We’re feeling festive and frosty, furfriends! These naturally coloured marbled frozen yogurt Christmas Pupsicle Dog Treats are pawfect for keeping cool during sizzling summer celebrations. That’s right. While our norther furfriends might feel more like lapping a hot dogolate or nesting into an ugly Christmas sweater, our southern hemisphere New Zealand festivities and be down right toasty. Frozen pupsicle treats are a droolworthy summer snack, and adding natural colours makes these simple Christmas dog treats look extra special. Here’s how to make marbled Christmas pupsicles using simple natural colouring ingredients for extra festive fun.
Drool for Cool
Before we start mixing things up, a little reminder to make sure frozen treats are suitable for your specific pup. Our boys have always loved frozen treats, especially in the summertime. But every dog is different. Just like people, some dogs don’t like cold treats. If your dog doesn’t enjoy frozen goodies, there are plenty of other tasty treat options in our recipe archives. Other dogs might love them a little too much. Highly aggressive chewers or dogs with dental issues may be better with softer treat options to avoid accidently damaging their teeth.
Colourful Christmas Dog Treats
Adding pretty shapes and colours to holiday treats is more for the humans giving them than for the dogs receiving them. Dogs don’t see colour the same way as humans do, plus smell and taste are always the most important factors. But we can still enjoy a little extra fun making and giving special holiday treats. Adding tasty, healthy, naturally coloured ingredients is a great way to create special treats without extra artificial colours. As an added bonus, many dog-friendly natural food colourings have yummy scents and flavours, too.
Individual colours are great for variety. You can make a single coloured treat, like these gorgeous golden fresh turmeric gummies, or a mixture like our small-batch naturally coloured Christmas gummy dog treats. You can also combine colours (and flavours) by layering, like our Neapolitan frozen yogurt dog treats, or marble a colourful combo like marbled biscuits or these marbled Christmas pupsicle treats.
Pupsicle Recipes and Options
Any dog-friendly liquid or puree can be used to make pupsicles. With frozen dog treats the cold does all the work, so it’s easy to customise recipes and create combinations. Check out our introduction to making frozen dog treats for tips and ideas. If you’re tinting the pupsicles in a variety of colours, as shown, you’ll want to use a pale or white base. The pictured pupsicles were made with natural greek yogurt, but I think something like our apple pie pupsicle recipe would also be a simple and delicious option. When using colouring ingredients in a base, white will tip the colours into more pastel shades, but the pinkish red and green in these bones still looks very festive. If you’re making separate colours, there are lots of tasty fruits and veggies that can be mixed to create colours on their own or boosted with add-ins.
Making Marbled Christmas Pupsicle Dog Treats
Naturally Coloured Marbled Frozen Yogurt Christmas Dog Treats
Ingredients can be easily scaled to suit your mould (see tips and tricks below). New to treat making and need a little extra help? Looking for ideas on different ingredients and combos? See our pet chef help for a handy introduction to making frozen dog treats.
- Plain yogurt, kefir, or suitable alternative (see tips)
- Dog-friendly natural colouring ingredients. I used spirulina powder (green), beetroot powder (red), and plain yogurt (white) for colours while making these marbled Christmas pupsicle treats.
- Optional: Water, stock, or other dog-friendly liquid(s) to dilute.
When making pupsicles, diluting thick mixtures can make filling your moulds a little easier. You can also do this if you’d like the treats to be a little less indulgent. Shhh… Don’t tell the dogs! When making marbled pupsicles, I like to start with thick mixtures (undiluted greek yogurt and colourings here) and then dilute the mixtures a little for the final filling. The thick dollops create distinct colours and the diluted final fills help avoid unwanted air bubbles or gaps. I’ll talk more about that in the instructions below.
