The classic puppy chow: crunchy Chex cereal covered in chocolate, peanut butter, and sugar. It’s the ultimate sugary snack food (and perfect for gifting, too)!

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Homemade puppy chow made with Chex cereal, chocolate, and sugar.

About Puppy Chow

Whenever a snack craving hits you, homemade puppy chow is always a solid choice, because… chocolate. And peanut butter. And sugar.

I mean, c’mon! You know what I’m talking about here. Puppy chow Chex mix is one of those foods that easily fits any situation thanks to its salty sweetness and sugary crunchiness.

Plus, it’s not too rich, so you can slowly graze on it to your heart’s content.

Puppy chow drying on a baking sheet.

But wait, what is puppy chow?

Despite the odd-sounding name, this recipe isn’t for the pups. It’s for anyone who loves a sweet and crunchy treat with the slightest hint of salt.

Ultimately, “puppy chow” refers to any recipe made with Chex cereal that’s been coated in various types of chocolate and sugar. It has roots in the central US and gets its name for resembling puppy chow – just for humans.

What are the other names for puppy chow?

Depending on where you’re from, you might have learned to call this sweet-and-crunchy treat by another name. Here are some of the most popular:

  • Monkey Munch
  • Muddy Buddies
  • Muddy Munch
  • Reindeer Chow
Scooping up a serving of puppy chow.

What can you add to puppy chow?

Puppy chow is always good all by itself, but sometimes it’s fun to jazz it up with sweet candies or a salty crunch. Here are a few of my favorites:

  • M&M’s, any flavor
  • Whoopers
  • Hershey bars, chopped up
  • Reese’s Pieces
  • Sprinkles, any type
  • Pretzels, broken up a bit

How long is puppy chow good for?

Once made, cooled, and stored in a sealed container, puppy chow will remain good at room temperature for up to one to two weeks.

Can you make puppy chow ahead of time?

Yes, you totally can! Because it can last up to two weeks, it’s great for making in batches for parties or giving away as gifts.

Single piece of puppy chow.

Notes & tips for this puppy chow recipe

  • When making this recipe, you’ll need a big mixing bowl so you have enough room to maneuver and stir. I own a 13 quart mixing bowl for this very reason.
  • If you’re running short on ingredients, you can exclude the butter and vanilla.

More puppy chow recipes

How to make puppy chow

This next part is only a photo tutorial of the recipe steps. If you’re looking for the full recipe measurements and instructions, scroll down to Recipe Details.

Step 1 – In a microwave-safe bowl, add the chocolate chips, peanut butter, and butter, then microwave it until the chocolate has melted (for best results, follow the instructions on the bag of chips.)

Step 2 – Quickly add the vanilla extract, then stir well.

Step 3 – Add the Chex cereal to a large mixing bowl (I like using a 13-quart mixing bowl), then pour the melted chocolate mixture on top. Use a spatula to gently toss to mix until all the cereal is coated. Tip: while mixing, dig under the cereal, then pull up.

Step 4 – Add powdered sugar to a ZipLoc bag. Working in batches, scoop in a portion of the coated Chex cereal, seal the bag, then shake to coat the cereal in powdered sugar. Repeat this step until all the puppy chow is coated.

Step 5 – Spread the puppy chow out on a flat surface (like a baking sheet) and allow it to cool, dry, and set.

Step 6 – Serve and enjoy!

Recipe Details

Homemade puppy chow made with Chex cereal, chocolate, and sugar.
3.72 from 38 votes

Puppy Chow Chex Mix

10 mins prep + 5 mins cook + 1 hr Cooling Time
583 kcal
Yields: 9 servings
The classic puppy chow: crunchy Chex cereal covered in chocolate, peanut butter, and sugar. It's the ultimate sugary snack food (and perfect for gifting, too)!

Ingredients 

Instructions

  • In a microwave-safe bowl, add milk chocolate chips, peanut butter, and butter. Heat in the microwave for 1 minute, then stir. Continue to heat in the microwave for 30 second intervals until chocolate chips are soft. Using a whisk or a fork, stir chocolate and peanut butter until smooth.
  • Quickly add vanilla to bowl, then mix until incorporated.
  • Add Chex cereal to a 13 quart mixing bowl. Pour chocolate-peanut butter mixture on top and gently stir with a spatula until all Chex cereal is coated. Set bowl aside.
  • Set a baking sheet nearby and cover with parchment paper (optional).
  • Add powdered sugar to a Ziploc bag (gallon sized). Working in batches (about 1-2 cups at a time), add coated Chex cereal to bag with powdered sugar, seal or twist the top of the bag closed, and then shake the bag until the Chex cereal is coated with sugar. Remove finished puppy chow and spread out on prepared baking sheet. Repeat step until all the puppy chow is made. When finished, discard plastic bag and any dry powdered sugar that remains inside.
  • Let puppy chow cool, dry, and set, about 1 hour.
  • Serve immediately.

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 583kcal | Carbohydrates: 84g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 26g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 28mg | Sodium: 423mg | Potassium: 439mg | Fiber: 10g | Sugar: 35g | Vitamin A: 985IU | Vitamin C: 8mg | Calcium: 154mg | Iron: 21mg

I do my best to provide nutrition information, but please keep in mind that I’m not a certified nutritionist. Any nutritional information discussed or disclosed in this post should only be seen as my best amateur estimates of the correct values.

