12 Cheap Frozen Kong Recipes that Your Dog Will Love!

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Here at The Ruly Bully, we love trying to find fun activities to enrich our pups! We believe most dogs could benefit from some additional enrichment, even if they already get a lot of exerciseFood-based enrichment is a great way to provide some mental stimulation for your dog and tends to be less hands-on than other forms of enrichment. This makes it great for times when you aren’t able to interact with your pup as much as you would like. Having a range of enrichment ideas available for times when you are occupied will be helpful for you and fun for your pup!

Frozen Kong recipes are a great example of food-based enrichment. Most pups are willing to participate, even if your dog isn’t as food-motivated as our Prim. Frozen Kong recipes are a great place to start if you are new to food-based enrichment. Due to the design, all you’ll have to do is plug the hole and toss your ingredients in! There’s no need to blend all of the ingredients unless you want to. There are an endless amount of recipes, which is one of the reasons we love using Kongs! Whether your pup is calorie-restricted, has allergies, or is just super picky, we’ll be able to find something your dog likes.

If you have your own favorite Kong recipes that we haven’t tried, let us know! We love to try new ideas and will give you a shoutout in our article if we (and our pups) like the recipe!

Benefits of using frozen Kong recipes

Frozen Kong recipes can help your pup relax during stressful situations

There are many benefits to using Kongs, specifically frozen kong recipes, for your pup.

First, and most importantly, it’s fun for your dog! Most dogs will have a great time with food-based enrichment, such as frozen Kong recipes or frozen lick mats! They generally don’t involve you as much as some other types of enrichment, such as playing or agility training, which can make them great options for times when you aren’t able to interact with your dog as much as you would like to. You can even use them to make not as fun activities, like harness training or crate training, into a more positive experience.

We’ve all heard that a tired dog is a good dog. We agree, but being mentally and physically tired is different, even for dogs. Food-based enrichment, such as Kongs, is a great way to tire out your pup mentally. Our favorite pet health resource, VCA Hospitals, agrees that providing enrichment, such as foraging toys, can help encourage positive behavior while decreasing problem behavior. For instance, if your dog is chewing on a bone or licking a mat or a Kong, they won’t be chewing on your shoes.

We’ve used an absolute ton of food-based enrichment during various injury recoveries for our dogs. When Goomba was recovering from CCL surgery, Kongs and lick mats were features of our daily routine. They also work great for older or mobility-impaired dogs, as well.

If you’re looking for some additional ideas that are low-movement, check out our favorite DIY dog puzzles.

There are a ton of options for food based enrichment for your dog

Frozen Kong recipes are our favorite form of food-based enrichment! They combine all of the best parts of frozen lick mats with a design that lasts much longer and generally doesn’t require a blender. If the ingredients are dog-safe, they’ll work perfectly in a Kong.

Kongs also tend to be one of the cheaper types of enrichment. We try to tailor our enrichment suggestions to be low-cost so that they are accessible to as many pup-parents as possible! There’s no real reason why your recipes should cost more than $1 for multiple fillings and the Kong itself lasts a long time, even if your dog tries to chew it periodically. We’re looking at you Goomba!

If you’re looking for more recipes than we have here, check out our favorite frozen lick mat recipes or non-frozen lick mat ideas. Any of these will work perfectly in a Kong and give you an even larger variety of recipes!

Our favorite Kong

The Kong Extreme is our preferred toy for frozen Kong recipes

Kong offers a few different variations on the iconic Kong device. Our favorite Kong is the Kong Extreme (Amazon, Chewy). It’s only a few dollars more expensive than their entry line, the Kong Classic, but holds up to chewing much better. If your pup is not a vigorous chewer at all, the classic line may be good enough, but for $2 more, we still think it’s worth considering the upgrade. Kong offers a sizing guide if you’re having difficulty deciding which one is appropriate for your pup, but you can get a good idea if you see them in person.

Our favorite!
KONG Extreme Dog Toy for Large Dogs (Black)
$14.99

Both of our dogs love Kongs and they are a staple in our house! You can dump anything pup-safe into them, they're relatively easy to clean, and they are durable. Goomba's been intermittently biting his for years and it's still holding up well. In our 5 years of owning them, we've only ever had to replace one!