I went out to harvest some berries from our garden to puree into in my red, but Humphrey and his visiting furfriends had pretty much cleared out every ripe berry. Rascals! I managed to find two little berries to mash with a tiny splash of plain cherry juice, just for a extra scent and flavour, but the pupsiles would be a-ok with just the base yogurt and natural colourings. Plain diluted yogurt or kefir are some of our our quick and simple favs for pupsicle treats.
Making the Treats:
- Combine ingredients for each individual colour in separate bowls. Mix well. Do not add extra liquid to further dilute the mixtures at this stage, unless necessary. As explained above, keeping things a bit thick will help to keep the initial dollops apart so you can create a more distinct marble of different colours.
- If using a flexible silicon mould, place it on a portable solid surface of some sort before filling. I like to use a cutting board. This makes it easy to transport and place in the freezer. It’s also perfect for tapping before freezing (see below).
- Incrementally spoon the mixtures into the mould. Try to spread the dollops apart and create distinct “bloops” of colour, especially on the base and sides. I like to rotate between mixtures, adding a bit of one colour to each cavity in the mould, then the next, and slowly build things up. For the final few additions, I dilute what’s left of my mixtures to help make sure it fills and seeps everywhere.
- Optional: Using a knife or skewer, give your filled moulds a little swirl for extra style. Take care not to accidently damage your mould.
- Gently tap the mould (with the solid surface) on the counter to help fill any hidden voids and level off the upper surface of the mixture.
- Freeze thoroughly before removing from the moulds. Transfer the treats to a suitable container and return to the freezer until serving.
Pupsicle Dog Treat Making Tips and Tricks
- See our comprehensive post on making and storing frozen and chilled dog treats for additional info and tips for frozen treats.
- Flexible silicone food moulds (affiliate link) or ice-cube trays work great for making fun little shaped treats. If you want a precise measure of a specific mould’s capacity, you can do a test pour from a measuring cup of water. Volumes for pupsicle mixtures are very easily scaled, and you can customise the type and amount of flavour add-ins to suit your pet.
- Store and serve straight from the freezer. See my messy container in the last picture in the treat-making collage above? As much as I like having things in neat stacks, leaving pupsicles offset or a bit loose in their container makes it easier to pop them free one at at time for future snacking. Stacks are more prone to sticking.
- Frozen treats will melt quickly, especially in warm temperatures and can be messy while your pup is licking merrily. You might prefer to serve pupsicles with a bowl or outdoors, especially where tints are involved!
- As always, moderation, furfriends! No, those are not all going straight to Humphrey. Haha! Humphrey had guests when I was taking these photographs, and each got a treat outside before the rest went into the freezer. You can see our pal Cooper’s black legs in the background of the photo below and their other furfriend was sitting very near just out of frame.
Recipe and Ingredient Tips and Tricks
- Check the ingredients carefully when shopping for dog treat ingredients. Be particularly careful to avoid unwanted ingredients, like sugars or artificial sweeteners. Xylitol (also identified as sweetener E967) is particularly dangerous for dogs.
- Not keen on dairy? Coconut milk, pureed dog-friendly fruit or veggies, or anything pet-safe, including simple water, can be used to create your own custom blend. As noted in the post above, pupsicles are really easy for ingredient substitions and adjustments.
- Looking for different holiday colours? It’s easy to swap the tinting ingredients to create different colour and/or flavour combos. See our post on natural food colourings for dog treats for alternative tinting ideas.
Happy Howlidays, Furfriends!
Christmas is almost here! This is our final post for 2022, but we’ll be back again in the new year with tons more DIY dog fun! We’ll be checking in on our social media during the holidays, too. Give us a follow, if you’re not already one of our social gang. Keep an eye out for holiday posts, pics, and behind the scenes stories. Merry barkmas and happy howlidays to all!
Hungry for more tasty treats? There are all sorts of different DIY dog treats here on the blog. Woofs! 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 or dislikes) and dietary needs. Some pets may have special dietary requirements and/or food allergies or intolerances. If you are ever in doubt or have questions about what’s suitable for your pet, have a chat with your trusted vet.