Who says meatballs are just for us humans? Meatballs for dogs are a great way to sneak some nutrients to your pups treats in a fun and tasty way!
There is this restaurant near me that has a dog menu which includes meatballs in a chicken sauce. Rhubarb LOVES them. We sit on the patio, I enjoy my iced tea and wrap and Rhubarb enjoys her meatballs for dogs.
It really is a Lady and The Tramp type moment. But anyways, I needed to make these meatballs at home for Rhubarb because she literally inhales them.
Fast forward a couple tries and we have our very own meatballs for dogs that you can make for your pup at home! These meatballs are very simple to make with only 4 ingredients, including some veggies to pack in the nutrients.
Ingredients for Meatballs
Making meatballs for dogs is not unlike making them for yourself. To make them dog friendly, we just leave out any seasonings.
- Ground Meat: Any kind of ground meat can be used. This could be beef, turkey, pork, or chicken. Just be sure it is plain and unseasoned.
- Egg: Eggs are the binding ingredient for meatballs. When they are mixed into the meat and then baked, the eggs set as they cook and therefore hold together the meat.
- Vegetables: I like to mix in some type of shredded vegetables into these meatballs to keep it nutrient filled. This could be carrots, zucchini, sweet potato, spinach, or even blueberries.
- Flour: Flour is another binding agent for the meatballs. It helps to absorb some of the liquid so that the meatballs for dogs can actually set when baked. Whole wheat, all purpose, or almond flour can be used.
Want these meatballs to do double duty? Try making a double batch and splitting it up – yours and theirs! Add garlic, onion powder, salt, and pepper to one and leaving the other plain. The seasoned meatballs are for you and the unseasoned for your pup. The perfect dinner for two!
How to make Dog Friendly Meatballs
Making meatballs for dogs is super simple! Just mix and bake. Just be sure to get everything prepped before you begin mixing.
Step 1: Prep
Preheat oven to 400ºF (204ºC). Grab all your ingredients, and shred your chosen veggie. I like to shred using a mandolin, grater, or food processor.
Step 2: Assemble
Combine all ingredients in a large bowl mashing together until evenly mixed. Roll into golf ball sized meatballs, then place on a parchment-lined baking sheet. It can be helpful to wet your hands with water before rolling the meatballs. This helps to keep the mixture from sticking to your hands.
Step 3: Bake
Bake for 20 minutes, or until golden brown and cooked fully. Cooked fully means they should have an internal temperature of 160 degrees F for beef and 165 degrees F. Let cool slightly before serving to your dog as an occasional treat.
Storage: These meatballs for dogs will keep in the fridge for 5 days sealed or in the freezer for 1 month. Thaw them in the fridge the night before you want to serve them to your dog. Do not give your dog reheated meatballs that are hot – they should be at most warm when serving.
Add-Ins: To add additional nutrients, just blend in any supplements your dog may take, or healthy everyday ingredients (like flax seeds, spinach, carrots, or pumpkin). Some favorites of ours are green-lipped mussels, eggshell powder, or zucchini!
Medication In Disguise: These meatballs make a great alternative to store bought pill pockets! Check out our guide on how to shape pill pickets for dogs.
Can dogs eat meatballs?
This depends on the meatball. Any meatballs that do not have added spices, salt, or fat can be given to dogs in moderation. But, even these meatballs for dogs should only be given as treats and never make up more than 10% of their diets.
Can dogs have meatballs with sauce?
Chicken sauce, yes. Marinara, no. You can certainly make a dog friendly sauce to go with these meatballs but human meatball sauce often has garlic and onion in them. These are both toxic to dogs and should not be given to them.
More Dog Friendly Shareables
Looking for more recipes to make and share with your pup? Try any of these!
- Yogurt Dipped Strawberries for Dogs is another great Valentine’s treat! Delicious for humans and four legged friends.
- Dog-Friendly Egg Muffin Cups is a tasty way to start the day with your pup. A little egg for you and a little egg for them.
- Dog-Friendly Banana Splits would be so sad if they weren’t split (get it?)!
- Dog Charcuterie Board is a fun way to display dog friendly treats and snacks for humans (that are also dog-friendly).
Easy Meatballs For Dogs (4 Ingredients)
- 1 lb ground meat like beef, turkey, or pork
- 1 egg
- 1 cup shredded vegetables like carrots, zucchini, or sweet potato
- ¼ cup flour all purpose, whole wheat, or almond
- Prep: Preheat oven to 400ºF (204ºC). Grab all your ingredients, and shred your chosen veggie.
- Assemble: Combine all ingredients in a large bowl mashing together until evenly mixed. Roll into golf ball sized meatballs, then place on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
- Bake: Bake for 20 minutes, or until golden brown and cooked fully*. Let cool slightly before serving to your dog as an occasional treat.