(Brandy Arnold in DIY Food for Dogs, Lifestyle w/ Dog - Dogington Post)
Standing in the pet food aisle of your local grocery store, staring down the endless array of treats, chews, and snacks for your dog can get overwhelming – especially if you start reading those long lists of un-pronouncable ingredients! Whether your dog, like mine, gets an upset stomach from rawhide chews, or you just prefer an all-natural, healthy, or vegetarian alternative to store-bought goodies, try making your own sweet potato dog chews at home! If your dog is a chewer, or if he prefers a crunch, this recipe from Dog TreatKitchen is totally customizable – and totally delicious!
DIY: Sweet Potato Dog Chews
Since it’s one of the sweetest of all the vegetables, just like the name implies, you’ll have no trouble getting your dog to try this dog treat recipe.
Making your own all natural dog treat is an excellent alternative to rawhide.
- 1 Large Sweet Potato, washed & dried
- Preheat oven to 250° F
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Cut off one side of the sweet potato lengthwise, as close to the edge as possible. Cutting the side of the potato first allows you to then turn the potato onto this flat surface that you have just created. Having a stable area to rest the potato will make it easier to cut the potato into slices. Don’t discard that first piece, it comes out just as yummy as the rest!
- Cut the rest of the potato into 1/3″ slices, no smaller than 1/4″.
- Place them on the prepared baking sheet.
- Bake for 3 hours, turning half way through.
- Cool completely on a wire rack.
Tips & Techniques
- Choosing a Sweet Potato – You want to find a potato that is as uniform in shape as possible. This will aid in the drying process as the pieces will be similar in shape and will cook through at the same time. Also, try to find one that has fewer blemishes or bruises. While you’re picking one to make a sweet potato dog chew, go ahead and pick some for the family, too!
- Knife Skills – If you are a pro with a knife, you may not need to cut off one side to stable your potato. If that’s the case, then by all means skip that step. However, for those of us who are more handy with a pastry bag, than a knife, having a stable surface makes all the difference.
- Cutting Even Pieces – One way to ensure your pieces are as even as possible, is to first rest your knife where you would like to cut. Then press down gently across the entire length of the knife. Make a slight cut, then press firmly on your knife from one end to the other, and cut all the way through.
- Degree of Chewiness – Baking for 3 hours results in a soft, but chewy dog treat. If your dog prefers more of a crunch, then bake for an additional 20-30 minutes. When you take the sweet potatoes out of the oven, they may at first appear to be too soft. Let them cool completely on a wire rack before you decide whether or not to bake them longer. This is because they will continue to dry or harden while cooling.
- Parental Supervision – This is not a dog treat recipe that we recommend for the kids. Please use caution while using a sharp knife, whether you are young or young at heart.
Find more great do-it-yourself recipes for your dog here. Have you ever tried making your own sweet potato dog chews? Did your dog love them as much as mine does? Tell us about it, and your favorite other recipes in the comments below!