Cooking for your dogs, when done right, can be very advantageous for the pet’s health. With the amount of recipes we have here, there’s always something new for you and your pooch to try. But not all homemade dog food recipes will fit every dog (most won’t), and more importantly, a pet owner must pay attention to nutritional value of each dish. Balanced homemade dog food recipes are usually the closest to a healthy doggy meal but still require vet’s assessment.
A word on balanced homemade dog food recipes
“Balance” refers to the type and amount of nutrients. Prolonged feeding of unbalanced meals exposes a dog to a number of health risks and many recipes do not provide enough nutrition for the canine, studies have found. A dog’s balanced diet will contain a sufficient amount of protein, fat, vitamins and minerals, including fatty acids like omega-3.
Do not assume that a recipe that looks nutritious to you will be nutritious for your dog. There’s a number of dangers associated with feeding homemade meals when pet owners feed something that hasn’t been discussed with a vet and specifically adjusted for the dog.
Balanced homemade dog food recipes are often structured in a way to provide a large number of key nutrients (canines need about 50 different nutrients in their diet). When adjusted for your dog, these recipes can be used for longer period of time as opposed to other recipes that may not contain even half of the essential nutrition.
That said, there is not a single completely balanced homemade dog food recipe that will be perfect for every dog. All essential nutrients cannot be added without significantly increasing caloric content. Generally, homemade dog food supplements cannot be avoided to ensure the pet gets all the vitamins, minerals and macronutrients. It’s nearly impossible to pack it all into a dog food meal without making it very calorie-dense.
If you’re about to start cooking for your Fido, to make your job easier, here are 13 balanced homemade dog food recipes that come close to being well-rounded and varied in their nutrient profile. They’re a good foundation to start with, but remember that you should NOT switch your dog to a regular homemade dog food diet without first consulting with a veterinarian; every dog is different and requires a specifically adjusted diet when it comes to homemade meals.
13 Balanced Homemade Dog Food Recipes
1. Stew Surprise
- 2 lbs. boneless chicken (chopped)
- 1 ½ lbs. ground beef
- 1 cup rolled oats
- 12 oz. of vegetable mix (chopped) (Your choice. This is where the surprise comes in.)
- Add chicken and enough water to cover it into a pot. Bring to boil.
- Cover and simmer for 40 minutes.
- Add beef, oats, and veggies and simmer an additional 5 minutes.
2. Beef Stew
- 1 lb. beef stew meat
- 1 small potato (chopped, skinless)
- 1 small sweet potato (chopped, skinless)
- ½ cup carrots, chopped
- ½ cup water
- ½ cup white flour
- 1 tbsp. canola or olive oil
- Preheat oven to 350°.
- Bake vegetables in oven 10 minutes.
- Sauté beef with oil until cooked. Remove the beef.
- Add water and flour slowly into pan. Stir until thick.
- Add beef, carrots, and potatoes.
- Cook 10 more minutes.
- 3 cups of ground beef
- 2 whole eggs (with shells)
- ¼ cup finely chopped celery
- ¼ cup finely chopped carrots
- ½ cup cottage cheese
- ½ cup rolled oats
- Pre-heat the oven to 350°.
- Thoroughly mix all ingredients in bowl.
- Place into loaf pan and bake 35 to 40 minutes.
4. Tasty Crockpot Pork
- 2 pounds pork (deboned and chopped)
- 2 cups asparagus (chopped)
- 2 cups beetroot (chopped)
- 2 cups white potatoes (chopped)
- 1 tbsp. olive oil
- 1 tbsp. ground flaxseed
- 1 cup water
- ¼ tsp rosemary
- ¼ tsp clove
- ¼ tsp basil
- Put all ingredients in crockpot.
- Cook on low 4 hours.
5. Fruity Pork Dinner
- 4 lbs. ground pork
- 1 large sweet potato (chopped)
- 1 large apple (cored and chopped)
- 2 carrots (chopped)
- 1 cup kale (chopped)
- ½ cup blueberries (fresh or frozen)
- 1 cup rice
- 1 ½ cup water
- Add meat, fruits, vegetables, and water to crockpot.
- Cook on low 4 hours.
- Cook rice with directions for your rice pot.
- Mix ingredients together.
