Pumpkin & Flax Seed Good-Dog Treats

This was a post which almost didn’t get written. You see, I’ve started to get a bit self conscious about over sharing. Not in that creepy “I feel the need to let everyone know what sort of bathroom rituals I have or funky positions we just tried” kind of over sharing. I’ll leave those to the uninhibited TMI peeps.

I’m talking about not wanting to be one of those who are so overly obsessed that they have to tell, and show, and tweet, and facebook every single detail of their new cat/kid/grandkid/puppy. Now if you are talking about a puppy, feel free to inundate us with your lore, I can nearly guarantee we’ll be rapturous listeners. However I don’t want to make that assumption towards everyone else. You know what they say about assumptions.

So count this as a fair warning given, this is about to become a puppy-centric post and I may be slightly fanatical about our two. Those who follow my Instagram will know, being that  my IG MO is basically puppy pics and travel moments (the former dominating lately.)

With that cleared out of the air, if you are still reading you are either: A: Cool with the dog sharing. B: A glutton for punishment. or C: Skimming over the text to look for pretty pictures and a recipe. Any of those makes you fair game for my puppy swooning.

As most of you know, we have ourselves a new addition to the WORC household, our Rhodesian Ridgeback puppy Lexi. Although it is getting harder and harder to call her a puppy.

A few of Todd’s IG iphone Shots

In a mere couple months she’s gone from this tiny little thing we could pick up in one hand to the size of  calf which needs to be bear-hugged in order to pick her up (which I still do – but Diane can’t. Freaks Lexi out ’cause she thinks momma is gonna drop her.) Seriously. She is almost as tall and long as Sierra, although she is only about half the width.

Lexi is at that goofball puppy teenager stage. Her body is becoming athletic and strong with occasional moments of pure clumsiness. Like yesterday when she came racing into the house, couldn’t make the turn and slid 10 feet right into the water bowls.

Distinctive Ridgeback and hound traits are emerging, warmingly reminding us of Dante, our previous Ridgeback. First time we took her into the vet, in a rising curious voice, he asks “So why a Ridgeback?” thinking we may not be knowing what we were in for. But with a twinkle we reminded him that our first pup was a ridgie.  We know their potential for trouble and love it.

“What are some of these traits?” you may so curiously ask.

For one, Ridgebacks tend to be quite clean, even though they usually hate water. She is a very clean puppy, making potty training fairly quick and painless. She has already learned how to ring the bell to let us know she wants to go outside if the door is closed. But if the lawn is wet, you can guarantee she’ll walk the long way around on the pathways.

Instagrammed Shot – Puppies! Attention!

Instagrammed shot – Asian Pear was this little Sugar Foot’s morning snack!

There is also a distinctive knack for independent stubbornness. Point your finger at her and command “No” and she’ll just look at you with a glimmer, then nibble on your finger. Our shoes and socks are regularly found strewn about the house and garden. But 9 out of 10 times it is only the right shoe. Don’t ask us why or how she knows. It is just her preference.

And then there is the super obsessiveness over food. She loves food. I mean really, really loves food. Every meal when when kibble bowls are being walked outside, she will race ahead doing one victory lap. Then after she reaches the front of the food bearer, she will sproing (a ridgeback thing of jumping straight up in the air, all paws staying more or less level with one another), rotating herself in mid-air until she is front and center of the food. And since she knows the rule of no eating till everyone is sitting, when she lands it will be directly into a sit, ready for food service.

After meals there will be at least another 30 minutes of roaming the garden, looking for other goodies to snack on. Right now it is the persimmons.

So with such a independent minded, smart, food focused dog, it is time to build up on the training treats. Much cheaper than the store bought ones, and the pups seem to love them more, I will bake up big batches at a time. And with all the pie pumpkins in the stores, pumpkin flax dog biscuits seemed like the perfect fall training treat.


Instagrammed Shot – Our pupppy pumpkins. At least we didn’t make them wear costumes. This year.

Dog Biscuit Cutter Sets
Here’s our favorite cutter sets. Obviously they have many uses beyond puppy treats, but ours tend to see a lot of action in that department. We love how all of these sets store, ’cause nothing drives us nuts more than messy kitchen drawers:
Cuisipro Heart Cutter Set – Set of 5. Snap together for easy storage Nice heart shape and easy to handle and press.
Fox Run Bone Cutter Set – These are the bone shaped cutters we love the most. Fun shape! Set of 3, comes in a handy storage tin.
Kayaso Round Cutter Set – This is our favorite round cutter set. Great selection of sizes. We’ll use the smallest for slightly larger than kibble sized training treats.  