Author: Chrisy

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30 comments

    • Lyzz

    I just wanted to add a comment regarding ingredients with a nut allergy πŸ™‚ I use Biscoff Cookie Butter and white chocolate. However, if you add a stick of butter, the mixture granualizes instead of melting.

    Thanks!!

    • Audra
    • 5 stars

    Ive used this recipe several times and love it! Any suggestions on how far ahead of time this can be made? Is a week too much?

    • Elise

    Hi, I’m confused about 9 cups and only 12 oz of cereal. Are one of those wrong?

      • Dianne

      The 12 oz. marking on the box is weight not volume. One 12 oz. box does contain almost exactly 9 cups.

    • Kat

    How much is one serving? All it says is that it feeds 18.

      • Chrisy

      Hey Kat! This recipe uses 9 cups of Chex mix cereal, so I think my original reasoning was that this would mean 18 portions at 1/2 cup. However, lately I’ve been updating my puppy chow recipes to list about 9 or 10 servings since 1 cup seems more like a reasonable size for snacking. I’ll update this recipe now to reflect that πŸ˜€

    • Linda

    I’ve been making this for years and now my Granddaughter makes it.

    • Terri Morton

    I tried this recipe and mine came out “chewy.” It was like the cereal changed in consistency from crunchy to chewy. Not sure what happened. Any ideas?

    I tried 2 different batches. I thought maybe on the first one I let it sit out on the counter for too long. So the next batch I didn’t let sit as long and it was still that way.

    • Hey Terri! I’m so sorry they didn’t turn out right. Would you be able to describe how they were chewy? Like did the chocolate not coat the cereal well enough, or did it coat TOO well (so a super thick layer)? What was the consistency of the chocolate while you were stirring? Whenever I’ve made these, the chocolate was fairly thin, almost to the point where I was worried it couldn’t cover all of the cereal (but then it does). If the chocolate was too thick and coated the cereal too thick, I could definitely see how that might make them chewy after coating with sugar. At that point I think it could be a temperature issue – like maybe the chocolate cooled too much before stirring?

    • Caroline hook

    What would be the equivalent to chex in England?

      • Natalie Barber

      I have not tried it, but I seen where someone from England used Krave cereal. They commented that they liked the extra center filling. It has a crispy shell and also comes with the following fillings:
      Chocolate hazelnut
      Milk Chocolate
      White Chocolate
      Caramel Chocolate
      Hope this helps πŸ˜‰

        • Deb

        Krave is about the closest thing you can get, it’s not the same but still gives yummy results. (We have just moved back to the US from the U.K. so I’m the Queen of substitutions!)

        • Thank you so much for your insight on this, Natalie! πŸ˜€

        • Diane Mazur

        I love puppy chow as do all the kids in our family, when I make it I use peanut butter chips instead of the chocolate chips. This would be a really good way to make it with chocolate Chex , hmmmm next time! ?

        • Ooo… peanut butter chips with chocolate Chex?! Sounds delicious πŸ˜€

        • Pam

        Hi Christy. I know this is a stupid question, but which Chex cereal do you use? There are so many to pick from. I never know which is best. Thanks!

        • Hey Pam! That’s actually a great question – I should notate it in the recipe! I typically use the rice Chex (blue box) but the corn Chex (green box) or even the chocolate Chex (if you can find it) would also work great with this recipe.

            • Gerry

            If you are using several boxes, wouldn’t it be fun to mix it up and buy different flavors?

            • I LOVE this idea. If you try it, I’d love to hear which ones you liked best πŸ˜€

                • Cheryl

                I always use Cinnamon Toast Crunch to mine and it’s delicious!

              • Chelsea

              One of my favorite snacks. You give a lot of good tips. Would print but too many grammar errors.

              • Thank you for bringing the errors to my attention! I will work on fixing them πŸ™‚

                  • DeDeeQ

                  I would not worry about this – it is a recipe to make for a snack and relaxation. I am certain you never thought you were writing a novel or an essay to be critiqued. Happy New Year!!! Thank you so much for sharing this recipe!!

                  • Thank you!! I needed to read some kind words this morning πŸ˜€ And a Happy New Year to you, too!

                      • Gerry

                      I am reading the comment from the grammar guru….and I say who cares? Not me (or is it not I?)
                      People…please be kind. There are so many negative remarks about everything. Just because we can’t see you it still makes all of us feel bad and I would ‘unfriend’ anyone who makes me feel that way.
                      Chrisy…this is perfect for a function my club hosts. My job is to bring a table snack for a Senior bingo we host. Great job.
                      And I understood every word you said.

                      • Thank you SO much Gerry πŸ˜€ Indeed, kind words are hard to find on the internet, so thank you for sharing a few with me!

                      • Joanie @ ZagLeft
                      • 5 stars

                      Oh my gosh! My older daughter who is now away at college loved this stuff growing up. I haven’t made it in years but that needs to change. Puppy Chow is so addictive!!

                      • Josie
                      • 5 stars

                      I’ve actually never had Puppy Chow mix! Powdered sugar, peanut butter, and chocolate? Count me in πŸ™‚

                      • Sheena @ Tea and Biscuits
                      • 5 stars

                      My son just loves this stuff! It’s so easy and tasty too, thanks for sharing πŸ™‚

                      • Shannon @ Dinner from the Heart
                      • 4 stars

                      I love the variations of “puppy chow” that are floating around the internet, but I always seem to come back to the original flavor – I’m pretty certain it’s my favorite! πŸ™‚