cheer.

As you prepare these treats, think about the space where your pup will enjoy them. For those with small yards, selecting the right fence style is key to ensuring a safe and enjoyable area. A well-chosen fence ensures your dog has a secure space to savor these homemade treats, allowing them to be part of your holiday celebrations.

Here’s how to make candy cane treats:


  • ⅔ cups pumpkin puree
  • ¼ cup creamy peanut butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 cups oat flour
  • Red and green food coloring


  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and set it aside.
  2. In a stand mixer, combine pumpkin, peanut butter, and eggs. Mix on medium-high speed until well incorporated. Gradually add 2 ½ cups of flour, then additional flour as needed, until the dough is no longer sticky.
  3. Remove the dough, knead it with your hands, and divide it into two equal parts.
  4. Flatten one part and add a few drops of green food coloring. Knead until the color is even. Repeat with the second part using red food coloring.
  5. Break each colored dough into 1- to 2-inch balls. Roll each ball into a long, skinny snake. Pair one green and one red snake and twist them together, then bend the top to form a candy cane shape.
  6. Place the candy cane shapes on the prepared cookie sheet. Bake for 20-30 minutes or until the bottoms start to brown.

Turkey Meatloaf

The holiday season is synonymous with hearty, comforting food, and what better way to treat your canine companion than with a festive turkey meatloaf specially prepared for them? Serving this turkey meatloaf to your furry friend is more than just providing a meal; it’s a way to include them in your family’s festive celebrations.

Preparing this meatloaf is a joyful and straightforward process, mirroring the holiday spirit. It also includes a source of protein and other nutritious ingredients. Let’s take a look:


  • 1 pound lean ground turkey
  • 1 ½ cups oats
  • 1 ½ cups grated carrots
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup low-fat cottage cheese


  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Lightly grease a large loaf pan to prevent sticking.
  3. In a large bowl, combine all of the ingredients. Use your hands to mix them thoroughly.
  4. Transfer the meat mixture to the prepared loaf pan, spreading it evenly.
  5. Place the loaf pan in the oven and bake for about 40 minutes or until the meatloaf is cooked through.
  6. After baking, remove the meatloaf from the oven. Let it cool completely before slicing.

Apple Pie “Pup-cakes”

Add a special touch to your furry friend’s training sessions this holiday season with homemade apple pie “pup-cakes.” These delightful treats are perfect for positive reinforcement training, offering a festive and delicious way to encourage good behavior.

The natural sweetness of apples makes these apple pie cupcakes a hit with dogs, ensuring they are both safe and appealing. The texture is soft and easy to break apart, ideal for training exercises where you might need to reward your dog frequently and promptly. Here’s how to prepare them:


  • 2 cups water
  • ¼ cup no added sugar apple sauce
  • ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg
  • 4 tablespoons honey
  • 4 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 cup chopped apples


  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Grab a large bowl and use a whisk to blend the water, apple sauce, vanilla, egg, and honey.
  3. In a separate bowl, mix the whole wheat flour and baking powder. Gradually add your dry ingredients to the bowl of wet ingredients, stirring to combine them smoothly.
  4. Gently fold the chopped apples into the mixture, ensuring they are evenly distributed.
  5. Lightly grease the muffin tins, then spoon the batter into each cup.
  6. Place the muffin tins in the oven and bake for about 35 minutes.

Dog Gravy

As the holiday season unfolds, one of the simplest yet most delightful ways to include your furry companion in the festivities is by introducing them to dog gravy. This savory addition is not just a treat; it's a practical solution for pets who might be growing weary of their regular dry kibble.

Dog gravy can transform an ordinary meal into a special feast, making your dog feel like an integral part of the holiday celebrations. It’s also versatile and can be tailored to suit your pet's dietary needs and preferences. There are numerous ways to make dog gravy, but here’s an easy recipe to get you started:


  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 pound ground chicken
  • ¼ cup chopped carrots
  • ¼ cup frozen green peas
  • 3 cups chicken stock
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch or arrowroot powder
  • ½ cup cold water


  1. Heat coconut oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add ground chicken and cook it, making sure to break it apart, until it’s thoroughly browned.
  2. Add stock, carrots, and peas to the skillet. Cover it, lower the heat, and let it simmer for about 10 minutes.
  3. In a separate bowl, mix cornstarch (or arrowroot) with cold water to create a slurry.
  4. Gradually stir the cornstarch mixture into the skillet, continuously stirring to avoid lumps.
  5. Turn off the heat and let the mixture cool. Transfer the mixture to a blender and blend until smooth.

Chicken Cranberry Meatballs

This recipe of chicken cranberry meatballs not only brings the festive spirit to your dog’s mealtime but also packs a nutritious punch. The combination of chicken and cranberries creates a delightful mix of flavors that dogs love. 

Cranberries, a holiday staple, are rich in antioxidants and vitamin C, making them a healthy choice for your pet. And let’s not forget the chicken–a favorite among dogs for its delicious flavor. Let’s take a look at how to prepare them:


  • 1 pound ground chicken
  • 1 cup frozen spinach
  • ½ cup fresh cranberries
  • 1 ½ cups coconut flour
  • ¼ cup ground flaxseed


  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. 
  2. Prepare a baking tray by lining it with parchment paper, or opt for a mini muffin tin for convenience.
  3. Take a large mixing bowl and add in all the recipe components. Thoroughly blend everything.
  4. Moisten your hands slightly for ease, then shape the mixture into meatballs roughly the size of large walnuts. You can also use a cookie scoop.
  5. Place the meatballs on your prepared tray or tin and bake in the preheated oven. They should take about 10-15 minutes to become firm and turn golden.


As the holiday season twinkles with lights and laughter, our festive tables often feature the classic eggnog, a creamy delight savored by many. However, since traditional eggnog isn’t suitable for our canine friends, why not whip up a special batch of "doggy-noggy."

Doggy-Noggy is an incredibly easy-to-make recipe packed with nutrients that are great for your dog. This holiday treat is a wonderful way to include your furry family member in the seasonal celebrations, offering them something both festive and healthy. Here’s how to make it:


  • 16 ounces of plain, low-fat yogurt
  • 1 unseasoned Chicken breast, boiled
  • ¼ cup green beans
  • ¼ cup carrots
  • ½ cup sweet potatoes (steamed) or pumpkin puree
  • 1 egg
  • 1 ½ cups water


  1. Place all of the ingredients into a blender or food processor.
  2. Blend the mixture until it reaches a smooth consistency.

Final Thoughts

As we wrap up our culinary journey through holiday-themed recipes for dogs, it’s important to remember that these treats are just that–treats. While each recipe has been crafted with your furry friend’s health in mind, they are meant to complement, not replace, a well-balanced and nutritionally complete doggy diet.

Celebrating the holiday season with your four-legged family members brings immeasurable joy and creates lasting memories. In these moments, it’s vital to remember that the most precious gift we can offer them is the promise of a happy, healthy life.

For more insights on maintaining your dog’s health and happiness and for additional tips on how to enrich your pet’s life, we invite you to visit our website.

About the Author

Maria Isabela Reis is a writer, psychologist, and plant enthusiast. She is currently doing a Ph.D. in Social Psychology and can't help but play with every dog she sees walking down the street.

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