Muddy Buddy Chex Mix


Muddy Buddy Chex Mix is my take on an amazing treat. It started out as a way to get rid of the muddy buddies I had laying around the house while also making use of the Chex mix I bought on sale. It’s super easy to make and only takes slightly under 20 minutes.

Muddy buddy chex mix is obviously a top snack to bring along on your next camping trip. You need this because, well, what else are you going to eat while building a fire at the beach or while sitting around the campfire singing songs with your friends. Plus — it’s delicious.

Making Peanut Butter

What are Muddy Buddies?

Since it somewhat resembles dog food, Muddy Buddies is sometimes referred to as “Puppy Chow.” It is a straightforward snack mix produced by combining 6 ingredients:

  • Chex Cereal – Rice Chex or Corn Chex are my favorites, but you can use Wheat or Chocolate Chex, or whatever you love or have on-hand
  • Semisweet Chocolate Chips
  • Peanut Butter
  • Butter – I prefer to use salted butter when I’m making these because I love a hint of salt when I’m eating something sweet but unsalted butter will work just fine as well.
  • Vanilla Extract
  • Powdered Sugar

Making this recipe simply requires 15 minutes of your time. My family absolutely loves this muddy buddy recipe so when I make it, I’ll double the ingredients so there’s plenty for everyone and a little leftover for later.

How To Make Muddy Buddies

The majority of the work was done by my girls, who did a fantastic job! My four-year-old cherished doling out the cereal into the bowl and combining the components. By reading the recipe to us and helping her sister stir the mixture, my eight-year-old was a huge help.

  • First, grab a medium sized microwavable-safe bowl and put in the chocolate chips, peanut butter and butter
  • Melt by cooking in the microwave, uncovered, on high for about one minute
  • Give the mixture a good stir then microwave about 30 seconds longer
  • When the mixture can be stirred smoothly you’ll know it’s ready
  • Stir the vanilla in with the chocolate mixture
  • Put the cereal into a different large mixing bowl
  • Pour the chocolate and peanut butter mixture over cereal
  • Stir everything together until it’s evenly coated
  • Once it’s been evenly mixed, pour everything into a large resealable plastic bag (I used one that was 2 gallons)
  • Add the powdered sugar into the bag
  • Seal the bag and shake until well everything is evenly coated

Shaking in all the powdered sugar was their absolute favorite part. The Muddy Buddies had a small unplanned dance party while shaking their bags after I separated them into two bags so they could each have their own to shake.

  • Spread the muddy buddies onto a baking sheet covered in waxed paper to let them cool at room temperature

See how proud these girls are of their creation! It was so much joy to work together as a family to create a treat from my youth, and they did a fantastic job. One of my personal favorite activities with my girls is cooking, and after seeing how much they enjoyed making these Chex Muddy Buddies, we will surely start a new Christmas tradition. Don’t hesitate to try them; you’ll adore them too!

bowl of muddy buddy chex mix

How Long Can You Keep Muddy Buddies

Your Chex muddy companions will last the longest if you store them in an airtight container when they have totally cooled. They last roughly two weeks if you keep them in the refrigerator. If you put something in front of them and forget about them, they will only last in your fridge for two weeks, let’s face it. They only lasted until my kids arrived home from school the last time I made them.


These Muddy Buddies (also called Puppy Chow) are the best easy treat. There’s no baking required and you’ll need only a few ingredients! 

Overhead photo of a bowl filled with Muddy Buddies and a toddler hand grabbing one out.

What Is A Muddy Buddy?

This treat is the BEST, regardless of whether you name it Muddy Buddies or puppy chow (or reindeer chow or monkey munch!). The ingredients for Muddy Buddies include Chex® cereal, peanut butter, chocolate, butter, vanilla, salt, and powdered sugar. They are a sweet and salty cereal snack mix. It’s even better because baking is not necessary!

Due to its resemblance to dog food, this treat is commonly called “puppy chow.” So even if they don’t have the most appealing appearance, you’ll be captivated after just one mouthful! Just be careful not to actually give your dog(s) this treat. Chocolate and pets don’t go together.

Now that we are familiar with the name, let’s discuss how to make this tasty snack mixture!

Process shots of creating Muddy Buddies -- melting the chocolate, peanut butter, and butter.

How Do You Make Muddy Buddies?

  • Measure the cereal (rice or corn Chex) into a very large bowl.
  • Melt the butter, chocolate chips, and peanut butter and mix together. Add in the vanilla and a pinch of salt (to balance the sweetness).
  • Combine the chocolate-peanut butter mixture and the cereal mixture; toss until combined.
  • Coat the mixture with powdered sugar: transfer it to a large bag, add the powdered sugar, and shake to combine!

And if you’re wondering how to make puppy chow — it’s the exact same as making this recipe. 🙂

A Quick Breakdown Of This Recipe:

  • This recipe doubles well– and on the flip side, it can also be halved easily. 
  • Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week. We like it best within 3-4 days.
  • Freeze in an airtight container/bag for up to 3 months; thaw at room temperature.


The best simple reward is these Muddy Buddies, often known as Puppy Chow! Few ingredients are needed and no baking is necessary!

prep time15 minutes

total time15 minutes

servings10 cups



  • 9 cups Chex cereal Rice or Corn Chex work best
  • 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1 cup milk or semisweet chocolate chips (I like Guittard or Ghirardelli)
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 and 1/2 cups powdered sugar

Optional Additions

  • mini M&M’s, mini chocolate chips


  • Put the cereal into a sizable bowl and reserve.
  • The peanut butter, chocolate chips, and butter should all be combined in a separate, sizable microwave-safe bowl. 15-second intervals in the microwave, stirring for 15 seconds in between each interval, until the mixture is melted and smooth. Salt and vanilla can now be added. Pour on top of cereal. Stir thoroughly until all of the cereal is coated. While stirring, take care not to smash the cereal.
  • Pour half of the cereal mixture and half of the powdered sugar into a gallon-sized resealable plastic bag. Once the cereal is evenly coated, seal the container and shake it. Do the same with the remaining cereal and powdered sugar. Shake the cereal until it is thoroughly coated.
  • Pour into a big bowl, then relish! Add some fun ingredients, like mini M&Ms or chocolate chips, if you want.
  • Muddy Buddies leftovers should be kept at room temperature in an airtight container.


