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This guest post was submitted by Mark Webster. He is the co-founder and chief editor at DogFoodHeaven.com. His aim? Simple. Cut through the jargon and help you make the right decisions for your furry four-legged friends.
Unique sweets help make the holiday season jolly. Cookies, chocolates, and other delectable desserts boost the Christmas spirit and expand waistlines. But seasonal treats aren’t just for two-legged members of the family.
You can spread the cheer to four-legged family members with this canine-friendly Doggy Christmas Cake. You’re likely to find this tasty treat at the top of any canine wish list. And unlike human alternatives, this pup pastry won’t pack on the pounds.
This doggy dessert has a simple recipe that only requires a few nutritious ingredients. If you have a few minutes to spare in your busy holiday schedule to spend in the kitchen, you can surprise your pup with a homemade treat he’ll love.
Keep reading to learn how to spoil your furry best friend with this festive recipe!
Here are the ingredients for the cake batter and frosting used to make this Doggy Christmas Cake. All of these human foods are safe for canine consumption.
- 11 oz Ox or Lamb Liver
- Two Eggs
- 17 oz Sweet Potatoes
- 8 oz Flour
- 2.5 tbsp Natural Peanut Butter
- 1.5 tbsp Coconut Butter
- 6 oz Greek Yogurt
- 3 oz Natural Peanut Butter
- First, preheat the oven to 360 F while you prepare the cake batter ingredients for baking.
- Skin the sweet potatoes and cut them up into 1-inch cubes. Then, place the cubes in a microwaveable bowl with a small amount of water. Cover and cook the sweet potatoes in the microwave for 8-10 minutes, pausing to toss the cubes mid-way.
- Blend the liver with water in a food processor until it forms a pourable paste so the meat can mix well with the other ingredients. The mixture may not smell appealing to you, but the liver aroma will make this cake irresistible to your dog!
- Add the cooked sweet potato, peanut butter, and coconut butter to the liver paste in the food processor before blending together. Slowly add water as needed to maintain the appropriate batter consistency.
- Next, add the eggs separately to the processor and mix until the batter is well blended again.
- Finally, add the flour and blend until the mixture becomes a smooth batter. Be careful not to mix too quickly and make a mess!
- Pour half of the batter mixture into a cake tray, filling the tray about ¾ inch high. Then, pour the remaining batter into a second tray to make two layers of cake. Place both trays in the oven to bake at 360 F for 30 to 35 minutes.
- While the cake is baking, you can mix the greek yogurt and peanut butter to create doggy-safe frosting. After mixing, the frosting is ready to go and doesn’t need any additional preparation.
- Remove the cake layers from the oven after they bake to allow them to cool down. Once cool, pour the frosting onto the first layer before placing the second layer on top. You can then add additional frosting to the top and sides of the cake.
- If you like, you can decorate your cake with dog treats to make it extra special. We used homemade peanut butter ones. Use Christmas shapes to make this cake feel even more festive.
IMPORTANT: Although finishing an entire cake in one sitting is always tempting, do not feed your dog more than one slice per day. Excess treats of any kind can upset his tummy. This Christmas doggy dessert is excellent for sharing with your pup’s fellow paw friends.
Human cake ingredients aren’t always the healthiest options. But all of the ingredients in this doggy recipe are healthy foods that have nutritional benefits for your pup. Not all foods are safe for canines, so remember to talk to your vet before feeding your dog human foods.
Although it may seem unpalatable to some of us, liver meat is an excellent animal protein source for dogs rich in vitamins and minerals. It is exceptionally high in vitamin A, which helps support healthy eyesight. 
Liver meat also has concentrated amounts of iron and B vitamins. Iron is an essential mineral that helps transport oxygen to blood cells. And B vitamins help support nerve function and mental health. Deficiencies in these nutrients may cause anemia in dogs.
Eggs are another nutritious source of high-quality protein for your canine companion. This ingredient has an impressive profile of omega fatty acids and amino acids.  These nutrients provide the building blocks of protein necessary for your pup to build muscle.
Like most whole human foods, moderation is key when feeding dogs eggs. Egg whites contain an enzyme that can prevent biotin absorption and cause skin problems in dogs when overfed.
