Leftover Turkey Dinner Dog Treats

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Lou loves turkey dinner too. There’s so much in the way of turkey scraps, mashed potatoes, veggies and gravy in our fridge – not to mention gallons of stock – that I couldn’t not turn some of them into treats. Dogs are the very best kinds of beings to cook for – they’re infinitely grateful, and care not at all about the texture of the cookies you make, or if they’re a few days old.

You needn’t worry about dog cookies being chewy or crispy or soft in the middle – the harder they get, the better. And you can turn anything your dog loves into a cookie – peanut butter, tuna, cheese… even a can of sardines (so good for their coat!) – but turkey dinner leftovers blend into a perfect, non-offensive-to-the-human-baking-them sludge that can be turned into treats of any shape or size.

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Dogs are the best taste testers (they love licking everything) but also the worst (they love licking everything) – when I wrote In the Dog Kitchen (did you know I have a book of cookies for dogs? I do!) every dog friend I offered samples to gobbled them up and looked expectantly for more. They were all pretty much keepers. Easiest recipe testing ever.

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I made these by blending chopped turkey – some meat, some skin and some grisly bits pulled off the bird – with some veggies and a bit of stuffing and gravy, and a big enough splash of stock to help things move along in the food processor. Add an egg, turn the turkey sludge out into a bowl, and add enough flour (I like using a whole grain flour, like barley, oat or wheat) to make a dough you can handle. Because dogs don’t care about aesthetics, you could roll little balls and flatten them with the tines of a fork – don’t sweat it if you don’t have a tiny milkbone-shaped cookie cutter. We’re the only ones who care about that stuff.

If you bake these until they’re hard and dry, they’ll last a long time – and look pretty adorable packaged up in glass jars for sharing.

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turkey-dinner-dog-treats-2

Leftover Turkey Dinner Dog Treats

Recipe link

  

October 11, 2016

Ingredients

2 cups chopped turkey, veggies and maybe some stuffing

gravy (if you have any)

chicken or turkey stock or water

1 egg

2-3 cups whole wheat, barley or oat flour

Directions

1Preheat the oven to 350F. Place your leftover turkey bits, veggies, stuffing, potatoes - whatever you have, but make sure it's at least half turkey - in the bowl of a food processor and add enough gravy and stock to process it into a mixture with the texture of thick, chunky pasta sauce or gravy. Blend in the egg, too.

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3Pour the mixture into a bowl and add enough flour to make a workable dough. Roll it into balls and press down with the tines of a fork on a cookie sheet, or roll or pat out on a floured surface and cut into biscuit shapes. Place on a parchment-lined sheet and bake for 20 minutes, or until golden. To get them nice and hard, turn the oven off but leave them inside as the oven cools - when they're completely dried out, they'll last indefinitely. If they still have some moisture to them, keep them in a sealed container like you would any other cookie.

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5Makes about 3 dozen treats, depending on their size.

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4 comments on “Leftover Turkey Dinner Dog Treats

  1. Tara B.
    October 12, 2016 at 8:51 pm

    Great idea! Maggie, our 1 year old Boxer, will be very happy with this recipe. Woof!

  2. C.L. Langtry
    October 14, 2016 at 3:18 pm

    Aren’t onions supposed to be bad for dogs? Most people put onion in the stuffing.

  3. Melanie Little
    October 16, 2016 at 2:23 am

    If the dog or cat eats a small amount of onions every day for many days, he may gradually develop anemia over weeks to months.

    You could try making some stuffing without onions, my dog was pretty big and they never bothered him the occasional times he had them mixed in foods. I think the recipe looks pretty good and I’ll be making a batch for the dogs, but I will leave out any onions just in case.

    • Julie
      October 17, 2016 at 3:34 pm

      Hey, thanks for catching this – and sorry for the slow reply! Yes, good advice! :)

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