Pumpkin & Peanut Butter Pupcakes


Let us not forget our furry four-legged barrels of fun this pumpkin season, shall we?  It’s Pumpkin & Peanut Butter Pupcakes!  Yay! Yes, going for a non-bipedal treat today. 

You could eat these yourself though if you wanted to.

Finn, our dopey nutcase, came into our lives right near exactly four years ago at a year and a half old.

Finn the German Shepherd dog lounging
Finn today, suffering so. I’m excited to share a photo of him! Liking this new photo editor too with its cool tricks.  He’s handsome, huh?
One of Mike’s coworkers at the time knew someone who worked with Chicago Animal Care and Control, aka the city pound.  It’s a scary place for animals, an unsettling place for humans; I heap ceaseless adulation upon those who help and rescue out of there.  My heart could not handle it.  I’d be this person

Mike’s coworker came to him one day, not long after we unexpectedly and suddenly lost my beloved soul puppy Hailey to bone cancer-related chemo; her heart couldn’t handle it and mine still cannot. 

Ugh ok so Mike’s coworker came to him with photos of a dog who had been pulled from CACC by an area rescue, he needs your help, maybe you could go meet him.  Still reeling and broken-hearted, after several difficult and teary conversations, we went.  And he came home with us that day. 

Poor guy, his life was off to such a rough start.  His previous uh I can’t call them people had been evicted so they packed up and moved, leaving Finn behind in the apartment.  Just up and left, and left him.  People suck. 

No one knows how long he was there alone, the landlord discovering him and then dropping him at CACC.  Starved, scared, confused, and emotionally wrecked. 

It’s strange too, someone spent time teaching him things like sit, lay down, lay down over there even, shake paw, go potty outdoors but yet it was obvious he had been hit, punished if he threw up or tried to be on furniture.  He’s buggy about his collar to this day still if we touch it, take it off or put it back on. 

Quickly it became evident that he had never been socialized with other dogs nor people, he had never been to a park, maybe not even walked, probably never really in a car, didn’t seem to much understand being outside in general.  He definitely knew nothing of toys or treats or receiving kisses from humans.  

He was a basket case.  He still pretty well is though, just a happier, safer, and more comfortable basket case. 

He’s a nervous, anxious fellow, a universal hater of everything other than literally us two.  He terrifies everyone.  A cacophony of fruit flavors is wrong with him.  Yet he’s a giant sweetheart, a bit of a 100 lb. cuddler, a snuggle bug who wishes to be loved and pet 24/7/365.

He lucked out, he found us and his life did a 360, a 720…1080.  He’s showered in toys and treats and healthy food, giant bowls of water, trips in the car which he now almost enjoys, daily walks in the park which he doesn’t enjoy but it’s part of his routine so he insists (which I don’t particularly enjoy as there are always off-leash dogs and it’s terrifying if one comes after Finn, a not dog-friendly dog [please leash your dogs, thank you]), he gets to be on all the furniture, has beds located in near every room of the house….

He’s spoiled, as he deserves to be.  Gee, Pumpkin & Peanut Butter Pupcakes, right?!

When he came to us, despite being the largest German Shepherd shape I’d ever seen in my life, he was very underweight, his tummy covered in sores, he tossed his cookies often, and he had a bad case of giardia.  My first goal, next to making him comfy in his forever home, was to get him fed properly, clear up his health issues. 

Hailey had food allergies so I was used to infinite hours of dog food research but Finn has exercised me for sure.  We soon discovered he is allergic to his favorites, chicken and whoa, turkey.  NoooOooo!!  He goes bonkers bananas for both yet those were causing his tummy sores. 

Imagine how quickly that eliminates a multitude of foods and treats.  Fast, yeah.  I even have to avoid chicken fat despite people yelling at me that there’s no possible way it could adversely affect him.  

They’re certainly welcome to swing by and clean up the next day after he eats some if they’d like. 

We’ve gone to square one, eliminating pretty well all people food.  Needless to say, I have become a label reading fanatic.  No more cheese (ugh yeah, just try withholding that, sheesh, but we have to now).  Apples.   Watermelon, ugh another of his favorites though we cave, he’ll get a couple nibbles and be fine.

Things he can eat?  Pork, beef, buffalo, fish, pumpkin, oats, blueberries, peanut butter.  Peanut butter, heh, he’s ambivalent about peanut butter which is so utterly un-dog-like.  SMH.  He’s a freak show, the absolute weirdest dog. 

In fact, he is the only dog I have ever known to enjoy the anticipation of eating a treat; he leaves them lying around the house or collects them in a pile, or he tosses them about for a while first or hops and dances near them for ten minutes.  He actually delays eating them so he can revel in having received one.  

Yep, kid you not.  It’s cute and heartwrenching at the same time.