Pros:
  • Great affordable way to entertain your dog
  • Easy to clean with the right approach
  • Very durable
Cons:
  • Dogs that have a low food drive may not be as interested
View on Amazon View on Chewy
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
07/23/2024 12:57 am GMT

We have 2 Large Kongs that work perfectly for us. In our experience, being off by one size isn’t a large deal, but an appropriately sized Kong can help prevent your dog from biting the Kong easily. As with any toy, supervision is recommended to ensure your dog has no issues.

If you have a puppy or senior dog, they also offer options for you!

Freezing Kongs

Our configuration for freezing a Kong involves painters tape and a cup

Fortunately, freezing Kongs is as easy as freezing frozen lick mats, it just takes a little longer. We find that it’s generally around 4 hours for Kongs to freeze through compared to the 1-2 for lick mats.

Since a lot of these recipes will involve water or a different fluid, we’ll have to find a way to seal the hole on the bottom to hold your ingredients. We’ve had success with using a piece of cheese or meat if you’re able to get it to sit right. Recently, we’ve been using painter’s tape, which has been great and relatively easy to remove. If you don’t like either of those options, Kong plugs and Kong holders both exist that can solve the problem for you. We like the holders better since it solves two problems at the same time.

Our favorite frozen Kong recipes

If you’re looking for long-lasting frozen Kong recipes, you’re in the right place! All of our recipes have been “expertly” tested by our dogs, Goomba & Prim. We’ll point out some tips and tricks along the way, but these recipes do not need to be exact, they’ll all freeze the same!

Don’t be afraid to mix and match what your dog likes. Your dog doesn’t care about how it looks or how weird chicken and peanut butter sound together, they’ll be excited either way!

Applesauce

Frozen Kong recipes applesauce

Recipe:

  • 1/4 cup of unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/4 cup of water
  • 1 tsp of pup-safe peanut butter (optional)

Unsweetened applesauce can make a great base for frozen kong recipes! It’s cheap, relatively healthy, and doesn’t require a blender. For this recipe, we’ll combine about a 1/4 of a cup of unsweetened applesauce and water to pour it into a Kong! That’s it. If your pup doesn’t like apples, you can always add meat or peanut butter to it to help encourage them to participate.

Both of our dogs like this recipe, even Goomba who is our resident picky eater. For us, organic unsweetened applesauce is about $3 and we can get around 10 servings per container, which puts it around $0.30 per Kong! It’s a great, affordable way to enrich your pup if you’re tight on money.

Baby food

Frozen Kong recipes baby food

Recipe:

  • 1 4 oz pup-safe baby food container
  • 1/8 cup of water

Baby food can also make a great base for a frozen Kong, especially if you don’t like preparing food. It’s a little more expensive than other options because it’s ready to mix with water. We like the root vegetable & other high-fiber flavors for our pups, but as long as it’s pup-safe, they all work reasonably well. We used butternut squash for our photographed example, primarily because it’s a vegetable they don’t eat often.

Many flavors of baby food are available, which is great if your pup is a picky eater. Some of the vegetables can be hit or miss depending on your dog’s specific preferences. For us, Prim was much more excited about the butternut squash flavor than Goomba, but both participated well!

Berry Banana Blast

Frozen Kong recipes Berry banana blast

Recipe (makes 2 Kongs):

  • 2 strawberries
  • 1/2 banana
  • 1 handful of blueberries
  • 1/2 cup of water

As far as frozen Kong recipes go, this is one of our favorite recipes. If you have a blender, it’s cheap and easy. All you’ll need to do is grab a handful of your favorite pup-safe berries into a blender with 1/2 cup of water and 1/2 of a banana and blend it for a few seconds. Our favorite berries that tend to be pup-safe are blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, and strawberries. If your pup isn’t particularly excited about berries, you can always add a bit of peanut butter to help motivate them to participate!

This recipe is another cheaper option from our favorite frozen Kong recipes. If your pup likes berries and bananas, this recipe is a great option to help cool your pup down during the warmer months!

