Christmas Muddy Buddies

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Bring the flavors of Christmas to the classic Chex Mix Muddy Buddies, and keep your family and friends snacking at your next holiday party.

picture of muddy buddies chex mix with pretzels and red and green candies mixed in coated in powdered sugar
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picture of muddy buddies chex mix with pretzels and red and green candies mixed in coated in powdered sugar in a jar with a red and green ribbon around it

Easy Festive Holiday Chex Mix

Christmas Chex Mix is an incredibly easy and delicious snack that will compliment your box of Christmas treats for the neighbors as well as compliment your mulled wine or hot chocolate during the Christmas season. 

The recipe for savory Chex mix first appeared on boxes of Chex cereal in the 1950s, and official and unofficial recipes have spanned the divide between sweet and savory ever since. While there are thirteen officially produced Chex mix variations sold commercially, there are many, many more home variations developed by snack lovers across the country.

Sweet Chex mix, like this Christmas-themed recipe, with melted peanut butter and chocolate is often called puppy chow, muddy buddies, or reindeer chow.

I love to serve this recipe when we’re putting up Christmas decorations, wrapping presents or any time we have friends over during the holiday season. It’s so quick and easy, though, you don’t really need an excuse to whip up a batch of the sweet and crunchy Christmas snack!

picture of muddy buddies chex mix with pretzels and red and green candies mixed in coated in powdered sugar

How to Make Christmas Chex Mix

To make this recipe, you’ll need:

  • Chex Cereal – Chex Cereal dates back to the 1950s and is a rice or wheat cereal named after the checkerboard squares in the original producer Ralston-Purina’s logo. I used Rice Chex for a lovely crunchy and mild flavor, but you could use corn or wheat flavor. Make a couple of batches of this recipe and try them all out!
  • Pretzels – Select pretzels that are a similar size to your Chex mix. I used small, twist pretzels for this. When the ingredients are a similar size, they will stay mixed better and provide a more balanced flavor in each handful. 
  • Butter – Butter is what brings all the dry ingredients together, and adds the delicious, nutty flavor to the Chex mix flavoring sauce. 
  • Peanut Butter – Peanut butter acts as a binder for this flavor mix, so it’s important to use creamy peanut butter, as crunchy peanut butter will have a different texture. 
  • White Chocolate Chips – White chocolate chips hold the whole recipe together, quite literally. Because white chocolate is solid at room temperature (77oF), it creates the outer flavoring shell for this mix, without melting in your hand when you eat it. White chocolate was first developed by the Nestle company in 1935. 
  • Powdered Sugar – sometimes called confectioners’ sugar, or icing sugar, powder sugar is granulated sugar milled into a powdered state. Commercially available powdered sugar usually contains around 5-10%, anti-caking agents. You can make your own powdered sugar by milling caster sugar in a clean coffee grinder or by hand with a mortar and pestle. 
  • Red and Green M&M’s – These classic Christmas-colored candies and a perfect crunch texture, and an additionally colorful element to this Christmas Chex mix. I used the regular-sized chocolate candies for this, but you could also use the festive mini-sized M&Ms. 
  • Candy Canes – The tradition of twisted peppermint stick candy dates back to the 1840s, and has been ubiquitous with Christmas ever since. The laborious process of twisting and bending the canes was done by hand until 1957, when Fr. Gregory Harding Keller, a Roman Catholic priest, invented and patented the Keller machine for his family’s candy business.

Once you’ve gathered your ingredients, we will use the following method: 

  • Prepare your dry ingredients. In a zip-top bag, crush the candy canes into pieces, but not into powder, and set aside. In a large mixing bowl combine the Chex mix and pretzels. 
  • Prepare your sauce. In a heavy bottom saucepan, or double boiler, melt your butter and add the peanut butter and one cup of white chocolate chips. Whisk together as they melt, being sure not to let the mixture burn if you are not using a double boiler. 
  • Mix together. Pour the melted white chocolate mixture over the Chex and pretzels, and stir to mix well. Then add the powdered sugar, and stir to mix. Add the crushed candy canes, M&Ms, and the remaining white chocolate chips and mix well. Serve in a bowl for all to enjoy!
picture of muddy buddies chex mix with pretzels and red and green candies mixed in coated in powdered sugar in a jar with a red and green bow on it

Tips and Tricks to Perfect Christmas Muddy Buddies:

Christmas Chex mix is SUPER easy to make, but these tips will make it, even more, hassle-free. 

For less mess, mix in a zip-top bag. For less of a mess, and to make mixing easier, you can combine the Chex and pretzels with the melted chocolate mixture and eventually the remaining ingredients in a zip-top bag. The bag also doubles as a storage container for the Christmas Chex mix, so this is a win-win. 

Use a double boiler method to avoid burning. It can be easy to burn chocolate when you’re melting it. To avoid that, use a double boiler method to melt the ingredients. Take a saucepan, and fill it half way with water. Place a metal or glass bowl over the pan so it fits neatly as a lid. The steam from the saucepan will provide gentle heat to melt the butter, peanut butter, and white chocolate which will prevent burning. 

picture of muddy buddies chex mix with pretzels and red and green candies mixed in coated in powdered sugar on a baking sheet

FAQ:

Can I make this recipe gluten-free?