By the way, if you feed your goobers commercial peanut butter stay waaaayy the heck away from the ingredient xylitol, it’s a known dog killer.  And try to keep sweeteners, both natural and artificial, to a minimum. 

all the ingredients in a bowl
Drop it all in a bowl sans the PB.
Oh and be careful too if you feed baby food to your fuzz nuggets.  Many contain onion or onion powder, both can be toxic.  And garlic builds up in their systems over time and is toxic.  Salt?  Skip it, it’s us people with our anthropomorphism thinking it helps dogs enjoy their food more.  In fact, here is a list of things you should not feed to your dogs.  The Canine Journal goes a bit further which is great.

So back to Finn.  Yes, he is now one pleased as punch pooch.  

He relies on me for his nutrition, it behooves me to do the best we can.  Hailey was healthy as an ox at near twelve, amazingly so the doctors all said, except for that stupid miserable bone cancer crap.  Finn will be as healthy too though hopefully skips that cancer crap.

Because I love to bake, of course I want to bake for him.  Not that he understands Mommy made this stuff from scratch just for his goofy self.  And he’s still confused if he gets cake for his birthday or really, by baked goods in general.  Doesn’t stop me though.  This year for his birthday I went with this recipe from Cupcake Fanatic

ingredients whisked together
Whip it all up then add the PB in there. I used crunchy as I know he likes nubbly crunchy bits. Though this is pre-PB here.
So I made him these little mini pupcakes.  I did make an ingredient swap; Finn doesn’t do well on baked goods overloaded with flour so I subbed in a portion of oat flour.  

Oh, and don’t panic about oat flour.  You can make it yourself by dumping regular oats into a food processor and grinding them to a powder.  Easy peasy lemon squeezy. 

making oat flour in food processor
So easy. Homemade oat flour from regular oatmeal in seconds. Try it!
Plus hey, this gave me a chance to use the mini muffin tin again too!  Niiice.

A major highlight of these, on top of the sensible ingredient list, is that they are sooooo quick and easy to make, you can surprise your cutie fluffer-nutter any time!

batter in mini muffin tin wells
Load up the ol’ tray….
Dump, stir, bake.  Happy dogs.  Oh no worries, I can hear their thanks!

birthday pupcake with lit candle
Happy 5th birthday ya goofball! No, the candle is just for effect here, he didn’t get to blow it out, don’t worry.
Be sure to store these in the fridge.  I mistakenly hadn’t and as unfriendlies grew on them within a couple days, sadly I had to toss ‘em. 

Feel free to whip up some extra peanut butter with yogurt as the author suggests for a frosting.  Finn would get it all over ever-ry-thing so I skipped it.  Do note that most dogs are lactose intolerant so go easy on that dairy in general.

So, how does Finn feel about Pumpkin & Peanut Butter Pupcakes?  At first he was confused as usual, it’s probably the plate since he’s not normally allowed plates.  Mommy then had to break them up into chunks, lots of sniffing going on, the peanut butter got licked off first atypically, but he ate them then looked up at me with his enormous puppy dog eyes to say thanks.  

My wee heart melted.  You’re welcome, big boy.  

Note:  This content originally appeared on Flaky Bakers.

Pumpkin & Peanut Butter Pupcakes

Pumpkin & Peanut Butter Pupcakes

12 pupcakes
Prep time
5 Min
Cook time
15 Min
Total time
20 Min
Treat your four-legged best friends to tender, soft, and tasty morsels of pumpkin and peanut butter (just don’t tell them they’ve got healthy stuff in there)!


  • 1/2 of a 15 oz. can (114 g) of 100% pure pumpkin puree, not pie mix, about 7.5 oz.
  • 2 cups (473 ml) water
  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/2 cups (138 g) oat flour (grind oatmeal to a powder)
  • 1 1/2 cups (180 g) whole wheat flour
  • 1 tablespoon (12 g) baking powder
  • 2 tablespoon (42 g or 30 ml) honey
  • 1/2 cup (135 g) peanut butter, smooth or crunchy


  1. Begin preheating the oven to 350° F (176° C) and coat a regular size cupcake tin or mini cupcake tin with cooking spray. These do have a tendency to stick.
  2. Except for the peanut butter, combine everything in a large bowl until mixed well. Scoop in the peanut butter and stir until all the ingredients are blended completely.
  3. Fill the pan wells about 3/4 of the way full and bake for 15 minutes for minis, about 25 minutes for regular size. Cool in the pan 10 minutes and remove to a cooling rack.
  4. Serve as is or add a smear of peanut butter atop. Likewise, peanut butter and yogurt may be combined for a frosting. (Be aware most dogs are lactose intolerant; dairy may upset their insides.)
  5. Store in the refrigerator.


Adapted from Cupcake Fanatic.

Nutrition Facts



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The nutritional information provided is in people form.

Please see the "info" section for nutrition details.

dog, cupcake
Created using The Recipes Generator

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