This is the best recipe, whether you call it puppy food or muddy pals, I assure you! Why? More powdered sugar, more peanut butter, and more chocolate! This enduring childhood snack combo just got better.

Bowl of puppy chow

Puppy chow (muddy pals) is incredibly quick and simple to prepare with only six ingredients, making it the ideal meal for the hectic holiday season. I enjoy making it for large gatherings or even giving it away as gifts because it’s so easy!


There are only six extremely basic components in this delicious snack mix. What’s best? All of the components are probably already in your possession. I’d advise adjusting it if you don’t usually have these ingredients on hand. The ingredients are all common cupboard and refrigerator staples with a lengthy shelf life.

  • The cornerstone of this dish is rice chex cereal, which gives this snack mix its incredible crunch and addictiveness. Use unsweetened cereal instead; otherwise, the final product will be overly sweet.
  • chips of semisweet chocolate. Semi-sweet cereal, like the unsweetened cereal, guarantees that this snack mix isn’t excessively sugary.
  • The chocolate chips and peanut butter are melted together to make a very creamy coating for the cereal. To promote consistent melting, use smooth peanut butter as opposed to chunky.
  • salted-free butter This facilitates the melting of the chocolate and peanut butter into a thick, smooth sauce that tastes like chocolate.
  • vanilla essence I adore adding vanilla for flavor and “cozy” appeal.
  • granulated sugar. The powdered sugar will be added after the cereal has been thoroughly covered in the chocolate mixture. This increases the recipe’s sweetness and makes it acceptable to lick your fingers in public.


  1. Place chex cereal into a large bowl. Set aside. 
  2. Place chocolate chips, peanut butter, and butter into a large microwave safe bowl or measuring cup.
  3. Melt until smooth, then stir in vanilla extract.
  4. Pour chocolate mixture over the cereal and gently stir together.
  5. Stir in the powdered sugar.
  6. Enjoy!

It’s sweet, peanut buttery, extra chocolatey, and slightly crunchy, so you know you can’t put it down!

Process shots of making muddy buddies


There are SO many recipes for puppy chow, but I swear, with these tips and tactics, my recipe is the finest.

  1. Use the whole box of cereal. There are typically 2 cups of cereal left in the box when recipes call for 9 cups. Two cups of Chex?! What in the world are you supposed to do with them? Avoid doing that. Utilize the entire cereal box.
  2. Use the whole bag of chocolate chips. In this recipe, more is better. Simply place the entire bag in.
  3. Use more powdered sugar than you believe is required. The cereal should be COMPLETELY coated in white.
  4. Don’t over mix. Chunks are the best part. Just trust me on this one.


For up to a week, puppy chow can be kept at room temperature in an airtight container. Although it doesn’t need to be cold, some people prefer it that way. You have the choice!


I urge you to follow the recipe exactly as written if you can. It really is the ideal fusion of deliciously crunchy, sweet, chocolatey, and peanut buttery flavors. Having said that, here are some suggestions if you MUST make substitutions:

  • Can I use a different kind of cereal? Corn Chex is a fantastic alternative to rice Chex if you don’t like them or can’t get them.
  • Do I have to use semi-sweet chocolate? You may use milk chocolate or even dark chocolate, but semi-sweet chocolate truly provides the ideal level of sweetness without being overly sugary.
  • I’m allergic to peanuts, can I use a different kind of nut butter? The best kind of peanut butter is processed—think Jiff or Skippy—but sunflower seed butter should also work. All-natural nut butters are too runny and could not set as well at room temperature, so I don’t advise using them.
  • I’m vegan, is the butter necessary? While butter is necessary, consider switching to a vegan buttery spread. Because it hasn’t been tested, results cannot be guaranteed.
  • Do I need to use vanilla extract? No, you can omit it, but some of the comforting depth of taste will be lost.

Powdered sugar truly cannot be substituted; therefore, disregard this step.

Bowl of puppy chow from overhead


Either way, the situation is the same. Even though many people refer to it as muddy buddies, I called it puppy chow growing up. Depending on where you reside,

Other names:

  • Monkey munch
  • Muddy munch
  • Reindeer chow
  • Monster munch


Puppy chow is a crunchy chex cereal-based snack mix covered in a spread of chocolate chips, peanut butter, butter, and vanilla and dusted with powdered sugar.


  1. The shape of the pieces coated in chocolate resembles dog food.
  2. Purina, the dog food company, created the original Chex cereal back in 1937 and people started calling it “human chow”, due to the Purina connection.

Who would have imagined that a firm that makes dog food would also make cereal for humans!


You can thank General Mills if you belong to the muddy pals camp. In 2009, they created and packaged their recipe for sale. I have no idea how they came up with the name, but if YOU do, please share in the comments below!

Puppy chow and muddy pals, regardless of their names, are prepared with the same fundamental ingredients: cereal, peanut butter, chocolate, and powdered sugar.


This is a really well-liked holiday recipe, and fortunately you can prepare it in advance at this hectic time of year! If stored properly, it keeps its freshness for up to a week.

Fingers grabbing muddy buddies from bowl

Crunchy, sweet, nutty, and chock full of chocolate.

Who could not love this?

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