6. Chicken and Rice Dinner
- ¼ pound of cooked, skinless chicken (boneless)
- 1 cup of cooked brown rice
- ½ cup of broccoli (chopped)
- ½ cup of peas
- 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil
- Sautee vegetables with oil until soft.
- Mix ingredients together.
7. Chicken Crockpot Medley
- 3 lbs. boneless skinless chicken
- 1 sweet potato (cubed)
- 2 carrots (sliced)
- 2 cups frozen green beans
- 2 cups frozen peas
- 1 medium apple (cored and cubed)
- 1 can of kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 2 tbsps. olive oil
- Place meat in crockpot and add water to cover chicken.
- Add potato, carrots, kidney beans, green beans, and apple.
- Cook on low for 8 hours.
- Add frozen peas and cook for 30 minutes.
- Drain, add oil, mash ingredients.
8. Skillet Turkey Yum
- 8 oz. ground turkey
- 6 oz. peeled potatoes (diced)
- 2 oz. nonfat yogurt
- 7 oz. vegetables (your choice, small bites)
- 1 egg (with shells)
- 1 oz. flaxseeds
- 2 oz. instant oatmeal
- 8 oz. water
- In large sauté pan add water, potatoes, vegetables, and turkey.
- Cook on medium approximately 20 minutes. Stir occasionally.
- Add egg and oatmeal and cook an additional 3 minutes. Stir frequently.
- Remove from heat. Add yogurt and flaxseeds.
9. Turkey Casserole
- 3 lbs. ground turkey
- 1 ½ cups brown rice
- 1 tbsp. olive oil
- 3 cups baby spinach, chopped
- 2 carrots, shredded
- 1 zucchini, shredded
- ½ cup peas, canned or frozen
- Cook rice according to your cooker instructions.
- Heat olive oil in a large stockpot medium heat.
- Add ground turkey and cook until browned
- Stir in spinach, carrots, zucchini, peas and brown rice.
- Cook for 5 minutes.
10. Breaded Salmon
- 1½ cups brown rice
- 16 oz. frozen green peas
- 2 Carrots (shredded)
- 75 oz. canned salmon (packed in oil)
- 2 tbsps. flax seed
- ½ cup whole wheat bread crumbs
- 1 tbsp. chives (chopped)
- Cook rice according to package directions or cooker directions.
- Mix all ingredients together.
- May be mashed if desired.
11. Baked Fish and More
- 2 cod fish fillets
- ½ sweet potato (peeled and cubed)
- ½ cup of ground sesame seed
- ½ cup ground parsley
- 4 tsp sunflower oil
- Preheat oven 350°.
- Boil potatoes in water until tender.
- Put potatoes and cod in baking pan. Place sunflower on top.
- Bake for 35 minutes. Let cool for 30 minutes.
- Place parsley and sesame seed on top of dish.
12. Peanut Buttered Sweet Potatoes
- 3 sweet potatoes (cubed)
- 3 cups peanut butter
- 6 cups water
- ½ cup brown rice
- ½ cup quinoa
- 1 cup lentils
- 1 cup apple cider vinegar
- ½ cup cranberry juice
- ½ cup flaxseed oil
- Bring the water to a boil. Add the rice, quinoa, lentils, and sweet potatoes.
- Reduce heat to low. Simmer for 45 minutes or until soft. Stir occasionally.
- Remove from the heat and mash.
- Add the peanut butter, vinegar, cranberry juice, and flaxseed oil. Stir.
13. Salad Bowl Whip-up
- 1 cup black beans (cooked)
- 1 cup quinoa (cooked)
- ¼ cup squash (chopped)
- ¼ cup spinach (chopped)
- ¼ cup zucchini (chopped)
- ¼ cup apples (cored and chopped)
- ¼ cup pears (cored and chopped)
- ¾ cup yogurt
- 2 tbsp. cream cheese
- Mix ingredients in large salad bowl.
These balanced homemade dog food recipes are just a few of the meals that you can create for your canine. If you keep a variety of these recipes in your pet’s weekly diet and use the right serving size for each meal, you’re likely to hit all the essential nutrient requirements of your dog.
However, even for the most well balanced homemade dog food recipes, you must first consult with a veterinarian or canine nutritionist to ensure that your individual caninewill get everything he needs from these meals; include any essential dog supplements if and as needed.