Meow! These homemade black cat cookies are fun Halloween treats for lucky dogs who happen to cross their paths. Bad luck? Perhaps for the cats… We’ve shared an easy biscuit dog treat dough option below, but similar black cat cookies can made using your favourite roll-and-cut dog treat recipe or adapted as human cookies. As a side note from the blog dogs of Dalmatian DIY, this dough also works great for other black shapes, too. See an example of it in use for edible naughty list Christmas lump of coal dog treats below. Sorry, Santa Paws!
Creating Homemade Halloween Black Cat Cookies
Black Cat Cookie Dough Options
Unlike many natural colours and tints for homemade dog treats, black isn’t something I’ve (yet) made using completely natural add-ins. If tinting a dog treat black(ish), starting with a naturally dark dough can allow you to get create a dark dough with minimal added colourings. The pictured treats use carob powder and molasses. I’ve included the recipe used for the pictured black cat cookies below. If you’re baking for people instead of dogs, dark cocoa cookies doughs could be used for a similar effect.
To boost the naturally dark dough, you can also use a little dog-safe black food colouring. My black cat cookies are actually a deep brown, but the dogs won’t mind! If you want a natural boost, you can try blending coloured add-ins, or experiment with a natural black like food-grade charcoal. I haven’t baked with charcoal, for people or pets. Although it’s considered safe and is included in some commercial treats and recipes, it should be consumed with consideration and care. Charcoal can help remove toxins from the system, but it can also accelerate the removal of desirable compounds like medications. Because of the latter, my charcoal is relegated to our first aid kit.
Creating Cat Face Cookies
If you have a cat plunger cookie cutter that stamps a pattern (like my Christmas plunger cutters), this dog treat dough can be used to make quick and cute black(ish) cats with your plunger. If you have a plain cat cookie cutter (like mine cat face or full bodied), simple cut treats without any extra stamping is a-ok too, of course! See below for details on how I decorated our hand stamped cat face treats.
To shape cats like the treats pictured in this post, you will need a cat cookie cutter (affiliate link), a knife, a skewer or toothpick, and a small circle plunger cutter or other small round object. Alternatively, you can make a simple cat face without ears using a round biscuit cutter.
- Prepare the dough according to your chosen recipe, including any additional tints.
- Roll your dough and brush lightly with a pastry brush or damp clean cloth to remove excess flour.
- Cut cat head shapes and place a prepared cookie tray.
- Press with the tip of a skewer or toothpick to create indents for the eyes.
- Press with the edge of a knife to create indents in the ears. If you’d like the to be full indents instead of just outlines like mine, you can use the tip of a knife sideways instead
- Press with the edge of a knife to create whiskers.
- Press with a small circle cutter to create indents for the nose.
- Bake according to your chosen recipe.
Black Cat Cookie Halloween Dog Treat Recipe
Our black cat cookies were made using this dough recipe, inspired by Halloween molasses candies combined with carob for flavour and colour. The naturally dark brown dough was blacked up a little with a teeny bit of black food colouring (optional as noted above).
- 1/2 cup plain thick-style yogurt
- 2 tbsp blackstrap molasses
- 2 tbsp smooth peanut butter
- 1/4 cup carob powder
- Optional: Black food colouring or suitable dog-friendly natural tint(s) to further darken the dough
- Approximately 3/4 to 1 cup of brown rice flour, plus extra for rolling
Making the Treats:
- Preheat your oven to 180C (or local equivalent) and gather together your baking ingredients and materials.
- Combine yogurt, molasses, peanut butter, carob, and any optional ingredients in a mixing bowl.
- Incrementally add flour, mixing into a cohesive workable dough. The amount of flour required will vary depending on your individual ingredients and any optional add-ins or substitutions. Note that if you are not including the optional ingredients in these treats, you may need to use a little extra flour. Missed the mark? No worries! You can add a little bit of extra liquid, a small amount of olive oil, or additional flour to adjust consistency if/as needed.
- Rest dough (optional but recommended).
- Roll, cut into desired shapes (see above for cat face details), and place on a prepared baking pan.
- Bake for approximately 10-15 minutes. Cooking time will vary with shape/size, so keep an eye on the oven.
- Cool before serving and storage.
Other Black Dog Treat Ideas
As noted in the intro, this dough (or similar tinting techniques) works great for other black shapes. You can use it for other Halloween designs like bats, witch hats, and other spooky cookie cutters. Or try it with a dog shaped cutter for black pups. We also used this recipe to make DIY lump of coal dog treats. As pictured, simple ball and flatten treats or little circles are easy options for making edible lumps of coal for anyone on your naughty but nice list.
Baked Biscuit Dog Treat Making Tips and Tricks
- See our introduction to making homemade baked biscuit (cookie) dog treats for additional information on baked dog treats.
- We don’t include yield in our treat recipe posts because it is very dependent on what the maker decides for treat shape, size, and thickness when they’re baking. We like to bake small batch treats (variety is the spice of life!). You can multiply our recipes if you’d like to bake a bigger batch for frozen storage or to share with furfriends.
- Baked treats can be broken for smaller dogs, or made bigger/smaller. Keep an eye on your time and temperature. The smaller the treat, 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.
- Homemade baked dog treats are best consumed within a couple of days from baking or frozen for longer storage. See our post on baked dog treat shelf life and storage for information and tips.
Recipe and Ingredient Tips and Tricks
- Peanut butter and molasses can both be tricky to measure perfectly. You can lightly flour or spritz your measuring cup/spoon with cooking spray to help measure with less mess. Or simply don’t stress about it. Close enough is good enough. Little variations in ingredients, measurements, temperatures, and other factors are why we like to work incrementally when mixing doughs.
- When using ingredients like yogurt or peanut butter for dogs, take care when shopping to avoid artificial sweeteners, especially xylitol, which is extremely dangerous for dogs. Xylitol may also be labelled as sweetener code 967. I use a no added salt or sugar smooth peanut butter when making treats.
Hungry for more tasty treats? There are all sorts of homemade dog treat ideas in our blog archives. You can use the category and tag labels to find other recipes that might be of interest or use our internal search tools to find something specific. Remember, treats (bought or homemade) are for spoiling your pup in moderation. We share ideas from treats that we’ve made ourselves for our pets, but different animals have different preferences (likes/dislikes), just like people. 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.