homemade dog food
Homemade Dog Food contains a healthy balance of protein, carbs, fiber, and fat and is filled with essential vitamins and minerals to keep your dog fit. Made with all-natural, wholesome ingredients and so much better than a store-bought bag.
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Table of Contents
  1. Healthy Homemade Dog Food
  2. Why We Love This Homemade Dog Food Recipe
  3. Ingredients
  4. Substitutions and Additions
  5. Recommended Tools
  6. How to Make Homemade Dog Food
  7. Tips
  8. Storage Tips
  9. Frequently Asked Questions
  10. Other Easy Homemade Recipes for your Dog
  11. Homemade Dog Food Recipe

Homemade Dog Food is the easiest way to make healthy, nutrient-dense meals for your furry friend, and is especially important if you have a pet who suffers from food allergies, skin problems, or gastrointestinal sensitivities.

This recipe takes mere minutes to prepare and is filled with a proper balance of rich protein, whole grains, and vegetables–the perfect wholesome combination of people food for pups without using any artificial or processed ingredients.

homemade dog food

Healthy Homemade Dog Food

This Homemade Dog Food Recipe is a simple and cost-effective way to ensure that your dog remains healthy and fit and is so easy to make by mixing brown rice with ground chicken and fresh vegetables.

A traditional doggie diet of processed kibble lacks nutritional value, but when you make your own dog food from scratch, you know exactly what you are placing in the pet bowl; it’s pure wholesome human food that’s fit for canine consumption.

Whether you’re a new pet parent or have a senior dog with special dietary needs, this DIY recipe contains an appropriate proportion of protein, complex-carbs, fiber, and fat, plus vitamins and minerals, to fuel your pup in a healthy way.

And while you may be thinking that making additional meals won’t fit into your busy day, this recipe takes only 5 minutes to prepare and the simple cooking steps are as basic as boiling rice and combining it with a cooked chicken veggie mixture. Dogs deserve a dinner made with real ingredients that are not only nutritious, but also taste delicious! 

Just like humans, every dog is different, so this is not meant to be a one-pup-fits-all recipe. Check with your vet before adding any new food to your dog’s diet.

Why We Love This Homemade Dog Food Recipe

  • Quick and easy to prepare in 5 minutes.
  • Made with 5 wholesome, nutrient-dense ingredients.
  • Recipe can easily be adjusted and customized to suit your pup’s breed and/or nutritional needs.
  • Feeding your dog fresh food ensures that there is nothing artificial nor harmful preservatives.
  • Better and cheaper than anything store bought.
  • Dogs think this DIY recipe is delicious!
homemade dog food

Ingredients

  • Brown rice: White rice can also be fed to dogs, but it only takes about 20 minutes to cook, so plan accordingly.
  • Lean ground chicken: You could also use lean ground turkey or lean ground beef.
  • Spinach: Feel free to replace this with any type of lettuce.
  • Carrot
  • Zucchini: Any other type of squash plant can also be substituted here.

Substitutions and Additions

  • Vary The Veggies: Feel free to use a frozen veggie blends that contain peas, corn, carrots, and green beans. Cooked sweet potatoes are also a great addition to bulk up their meals, just make sure never feed your dog raw sweet potatoes.
  • Pick Your Protein: Lean ground beef, ground chicken, ground white or dark meat turkey, and ground pork are all great protein options. Be sure to check that any meat you feed your animals is free of seasonings.
  • Other Great Grains: Other whole grains like oats, quinoa, barley, potatoes, and even whole grain pasta are also easily digestible and can be added to homemade dog food.
  • Flavor Factor: Fresh and dried herbs are safe for dogs and are loaded with health benefits. Try parsley, cilantro, thyme, or basil to increase the flavor factor.
homemade dog food
  • Large pot or saucepan
  • Measuring tools
  • Large skillet
  • Stirring tools

IMPORTANT NOTE: Please consult your vet before feeding your pet anything new! 

