Friday, 12 January 2018
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{RECIPE} Sardine and Cheese Dog Treats (Naturally Pink!)

Pink bone shaped homemade dog treats

With the chaos and fun of Christmas behind us, it's time for us to start our Valentine's posts, yay! Feel the love, furfriends!  Nothing says love to our boys quite like something super stinky and delicious, and fishy treats are particularly irresistible. Sardines puree to a not-so-appetising greige colour, so these treats get an all-natural colour boost from beetroot powder.  Delicious and nutritious!

{RECIPE} Sardine and  Cheese Dog Treats (Naturally Pink!)

🥄 Treat Ingredients:

1 standard tin of water packed sardines*
1 egg
1/4 cup of low sodium stock or water
1 tsp beetroot powder (optional for colour)
1 tbsp dried parsley (optional)
1 tbsp dog safe dried Italian herbs (optional)
2 tbsp ground flax (optional)
Approximately 1 to 1+1/4 cups of brown rice flour (plus extra for rolling)
Sprinkle of finely grated cheese (optional)

I've used a few different brands of water-packed sardines for various treats and the tins are similar size/volume but can vary a little in net weight (~100-125g). The affect on my doughs has been pretty negligible, and is easily compensated for with slight flour/water adjustments if your treat dough consistency needs a tweak for workability.

Step-by-step making homemade sardine dog treats

🥄 Making the Treats: 

Preheat your oven to 180C (or local equivalent) and gather together your baking ingredients and materials.

Empty the sardines and any packing water in the into into a food processor and puree until smooth. If you need a little liquid to help, you can add the stock and/or egg to the food processor.

Pour into a mixing bowl and combine with the egg, stock, beetroot powder, herbs, and flax. Incrementally add flour until the dough has a nice workable play-dough like consistency. Flour quantity will depending your individual ingredients and options, so work incrementally. If it isn't firm enough, add a touch more flour. If your mixture is looking a bit dry, you can add a little bit of additional water/stock to adjust. Knead through the cheese to distribute. Rest dough (optional).

Roll, cut, place on a prepared baking tray, and bake for approximately 10 minutes.  Cooking time will vary with size and thickness, so keep an eye on the oven.  Cool before storage and serving.

Dalmatian dog eating bone shaped dog treat

Tips and Tricks:
  • Variations in measurements, individual ingredient types, and options/substitutions as well as variations in egg size, ingredient/ambient temperatures, etc. are all  part of why we work incrementally when mixing. 
  • I used chicken stock for these treats. My go to stock for dog treats is simple unseasoned broth saved from preparing homemade food. It can be VERY hard to source ready-made unsalted and unseasoned stock, and it's super easy to make your own (and budget friendly too!).  
  • The treats can be broken for smaller dogs, or made bigger/smaller - just keep an eye on your cooking time - the smaller the cookie, the shorter the baking time. 
  • For a crunchier treat, you can let baked treats sit a while in the cooling oven before removing to get a little crispier or pop the baked treats into a dehydrator. I dehydrated mine and the dogs were sooooo excited sniffing around the kitchen with the fishy teat smell. Me, not so much. Haha!
  • These treats are best consumed within a couple of days from baking or frozen for longer storage. 

🦴 Hungry for more tasty treats?  You can explore from our treat navigation page, hop straight into our homemade dog treat ideas in the blog archives, search the blog from our sidebar, or use the labels below this post to find other recipes that might be of interest. Remember, treats (bought or homemade) are for spoiling your pup in moderation. We share ideas here from treats that we make ourselves for our pets, but different animals will have different preferences (likes/dislikes) and dietary needs. Some pets may have special dietary requirements and/or food allergies/intolerances. If you are ever in doubt or have questions about what's suitable for your pet, have a chat with your trusted vet.


  1. I made these without the cheese or beet. My dog loves them! They are super stinky like you said and she is crazy about them. Thank you. :-)

    1. So stinky! I had random dogs coming up to introduce themselves to my pocket when out walking with my boys (I always carry a few treats on dog walks). Hehe. Thanks for the comment and feedback. :)


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