Articles & Guides
What can we help you find?

7 Instagram-worthy dog dessert recipes for birthdays and beyond

These dog dessert recipes are easy to make and will have your furry friend begging for seconds.

7 Instagram-worthy dog dessert recipes for birthdays and beyond

It’s your dog’s birthday, or maybe they’ve hit a new training milestone and you want to do something special. If we humans celebrate with cake and sweet treats, why shouldn’t our precious pooches?!

However, when it comes to dog dessert recipes, there’s a major caveat: All of the Instagram-worthy treats you likely want to recreate from The Great British Baking Show aren’t suitable for pups. Your furry friends need recipes that are tailored to them — in other words, they need to be canine-friendly.

Looking to celebrate your dog with a sweet confection? We’ve rounded up seven dog dessert recipes (a.k.a. pupcakes) that look incredible and are completely safe for pups. And before you whip anything up, be sure to check out our crash course in dog baking no-nos. Then decide which pupcake flavor will have them begging for seconds!

Dog treat ingredients to avoid

If you’re going to prep food for your animals, you’ll need to be well-versed in all the harmful ingredients out there, because the good health of your BFF is what’s most important. For a full breakdown of how some of the off-limits ingredients below can make your pet seriously ill or upset their stomachs, visit the ASPCA’s website. Don’t feed your dog the following ingredients:

  • The sugar substitute Xylitol
  • Grapes
  • Raisins
  • Nuts, especially Macadamia
  • Mustards or seeds
  • Chocolate
  • Added sugars
  • Rosemary
  • added fats, like butter, lard or shortening
  • Anything caffeinated, like coffee
  • Garlic
  • Onion
  • Chives
  • Yeast dough
  • Large amounts of salt
  • Milk and dairy products
  • Alcohol
  • Citrus

It’s also wise to read the labels of ingredients you use and even the ready-made treats you buy.

“Garlic and onions are toxic to dogs in large quantities and readily used in many brand-name treats but can cause red blood cell issues in dogs,” says veterinarian Dr. Sarah Lavery.

Lavery also recommends pet parents steer clear of raw meat-based foods. “They could compromise the health of people and animals, especially if immunocompromised — think of a young child being wiped in the face with raw chicken… a dog’s tongue will readily transfer bacteria in the form of a kiss,” she says.

Marcia Lain, the founder and owner of Dog City Bakery in Marietta, Georgia, says, “I try to stay away from sugar.”

“I use fruits and vegetables as my liquids in dog cakes. Not only does it make the cake moist, it’s packed with vitamins,” Lain says, sharing that her go-tos are blueberries, raspberries and carrots.

Now that you know what not to serve, grab your apron and get ready to get your hands dirty with these delicious dog desserts

7 dog dessert recipes pups will love

1. Peanut butter pupcakes

diy dog desserts
Image via Veena Gowda/Instagram

Dogs and peanut butter — they have an instant connection. Fancy ingredients are nowhere to be found in this peanut butter pupcake recipe from Crazy for Crust, which features a rich, creamy, peanut-y frosting (the AKC says peanut butter is safe for dogs in moderation, since it’s rich in natural fat — but always make sure it doesn’t contain Xylitol, which is toxic to canines). To make them, simply dump the ingredients in a bowl, stir and bake.

For the dreamy frosting, blend banana and peanut butter — and a dog biscuit, like this one from Veena Gowda, is the cutest cherry on top!

2. Peanut butter and banana pupcakes

dog dessert recipes
Image via Jen Woodhouse

Isn’t it amazing when something you almost threw away (like the two overripe bananas sitting on your kitchen counter) can be refashioned into something sweet for your sweetie? Your pet will go wild for these peanut butter banana pupcakes from Jen Woodhouse. Top with an optional yogurt, cream cheese and honey frosting. Warning: You will be tempted to lick your fingers.

3. Apple spice pupcakes

diy dog desserts
Image via Courtney Cable/Instagram

Forget the pumpkin spice, we’re all about apple crunch — especially when it comes in the form of this delish pupcake recipe from Miss Candiquik. Guys, it features applesauce and chopped apples. Yum! No pup will be able to resist!

4. Sweet potato and apple pupcakes

diy dog desserts
Image via Cha’s Pupcakes/Instagram

They’re called sweet potatoes for a reason! The naturally delicious vegetable is considered an excellent source of fiber for dogs and, as you know, tastes great to boot. Perfect for Thanksgiving or simply as a way to thank your pooch for all the love and adorableness.

One sweet potato pupcake recipe from The Speckled Palate calls for a few other ingredients, such as honey, applesauce and rolled oats. And — yum alert! — applesauce and cream cheese frosting.

5. Blueberry pupcakes

diy dog desserts
Image via Pok Pok Pocky/Instagram

Fresh or frozen blueberries, honey and cream cheese are just some of the standouts in this blueberry pupcake recipe from Staying Close to Home. But what takes the cake is the ground kibble it calls for (crushed in a food processor or pounded in a Ziplock bag). Just dump the kibble into the mix until well combined. Bake for at least 15 minutes and let cool. Top tip: Don’t forget to set aside some blueberries for decorating!

6. Carrot pupcakes

diy dog desserts
Image via Zhivago Chairman Miao Taj Tatiana/Instagram

These carrot pupcakes from Pawsome Recipes are chock full of healthy ingredients, despite having a delicious dog yogurt icing on top. And fun fact: Gnawing on whole carrots can help keep dogs’ teeth clean! So, while the pupcakes are baking for 15 to 20 minutes, give your pup a stick or two to munch on so you can prep the Greek yogurt and carrot frosting.

7. Zucchini pupcakes

diy dog desserts
Image via Sydney Boukari/Instagram

If you’d rather refrain from grain, due to potential allergy or health concerns, these grain-free zucchini dog treats from Kol’s Notes are worth the effort. Keep in mind, though, you may need a thorough grocery shop to track down a few ingredients you don’t typically use every day, such as onion-free chicken stock, tapioca flour and garbanzo bean flour.

If you’re looking for DIY treats that are less cake and more cookie, check out our list of 26 homemade dog treats. Woof!