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How to Make Homemade Dog Food

Homemade Dog Food is so easy to make and is a cost-effective way to feed your furry friend a healthy, nutritious meal. This recipe simply combines whole grain rice with lean ground chicken and fresh vegetables for a wholesome alternative to traditional dog food.

  1. Bring 4 cups of water and rice to a boil, then simmer on medium low to low heat and cover the pot.
  2. Cook rice for 45 minutes or until rice is soft and water is absorbed.
    cooked rice
  3. While the rice is simmering, cook the ground chicken in a skillet over medium high heat until no longer pink, about 6-8 minutes.
    cook beef
  4. Add the spinach, carrot, and zucchini to the skillet and cook until the spinach wilts, and the other vegetables soften, about 3-4 minutes. 
    homemade dog food
  5. Remove the cooked chicken and vegetable mixture from the heat and set aside to cool. 
  6. When the rice is finished cooking, mix it together with the chicken mixture.  
    homemade dog food
  7. Cool completely before serving to your dog or storing for later. 

Tips

  • It’s not usually advised to abruptly change your dog’s diet. Start transitioning your pet to homemade food by mixing some of this homemade dog food in with their regular food for a few days until they are used to the new food. And again, always consult your vet before feeding your pet something new.
  • To give your dog a variety of different nutrients, you can use different meats, carbs, and vegetables to customize your dog’s food.
  • Be sure to find a dog food recipe that is complete and well-balanced. One of the biggest mistakes you can make is to feed an incomplete or imbalanced diet to your dog.

Storage Tips

  • To Store: Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator no more than 2 hours after cooking the food. It will stay fresh for up to 4 days after that.
  • To Freeze: You can freeze the dog food in a freezer-safe container for up to 6 months.
homemade dog food

Frequently Asked Questions

What foods can you never include in a homemade dog food recipe?

Never add foods that are toxic to dogs. These include chocolate, grapes, raisins, onions, garlic, avocados, and Macadamia nuts.

What are the health benefits of this Homemade Dog Food?

This Homemade Dog Food Recipe is loaded with nutrient-rich, healthy ingredients. Check out all of the benefits of each food:
Ground Chicken: This is a great source of protein and Omega 6 fatty acids that dogs need. (SOURCE.) 
Brown Rice: Brown rice helps a dog digest because of its fiber. It also provides the necessary vitamin D and B. (SOURCE.)
Spinach: The vitamins A, B, C, and K from spinach are great for your dog. There are also some great digestive benefits from spinach. (SOURCE.)
Carrots: Carrots can help keep the teeth of dogs healthy by providing a healthy chew toy. They can also deliver beta-carotene and vitamin A to your dog and improve bowel movements. Carrots must be cooked slightly for dogs to be able to metabolize their nutrients. (SOURCE.)
Zucchini: Zucchini includes great nutrients and vitamins that help your dog, including vitamin C, potassium, and calcium. (SOURCE.)

What is the recommended serving size of dog food?

The amount of homemade dog food that your dog will require is dependent upon how much your dog weighs and how active he or she is. Generally speaking, for every 20 pounds a dog weighs, you give it roughly 1 cup of prepared food. This amount varies from dog to dog. I suggest talking to your vet and getting their advice on a good starting point.

homemade dog food

Other Easy Homemade Recipes for your Dog

5 from 7 votes
homemade dog food

Homemade Dog Food

Serves — 12
Homemade Dog Food contains a healthy balance of protein, carbs, fiber, and fat and is filled with essential vitamins and minerals to keep your dog fit. Made with all-natural, wholesome ingredients and so much better than a store-bought bag.
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 45 mins
Total Time 50 mins

Ingredients
  

  • 2 cups brown rice
  • 2 pounds lean ground chicken
  • 2 cups spinach chopped
  • 1 large carrot shredded (about 1 cup)
  • 1 small zucchini shredded (about 1 cup)

Instructions
 

  • In a large pot or saucepan, combine 4 cups of water and brown rice. Bring to a boil, then lower heat to a simmer (medium low to low heat) and cover.
  • Cook rice for 45 minutes or until rice is completely soft and cooked through and all the water is absorbed.
  • While the rice is cooking, cook the ground chicken on a large skillet over medium high heat until no longer pink, about 6-8 minutes.
  • Add the spinach, carrot, and zucchini to the skillet with the chicken. Cook until the spinach wilts, and the other vegetables soften, about 3-4 minutes.
  • Take the chicken and vegetable mixture off the heat and set aside to cool.
  • When the rice is finished cooking, stir together the rice and ground chicken mixture.
  • Let cool completely before serving to your dog or storing for later.