Pumpkin Flaxseed Dog Biscuits

Total Time: 1 hour


  • 2 cups (@ 1 pound or 455g) Pumpkin Puree *see Notes
  • 1/4 cup (55g) packed Brown Sugar
  • 3 Eggs
  • 1/3 cup (80ml) Vegetable Oil
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) Water
  • 1/2 cup (85g) Flax Seeds
  • 3 1/2 cups (440g) all-purpose Flour
  • 3 1/2 cups (420g) Whole Wheat Flour


Preheat oven to 350°F. Line 3 sheet pans with parchment paper.

  1. Mix together pumpkin puree and sugar. Add in eggs. Mix in oil and water until incorporated.
  2. Stir flax seeds into batter, then mix in flours. Dough should be fairly stiff.
  3. Roll out dough to about 3/8" thick. Cut into desired shapes (for a quick stick shape, cut strips using a fluted pasta cutter). Place treats on lined sheet pans.
  4. Bake for about 40 minutes or until light golden and fairly hard (they will harden a bit more when cooled). Set aside to cool and liberally pass out to deserving puppies.

Recipe Notes:

To make pumpkin puree, roast a pie pumpkin on a sheet pan at 375°F for about 1 hour or until soft when sides are pressed. Allow to cool, then split, scoop out seeds and remove flesh from skin. Puree flesh and store in an airtight container in the fridge.

Recipe Source: WhiteOnRiceCouple.com.

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Recipe Note for Salt: All recipes containing salt are based on kosher or sea salt amounts, not table salt. If using table salt, reduce the amount used to taste.



{ 47 comments… read them below or add one }
  1. Paula

    Hi, what is a pie pumpkin regarding making dog treats? TY

    1. Todd & Diane

      Hi Paula,

      They are pumpkins which are grown to be cooked and eaten, instead of made into Jack o Lanterns. They’ll often be sold as “Pie Pumpkins” if the grocery doesn’t list the specific variety.

  2. Joette Poole

    Hello….we too have a Rhodesian…..she is now 11. LOVE LOVE LOVE her. I enjoyed your post and photos so much. I was looking for recipes for dog treats and happened upon your posts. She is EXACTLY as you describe yours. Amazing dogs! and yes…..she absolutely HATES the water, and having her nails trimmed. Thank you for the photos and the posts about your Dante and Lexi.

  3. lholmesbbs

    Nice post! Like that you used flax seed.

  4. Louise from Wagginglicious.com

    These are so cute! I love the smell of pumpkin roasting and my boy is going to demolish these!!!!

    I have recently started a recipe sharing site (food photo site) specifically for pet treats, as I found the big food sharing sites, didn’t always accept treats for our fur babies!

    I would love to have you submit your recipes and photos.

  5. Ozkar

    The only thing I would have an objection too is the sugar, but this can be taken out and the dog still loves it, I do have to warn people though (nothing to do with this recipe which is great) BEWARE OF PEANUT BUTTER dogs can be allergic to peanuts too!! mine was and I did not know well I knew when I gave him the biscuits be careful!! (severe vomiting, no control over his muscles he collapsed very scary)

  6. AlyssaAprilwannabe

    so 2 cup pumpkin puree, right? It’s a little bit confusing right there, no offense 🙂

    1. Todd & Diane

      Yes. 2 cups of puree. The other info is for those who want to make the puree from fresh pumpkins.

  7. Amy

    Where did you find tiny bone cookie cutters? I have a Pom and have looked everywhere. We will be tryingvthesevtreats for sure 🙂

    1. Angie

      I bought at hobby lobby a bone shape and paw print shape

    2. Todd & Diane

      We got them a long time ago at Sur La Table. Not sure if they have them still. We have seen similar on Amazon.
      Good luck.
      T & D

  8. Sam

    Thanks for the recipe! I had been looking for dog treats for my
    Standard Poodle, because she’s a little picky 🙂
    I wasn’t sure about this one but she really likes these!
    Thank you!

