My dogs love Trader Joe’s dog treats. You know the ones? Lovely crunchy, crumbly cookies in a variety of flavors. But, if you live in Canada, you know one of the downsides to life in this wonderful country is that Trader Joe doesn’t make his home here.
When I visit the US, one of my stops is always that eclectic grocery store. I buy their newest reusable bag, some three-ginger cookies, and a couple of boxes of dog treats. The bags endure, but the people and dog cookies never last long enough.
I returned from our summer camping trip well supplied, but a few weeks ago we ran out. My dear doggies looked at me soulfully as I broke the last cookie into two pieces and ceremoniously handed one to each. Was it my imagination? Or did they take a reverential few seconds to say grace?
So, no more Trader Joe’s until the next trip south. What to do?
If you’re a regular reader, you know I’ve tried some homemade dog treat recipes. They’ve been good. They’ve certainly been cheaper than store bought. But they haven’t been Trader Joe’s quality.
Better Than Trader Joe’s Peanut Butter Dog Treats
(They’re better because they have real peanut butter in them, instead of peanut butter flavor, whatever that is.)
1 cup peanut or almond butter
2 tablespoons molasses
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup water or milk (or as needed to make a cohesive dough)
Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.
In a large bowl, mix the peanut butter, egg and molasses together until smooth.
In a smaller bowl, whisk the flour and baking powder together.
Add the flour mixture to the peanut butter mixture and stir, adding just enough water or milk to make a dough the consistency of cookie dough.
Knead just enough to form a smooth ball of dough. Roll it out 1/8 to ¼ inch thick and cut into shapes, either with a knife or your favorite cookie cutter.
Place on a greased baking sheet, or one covered with parchment.
Bake for at least 40 minutes, more if your dogs like crunchier treats.
Turn off the oven, open the door a bit, and leave the treats in the oven as it cools so they dry out a bit more.
Once the treats are cool, store them in an airtight container. No need to refrigerate unless your dogs have more self-restraint than mine do.
Be sure to give your puppies a kiss for me.