I’m not a big Chex Party Mix fan, but a few years ago a co-worker gifted us with a container of a sweet and salty party mix made by his mother. It was simply delicious!
This year I decided to try my hand at duplicating that party mix. Happily I was able to come up with this recipe. It’s so good I can hardly keep my hands off while I waited for it to cool.
I wanted it to be sweet, salty, buttery, and a bit chocolatey. I also wanted it to have different shapes and textures that’s why I used a variety of crunchy ingredients. You can use any color M&M’s you want, you can even match the holiday!
I’m packaging the mix in quart sized Mason jars and giving them out for family and friends this Christmas. Of course we’ll keep a batch at our house for snacking.
This mix will be a hit at holiday events, game nights, and more. They’ll make great hostess and neighborhood gifts too! Best of all each quart size jar costs less than $5 to make! Mix up a batch today, I promise you, you’ll be hooked after one bite!
Makes 4 quart size mason jars with some left over for you!
Pre-heat oven to 275 degrees.
1 stick butter
1 cup clear Karo corn syrup
1 packed cup light brown sugar
3 cups each of Chex cereal (corn, rice, wheat)
1 cup salted cashews
2 cups Bugles corn chips
2 cups small pretzels
1 bag M&M’s
Line 2 baking sheets or jelly roll pans with parchment paper.
Place cereals, cashews, Bugles, and pretzels on the sheet. Toss them a bit so they are mixed. Divide the mix between the 2 sheets.
Place butter, syrup, and brown sugar in a microwave safe bowl. Microwave for 2 1/2 minutes or until butter melts. Stir well so butter is mixed in and doesn’t separate from the syrup.
Drizzle half of syrup on to cereal mix in one pan, drizzle the rest on the other pan.
Stir gently with a rubber spatula to cover cereal mix with syrup.
Place in oven and bake for a total of 1 hour.
You have to stir it every 15 minutes so I set the timer for 15 minutes at a time.
Every 15 minutes gently stir the mix so that the syrup is as evenly distributed as much as possible.
After the 2nd. 15 minutes switch the tray on the bottom rack to the top so and the top one to the bottom so it doesn’t burn. (Ovens are usually hotter closer to the bottom, so to bake both trays evenly switch them.)
When done, you have to work quickly because the syrup hardens fast. I take the bottom tray out first and turn off the oven. Keep the other tray in until you’re ready to work with it.
Lift the parchment paper from the corners and transfer it to your counter. Using a spatula separate the cereals and make a thin layer to cool. If you don’t do this you will end up with a huge clump that will be hard to separate without breaking the pieces. Do the same with the other tray.
When it’s cool, about 10-15 minutes, gently toss in the M&M’s.
Store in sealed containers. It will keep in sealed containers for at least a month, that is if you can keep from snacking on it!