Choosing a flour for your dog treat recipe is an important step, especially if you want your dog to drool for them!
When you decide to whip a batch of homemade dog treats for your best four-legged friend, it seems easy to enough to mix all the ingredients together, cut out cute cookie shapes, bake and serve.
However, since dogs have different nutritional needs and some foods aren’t safe for them, the dog treat recipe that you’re going to is going to be different than baking a batch of cookies for yourself.
The good news is that making treats for your dog is pretty easy and most baking flours are going to be safe for them.
However, not all flour works the same and some dogs will tolerate flours differently.
While not all dog treat recipes will call for flour, like frozen dog treats or dehydrated treats, most baked dog treats will. Flour provides the structure in your dog biscuits. For instance, wheat flour is a common ingredient used in many dog treat recipes and it holds the wet ingredients like eggs, water or bone broth together.
So while most dogs will tolerate flour given in moderation, it’s important to choose a flour that is safe and well tolerated for the dog in front of you.
The most commonly used flour in dog treats is whole wheat flour which is a good option.
My favorite flour that I’ve worked with so far is oat flour.
Let’s take a look at some more common flours used in homemade dog treat recipes.
5 Most Common Flours Used In Dog Treat Recipes
While they’re are surprisingly a lot of flours that you can use in your homemade dog treat recipes, the most common ones are:
- Whole wheat flour
- Oat flour
- Brown rice flour
- Coconut flour
- Almond flour
Whole Wheat Flour
As stated earlier, whole wheat flour is the most common type of flour used when making homemade dog treats.
It’s easy to get, affordable and works well in most recipes.
Whole wheat flour also contains a lot of nutritional value for dogs since it contains protein, carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals, and fiber.
The downside of whole wheat flour is that it’s a grain flour so dogs that are allergic to grain can’t tolerate it.
Oat flour is another great choice for dog treat recipes. You can buy oat flour in most grocery stores but you can also make your own oat flour at home in seconds.
Making oat flour at home is way more affordable than buying it!
Oat flour has 0 calories which makes it a great options for dogs that are counting calories and it’s a good choice for dogs that can’t tolerate wheat flour or grains.
I love make treats with oat flour. I use it alone or I combine it with other flours like whole wheat.
My favorite dog treat recipe that I’ve made combines equal parts of oat flour and wheat flour.
The dough was so easy to work with and it baked great!
Brown Rice Flour
Brown rice flour is used in a lot of store-bought treats and I believe it’s a great choice to use in dog treat treat recipes.
It’s an affordable flour but at most stores it’s a bit more expensive than whole wheat flour.
Brown rice flour is easy to work with and works great in place of white flour and it’s high in iron and potassium. It’s also a good source of fiber, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
The only downside is that it is a grain so some dogs may not tolerate it.
Grain Free Flours For Dog Treat Recipes
For dogs that are allergic to grains, don’t worry, there’s plenty of flours that will work for their homemade dog treats too.
Coconut flour is high in fiber and low in carbohydrates.
It’s a good flour option for dog’s that need to watch their weight but since it’s so grainy it can be hard to work with and hard for some dogs to digest.
It would be a good option to combine with other flours but I don’t use it often because it can cause gas and bloating in some dogs. Since I own a breed that is prone to bloat, I don’t use it often.
Coconut flour is also not recommended for dogs that have IBD, IBS or other intestinal conditions so it’s wise to speak with your vet if you have any questions in regards to coconut flour.
Almond flour is a good choice for dogs that have allergies and need to be on a grain-free diet but it should be introduced slowly and approve by your vet
It’s made from almonds that have been blanched and then grounded into a fine powder.
Almond flour is gluten-free, grain-free, low in carbohydrates and high in plant based proteins.
Almonds also contain healthy fats, calcium, fiber, vitamin E and iron.
Almond is a little more expensive on the grocery store shelves but you can make homemade almond flour!
While almond flour is a great option for making dog treats, it is high in calories so not the best option for overweight dogs.
A few more grain free flours that will work in many dog treat recipes are:
- Chia seed
All Purpose Flour For Homemade Dog Treats
While not the most traditional flour, in a pinch all purpose flour can be used in your dog teat recipes.
Since white flour is highly processed, most people don’t recommend giving all purpose white flour to dogs on a regular basis when there are more nutritional flours that can be used when making dog treats at home.
If you have any concerns about using regular when making dog treats it’s best to speak to your veterinarian.
Most veterinarians that I’ve spoken to advise using unbleached flour in moderation over bleached all purpose flour which is highly processed and some dogs don’t tolerate it well.
Other Types Of Flours
Other types of flours that are used in some dog treat recipes are:
- Rye flour
- Quinoa (can be difficult for some dogs to digest)
- Sorghum flour
Understand Your Flours
The best flour to use when making dog treats is really going to depend on your dog, the ingredients that your using and how you’re going to make them.
Wheat flour or oat flour is a good choice for basic peanut butter dog treat recipes.
The important thing to remember when using any type of flour in your dog treat recipes is that all flours don’t work the same.
Some flours, like gluten free flours, won’t work with liquids the same as white or whole wheat flour.
Gluten free flours tend to soak up more liquid than flours with grain.
If you’re substituting a flour in a dog treat recipe that you found online it’s best to do a trial run because you will probably have to adjust the other ingredients in the recipe too.