The Speckled Palate
November 20, 2013

Sweet Potato and Apple Pupcakes {for Lucy’s Birthday!}

Celebrate your dog with homemade dog treats. Sweet Potato and Apple Pupcakes call for whole ingredients and are sure to become your pup’s favorite treat!

Celebrate your dog with homemade dog treats. Sweet Potato and Apple Pupcakes call for whole ingredients and are sure to become your pup's favorite treat!

My dog might be the most spoiled dog in the world, and the worst part about this is she doesn’t even know it. She just expects lots of things from us and rightfully so. She’s been conditioned for this, of course, and after what her life was like for the first seven months, I think she deserves all the attention and treats in the world to make up for that rough patch. However, as she grows older, her list of demands seems to grow.

Case in point: I baked Lucy pupcakes for her birthday, which was yesterday.

OK, so pupcakes weren’t a demand made by Lu, but they should clearly illustrate that my pup is spoiled. (It should also prove that I’m the kind of dog mama who wants her furbaby to have a good birthday… even if it makes me sound a little nutty.)

Pupcakes aren’t something that are made at our home on a regular basis, so they are pretty special. In fact, when Lu learned the baked goods were for her, the amount of excitement she expressed was indescribable. It’s pretty fantastic to witness, and I love seeing the moment when the realization dawns on her that yes, this was made specifically for her.

Celebrate your dog with homemade dog treats. Sweet Potato and Apple Pupcakes call for whole ingredients and are sure to become your pup's favorite treat!

Lucy didn’t know these were her birthday treat until I was actually photographing the very top image. Yes, the one with the lit candles. No, my dog was not harmed in the documenting of this recipe. And no, she wasn’t in danger at any time.

Fear not: Lucy and I have been to several training classes over the years, and even though she has many opinions and doesn’t like to listen to me all the time, she knows that to get a treat, she needs to be good, and being good requires sitting quietly. (I should also note that she’s not a fan of fire, so there is absolutely no chance she would have attempted to consume her pupcake while the candles were lit.)

So I asked her to sit, told her to stay, lit the candles, held down my shutter, snapping as many angles as possible in a short amount of time, then proceeded to blow out the candles, remove them from the pupcake and slid the treat across the surface to Lucy.

She looked up at me with wide eyes, clearly wondering if this was a test, and when I encouraged her to give it a try, she took an experimental lick before diving right in, slurping off the icing before grabbing the cake between her front teeth and attempting to swallow it whole. (Note: If you make full-sized pupcakes, PLEASE cut them up for your dog. Lu was fine, but she scared me for a moment there.)

And ever since I baked Lucy pupcakes, she now believes everything that comes out of the oven is for her… and she sat patiently next to a tester batch of cookies cooling on the island after they were baked last night, sneaking a glance at me every once in a while to see if I noticed she was being good.

Because, you know, being “good” definitely means you deserve a treat. Even if the treat you think belongs to you doesn’t.

Celebrate your dog with homemade dog treats. Sweet Potato and Apple Pupcakes call for whole ingredients and are sure to become your pup's favorite treat!

My sweet girl may be spoiled, but I think she’s earned it. She’s brought so much joy into our home over the last five years, and I don’t know what I would have done without her through some of the rougher times, especially those times right after I got Lucy. (After all, I was set on getting a dog because I knew no one in my new town and wanted a faithful companion to come home to who would be thrilled to see me. It worked.)

So if you’re like me and want to shower your dog with affection and good eats on their birthday, here’s how you make this recipe:

5.0 from 3 reviews
Sweet Potato and Apple Pupcakes
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Dog Treat
Makes: 6 pupcakes
  • A heaping ½ cup sweet potato, pureed
  • ½ cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 tablespoon local honey
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 small apple, grated finely
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • ¾ cups whole wheat flour
  • 2 tablespoons uncooked oats
  • 2 ounces cream cheese
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened applesauce
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the pureed sweet potato, apple, applesauce, honey and coconut oil.
  3. Pour in the beaten egg, stirring until incorporated, then add the whole wheat flour and uncooked oats.
  4. Once the dough comes together, grease your lined cupcake pan and slowly dollop the batter in. (It will be SUPER thick, so no worries.)
  5. Bake for 15-30 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
  6. While the pupcakes are cooling, combine the cream cheese and applesauce in a bowl, beating with a hand mixer and set aside until needed.
  7. Once the cakes are cool, top with the icing if you so choose, and let your pup enjoy!
My pupcakes turned out REALLY dense, so I recommend making these in mini cupcake pans and cutting them in half before feeding to your dog, as Lucy tried to eat hers whole unsuccessfully...


Celebrate your dog with homemade dog treats. Sweet Potato and Apple Pupcakes call for whole ingredients and are sure to become your pup's favorite treat!

Now I want to know: Have you baked for your pet before? Does this concept sound absolutely crazy to you? (If it does, that’s OK. My husband felt the same way… and then I got Lucy, and she changed everything…)


  1. Desiree

    Aww happy birthday to Lucy! What a special treat!

  2. Katherine

    Erin, I love this. You are such a great dog mama to sweet Lucy! She’s lucky to have you! 🙂 Pearl is always at my feet while I’m in the kitchen, although I haven’t baked for her. These pupcakes sound like a fun and special treat.

  3. Alli

    That picture of Lucy licking her pupcake… I can’t even… I’m having a cute overload aneurysm.

  4. LeSha Brewer

    Love it! Your dog is so adorable 🙂 I never thought about baking cupcakes for my dogs birthday! So fun ! I used to have a yorkie but I had to give her away, so I’m looking forward to doing this with our future pup 🙂

  5. Ashley

    Ahh I am dying over these photos! Your Lucy is so sweet and adorable! Our dog is spoiled rotten too … case in point she sleeps in our bed UNDER the covers! haha I’ve made homemade dog treats a few times but never have I made pupcakes! I think Emma needs some for her next birthday : )

  6. Jenn @ Party of One

    This is so great! I love that you made her a special puppy treat- so something I would do 😉 Lucy is just too adorable! Happy Birthday to her!

  7. Krystal

    Beautiful photos! I have two dogs so this really warms my heart! <3 Pinning!

  8. Megan - The Emotional Baker

    This is so sweet! I love these pics, too. My dog is spoiled, but it’s ok ’cause he’s a great boy. Thanks for sharing!

  9. Erini

    If my Dexter was still with us, I’d totally bake him treats. Cats just don’t appreciate baking. (In fact, mine dislike almost all people food, with the exception of braunschweiger.)

    Also, Lucy is absolutely adorable! 🙂 Yay birthday pup!

  10. Maureen | Orgasmic Chef

    Charlie is only 4 but he loves to bake. 🙂 What a sweet post! Lucy is such a cutie.

  11. Melissa

    Found your recipe through Pinterest and made these for our greyhound, Riley for his birthday. HUGE hit! Great recipe – he absolutely loved them and goes crazy for them. He ate his so quickly that we couldn’t even get a photo of him eating them.

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  13. Jen

    I altered the recipe a bit but my babies loved the Pupcakes I made this weekend to celebrate Rudy’s 9th birthday (lab/corgi mix).

    • Erin

      Aww, YAY! I’m so happy to hear your furbabies loved these pupcakes! Happy belated birthday to Rudy!

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  15. Brian Mitchell

    Make these with organic ingredients, if I vacuum seal the how long are they good for

    • Erin

      Hey Brian. I’ve never vacuum sealed these pupcakes before, so I couldn’t tell you. I’d check the manufacturer’s instructions for lengths of time for any baked good and go from there. Sorry I’m not more helpful!

  16. Tonya Williams

    Do you think I could use canned pumpkin instead of puréed sweet potato?

    • Erin

      Hey Tonya. I’ve never subbed pumpkin here for the sweet potato, but I bet you could! Chances are, the texture would change a bit, but I’m sure your pup would still enjoy it. If you do this, please let me know how it turned out!

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