Grain-Free Pumpkin Coconut Dog Treats on a white background

I swore up and down before I became a parent that I’d never be one of “those” people who has a baby and stops giving attention to their pets. My older siblings all warned me. They told me you just don’t have as much “dog patience” when you’re dealing with a screaming baby or tantrum-ing toddler. I scoffed. I’d be different! I’d still dote on my dogs and take them for long walks every single day and never, ever get frustrated with them!

Except…nope. Spoiler alert: the list of things I swore I’d never do before having a child and now do could fill a book. And this one would be on the first page. The truth is: I just don’t have nearly as much margin in my life to give my animals (particularly my dogs) the attention that I once did. Don’t get me wrong, they are nowhere near neglected with their premium dog food, regular vet visits, frequent snuggles, and fenced-in yard. They still lead lovely, happy, healthy lives—just with a little less of me in it.

Two dogs laying on a black and white rug, looking up at a treat being held in the air

I try not to feel too guilty about it (after all, I’m working hard to raise a kind, compassionate, empowered human here!), but there are times throughout the year that I feel like I need to give the puppers a little more love to make up for my absence. And this is one of those times.

This is one of the busiest times of year for me both personally and professionally, which means my already small amount of one-on-one time with the dogs has shrunk. The cure for my guilt? Regularly scheduled long walks with the dogs (it’s literally in my planner) and a totally over-the-top gift basket complete with all kinds of goodies from my local Meijer store!

Tan basket filled with dog treats and toys

Grain-Free Pumpkin Coconut Dog Treats wrapped up for gifting, surrounded by dog toys

The idea for this started when I was browsing the aisles of Meijer killing time before I had to pick up my daughter from school one day. I stumbled into their massive Pets section, and I found a particular toy and thought, “Hey, I bet Ivy would like this!” and it ended up in my cart. And then, because I’m all about fairness, I went to pick up something for our other dog, Rory. And the shopping spree continued until my cart was jam-packed with toys and treats for the girls, and an idea to surprise them with an “I’m sorry I spend so much time playing Legos and so little time taking you on hikes” gift basket.

Shelves of pet products in a Meijer store

I also needed to pick up a few cans of pumpkin puree (because hello: it’s fall), so I popped over to the baking aisle and knew immediately that I had to bake the puppers some homemade pumpkin dog biscuits to go in their basket.

I have a homemade dog treat recipe already on Wholefully, but it uses wheat flour. I created that recipe before our vet recommended both our dogs go on a grain-free diet. It was time to get back in the kitchen and start working on new, grain-free dog treats! I snagged a few more ingredients from the Meijer baking section (including a cute bone-shaped cookie cutter!) and headed home to get started.

Ingredients for Grain-Free Pumpkin Coconut Dog Treats lined up on a counter

What I ended up creating was a treat that not only made the puppies excited but also added a bit of a nutritional boost to their diet! The treats are packed with ingredients that can really help nourish your canine friends like:

  • Eggs: an amazing simple source of protein, especially for pups who may have adverse reactions to other proteins. If you get high-quality eggs like the Meijer True Goodness Cage-Free eggs, you also are giving your dogs a nice dose of Omega-3s, which can help keep your puppy’s coat and skin healthy.
  • Pumpkin: it’s full of fiber, which can help keep your dog’s gut balanced, and has beta-carotene, which is a powerful antioxidant.
  • Coconut oil: helps get much-needed healthy fats to your puppy, and contains compounds that may help prevent cancer.
  • Turmeric and cinnamon: both are natural anti-inflammatories, which is great for all dogs (and humans!), but in particular is a good nutritional supplement if your dog has joint issues like our dog Rory does.

Ingredients for Grain-Free Pumpkin Coconut Dog Treats being mixed together in a glass bowl

Hand using a bone-shaped cookie cutter to cut dough for Grain-Free Pumpkin Coconut Dog Treats

A caveat here: there are tons of (many times conflicting) reports about what and what not to feed your dog. As with all decisions regarding the health of your loved ones, it’s probably best to check with a trained health care professional when introducing any kinds of new foods. A vet can give you a definitive “yes” or “no” on what should end up in your pup’s bowl.

That being said, the ingredients below avoid any products that are well-known doggie no-nos (like, say, chocolate!) and focus on ingredients that are generally accepted as good for doggie-dom. Just like with human food, it depends on the individual. So keep a close eye on your puppy any time you give them a new food or treat. Even though these grain-free dog treats are formulated to be as gentle on their systems and give them as many added nutritional benefits as possible, they still might not agree with some pooches.

Grain-Free Pumpkin Coconut Dog Treats arranged on a white background, with half the treats drizzled with peanut butter

In the recipe below, I include how to make the (adorable!) peanut butter glaze for on top of the treats, but it’s absolutely not necessary. I can tell you from experience that the dogs couldn’t care less if there is a cute drizzle on top of their treats or not. They scarfed both versions equally.

Side-by-side shot of two dogs chewing on rawhide bones

The dogs were very pumped about their gift basket. They ate a few of these homemade treats each, and then each of them grabbed one of the rawhide retriever rolls (their favorite) and happily chomped on them for a few hours. I don’t think they’re feeling so overlooked anymore. I hope your dogs enjoy these treats as much as mine did!

 
IMPORTANT NOTE: I am not a veterinarian, and this recipe has not been approved by animal health professionals. Always check with your vet before feeding your pet any homemade treats.
Grain-Free Pumpkin Coconut Dog Treats on a white background

Grain-Free Pumpkin Coconut Dog Treats

Yield: 4 dozen treats (using a medium-size cookie cutter)
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour

IMPORTANT NOTE: Many people have had problems with this recipe. We have tested it in multiple kitchens and had great results. We continue to retest this recipe to replicate the problems (and fix them!), but in the meantime please read through the comments before embarking on this recipe. Thanks!