  9. Cheddar's Mommy

    Pumpkin and flax are also great for dogs who don’t express their own anal glands well (most dogs do during a normal bowel movement). The fiber from pumpkin and flax gives them a little extra help.
    Will definitely be trying this for my Cheddar dog. He loves pumpkin treats!

  10. Sarah at LolaThePitty.com

    These look awesome! I’ll leave out the brown sugar because the pups won’t know the difference – I love adding flax/chia/etc. to our pups’ diets. Sharing 🙂

  11. Ann

    Thanks you for the recipe!
    There is a favorite simple, quick and healthy recipe.
    Peanut Butter Treats
    • 2 tablespoons corn oil
    • 1/2 cup peanut butter
    • 1 cup water
    • 1 cup whole wheat flour
    • 2 cups white flour

    Preheat oven to 350°. Combine oil, peanut butter and water in a bowl. Add Flour 1 cup at a time, then knead into firm dough. Roll dough to 1/4 inch thickness and cut with small bone shaped cookie cutter. Bake at 350° for 20 minutes. Makes 2 1/2 dozen.

    You may be interested to see my collection of recipes of homemade dog treats (snacks, biscuits, cookies and bones) :

  12. Ti

    I can’t wait to try this recipe! Making them for my own 2 pups and testing out recipies for a fundraiser for our dog rescue group.
    I had read though, that flax seeds were not digestable and in order to get the benefits from it, they needd to be ground. I’ve been grinding our pups fresh flax for their meals. Would love to know that I can just skip this step & give them whole seeds! Had you heard that dogs can break dogs the seeds (or have you noticed signs of them not breaking down…)?

    1. Frobozz Dingle

      You are right…to get any benefit from flax seed it needs to be ground…and the fresher the grind the better

    2. White on Rice Couple

      We haven’t noticed any whole remnants, but haven’t inspected too closely either. ;). The next doggie biscuit recipe I want to work on will have ground flax, but I just haven’t gotten it down to what I want yet. Hopefully it will come soon.

  13. Faerl Marie

    Thanks for the great recipes- ill be giving them a try tonight. One thing- I’ve heard and read that persimmon seeds can be toxic to dogs if eaten in significant quantities. Maybe give that some research if you’re fortunate enough to have a happy persimmon tree dropping fruit this autumn.

    Faerl Marie

  14. Kazinmich

    I am going to try to make this with oatmeal flour substituded for the wheat flour. I don’t feed my dogs wheat and wondered how they will turn out, also if I use a rice flour instead of the all purpose, if that would work too. I have been making all my own treats for a year now for my two bullmastiffs. Thank you for the new recipe!

    1. White on Rice Couple

      We would love to hear how they turn out. We’ve been thinking of trying other non-wheat flour variations as well, but haven’t yet.
      Good luck!

  15. Lisa

    This is great! And I agree with everyone that there are never too many dog pictures. How long do the treats keep and how do you store them?

    1. White on Rice Couple

      They are baked until dry, so ours have lasted a month, maybe more. We’ve yet to have a batch go bad before the pups could eat them all and we usually do double batches.

  16. Natalya

    I smiled when I came across this post tonight… not only am I a fellow “dog-obsessed” human – my pup is ALSO a Rhodie – and I (an illustrator & designer with a dog-blog) posted my own version of “Pumpkin Pup-treats” just about a month ago! Slightly different ingredients, but boy they look similar – and I’m positive the dog’s don’t notice any nuances! Here’s our spin on these tasty little treats:


    Very excited to find your site – we’ll be keeping tabs on your beautiful work – and definitely on gorgeous Lexi! Cheers, Natalya & Oscar Dog

  17. Heather Tate

    I love the info. about your dogs. The recepies are awesome also! I plan on making many of them next yr. for my little sisters English Bulldog Nutmeg.

  18. nakedbeet

    These look great and I’m planning on making them for my friends (with dogs) for the holidays. How many do these make approximately?

    1. White on Rice Couple

      Usually for us it is about 3 sheet pans full, but it depend on how thick you roll them out.

  19. Brandon @ Kitchen Konfidence

    Very cute 🙂 I think I’m going to make these for my boyfriend’s pug!

  20. Greta

    Seeing the pics of Lexi makes me wish for another Ridgeback! I loved mine and they were such good family dogs! I will have to try out the treats for my present pups.

  21. Destiney Yates

    OHHH i love pumpkin recipes i have about 5 pumpkins worth of puree in my freezer. Now i have something to do with them! Our doggie loves treats… maybe a little to much since she is just over the puppy stage she is starting to pack on a few extra pounds.

