Print|Email|Text Size: ||
Thanksgiving Dinner for Dogs
Winning ways with leftovers

Dogs love turkey and sweet potatoes, too. Cook this meal from scratch or use up the leftovers—either way, your chow hounds will chow down with gusto!


Nutritional Information

Per 1-cup serving (approximate, depending on ingredient substitutions)

Calories 321

Protein 44 g

Carbohydrates 16 g

Dietary fiber 1.9 g

Fat 7.7 g (with gravy; less if omitted)


Facts (Vet’s View)

This is a moderate-carb recipe suitable for healthy adult dogs.


Portion Size

For small dogs, 3/4 cup; medium dogs, 1 1/2 cups; larger or more active dogs, 3 cups.



Add 400 mg calcium per 1-cup serving (600 mg if using bone meal).



Preparation Time: 30 minutes

Makes: 9 1-cup servings


3 lb/1.3 kg skinless turkey pieces (light and dark meat)

1 cup (about 6 oz/175 g) oatmeal (cooked)

1 lb/450 g sweet potatoes, cubed

2 tbsp cranberry sauce

4 tbsp turkey gravy (optional; to reduce the fat content, omit the gravy or substitute olive oil)



Use turkey leftovers or roast the turkey: 

1. Preheat oven to 350°F/180°C. Lightly oil a roasting pan.

2. For boneless breast or thigh, cook 30–45 minutes; boned breast or thigh, 45–60 minutes; whole turkey, 1 1/2–2 hours or until the meat juices run clear when pierced with a skewer. Let cool.

3. Remove all the bones and dice the meat into large pieces.

4. If using fresh sweet potatoes, roast with the turkey for about 25–30 minutes or until tender. Let cool, then peel and dice.

5. Meanwhile, cook the oatmeal according to package instructions.

6. Mix together the turkey meat, oatmeal, sweet potatoes, and cranberry sauce. If using gravy or oil, add it now and mix thoroughly. (If your dog is at all prone to pancreatitis or other fat-related upsets, omit the gravy.) 

Adapted from The Healthy Dog Cookbook: 50 Nutritious and Delicious Recipes Your Dog Will Love. Published by TFH Publications, 2008. Used by permission. © Ivy Press Limited


This article first appeared in The Bark,
Issue 51: Nov/Dec 2008
Jonna Anne is an executive chef, founder of the Copperpaws website and author of The Healthy Doggie Biscuit Box. She lives in Hemlock, New York. copperpaws.com

 Photo from The Healthy Dog Cookbook, © Andrew Perris

CommentsPost a Comment
Please note comments are moderated. After being approved your comment will appear below.
Submitted by Anonymous | November 29 2009 |

Most commercial cranberry sauce contains HFCS (high fructose corn syrup) so I would suggest dried cranberries that have been soaked or fresh whole cranberries. Of course organic is better.

HFCS is a major player in human obesity and it takes very little to do the damage it does to health.

Submitted by Renee | November 23 2011 |

We make our own cooked/candied cranberries every year. The dogs love them!!! Once you make 'fresh' cranberries/cranberry sauce, you will never go back to the canned stuff :)

Submitted by vlizzle | November 24 2011 |

Great idea and I am going to try this today

Submitted by Brett | February 15 2010 |

Good point Anon. I like the olive oil subbing in for the gravy as well and think this is a dish my pup, and most pups, would thoroughly enjoy.

Submitted by Heidi | November 19 2010 |

Thanks for sharing this great recipe! We mention it on our blog post, "Five Thanksgiving Tips for Dog Owners": http://blog.dogwatch.com//2010/11/18/five-thanksgiving-safety-tips-for-d...

Keep up the good work, and Happy Thanksgiving!

The DogWatch Hidden Fences Team

Submitted by Michael Horner | November 25 2013 |

Great idea for our 4 legged family members. I'll be posting this on my Facebook page at Blackstar Internet Research Services. I have a few clients that are dog lovers

Submitted by Barbara | September 3 2014 |

Howdy is a 2year old Teacup Pom and a pick eater. Howdy weighs about 4 and a half pounds. What should we feed our baby?

More From The Bark

More in Recipes:
Homemade Chicken Jerky & Sweet Potato Chews
Recipes for Dogs: Allergen-Free Dog Treats
Simple Frozen Yogurt Treats
Whole Grain Peanut Butter Treats
Thursday Thanksgiving
Homemade Kibble
Dog Food Recipes: Cool Treats for Warm Weather
Recipes: Picnic for Pups
Granola Peanut-Butter Crunchies
The Basics: Homemade Peanut Butter