While the Midwest hangs in its sticky heat there is still time for cold coffee, ice cream, and other cool treats. Luca’s birthday lands in these dog days, so yesterday we whipped up some frozen goodies to share with her. Grab the blender and treat your pup while they await fall cool-down. (See a past doggy birthday recipe here.)
– 24 oz. yogurt
– 1 banana
– 1/4 cup peanut butter
– 1/4 cup rolled oats
– 1 tablespoon flaxseed meal
– 1 tablespoon brewer’s yeast
– square baking pan, approx. 9″x9″
– 16 Dixie cups
Make sure any kid and puppy paws are out of the way, then blend all the ingredients in a standard blender. If it seems a little too thick, you can add a splash of milk to get things going.
Arrange the Dixie cups in the square pan. Pour the blend into each cup one by one, so they are about 2/3 full. By the time you get to the last one you’ll be able to tell if you need to top them off or redistribute the mix.
Put the pan in the freezer for about half an hour. Remove the pan, and the mix should be semi-firm. Insert small treats into the top of each cup, then put the pan back in the freezer for another couple hours to ensure they freeze completely.
When your trusty canine gets back from a hot walk or run in the yard, invite her up to the kitchen. Grab one cup out of the freezer and remove the wrapping. (Some dogs may not mind licking into the cup, but many will just try to eat the thing whole.) Toss the wrapping and give her the treat. She will lick, chomp, and swallow to her delight.
This is a recipe where you can mix and match things you have on hand. The yogurt is pretty essential for texture and freezing capabilities, but everything else is optional. For example, we tossed in brewer’s yeast because we happened to have it, but that can be kind of expensive to go out and buy just for this purpose. Laura suggested that olive oil could be added to this mix to improve digestive health, and I’m sure you can think of other canine-appropriate ingredients that could be tossed in there. (Also, adding the dog treats to the cups partway through is just an extra way to spoil your pet for a special occasion. Skip it if you’d like.)
A note on quantities: this works just as well with a 32 oz. yogurt, which is standard in a lot of stores. In that case, you could probably increase the oats and PB to a half cup each. You may want to start conservative then add more after an initial blend, though, to prevent gumming up the works.
Hope your pup likes it. Take care.