Last summer I created a dog biscuit recipe using spent beer grains after we homebrewed (find it here). We haven’t homebrewed in a few months, but friends of mine over at Tin Cannon Brewing Company—and brewmaster Bobby—let me come by to pick up some unfermented wort and grains for my artisan beer soaps. I had plenty of grains left over after a couple of soap batches, so I thought I’d treat my dog Hubert to some cookies and updated my initial recipe using pumpkin puree. Pumpkin is loaded with vitamins and nutrients that are beneficial not only for their insides, but also for their hair and skin!
Worth noting: Initially give these to dogs in moderation and when you are going to be around them for a while. The spent grains have a lot of fiber content, and particularly with older dogs or those with more sensitive systems, you want to make sure they don’t get the runs. Additionally, pumpkin is a great source of fiber, too, so again…monitor their intake. Hubert has absolutely no problems with these; he is five.
- 4 c spent grains (moist, not dried)
- 3 c unbleached flour (typically I use rice flour; this time I used regular wheat)
- 1.5 c natural peanut butter (lower sugar and less additives)
- 2 eggs
- 1 c pumpkin (not the spiced pumpkin for pie, but plain pumpkin puree)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
This is going to be a large, thick batter, so use a big batter bowl. After organizing my ingredients I placed the pumpkin in a mixing bowl. Next I added the eggs, then fully mixed.
Add in the peanut butter and hand mix so everything is incorporated. Set the bowl aside.Now it’s time for the dry ingredients. In the big bowl, measure out the spent beer grains and add the flour a little bit at a time. Mix until the flour fully coats the grains.
Now you’re ready to add the pumpkin mixture to the grains. At first I used the silicone spatula, but then I started using my hands and it made the job so much easier.
Line up the cookie sheets, put out the cookie cutters you want to use and flour the surface to roll out the dough. Take a portion of the dough out of the bowl and form into a ball. (Sorry for the blurry pic; hands were a bit of a mess)
I rolled out the dough to about 1/2-inch in thickness and used two different bone-shaped cookie cutters. Or you can make balls and press with your finger tip. Keep adding small amounts of flour to your rolling pin and sprinkled on top of the dough to alleviate any sticking.
Once you have the shapes cut out, carefully peel away the excess dough and use a flat spatula to pry up the shapes. Place them on the cookie sheets—no shortening, spray or oil is needed; I used metal cookie sheets and nothing stuck.
Repeat rolling out dough and cutting shapes. Because of the texture of the grains, the shapes will have some rough edges as cookie cutters won’t completely sever the grains.
- Place in 350-degree oven for 30 minutes
- Reduce oven temperature to 225 and bake for 1 hour 30 minutes
- Turn off oven, keep biscuits in oven for at least 15 to 20 more minutes
Remove biscuits from oven and place them onto a cooling rack. They literally slide off of the cookie sheets.
As they sit on a cooling rack, they will harden. Once completely cooled, place biscuits in air-tight containers or bags. They should be good for about two weeks at room temperature. Or pop the sealed container or bags in the freezer, where they will stay fresh longer.