Jenn’s Notes

Storage:
  • To Store: Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator no more than 2 hours after cooking the food. It will stay fresh for up to 4 days after that.
  • To Freeze: You can freeze the dog food in a freezer-safe container for up to 6 months.
Tips:
  • It’s not usually advised to abruptly change your dog’s diet. Start transitioning your pet to homemade food by mixing some of this homemade dog food in with their regular food for a few days until they are used to the new food. And again, always consult your vet before feeding your pet something new.
  • To give your dog a variety of different nutrients, you can use different meats, carbs, and vegetables to customize your dog’s food.
  • Be sure to find a dog food recipe that is complete and well-balanced. One of the biggest mistakes you can make is to feed an incomplete or imbalanced diet to your dog.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Please consult your vet before feeding your pet anything new! 

Nutrition Info

Calories: 229kcal | Carbohydrates: 25g | Protein: 16g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 65mg | Sodium: 55mg | Potassium: 566mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 1351IU | Vitamin C: 5mg | Calcium: 24mg | Iron: 1mg
Jennifer Fishkind

About Jenn

Jenn is a mom to three beautiful boys, wife to an amazing husband, social influencer and blogger. I love all things easy recipes, easy crafts, all things hacks, traveling EVERYWHERE and feeding my Pinterest addiction!

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Comments

  1. Don’t feed your dog this! It’s poison! Spinach is fine for a snack in very small quantities every so often, but long term has major kidney damaging properties. On top of that, brown rice is EXTREMELY hard to digest for dogs and not recommended at all. IRRESPONSIBLE of the blog owner to post this without research!!!

    1. We did research this extensively. According to the AKC Spinach is safe for dogs to eat. They would need to digest a very large amount in order for it to be any issues (this is the same as with many other foods in popular homemade dog foods and dog treats). It is accurate that brown is harder to digest than white rice, but is still safe for dogs to eat.

      1. 5 stars
        just tried this recipe on my 3 little girls and they Loved it! They can be very picky eaters and each one cleared their bowl’s. Gave them some as a snack. will now begin mixing with there food for a few days until adjusted. Thank you for a easy yummy recipe for my dog’s 🌹❤️👏👏

    2. 5 stars
      Lady, if you read the entire blog post, she very clearly lists numerous other grains that can be substituted for the brown rice. In fact, that is also the case with the spinach. She also states QUITE A FEW TIMES to check with your veterinarian about all of the foods she listed, to make sure they will be compatible with your dog’s needs. Please do YOUR research before being judgmental and rude to a blog owner, or just move on.
      Anyway, great recipe! I wanted to know, when it says 12 servings, does that mean 12 cups?

      1. Thank you for your message – I truly appreciate your support ❤️.
        The serving size will be closer to about 1/2 cup per serving. Thank you again.

  2. I have to say thank you! This is a simple rice recipe that is absolutely adjustable to fit a dog’s needs. I have checked with my vet, we’ve had a on going issue with my Gabby Girls diet as she does not eat most dog foods and would go 3 or 4 days without eating. She will eat little Ceasars for a while then turn her nose up and go without eating again, now she eats every day! Thus is way better than her going without eating for days. Brewers yeast at 2 table spoons and a 3rd cup apple sauce(all natural) are also great nutritional ingredients to add. My vet did suggest white rice and changing up the veggies as well. One happy supporter! Please ignore the judgey posts, so sad for negative people, must be hard to be so unhappy❣