Tired of feeding highly processed foods to your pet?
Want more control over ingredients and sourcing?
Is your pet plagued with chronic health issues?
Discover the joy of making your pet’s food!

An easy recipe introduction to making your dog a home-prepared meal — raw or cooked.

Dr. Fougere’s Basic Homemade Recipe for Dogs

To achieve a proper balance of proportions, follow the recipes and provide a variety of ingredients to meet your pet’s nutritional needs. Cats particularly need high levels of meat protein and do best when fed a variety of meats over the course of a week. Raw meat is beneficial because cooking can destroy some of the essential minerals, for example, the taurine needed by cats. When food is cooked, it’s important to add these elements in supplement form. A dog’s diet is a little more forgiving, but it’s important to remember that each animal is an individual and what works for one may not work for another. Discuss any diet changes with your veterinarian first.

% of Vol. Ingredient Volume kcal
40% Boneless beef, raw, 50% of fat trimmed 1 ½ cups (10 oz) 10 x 55 = 550
40% Rice, uncooked, basmati, white ½ cup when raw (1 ½ cups cooked) 3 x 80 = 240
20% Leafy green vegetables ½ cup, finely chopped 1 x 25 = 25
Beef liver, raw 1 ½ oz., minced 1.5 x 55 = 82
Flaxseed oil ½ tablespoon added after cooking 1.5 x 45 = 68
Calcium carbonate** 1 ½ teaspoons
Iodized salt pinch
Total 100% 3 ½ cups 1,000 kcal approx.

Yield: 2 lb., providing 1,000 kcal of energy from protein 32%, fat 33%, and carbohydrates 32%. 1 cup of this diet = ~285kcal. Owners can compare to the caloric density on the back of their bags. For example, a 20lb dog would need roughly 1 and ¼ cup daily to meet their resting energy requirements. This could vary depending on the dog’s weight and activity.​

1 cup = 240 ml
1 tsp (teaspoon) = 5 ml
1 tbs (tablespoon) = 15 ml
25 gm (grams) = 1 oz

Meat Substitutes:
Ground turkey, raw, lean and skin – 1 ½ cups
Cottage cheese, low fat – 7oz, PLUS Cottage cheese, regular – 9 oz
Beef, lean, raw – 1/4 cup, PLUS Beef, heart, raw – 2 cups
Salmon, canned –
*Feeding uncooked fish is not recommended. Take care to limit the amount of fish to occasional servings weekly.

Liver exchanges:
Beef liver – 25 gm
Chicken liver – 25 gm
Lamb liver – 25 gm
Carrot (DOG ONLY) – ½ cup (70gm) finely grated

Carbohydrates exchanges:
Brown rice, uncooked – 1/2 cup
Oats, uncooked, rolled – 1 cup
Pasta, egg, dry – 1-1/2 cups
Barley, dry – 2/3 cup
Sweet potato, cooked – 3-1/2 cups

Vegetable or Fruit Exchanges:
Zucchini – ½ cup, grated raw
Broccoli – ½ cup, lightly steamed (or cooked in recipe)
Celery – 1 ½ cups, cooked (or cooked in recipe); for fluid retention, arthritis

Preparation 1 – Cooked Meat Meal: Combine meat, liver, rice and veggies in a deep pot with enough water to cook the rice. Cook on low heat until water is almost completely absorbed by the rice, then remove from heat. Add supplements to the food after it is cool and mix thoroughly. Yields 2 lbs; protein 32 %, fat 33 % and carbohydrate 33 %.

Preparation 2 – Raw Meat Meal: Cook vegetables and rice together as above. Cool and add supplements. Prior to each meal, combine equal portions of the rice mixture with the raw meat. Or alternatively, cook only the rice with a little meat for flavor, and add supplements when cool. Then add equal portions of raw meat and finely chopped veggies at each meal. Follow raw meat safety recommendations when choosing meats and preparation.

**Calcium Note: We often recommend Animal Essentials Calcium, which is high in bio-availability and low in phosphorus. When using this product, only one teaspoon is required. Calcium carbonate is unnecessary if bones are included in the diet.

Additional recommended daily supplements:

  • A balanced multi-vitamin with vitamin B-complex
  • A balanced antioxidant with vitamins A, C and E
  • Kelp, a rich source of vitamins, minerals and trace elements
  • Egg yolk or nutritional yeast (not brewer’s yeast) for natural vitamin B-complex

Use supplements created for animals when possible; species specific is best. Avoid those with added dextrose, sugar or artificial flavoring.

NOTE: These recipes are used with permission from The Pet Lover’s Guide to Natural Healing for Dogs and Cats by Barbara Fougère, BVSc. They meet the AAFCO (Association of American Feed Control Officials) guidelines. Modifications have been made to the original recipes to clarify preparation. The recipes and information are for general informational purposes only and are not intended to replace professional advice from your veterinarian. Any questions about your animal’s health should be directed to a professional animal health care provider.


Previously published in PetSage blog, 11/19/2008. Updated 3/20/2020.
© Terri Grow, 2021
Terri Grow writes and speaks on pet health and welfare, working with veterinarians, trainers, shelters and manufacturers to empower canine and feline health through diets, herbal therapies, supplements and environmental adjustments.