We are just as protective over them as they are over us. That said, it only makes sense that we reward this loyalty and give them a tasty treat once and awhile, am I right? But, the question is… what is the perfect treat for your beloved canine? Well, for my dogs, the answer is an obvious one — it’s homemade chicken jerky dog treats. In fact, if your dogs tries the recipe I’ve listed down below, I guarantee that these chicken jerky treats will be their new favorite snack forever.
My Great Tasting Homemade Chicken Jerky For Dogs…
What You Need:
- 3lbs Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breast
- Meat Slicer and Sharp Fillet Knife (Meat Slicer Is Optional)
- Oven or Dehydrator
Step 1. Wash the chicken thoroughly and then remove all traces of fat with the knife. Pat them dry.
Step 2. Place pieces of chicken on a plate or cutting board and put them in the freezer for about 1 hour. Prepare your cutting station during this time.
Step 3. If you’re using an oven, remove the racks, turn it on and set it to the 160 degrees (or the lowest possible setting). If you’re using a dehydrator (which is recommended), then you don’t have to prepare anything.
Step 4. Remove chicken from freezer. Chicken should be hard but not frozen solid. This makes it much easier to work with.
Step 5 (No Meat Slicer). If you don’t have a meat slicer at home, first I recommened that you get one. Makes things so much easier and you can slice everything from ham to chicken to pork to beef to veggies. Costs about $60 for a home slicer. Anyways…
Take your fillet knife and slice the chicken breast from top to bottom. Each slice should be about 3/8 or 1/4 of an inch in thickness.
Step 5 (Meat Slicer). Place the chicken breast on the slicer with the top of the breast toward the blade. Set the blade to about 3/8 of an inch. Turn on and start slicing. All of the slices will be uniform which makes for much easier dehydrating.
Step 6 (Using Oven). Place the chicken fillets on the racks. Place them as close to each other as possible without touching. Slide them in the oven. Close the oven most of the way. Leave open about 2 inches (use balled up aluminum foil to accomplish this). Should take anywhere from 4 to 8 hours to finish — depending on your oven. Flip chicken fillets halfway through.
Step 6 (Using Food Dehydrator). Place the chicken fillets on the food dehydrator racks. Turn it on and set it to 160 degrees. Set a timer for 3 hours and walk away. Check back when the buzzer goes off.
Step 7. Make a Decision
Do you want hard jerky or soft jerky? My dogs enjoy the softer type of jerky so I take out the chicken when it’s still pliable — not rock hard. It doesn’t last as long on the counter, but my dogs really love it. They eat the hard stuff, but they don’t go after it with the same type of “animal” hunger like they do the soft homemade chicken jerky dog treats.
If you want the hard stuff, just keep it in there for longer. If you want the softer homemade chicken jerky for dogs, keep checking on it until it’s done.
How to Know When Your Homemade Chicken Jerky Dog Treats Are Done
Soft Version. There won’t be any mushy parts to the chicken. It will be an orangish color all the way through and it will be fully “cooked”. By that, I mean there won’t be any raw chicken visible. Think of a soft, orange piece of leather — that’s what it will look like.
Hard Version. It’ll be very hard and pretty brittle and be approaching a darker orange color. You should have no problem telling when it’s done.
- For chewier chicken jerky, make the chicken fillets thicker. This increases dehydrating time.
- 3lbs of chicken will net you around 1lb finished product.
- You can add a preservative if you want the jerky to last longer; lemon juice. This will add a few days to the shelf life.
- Vacuum sealing your jerky is the best way to keep it fresh. If you know it will be gone within the week, then this is unnecessary.
- Hard jerky can be left on the counter. Soft jerky should be refrigerated prolong freshness.
Why You Should Choose Homemade Chicken Jerky For Dogs…
Simply put, for the health of your dog. There have been recent reports these past months of dogs being poisoned (some even dieing) from name brand dog treats imported from china. These china imported treats are not regulated nearly as thoroughly as you think they are. They can and do contain many ingredients that are HARMFUL to your dogs and can damage their health.
When you make your own homemade chicken jerky dog treats (or at least buy them from someone who makes them), you’re ensuring that your dog gets only the absolute best; 100% healthy and 100% safe treats. For me, this is a no brainer. There’s no filler, no chemicals, and no perservatives. It’s just completely natural and healthy and it’s what every dog deserves