Horse-Approved Homemade Treat Recipes

Are you looking for a special treat to give your horses this holiday season? Look no further: The Horse staff members have compiled and made four homemade horse treat recipes just in time for Christmas. And to get the verdict on each straight from the horse's mouth, their own horses served as the treat testers.


Erica Larson—News Editor

This recipe is based off one The Horse shared in its February 2012 article, Healthy Horse Treats, which provides insight on what to consider when feeding your horses snacks. Since her horse Dorado loves grapes and raisins, Erica added raisins to her horse treats.

Erica's horse Dorado gives the homemade treats a try and gives his stamp of approval.

Photos: Erica Larson (top), Adam Spradling (bottom)

What You'll Need:

  • 1 cup flour
  • 3/4 cup beer
  • 2 cups molasses
  • 1 pound grain
  • 1/2 cup raisins

What To Do:

  • Mix the flour, beer, and molasses thoroughly. Add grain to mixture slowly and mix well. Finally, mix in raisins.
  • Pour this mixture into an oiled 12-by-15-inch pan, and place in a 250°F oven.
  • When the mixture starts to firm up (about 25 minutes), remove the pan and cut the contents into bite-sized pieces. Then, return the pan to the over and bake until the treats are mostly dry and fairly firm (roughly 40 minutes).
  • After removing the pan from the oven, let it cool before removing the treats.
  • Place the treats on cooling racks overnight.

The Verdict:

Erica says Dorado loved these treats and wouldn't stop trying to find more in her pockets after he tried the first treat. Three of his barnmates—Smokey, Satin, and picky-eater Lace—also approved.

Michelle N. Anderson—Digital Managing Editor

Michelle drew the inspiration for her "Oregon 'Farm to Stable' Earth Muffins" from one of her old mounts:"These horse treats are inspired by my childhood horse, an off-the-track Thoroughbred named Red February. I grew up in the Puget Sound area of Washington state, where blackberries are a noxious (but delicious!) weed. Every year in August Red would disappear over the hill of his pasture to gorge on newly ripened berries. He would return to the barn with his face covered in blackberry juice and prickers from the tangled vines. He would usually stain his white snip purple just in time for county 4-H fair.

"For these muffins, I've used Oregon marion berries, which are a seedless cousin of the wild blackberries Red enjoyed so much. Instead of egg as a baking stabilizer, I used a vegan baking trick: ground flax seed soaked in water. Healthy omega-3 fatty acids are a nice bonus to this method. The organic cane sugar I used has a higher molasses content, which I'd like to believe my horses appreciate. Also, to make these 'farm to stable,' I used grain ingredients from Bob's Red Mill, an Oregon company."

Jack, Michelle's Quarter Horse, gives her earth muffins a try. Marathon and Atty, Michelle's other horses, also approved.

Photos: Michelle N. Anderson

What You'll Need:

  • 1/4 cup Bob's Red Mill ground flax seed
  • 3/4 cup warm water
  • 1/2 cup organic sugar
  • 2 cups Bob's Red Mill oat flour
  • 2 cups Bob's Red Mill oatmeal
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup frozen Oregon marion berries

What To Do:

  • Preheat oven to 375°F.
  • Soak ground flax seed in warm water for 10 minutes until it turns a gelatinous consistency.
  • In a mixing bowl, combine flax-and-water mixture with sugar.
  • Stir in oat flour, oatmeal, salt, and cinnamon until well-combined.
  • Pour batter into greased mini-muffin pan.
  • Firmly press one marion berry thick side down into each muffin.
  • Bake 18-20 minutes.

The Verdict:

"Your horses will love them (mine did), and so will your vegan friends!" Michelle says.

Jennifer Whittle— Web Producer

Jennifer made her "Fruity Chews" for her family's herd of Appaloosa horses. She says she used honey in her recipe instead of molasses, but either will work. Her recipe makes about 20 cookies.

Jennifer's sister offers a fruity chew to Teddy, who happily obliged!

Photos: Jennifer Whittle

What You'll Need:

  • 1 1/2 cup oats
  • 2 tbsp. honey or molasses
  • 1cup water
  • 1/2 apple, finely chopped
  • 1 carrot, finely chopped
  • 1 1/2 tbsp. flour
  • 1 tbsp. brown sugar
  • 5 crushed peppermints

What To Do:

  • Preheat oven to 350°F.
  • Mix oats, water, and honey or molasses in a bowl.
  • Microwave for two minutes.
  • Add chopped apple and carrots, brown sugar, crushed peppermints, and flour to the mixture.
  • Microwave for two minutes again.
  • Put mixture in mini muffin pan, and bake for about 15 minutes.

The Verdict:

Jennifer says most of the horses at her farm—except for their leopard Appaloosa stallion—enjoyed the treats. "Roo, my current work-in-progress show horse, was trying to eat the treats and the bag I had them in all at once," she says.

Shawna White—Brand Manager

Shawna's "No-Bake Peppermint Thumbprint Cookies" are a quick and easy option for owners looking for a creative horse treat. The recipe makes five treats.

Both Chunder (left) and Clarence heartily approved of Shawna's treats!

Photos: Shawna White

What You'll Need:

  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • ¼ cup water
  • 1 to 2 tbsp. molasses
  • 5 peppermints

What To Do:

  • Mix the oats and water until the oats are damp.
  • Add molasses by the tablespoon until the mixture is sticky.
  • Roll into balls and press peppermint in the middle of each cookie.
  • Put in refrigerator (uncovered) to harden.

The Verdict:

Both Shawna's Thoroughbred eventer Chunder and his friend Clarence give these easy-to-make treats four hooves up.

Happy Holidays from The Horse!


Disclaimer: Seek the advice of a qualified veterinarian before proceeding with any diagnosis, treatment, or therapy.