Happy almost howlidays, furfriends! It’s treat baking time! Today’s post shows how to bake a segmented dog treat bar. These homemade dog treat bars would be pawesome for little homemade Christmas presents, party favours, or other special gifts for furfriends and their owners. And, of course, presents need wrapping. We’ve got some easy festive DIY dog treat bat wrapping ideas for you, too.
Cute and Convenient DIY Dog Treat Bars
Segmented dog treat bars are a great way to make cute but convenient homemade treats. They don’t require any rolling and cutting into shape, and they’re really easy to store. Cutting a pan of treat dough is a quick and simple option for making bite-sized dog treats in bulk. These homemade dog treat bars are a slightly cuter take on the same easy concept.
Like a candy bar, the scoring lines on our homemade dog treat bars are only partial thickness. The treat bars stay whole until broken apart for easy bite sized serving. They can be frozen and defrosted for personal use (the bar shapes stack great in containers) or wrapped for gifting. Wrapping does double duty here, creating homemade dog treat gifts that don’t require jars, containers, or bags.
Making Homemade Dog Treat Bars
Choosing a Treat Dough Recipe
Almost any favourite biscuit or cookie style dog treat dough can be used to make homemade dog treat bars. Roll and cut doughs have the best consistency for shaping, even if you don’t need to roll and cut these bars. For good results, choose a recipe with a sturdy handing and firm baking consistency. Don’t use any chunky ingredients that could make shaping or segmenting difficult. For the pictured treats, I used a fruit and yogurt dough with a boost of gelatin and flax. I also added finely shredded dry cooked chicken to make things extra irresistible.
Shaping the Dog Treat Dough into Segmented Bars
Once the dough is ready for shaping, divide it into bar sized portions. You can split the dough to suit whatever bar size you’d like. My bars were hand formed into rectangles, and I suggest doing this either on a non-stick mat or bakers paper for easy movement to the baking pan. Keep the bars reasonably thick to reduce the risk of breakage and/or cracking. I used the side of a butter knife to help with flattening and squaring my edges, and the flat back to indent score lines in the top of the bars.
Individually formed bars will look uniform, but you could make a large sheet of dough, bulk cut into segments, and separate into bars. They could be separated before or after baking along score lines. See our simple shortcuts for making baked dog treats in any size for details and a visual example. There may be rough edges where the bars are separated, but the bars will otherwise look very similar.
Baking and Storing the Dog Treat Bars
The prepared treats can be baked according to your chosen recipes, noting that cooking time will vary depending on size and thickness. With most of my dog treats, I like to bake lightly and then dehydrate. Totally optional, of course.
Once prepared and fully cooled, the treat bars can be wrapped for gifting or stored for later use. Shelf life depends on the treat recipe, how it was made (including whether it was dehydrated), and the storage conditions. Since homemade treats don’t use preservatives, much like human baked goods, they’re typically best consumed within a few days of baking, carefully stored, and/or frozen for longer-term storage. I freeze most of our treats. You can read more in our FAQs, Tips, and Tricks post about homemade baked dog treat shelf-life and storage.
Wrapping Dog Treat Bars as Holiday Gifts
As a fun option for gifting, bar shaped treats can be wrapped like candy bars. Depending on your chosen materials, this can help with shelf-life and storage as well as handling. It’s also quick, cute, and inexpensive. You can buy (or make) specialised bar wrappers, including custom printed wrappers, but you can also use readily available household supplies to DIY a cute wrapper and size it to suit your treats.
DIY Dog Treat Bar Wrappers
Supplies and Materials
The materials and supplies used in making the treat bar wrappers as shown include:
- Foil or foil wrappers (inner wrapping)
- Patterned paper (outer wrapping)
- Paper cutter (optional)
- Tape or glue
- Ribbon (optional)
- Gift tags or punches for DIY gift tags (optional)
The foil inner gives a classic candy bar look, but also seals the treat bar for better storage and handling. I used plain aluminium foil (reusable or recyclable in some areas, if clean) as my inner wrapper, but you can also buy special foil sheets through candy making suppliers or online. Those are easier to fold into prefect pretty shapes, but most are paper backed (not recyclable).
Making the Wrappers
My inner wrappers are carefully folded aluminium fold, as noted above. My outer wrapper is holiday patterned paper. It’s a scrapbook sheet, but it’s not thick. The paper was still easy to wrap and fold. I cut it to size and secured it at the back with tape (glue, if you prefer).
Making the Gift Tags
As an added touch, I used the paper off cuts with punches to create matching tags, then secured these with gold ribbon. Easy, portable, and cute. Prefer a printed tag? Check our archives for freebies, including mix-and-match labels and tags for dog treats and other presents.
Alternative Treat Bar Wrapping and Gifting Ideas
Hugging both trees and dogs? As lower waste options, the inner foil could be swapped for paper (similar look, but not as sealed), the foil can be omitted and the bar simple gift wrapped (in a recyclable paper), or you can swap the wrapping with a reusable food wrap. You could also tuck a bar (or several) into a gift bag, gift box, treat jar, treat bag, or other wrapping instead of individually wrapping like candy bars. As much as my dogs love ripping up paper wrapping and boxes, we wouldn’t let them straight at any type of wrapped treats, lest they try to bite right into the treat, wrapper included. Or eat the entire giant treat bar instead of just a moderated portion. Eyes on the prize!
Safety first, furfriends! We recommend that the humans be in charge of safeguarding and unwrapping any tasty treats. That way, the treats can be shared in moderated portions and cheeky rascals can’t accidentally (or intentionally) eat any of the wrapping. Celebrate safe.