Homemade Chicken Jerky Dog Treats
Making chicken jerky for dogs is as easy as ABC! It doesn't take too long to make. You can also add a variety of healthy herbs to add flavors and nutrients to the treats. This page will show you how.
With seemingly unending news on tainted chicken jerky dog treats from China and numerous food and treat recalls, many concerned dog parents naturally no longer want to buy any such products from the stores. However, we are talking about chicken jerky here - dogs love it!
Fortunately, making jerky at home is easy, economical, and most important of all, the resulting treats are healthy and safe for our poochies.
If you have a dehydrator, it is a breeze. However, even if you don't, you can still easily make jerky using your oven.
Below you will find a basic chicken jerky recipe, and an "herbal" chicken jerky recipe, which uses different dry herbs on the meat, not only to enhance the taste but also to reap the health benefits of the herbs.
For Dogs with Food Allergies...
If your dog is allergic to chicken, substitute the chicken meat in the recipes with a meat that your dog can tolerate (e.g. turkey, kangaroo, lamb).
Don't know which animal proteins your dog can tolerate? Visit this page to see how to do an elimination diet.
Recipe 1: Basic Chicken Jerky Dog Treats
- Boneless, skinless chicken breasts, or chicken tenders
- Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Clean the chicken meat and remove any fat.
- Cut the meat into thin (1/4" - 1/8") strips. It's easier to cut if you partially freeze the meat.
- If you want the jerky to be more chewy, cut along the grain of the meat.
- Line the strips of meat on the baking sheet.
- Bake at 350°F for 30 minutes, turning them over half way through.
- Turn the oven down to 170°F (75°C) and bake for another 90 minutes, turning them over half way through.
- When the jerky is slightly cool, tear one open to see if it is thoroughly dry inside.
- If not, stick them back into the oven and bake for another 5-10 minutes.
- Store in the refrigerator in an airtight container.
Recipe 2: Herbal Chicken Jerky Dog Treats
- Boneless, skinless chicken breast, or chicken tenders
- Dry herbs, e.g. parsley, basil, thyme, oregano, turmeric, alfalfa, fennel, ginger powder, garlic powder (not sure if garlic is safe for dogs? Read this page to find out.)
Follow all the steps in Recipe 1, except before putting the cut meat on the baking sheet, rub some dry herbs of your choice onto the meat, and then bake as described above.
- Culinary herbs such as thyme, oregano, and basil are good for general health support, and especially for older dogs, as these herbs have antioxidant properties.
- Parsley, dill, and fennel are good for dogs with bad breath.
- Parsley, fennel, thyme, and ginger are good for dogs with gas.
- If your dog has arthritis, alfalfa and turmeric are good combinations.
- For dogs with cancer, turmeric and garlic powder are good choices.
- If you have an older dog (like me...), or a dog with dental problems, try not to make the jerky too dry or chewy (unless you can make your dog wear denture!). Try cutting against the grain of the meat, and baking the strips for a shorter period of time.