  22. alexandra @ sweet betweens [blog]

    please please puhleeeease capture Lexi’s sproing on video and share?

    I’ve recently gotten in the habit of making our two pups [Rosey the chow/pit and Ramble the Boston TerrOR] homemade treats. Feel better knowing what’s in them and that it’s all under my control. So these? These will be next, once we finish the most recent batch of bacon goodies I made.

    thanks for continuing to share glimpses of yours + Diane’s lives on your blog. you both continue to be such a great source of inspiration and motivation!

  23. cindy

    My husband and I are just as insanely in-love with our pups–who are no longer pups, but whatever. We taught our larger dog, Jezebel, to open the lever-handled door herself, but our Chihuahua mix, Luxe, has no hope for reaching it… I love that you have a bell on your door for Lexi and Sierra.

  24. Christine

    Dog pics are fine any time…love them! Such cuties. Thanks for the recipe, was just thinking of making some treats for Blue!

  25. Elain Ponce De Leon

    Living in an apartment with 3 kiddies, we don’t have room for a dog but lucky for us, our neighbor has a brindle colored Frenchie named Bosco. When my neighbor is at work, we “babysit” and I am enjoying watching my kiddies grow up with a dog in their lives. I bake treats for him sporadically and this is definitely a recipe that I will use to bake him goodies.

  26. Shut Up & Cook | The Attainable Gourmet

    Rule #1 – There is no such thing as too many puppy stories.
    #2 – These treats look fabulous.
    #3 – Ther is no such thing as too many puppy pictures.
    #4 – I am totally making these for my dog.
    #5 – Love this!

  27. Leah

    As a fellow dog person I love the doggie pictures and stories. It seems there are so many blogs where people are happily embracing their own parenthood in blog form that it’s nice to find a blog with people who share my love of the pooch, photography, and food. I am careful when I find myself about to compare my dog to their kid. “Oh, Gus does that all the time”, doesn’t go over too well. Can’t wait to try these.

  28. Stefanie @ Sarcastic Cooking

    I always feel weird about posting too many dog pictures too. So, I know what you mean. I love these little treats, they will be perfect size for my pug! Great pumpkins!

  29. Georgia @ The Comfort of Cooking

    I love making homemade dog biscuits and these look so perfect! Your pups are adorable!

  30. Meegs

    These look good. Would it be possible to do with all whole wheat flour? And/or with less sugar?

    1. White on Rice Couple

      Sure. If doing just whole wheat flour, I would start with cutting back the amount by about 1/2 cup, then slowly incorporate more if needed. I would think it would be fine without the sugar too. We add it ’cause our boxer sometimes gets a weird head shaking thing and it is thought to be caused from low blood sugar so we use the treats as a way to give her a little bit of sugar. If you try them with the changes we’d love to hear how it turns out.

  31. susan

    Such cute dogs. Such cute treats. I just made Lola a batch of treats for her 1 year bday and not only did she love them – but her friends did as well. You are good parents!

  32. JulieD

    I love love this, Todd! I used to make dog treats every year and give them out to co-workers with dogs. I was just telling Curtis the other day that I need to do it again this year. 😀 I love you sharing pictures of Lexi and Sierra on instagram. #pleasedontstop

  33. Pam

    Total rubbish! (that any of your reader’s would think you’re creepy or over-obsessed!) LOVE your pictures of Lexi and Sierra and thank you for this great recipe, or I should say Sophie (my standard poodle) thanks you. Pam

  34. Tina

    LOVE the dog sharing! This post made me laugh out loud as we have a boxer who happens to do many of the same things little Lexi does, namely the sproing! Love it! Thanks for sharing this recipe as well 🙂

  35. Angie @ Big Bears Wife

    Thanks for the recipes, I’m sure that our puppies will love these! Love the pictures of the “babies” Ours are not quite as big as your pups haha, but you’re doggies are quite adorable,.

  36. Cynthia A.

    Wow, the pumpkin flaxseed biscuit recipe looks so good I might be tempted to eat one myself!

  37. Emily

    We are fairly new dog owners. Never thought I’d love a four-legged creature as much as I do our Coco (a Pomeranian, Yorkie, poodle mix). Totally pinned this so we can bake her up some goodies for under the Christmas tree.

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