How to Make 3-Ingredient Dog Treats

Whip up these 3-ingredient dog treats in under 15 minutes.

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The way to a dog’s heart is through the belly, and nothing tells your furry friend you love them like homemade dog treats. If making your own dog treats seems daunting, this is the recipe for you. Using food you probably already have at home, you can make 3-ingredient dog treats shaped like delicious little “meatballs” for your pup.

The treats don’t use added sugars or preservatives, so the nutrition factor is higher than in most store-bought versions. Plus, you can shape these little round dog biscuits into any size you like, depending on the size of your dog.

What Kind of Peanut Butter Is Safe for Dogs?

When it comes to your pup, not all peanut butters are created equal. While peanuts are perfectly safe—and most dogs enjoy the flavor—some peanut butters include sugar and xylitol. Sugar isn’t great for dogs, and xylitol is toxic to them. Make sure to pick a peanut butter with no xylitol or added sugar for these 3-ingredient dog treats. You can even buy peanut butter specially formulated for dogs.

3-Ingredient Dog Treats Recipe

How To Make Three Ingredient Dog Treats IngredientsKate Morgan For Taste of Home


Editor’s Tip: If your dog loves cheddar dog treats, you can add 1/4 cup shredded cheddar as a fourth ingredient.


Step 1: Peel and slice the apple

Use an apple slicer or a sharp knife to slice up your fruit. I used apples because I had some on hand (and Olive, my Rottweiler, loves them). If you don’t have apples, you can substitute another fruit or veggie like pears, peaches or carrots.

Step 2: Cook the apple

Add the apple slices and two tablespoons of water to a small saucepan with a lid. Cook over low-medium heat for 10-15 minutes, or until apples are soft enough to mash.

Step 3: Mash the apple

Use a fork to mash the apples to an applesauce consistency. Some chunks are OK, but the smoother the mash, the easier it’ll be to mix in.

Step 4: Combine apples, peanut butter and oats

In a large bowl, mix the 3 ingredients together until they’re well-combined. The mix should be thick and a little sticky.

Step 5: Roll into balls

Roll a small amount of the oat mix between your palms to make a “meatball.” The size depends on the size of your dog. For larger pups, use 1/2 or 1 tablespoon of mix per meatball. For smaller dogs, use 1 teaspoon.

If too much mix is sticking to your hands as you roll the balls, refrigerate the bowl for 15 minutes to firm it up.

Step 6: Bake, cool and serve

Place the 3-ingredient dog treats on a parchment lined baking sheet and bake at 350°F for 15 minutes, until firm. Cool, then let your furry taste tester give them a try. My dog Olive loved these: The peanut butter kept her chewing long enough to really enjoy it, and then she came sniffing for more.

Tips For Making 3-Ingredient Dog Treats

Three Ingredient Dog TreatsKate Morgan For Taste of Home

This recipe comes together super quickly, but if you’re especially short on time, you can cook your apples (or whatever kind of fruit or vegetable you’re using) in the microwave. Just put the slices in a microwave-safe bowl with 1/4 cup of water and cook on high a minute at a time until the apples are fork-tender. Then drain the water and continue with the rest of the recipe.

How Long Do the Treats Last?

These treats will last up to a week in the refrigerator, and they freeze well, too. For long-term storage, spread them in a single layer on a tray and freeze them individually. Once you’re frozen dog treats are ready, dump the tray into a freezer bag and store up to 6 months.

Can Humans Eat These Dog Treats?

Sure, and you might actually like them—just one more thing you and your dog have in common!

Kate Morgan
Kate is a freelancer whose work has appeared in the New York Times, The Washington Post, National Geographic, Woman's Day, Harper's Bazaar, BBC, Popular Science, and many other publications.