Sweet potatoes are an excellent source of carbohydrates and fiber. The carbohydrates from this starchy vegetable provide a digestible source of energy. And dietary fiber acts as a prebiotic in your dog’s gut, nourishing the good bacteria that helps digest his food. 
These vibrant veggies are also rich in beta-carotene. This antioxidant provides protection against heart disease, supports vision, and promotes healthy bones.
Although some dogs are allergic to flour, it is a safe ingredient for most pets. If you want to maximize this cake’s nutritional value, opt for whole-grain flour instead of white flour. Whole grains use the entire grain seed, including the parts with the greatest concentration of nutrients.
If you have a sensitive pup, you may want to avoid flours made from soy, wheat, or corn. These ingredients are common canine allergies. Some healthy whole grain flours suitable for dogs include barley, oat, and rice flour.
We know dogs love the taste of peanut butter. It is generally safe for pups and a great source of protein and healthy fats. But you have to be careful when selecting peanut butter for this recipe. Some brands contain xylitol.
Although safe for humans, this sugar substitute is toxic when ingested by dogs. Xylitol can cause a sudden release of insulin that may result in seizures.  Try to avoid sugar-free peanut butter so your pup can safely enjoy this healthy snack.
Coconut butter can be a healthy addition to dog treats when used in moderation. This ingredient is rich in healthy fats that can help improve immune function and skin health.
Coconut contains unique medium-chain triglyceride fats that can even help with digestive disorders and boost mental function.  Plus, concentrated levels of lauric acid contribute antibacterial and antifungal properties.
Unless you have a lactose-intolerant pup, Greek yogurt can be a beneficial ingredient in homemade dog treats. Plain greek yogurt is safest and contains concentrated amounts of probiotics.
These probiotics introduce good bacteria into your dog’s digestive system. The good bacteria help digest food and optimize nutrient absorption. They can also help fight yeast infections in furry friends with recurring skin or ear problems. 
You can easily use the batter from this recipe to make different types of Christmas doggy sweets. Or, alter the recipe to make a cake with the ingredients you have on hand.
Doggy Christmas Cupcakes
If you have several pet parent friends with dogs who may also enjoy a little extra cheer, you can use the batter to make cupcakes.
Instead of pouring the batter into cake trays, portion the mixture out in a cupcake tray to make individual servings that you can easily give to friends and family. Cupcakes are also an excellent option for multi-dog families to portion out the goodies to every fur baby.
Small Doggy Christmas Treats
If you have an exceptionally long list of pet parent friends to get gifts for this season, consider making this batter into small treats instead. You can use cookie molds on a baking sheet to create cute, homemade treats for the holidays.
Small treats may also be a better option for tiny pups who can’t eat a large slice of cake. And for our messy four-legged friends, frosting is always optional.
Not everyone has liver readily available in their kitchen pantry. You can easily substitute chicken or any other animal meat for liver in this recipe. Although this may require some extra blending, your pup will still enjoy the same savory flavor and additional protein.
You can also swap out sweet potatoes for regular potatoes. Sweet potatoes have a more appealing flavor and a higher concentration of vitamins and minerals. But regular potatoes will provide the same starchy source of carbohydrates.
We love this Doggy Christmas Cake recipe for its simplicity and healthy ingredients. Our dogs loved their special holiday treat, and your pup will love it too.
It always feels good to spoil your furry family members. And there’s no better time to show a little extra love than the season of giving.
Plus, this canine cake is probably the easiest recipe you’ll tackle during your holiday baking. Although, I doubt any Christmas cookies include liver on their ingredient list.
Dogs bring so much joy into our lives. Give some back with this homemade holiday treat for your four-legged friend.
Kayla founded Journey Dog Training in 2013 to provide high-quality and affordable dog behavior advice. She is a Certified Dog Behavior Consultant who’s worked with hundreds of private clients, thousands of shelter dogs, and dozens of working detection dogs. Kayla’s dog and cat behavior advice has been featured in NPR, the Chicago Tribune, and Pet MD. She’s an avid adventurer who is currently doing #vanlife on the Pan-American Highway with her two border collies and a cat. Aside from running Journey Dog Training, Kayla also runs the nonprofit K9 Conservationists, where she and the dogs work as conservation detection dog teams. You can get 1:1 advice with a Journey Dog Training team member here.