Chicken, carrot, & peanut butter

Frozen Kong recipes chicken carrot and peanut butter

Recipe:

  • 3 baby carrots
  • 1 oz of chicken
  • 1 tsp of peanut butter
  • 3/8 cup of water

Chicken, carrot, and peanut butter is one of pups’ favorite combinations. We use a blender for this one, but you don’t have to if you don’t have access to one. We toss all the ingredients in our blender with the water and blend it until it looks like a smoothie. Pour the mixture into your Kong Extreme and you’re good to go!

This is one of our favorite easy frozen Kong recipes since we always have the ingredients on hand. It’s extremely cheap and always a hit with our pups! You don’t have to blend the ingredients, but we find it helps spread the taste out to help keep them more motivated. Some pups are less interested in carrots and blending allows you to sneak in some cheap, healthy vegetables. This recipe is extremely cheap per serving and healthy, as long as you use the peanut butter in moderation!

If your pup loves chicken like ours do, check out our guide to stuffed bones! Our pups love them and they make at least one appearance a day!

Scrambled eggs & oatmeal

Frozen Kong recipes scrambled eggs and oatmeal

Recipe:

  • 1 egg
  • 1 pinch of cheese
  • 1/8 cup of pup-safe oatmeal
  • 31/2 cup of water

We think this is one of the best frozen Kong recipes, but it is more work than some others. Scrambled eggs & oatmeal is our frozen pup-safe breakfast Kong! It’s pretty easy, it just has a few ingredients. First, we need to scramble 1 egg. Next, take 1/8 cup of oatmeal & 1/2 cup of water and microwave it for 1 minute, just like you would with quick oats. Finally, mix the two and place a pinch of cheese on the top.

This recipe doesn’t require a blender and is easy to do by hand in a bowl or even in the Kong. The ingredients have a good chance of being ones you have on hand, which makes this great if you don’t have any special supplies. Just make sure the oatmeal is pup-safe before using it in your recipe!

Peanut butter & banana

Frozen Kong recipes peanut butter banana

Recipe (for 2 Kongs):

  • 1 banana
  • 1/3 cup of water
  • 1/2 tbsp of pup-safe peanut butter (optional)

Peanut butter and banana recipes are always a hit for our dogs! This recipe can get high-calorie fast, especially if you go overboard on the peanut butter. We usually reserve these frozen Kong recipes for use after some vigorous activity, such as playing with Prim’s DIY flirt pole or doing agility training! If your pup is calorie-restricted, just limit the peanut butter & replace some of the banana with water. Both ingredients have strong flavors so your pup can still enjoy this recipe. We do recommend blending this recipe, but it’s still possible to do it in a bowl with a fork, too.

Our favorite!
KONG Extreme Dog Toy for Large Dogs (Black)
$14.99

Both of our dogs love Kongs and they are a staple in our house! You can dump anything pup-safe into them, they're relatively easy to clean, and they are durable. Goomba's been intermittently biting his for years and it's still holding up well. In our 5 years of owning them, we've only ever had to replace one!

Pros:
  • Great affordable way to entertain your dog
  • Easy to clean with the right approach
  • Very durable
Cons:
  • Dogs that have a low food drive may not be as interested
View on Amazon View on Chewy
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
07/23/2024 12:57 am GMT

We grouped this recipe into a 2 Kong serving because that’s what you get from one banana, but if you only need one, you can eat the other half! Prim loves bananas and peanut butter, so this is one of her favorite recipes. Goomba doesn’t like bananas by themselves but willingly participates in this recipe. This recipe is one of the cheaper ones due to how affordable both the ingredients are.

Pumpkin & cream cheese

Frozen Kong recipes peanut butter banana

Recipe:

  • 1/4 cup of pumpkin
  • 1 tbsp of cream cheese
  • 1/4 cup of water

This is one of our featured recipes on frozen lick mat recipes and it’s making another appearance here! It’s even easier with a kong than a lick mat and doesn’t need a blender. All you need to do is find some pup-safe pumpkin and pup-safe cream cheese. Grab around a 1/4 cup of pumpkin, 1 tbsp of cream cheese, and 1/4 cup of water. Mash and stir them together and you’re good to go!