Yes! Chex makes a variety of products that are gluten-free including this Rice Chex. Substitute regular pretzels for your favorite gluten-free variety (like these). Most commercially available peanut butter and powdered sugar is gluten-free, but you’ll want to check the labels if you’re gluten sensitive. 

How long can I keep Christmas Chex Mix?

You can keep this Christmas Chex mix in an airtight container at room temperature for up to two weeks.

My Chex mix seems to have lost the strong white color after the first couple of days, how do I fix this?

This usually happens when you use the lesser amount of powdered sugar, the simple fix is to add in more powdered sugar.

Can I use regular chocolate chips in place of the white chocolate chips?

For the chocolate chips you melt with the butter and peanut butter, replacing white with regular chocolate chips is fine. However, replacing the white chocolate chips with regular chocolate chips for the ones that get stirred into the mixture, might make the Chex mix look off because of the color.

Can I melt the chocolate chips, butter, and peanut butter in the microwave rather than on the stove?

Yes, you can! Just put them in the microwave for 20-30 second increments, stirring well after each time. This way may take more time and effort than melting it on the stove because of the amount of ingredients that needs melting; which is why using a saucepan on the stove was recommended in the directions.

Should I use Corn Chex, Rice Chex, or another kind?

The type of Chex cereal you choose is up to you, just make sure it’s a neutral one and not an already flavored one like cinnamon.

Is it easier to make this Chex mix in a bag or in a bowl?

If you have a large 4 quart bowl, then it is easiest to make in the bowl and to make sure all ingredients are stirred in well. If you do not have a large enough bowl, then a gallon sized bag works fine, just make sure you shake it well enough every time the directions say to stir or shake.

picture of muddy buddies chex mix with pretzels and red and green candies mixed in coated in powdered sugar in a jar with a red and green bow on it

What to serve with Christmas Chex Mix:

This Christmas Chex Mix will complete any Christmas cookie plate or provide that sweet crunch for an afternoon snack.

I enjoy this Christmas Chex Mix with a nice mug of mulled wine or mulled beer, eggnog, spiked eggnog mocha, or hot chocolate

A few of my favorite Christmas cookies include gingerbread truffles and candy cookie dough fudge.

Check out other favorite Christmas recipes!

picture of muddy buddies chex mix with pretzels and red and green candies mixed in coated in powdered sugar in a jar with a red and green bow on it

Christmas Muddy Buddies Recipe

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picture of muddy buddies chex mix with pretzels and red and green candies mixed in coated in powdered sugar in a jar with a red and green bow on it

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picture of muddy buddies chex mix with pretzels and red and green candies mixed in coated in powdered sugar in a jar with a red and green bow on it
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Christmas Muddy Buddies

Bring the flavors of Christmas to the classic Chex Mix, and keep your family and friends snacking at your next holiday party.
Course Snacks
Cuisine American
Keyword candy cane, chex, chex mix, christmas, dessert, muddy buddies, puppy chow, snack
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 12 cups
Calories 589kcal
Author Courtney O’Dell

Ingredients

  • 6 cups Chex Cereal
  • 2 cups Pretzels small, twisted
  • ½ cup Butter
  • ? cup Peanut Butter creamy
  • 1 ½ cups White Chocolate Chips
  • 2 – 2 ½ cups Powdered Sugar
  • 1 cup Red & Green M&M’s
  • 4 Candy Canes

Instructions

  • Slightly crush the candy canes in the zip lock bag with a rolling pin, and make small chunks not anywhere close to a powder.
  • In the large bowl (or ziplock bag once you remove the candy canes or a separate bag) mix together the Chex and pretzels.
  • Melt the butter, peanut butter, and 1 cup of white chocolate chips on the stove, stirring constantly over medium to low heat.
  • Pour the butter mixture over the Chex mixture and stir (or shake) well.
  • Add in the powdered sugar and stir (shake) well again.
  • Once all of the Chex and pretzels are covered well, stir (or shake) in the M&M’s, the rest of the white chocolate chips, and crushed candy canes.
  • Share and enjoy! 

Notes

  • If using a ziplock bag to make the Chex mix, be sure the butter mixture is not too hot when pouring it in.
  • If possible, don’t re use the ziplock bag you crushed the candy canes in.
  • This Chex mix tastes the freshest when enjoyed within the first 2-3 days after it’s made, but it will last up to two weeks in an airtight container at room temperature without tasting stale.
  • Nutrition

    Serving: 1g | Calories: 589kcal | Carbohydrates: 94g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 23g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 27mg | Sodium: 300mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 72g

    About Courtney

    Courtney loves to share great wine, good food, and loves to explore far flung places- all while masting an everyday elegant and easy style at lifestyle blog Sweet C’s Designs. Sweet C's devoted to finding the best food and drinks you'll want to make or find, around the world!

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