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What is dog frosting made of?

Dog frosting, sometimes called pupcake frosting, is a sweet topping used to decorate dog treats and pupcakes. It allows dog owners to make cute custom cakes and treats for their furry friends on special occasions like birthdays, holidays, or just for fun. But what exactly goes into making safe and delicious frosting for dogs?

The Main Ingredients

While regular frosting contains ingredients that can be harmful to dogs like chocolate, xylitol, and raw egg, dog frosting substitutes those ingredients for dog-safe ones. The primary ingredients in most dog frosting recipes are:

  • Yogurt – Plain yogurt provides thickness, texture, and a creamy taste dogs love. Greek yogurt is often used for an even richer consistency.
  • Peanut butter – For flavor and protein, peanut butter is one of the most popular ingredients in dog frosting. Make sure to use plain, unsweetened peanut butter.
  • Honey – Just a drizzle of honey enhances the flavor while also making the frosting smooth. Only a small amount is needed.
  • Applesauce – Unsweetened applesauce adds moisture and binds the ingredients together.
  • Cream cheese – For stability and structure, a small amount of reduced-fat cream cheese helps the frosting hold its shape.

By blending together some combination of these key ingredients, dog owners can create a simple base frosting that is customizable with different mix-ins and flavors.

Common Flavor Add-Ins

While the core ingredients provide the right texture and consistency, different add-ins can make each batch of dog frosting unique:

  • Bananas – Mash up ripe bananas into the frosting for extra moisture and sweetness.
  • Carob powder – For chocolate flavor without the toxicity, carob powder adds rich notes.
  • Vanilla – A dash of vanilla extract enhances flavor subtly.
  • Beef or chicken broth – Savory frostings pair broth with yogurt or cream cheese.
  • Baby food – Meat-based baby foods add enticing aroma and flavor.
  • Cheese – Grated hard cheeses like cheddar or parmesan lend a cheese cake taste.
  • Berries – Mash blueberries, strawberries, or raspberries into the frosting.

Experiment with small amounts of mix-ins to create custom flavors like peanut butter banana, cheese cake, pumpkin pie, and more!

Decorative Additions

For appealing decorations and added texture, many recipes suggest mixing in:

  • Crushed dog treats
  • Crumbled bacon bits
  • Dried fruits like bananas or apples
  • Crushed unsalted pretzels
  • Toasted coconut flakes
  • Chopped cooked chicken or liver
  • Low-sodium crackers
  • Whole grain cereals like Cheerios

These add crunchy or chewy bits into the frosting that dogs will love to nibble on. They also allow creating decorative patterns and designs on pupcakes for holidays, birthdays, and special occasions.

Food Coloring

To make dog frosting even more festive, add a few drops of pet-safe food coloring gel to tint it any color you like. Here are some guidelines for using food coloring:

  • Use coloring gels, not liquids, for more concentrated color.
  • Start with just 1-2 drops per batch, adding more as needed.
  • Make sure colors are pet-safe and non-toxic.
  • Blues and greens may be harder for dogs to see than reds or oranges.
  • Limit to 2-3 colors per batch for easiest mixing.
  • Mix into frosting well until evenly distributed.

A little color goes a long way to make pupcakes look even more cute and exciting!

Storing and Serving Dog Frosting

To keep dog frosting fresh for decorating treats, store it covered in the refrigerator up to 5-7 days. When ready to decorate, let it sit at room temperature to soften before piping or spreading onto pupcakes, cookies, or other baked treats. Here are some tips for working with and serving dog frosting:

  • If frosting seems too thick, stir in small amounts of yogurt or applesauce to thin.
  • For piping, spoon frosting into a piping bag fitted with a wide decorative tip.
  • Level tops of baked treats before frosting so it adheres well.
  • Refrigerate frosted treats until serving to help frosting set.
  • Serve frosted treats to dogs at room temperature or slightly chilled.
  • Supervise dogs when eating to prevent choking on any decorations.
  • Discard any leftover frosted treats within 2-3 days.

Have fun decorating tasty pupcakes and cookies your dog will love using safe, healthy ingredients!

Dog Frosting Recipe

This simple recipe makes about 1 cup of basic vanilla frosting for dogs:

Ingredient Amount
Plain Greek yogurt 1/2 cup
Cream cheese 2 tablespoons
Unsweetened applesauce 1 tablespoon
Honey 1/2 teaspoon
Vanilla extract 1/4 teaspoon

In a small bowl, stir together all ingredients until thoroughly blended. Add any desired mix-ins for flavor and texture. Refrigerate covered until ready to use. Makes about 1 cup frosting.

Peanut Butter Banana Variation:

Substitute 1/4 cup peanut butter for the cream cheese. Mash 1 small ripe banana into the frosting. Top treats with banana slices.

Pumpkin Pie Variation:

Substitute 1/4 cup canned pumpkin for the applesauce. Add 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon and a pinch of ground ginger. Top treats with crumbled gingersnap cookies.

Safety Tips

While dog frosting uses dog-safe ingredients, there are still some precautions to take when making and serving it:

  • Check ingredients to ensure they are pet-safe and contain no known toxins.
  • Avoid ingredients dogs are commonly allergic to like corn, wheat, and soy.
  • Introduce new foods slowly to check for any allergies or sensitivities.
  • Reduce sugar by using minimal honey or maple syrup.
  • Prevent choking by ensuring treats are bite-sized or crushed/diced.
  • Moderate portions to reduce weight gain or digestive upset.

As with any treat, give frosting and decorated items in moderation. Make sure treats do not replace balanced meals. If in doubt about any ingredients or methods, consult your veterinarian.

Fun Ideas for Decorated Dog Treats

Decorating treats with dog frosting and toppings allows creativity in making fun designs for your pup. Some ideas include:

  • Have a “bone”-day party for your dog’s birthday and top treats with frosting “candles.”
  • Make spooky Halloween pupcakes with orange frosting and spider web designs.
  • For Christmas, do red and green frosting on tree-shaped cookies.
  • Pipe blue frosting and coconut “waves” on cookies for a beach theme.
  • Top heart-shaped treats with pink or red frosting for Valentine’s Day.
  • Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with green shamrock designs on green frosting.

Get inspired by holidays, seasons, your dog’s interests, or your own imagination. Those fancy cupcakes and cookies don’t have to just be for humans!


Dog frosting lets pet owners create fun custom treats dogs will love as much as the humans get to enjoy cake decorating. By using pet-safe ingredients tailored to your dog’s diet, frosting can become a creative way to celebrate special occasions or just spoil your pup. Dogs bring so much joy to our lives, so why not return the favor by whipping up some yummy “pupcakes” just for them?