We think this is one of the best frozen Kong ideas as it’s cheap, easy to get the supplies for, and not too heavy if your pup is calorie-restricted. In our experience, most pups like pumpkin, but if your pup doesn’t, you can substitute it with whatever fibrous vegetable they do like and it’ll work well, too. Sweet potato is usually a great place to start and similar to pumpkin. We can usually get around 7 Kongs from one can of pumpkin.

Thanksgiving dinner

Recipe:

  • 1/4 cup of water
  • 1/4 cup of broth
  • 1-2 oz of turkey
  • 1-2 oz of sweet potato
  • Less than a handful of green beans
Frozen Kong recipes Thanksgiving dinner

One of our favorite frozen Kong recipes to make is “Thanksgiving Dinner”! We take the pup-safe ingredients from Thanksgiving & combine them all to make a frozen Kong! Our pups love it and it’s reasonably healthy for them, too!

The recipe is relatively easy but does require a little bit of prep. For the sweet potato, we typically clean it, make some holes, and then microwave it for 7 minutes. This will cook it in its skin, which is a great way to prepare it if you’re in a hurry. Besides that, toss the ingredients in the blender for a few seconds and pour them into your Kong.

Even pups who don’t like green beans (Goomba) love this recipe. If you don’t want to bother with the sweet potato, pure pumpkin puree works great, too!

Tuna & water

Frozen Kong recipes tuna and water

Recipe:

  • 1 cup of water
  • 3 oz of tuna (1 small can)

Tuna & water is one of our pups’ favorite froze Kong recipes and it’s extremely easy to make. You don’t even have to use a blender since the tuna breaks apart easily enough with a fork in a bowl. All you’ll need to do is grab a 3 oz can of tuna and 1 cup of water and mix it up in a bowl. You can get 2 large Kongs off of one batch, which puts it around $0.50 per Kong. If you don’t have a second Kong, you can reseal the tuna after using half or leave the covered bowl in the fridge until you need it.

This is easily one of our dogs’ (and our) favorite recipes. Canned tuna is available in almost every store, is affordable, and motivates less food-driven pups. If you don’t hate the smell of tuna, it’s worth trying to see how your dog likes it!

Wet flood slurry

Frozen Kong recipes wet food slurry

Recipe (for 2 Kongs):

  • 1/3 cup of wet food
  • 2/3 cup of water

This frozen Kong recipe is always a hit for us! Our pups, like most, love wet food. This simple 2 ingredient recipe is relatively cheap, easy, and typically available. Since there are an almost infinite amount of wet food options, this recipe will work with all dogs! Whether your pup is ingredient or calorie-restricted, a wet food slurry is a great option for your pup!

As wet food is typically a lot of calories, make sure to withhold some of their normal food or that they can handle the extra calories! This or the tuna recipe is our pups’ favorite frozen Kong recipe and we think it’ll be that way for yours, too!

Soaked dry kibble

Frozen Kong recipes soaked dry kibble

Recipe (for 2 Kongs):

  • 1/4 or 1/2 cup of dry kibble
  • 1/2 cup of water
  • 1/4 cup of broth

Soaked dry kibble is a great way to entertain your calorie-restricted pup. As a frozen Kong recipe, it lasts much longer than normal meal time, but can still use your measured kibble. Prim is our resident pup who has a high food drive and she loves it!

Frozen Kong recipes soaked dry kibble 2

To make the recipe, all we need to do is grab some kibble (we used around 1/4 cup) and soak it in broth or water until it is soft. We do a mixture of 1:2 for broth and water since a little broth goes a long way. After the kibble is soft, blend or mash it’s broken up. It doesn’t matter how broken up, but this will help spread out the taste a little better.

Our favorite!
KONG Extreme Dog Toy for Large Dogs (Black)
$14.99

Both of our dogs love Kongs and they are a staple in our house! You can dump anything pup-safe into them, they're relatively easy to clean, and they are durable. Goomba's been intermittently biting his for years and it's still holding up well. In our 5 years of owning them, we've only ever had to replace one!

Pros:
  • Great affordable way to entertain your dog
  • Easy to clean with the right approach
  • Very durable
Cons:
  • Dogs that have a low food drive may not be as interested
View on Amazon View on Chewy
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
07/23/2024 12:57 am GMT

As with the other recipes, if your pup isn’t as excited as you’d like, this recipe can be combined with ingredients such as peanut butter or chicken to help entice your dog.

