What Your Pup Can Eat on Thanksgiving: 6 Dog-Safe Recipes

Published: 11/20/2020

Thanksgiving is near, and it's time to feast! You may be wondering what foods your woofer can join in on eating. Luckily, many Thanksgiving favorites are safe for pups in moderation, though there are some foods to watch out for.

What foods are okay in moderation?

Pumpkin 

Pumpkin pie is a Thanksgiving staple for many Americans, but the high sugar content isn't great for dogs. With that being said, adding pumpkin to your dog's diet has many benefits. When baking for Thanksgiving, save a few scoops of sugar-free pure pumpkin puree for Fido. You could also bake the puree into treats with a few extra ingredients. 

Boneless, skinless turkey

Baked turkey is an excellent source of protein and healthy fats for pupperinos, but an unattended turkey can cause a host of problems. Poultry bones are brittle and pointy and can lodge in the digestive tract. Only give your pups turkey meat without bones. You may be tempted to pass your pooch some turkey skin, which is fine as long as it isn't heavily seasoned. A lot of all-purpose seasoning contains high salt levels, which can cause health problems for canines.

Sweet potatoes

Plain baked sweet potatoes are another excellent treat for festive fur-babies. Sweet potatoes are even considered one of the best foods for dogs with digestive problems. Just avoid toppings like marshmallows, butter, and sugar, but a sprinkling of cinnamon is "pawfectly" fine

Green beans, peas, and carrots

Unseasoned green beans are another holiday delicacy that doggies can dine on. Roasted, low-sodium canned, and raw green beans are all suitable for canines. Unseasoned peas are another protein-rich food pups can eat on Thanksgiving. Green peas, snow peas, and English peas all get the vet seal of approval for their high levels of vitamins and minerals. 

Raw, boiled, or roasted carrots are all fantastic (and healthy!) treats for hungry puppos. If you prefer some seasoning on your carrots, wait until after you dish up your doggy's plate to add it. Don't feel like preparing two types of carrots? Just toss Fido a whole carrot to gnaw on while you finish cooking the meal.

What Thanksgiving foods should dogs avoid?

Sugar and artificial sweeteners  

Avoid foods made with sugar and artificial sweeteners. Large amounts of sugar can cause a dog's blood glucose levels to go out of wack and make them more likely to become overweight. Artificial sweeteners and sugar alcohols like xylitol are incredibly poisonous to dogs, even in minimal amounts. Xylitol can trigger a life-threatening reaction within 10 minutes of consumption. 

Chocolate

Theobromine in chocolate can cause strain on a canine's heart and can even be deadly in high doses. The amount of theobromine that chocolate contains depends on the manufacturer and type of chocolate, so you never know how it could affect your pup. It's best to avoid the dessert table at all when making your pup's plate.

Dishes containing onion

Skip anything with onion. Dressing, stuffing, potato salad, and casseroles often contain onion, and while it makes the food taste delicious, it also makes the dish risky for dogs to consume. A build-up of n-Propyl disulfide, a molecule found in onions, can destroy red blood in canines, so it's best to avoid foods containing onion altogether.
6 dog-friendly Thanksgiving recipes

Want to make a tasty Turkey day treat for Tucker? Try these simple dog-safe recipes!

Turkey and vegetable doggy loaf

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb ground or chopped Turkey

  • 1/2 cup pre-cooked brown rice

  • 1/2 a sweet potato

  • 1/4 cup fresh cranberries

  • 1/2 of zucchini

  • 1/2 cup green beans

  • 1/2 cup of spinach

  • 2 tbsp minced parsley

  • 2 tbsp turmeric powder

  • 1 egg

  • coconut oil for greasing

Instructions:

Cook the rice according to the package directions and let cool. Preheat the oven to 350 F. Combine all the ingredients in a large mixing bowl, then puree in a blender. Use enough coconut oil to grease a baking pan and transfer the mixture to the pan. Finally, bake for 30 minutes or until solid and cooked through. Slice, serve, and enjoy! The doggy loaf can be frozen for up to 6 months.

No-bake pumpkin peanut butter balls

Ingredients:

  • ¼ cup pure pumpkin puree (no sugar or artificial ingredients added)

  • 3 cups oats

  • ¼ cup natural peanut butter (no xylitol)

  • ¼ cup coconut milk

Instructions:

Reserve 1/2 of a cup of oats off to the side. Then, place all other ingredients and the rest of the oats in a large bowl, then mix. Next, portion out the treats with a mini scoop and form it into a ball. Roll the balls in the remaining oats and place them on a baking sheet in the fridge. Let chill until firm, then enjoy. The pumpkin peanut butter balls can be frozen for up to 6 months.

Turkey and veggie bake

Ingredients: 

  • 1 cup raw green beans

  • 1 cup raw carrots

  • 1 cup frozen peas

  • 1 cup cooked boneless and skinless dark meat turkey

  • ½ cup of coconut oil

Instructions:

Dice the carrots, green beans, and sweet potatoes into pea-sized pieces, then place them in a mixing bowl. All the vegetables must be similar in size so that they cook evenly. Place frozen peas, diced cooked turkey, and turmeric in the mixing bowl. Melt half of the coconut oil in the microwave. Pour the oil over the mixture and mix thoroughly. Transfer the mixture into a coconut oil-greased baking dish and bake at 350 F for 30 minutes.

Crispy roasted green beans

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup raw green beans

  • 1 tablespoon of melted coconut oil

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350 F. Cut the green beans into 1-inch pieces and toss in a bowl with melted coconut oil. Lay the green beans flat on a parchment-lined baking sheet and roast for 20 minutes, turning once midway through.

Cheesy canine crisps

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup mild cheddar cheese shreds

  • 3 ½ cups whole wheat flour 

  • ½ cup low-sodium green beans (canned)

  • 1 ¼ cups low-sodium beef broth

  • ¼ cup unsweetened coconut milk

  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

Instructions:

Heat the oven to 350 F. Mix the grated cheese with the dry ingredients. Blend or mash the beans in a separate dish. Pour in the wet ingredients and the oil into the mashed beans. Form a hole in the middle of the cheese and flour mixture and pour the wet mix inside. Work the dough with clean hands until it's uniform in consistency. 

Dust your work surface with flour, and continue to fold and knead the dough until firm. Use a rolling pin to flatten the dough until uniform in thickness. Cut with cookie cutters. Spray a baking sheet with cooking oil spray and put the crisps on the sheet. Brush the tops of the crisps with beef stock and bake for 30 minutes. The crisps store wonderfully for up to 6 months in the freezer.

Sweet potato chewies

Ingredients: 

  • 2 sweet potatoes

Instructions:

Preheat your oven to 250 F. Peel your sweet potatoes and then cut them into french fry shapes. Place the potato sticks on a parchment-lined cookie sheet in a single layer. Roast the potatoes for 3 hours until golden and chewy.

Happy Turkey Day from all of us at Wag!

Want more do's and don'ts of what pups can eat on Thanksgiving? Check out our Thanksgiving foods and dogs guide. From the Wag! family to yours, we hope you make beautiful memories with your furry (and not-so-furry) family this Thanksgiving!