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Grain-Free Pizza Treats for Pups (and Peeps)

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It’s a dog’s life.

It’s all well and good to have a Mama who makes treats, but for woof sakes, when she starts EATING them too, well that’s too much. What is a dog to do?

The Mama claims that today’s homemade dog treat recipe actually started as a human recipe. She says that these were her treats first and that we should just count ourselves lucky that she deigns to share with us.

HUMPF.

I don’t know who is correct, but I suppose I should just eat my treats and not worry about it too much.

Besides, it’s hard to complain too much when the Mama is making her boring quinoa “people crackers” into tasty pizza dog treats.

 

These all started as quinoa crisps that were just sprouted quinoa, water and not much else. Over time, Mama started adding herbs and spices to them to make them extra delicious. One day, I was sitting there, not even begging and the Mama tossed one to me. It was a hit! After that, Mama was obligated to share. I mean, really, she’d have to be pretty hard hearted to keep hogging these tasty treats all to herself!

 

 

IMG_3994b1This weekend,  Zachary & Henry from BZ Dogs were woofing all about their hunt for Pizza Bones and I just knew exactly what I wanted to do for Tasty Tuesday. Mama’s quinoa crisps would make fantastic pizza treats.

Now, we all know the Mama is a bit of a crazy dog lady. She thinks these look cute as woof as teeny tiny dog pizzas, but let’s face it. That’s a lot of work. The bone shaped treats were much easier AND they taste exactly the same.

Mama made one batch of these treats for dogs with dog-friendly “pupperoni” and a second batch for the peeps with human pepperoni. (Don’t tell Daddy he’s eating dog treats though, OK? He gets cranky when Mama feeds him dog food!)

 

 

Grain-Free Pizza Treats for Dogs

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 c. dry quinoa
  • 1/2 c. shredded low fat mozzarella cheese
  • 2 tbsp. tomato paste
  • 1 tsp. dried herbs (we used basil & oregano)
  • a few sticks of Dog-friendly "pupperoni" - we like the grain-free, novel protein dog treats from Wild Bites
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil (for greasing pans) or silicone baking trays
  • + up to 1/4 water (if you're making the fancy pizza looking treats)

Instructions

In a fine mesh colander, rinse quinoa several times. The outside of this seed is covered with a bitter substance called saponin which will leave your treats tasty nasty the quinoa is not rinsed clean.

In a medium bowl, cover the quinoa with a generous amount of water and leave it to soak overnight (or at least 8 hours). Use the mesh colander to drain off the excess water.

Fancy Pants Way:

Preheat oven to 450F. Line a muffin tin with parchment liners, brush with olive oil or just use silicone trays. (We tried it all three ways, but we liked the silicone the best. Plus, you can get these cute dog bone silicone baking trays. You could even just line a baking sheet with parchment and spoon these out like you would pancakes.

In a blender, food processor or [Magic Bullet|http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001WAKFDY/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B001WAKFDY&linkCode=as2&tag=kols-20) blend together the quinoa, 1/4 c. water, 1/4 c. of the mozzarella cheese and the herbs. Blend together until smooth.

Scoop a tablespoon of mix into each muffin cup, using the back of the spoon to smooth it out. You only want a thin layer in the bottom. If it's too thick, you'll have trouble getting it to bake through and stay crunchy. Place in the over and bake for 15 - 20 minutes, until golden brown on the bottom. Flip treats and return the trays to the oven for an additional 10 minutes.

Sprinkle the top of each treat with the remaining cheese and treats. (For human friendly snacks, omit the dog treats, unless you're into that kind of thing then have at 'er, I guess.) Return the trays to the oven fo 5 - 10 minutes until cheese has melted.

Easy Way (That Tastes Exactly the Same)

Preheat oven to 450F. Line a muffin tin with parchment liners, brush with olive oil or just use silicone trays. (We tried it all three ways, but we liked the silicone the best. Plus, you can get these cute dog bone silicone baking trays. You could even just line a baking sheet with parchment and spoon these out like you would pancakes.

In a blender, food processor or [Magic Bullet|http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001WAKFDY/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B001WAKFDY&linkCode=as2&tag=kols-20) blend together the quinoa, 1/8 c. water, tomato paste, mozzarella cheese and the herbs. Blend together until smooth.

Scoop a tablespoon of mix into each muffin cup, using the back of the spoon to smooth it out. You only want a thin layer in the bottom. If it's too thick, you'll have trouble getting it to bake through and stay crunchy. Place in the over and bake for 15 - 20 minutes, until golden brown on the bottom. Flip treats and return the trays to the oven for an additional 10 minutes.

Kol's Note: since these are soft treats, they should be stored in the fridge. To make them even crunchier (and extend how long they'll keep), leave the treats in the oven, turn it down to 150F and bake until the treats are crisped all the way through (or pop them into your counter top dehydrator overnight.)

 

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