Show your pets some love with Grain-Free Pumpkin Coconut Dog Treats, made entirely from ingredients you already have in your kitchen!

Ingredients

  • 1 15-ounce can Meijer 100% Pure Pumpkin
  • 1/2 cup True Goodness Creamy Just Peanuts Peanut Butter
  • 1/2 cup True Goodness Pure Coconut Oil, melted
  • 4 True Goodness Organic Cage-Free Eggs
  • 1 teaspoon True Goodness Organic Turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon True Goodness Organic Cinnamon
  • 1 2/3 cups coconut flour

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the pumpkin, peanut butter, coconut oil, and eggs until smooth.
  3. Add in the turmeric, cinnamon, and coconut flour. Mix until well combined. Let rest for about 5-10 minutes to thicken. Coconut flour NEEDS this time to absorb the moisture. If your dough is too moist, let it sit longer.
  4. Layout a piece of parchment paper and place the dough on top. Then place another piece of parchment on top of that. Roll the dough between the parchment sandwich until the dough is about 1/4” thick.
  5. Remove the top layer of parchment paper, and then cut using cooking cutters. Remove the dough scraps (but leave the cutouts behind), and transfer the parchment sheet with the cutouts directly to a large baking sheet.
  6. Combine the scraps, place between two sheets of new parchment, and roll, cut, and place on a baking sheet.
  7. Bake in preheated oven for 45-55 minutes, or until the cookies are dry and hard. Let cool completely.
  8. Store in an airtight container for up to a month.

Notes

  • This is a very soft dough to work with!
  • For an optional (cute!) glaze, mix together 1/4 cup peanut butter with 2 tablespoons of melted coconut oil. Place in a ziptop bag, snip off the corner, and drizzle on. The glaze will harden in the fridge, but might be a bit soft at room temperature. Keep the biscuits unglazed if planning on packaging.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 48 medium-sized treats Serving Size: 1 treat
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 85Total Fat: 7gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 4mgSodium: 19mgCarbohydrates: 4gFiber: 1gSugar: 1gProtein: 2g

At Wholefully, we believe that good nutrition is about much more than just the numbers on the nutrition facts panel. Please use the above information as only a small part of what helps you decide what foods are nourishing for you.

 

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76 Comments

  1. Thank you for the recipe.I made these today for my dog who has had pancreatitis.
    She is allergic to peanut butter so I used almond butter powder( Barney Butter) to lower the fat content. I also scored small squares bc I use them as training treats. I prefer them to be soft – easier to digest for Grace- I baked them at 350 for 35 minutes.

    1. Hi Elaine! We’ve had at least one reader use a cookie press and report back in the comments that it worked perfectly. If your dough consistency comes out softer, then it may be a great option for you! Please let us know how it works out =)

  2. Hi! Just curious if you have tried popping these in the dehydrator? I have a batch in now and crossing my fingers everything goes great! I had baked some butttt apparently my oven is so hot bc they looked a little burnt , other than that my dogs give them a 10/10!!

    1. Hi Holly! We haven’t tried popping these in the dehydrator before, though we don’t see why it wouldn’t work. Did they turn out well for you? We usually adjust the cooking time or temp if the edges are darker than we’d like. Since every oven is different, taking the temperature down by 25 degrees or reducing the cooking time by a few minutes is a great place to start!

  3. I am wondering how often to give the treats to small dogs as I will be using them in place of a supplement for itchy skin. Thanks!

    1. Hi Holly! We always recommend checking in with your vet regarding questions about what and how much to feed your pup!

  4. Great recipe! Made for my dog who can’t have chicken or wheat. Followed the recipe, let sit in the refrigerator for 30 min, and rolled out between Reynolds parchment paper. Took a few roll outs for all the cut outs. The dough is soft but not sticky. Made 28 4″ candy canes about 1/4″ thick. Cooked 45 min at 350 degrees like the recipe said. Came out firm like a dog biscuit. Will definitely make again.

    1. Thanks, Valerie! We’re so glad you and your pup liked them. We appreciate you taking the time to come back and tell us about it!

  5. I’ve used this recipe 4 times now, and the last two times I tried something new… after rolling the dough (half of it at a time) on the parchment paper, I used my pizza cutter to score the whole slab into small squares. The outside edges finish baking more quickly, but I don’t actually mind that the inner pieces aren’t crunchy; I put a handful of baked treats in the fridge and store the rest in a ziplock in the freezer. When I need more, I grab some from the freezer again. I asked my doodle if he missed the bone shapes and he said “no”…:)
    PS
    I think the 10 minute rest for the coconut flour to thicken up is noticeably important.

  6. Hi, just wondering how they these treats would stay good for, and do I need to keep them in the fridge or are they ok in an air tight container in the cupboard? Thanks 🙂

    1. Hi Katie! As long as you bake them until they’re dry and hard, these treats will store in an airtight container out of the fridge for up to a month. Be sure to let them cool completely before storing. We hope you and your pup love them!

    1. Hi Donna! If you’d like to use this recipe, your best bet would be to make the treats smaller and/or to feed them less frequently. Otherwise, we recommend seeking out a recipe that’s already lower in calories if that’s what your pup needs!

  7. I tried this straight from the recipe however replaced peanut butter with home made maple butter – my dog has early Renal failure so we need to limit her protein intake. These are a great alternative to very expensive treats available and she loves them!

    If anyone else wants to try with maple butter the recipe:

    1 cup maple syrup
    3/4 cup unsalted butter
    Pinch of cinnamon

    Heat the maple syrup + cinnamon in a large pan to 270F, remove from heat and then melt in the butter. Cool down, cover and place in the fridge for a few hours. If it separates you can stir it back in :).