The Kitchen sink

Frozen Kong recipes the kitchen sink

Recipe:

  • whatever you have in your kitchen!

This style of frozen Kong recipe is one of our favorites! You can use anything that’s pup-safe in your kitchen! Some of the staples of our kitchen that are great options (and cheap!) are oats, carrots, peanut butter, broth, and chicken! We included bananas, wet food, and pumpkin for the demonstration above since we had some leftovers from the other recipes! Even though you may think chicken and oats are odd, your pup won’t care!

We usually use this as one of our “oops, we forgot to plan something better” frozen Kong recipes, but our pups always think it’s a hit! It’s a great way to use food you don’t think you’ll get through before it expires. Don’t be afraid to get weird!

Some tips when using a Kong

A bottle brush and funnel can make your life much easier with a Kong

We wanted to provide a few additional tips that will help make using a Kong easier. First, we recommend finding something to seal the bottom hole while freezing the Kong. We typically use painter’s tape because it comes off easily and is extremely cheap. Kong plugs and Kong holders are also an option, but anything can work here!

Kong Freezer Holder with Built in Plugs Kong Stand Dog Enrichment (Large)
$15.99
View on Amazon
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
07/23/2024 12:57 pm GMT

We’ve used Kongs hundreds of times with our dogs and haven’t had this issue, but we’ve heard of people sticking a straw through a Kong to prevent your pup from getting their tongue stuck in the frozen Kong. We haven’t seen anything like this, but if that’s something that you’re concerned about, you can shove a rigid straw (like a metal reusable one) through it and then seal around it like you would normally. It’s easy enough to work around with something more maneuverable, like painter’s tape.

To hold them, we find that cups are a perfect holder for both filling & freezing. It keeps your Kong vertical and stationary when filling & freezing and collects any fluid that may leak out. We use this funnel from Walmart which makes this entire process a breeze!

As for cleaning, we have three different options. Kongs are marketed as dishwasher safe, so that’s the easiest way to clean them. If that’s not an option, you can soak them in a bowl to loosen any chunks and then rinse them out. If you have particularly stubborn residue, we have this bottle brush and it fits perfectly into a large Kong. As with any food residue, if you rinse the Kong off as soon as your pup is done, it typically comes off much easier.

How to minimize biting the Kong

The Toppl by WestPaw makes a great alternative for dogs who like to bite the Kong

If your pup is determined to bite the treat out of the Kong, even after gentle corrections, the best option that we have for you is to try an alternative to a Kong. West Paw’s Toppl is a similar product to a Kong, but it has a much wider opening. Goomba is determined to bite the treats out of a Kong which resulted in constant attempts to correct him. We’ve been using the same Kong for years, even with the attempted biting!

Our favorite!
West Paw Toppl Dog Toy Puzzle (Large 4", Tangerine)
$25.95

We love this take on a treat holder by West Paw! It's a great alternative to a Kong, especially for those pups who are more inclined to bite the treat than lick it out, like Goomba. It's extremely easy to clean and has a wide opening. The Toppl is one of our pup's favorite sources of enrichment!

View on Amazon View on Chewy
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
07/22/2024 10:06 pm GMT

The Toppl is slightly more expensive than the Kong, but we love it! For us, Goomba typically gets the Toppl and Primmie gets a Kong. West Paw also makes this awesome plug, which is two halves of a dog, and plugs and holds up the Toppl at the same time! It’s our recommendation if your pup is a determined biter like Goomba!

Conclusion

Our pups love these frozen Kong recipes, which are a staple in our enrichment options! Any pup-safe foods can be combined, especially if you use a blender, into a recipe that your pup can enjoy! We recommend starting with wet food or tuna and water, as the smells of these options can help motivate less food-motivated dogs to participate initially!

What do you think are the best frozen Kong recipes? Share your experience with us on Instagram @TheRulyBully. We love hearing your stories and experiences!

Have fun!

    Lincoln Schaefer

    Hi, I’m Lincoln!  I’m the owner & primary writer here at The Ruly Bully!  My wife and I have two dogs, Goomba & Prim, and a host of other critters in our home.  Feel free to send a message!  We love to hear your stories, too.

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