Smoky Garlicky Party Mix
- 6 tablespoons butter
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 1/4 teaspoon granulated garlic
- 1 teaspoon dry mustard
- 1/4 teaspoon celery seed
- 4 cups corn squares cereal
- 4 cups rice squares cereal
- 1 cup rye crisps I used Gardetto's Special Request Roasted Garlic Rye Crisps
- 1 cup unsalted dry-roasted peanuts
- 1 1/4 cup pretzel sticks
- 1 1/4 cups oyster crackers
- Preheat oven to 250°F. Line a jelly roll pan with parchment.
- Melt butter on the stovetop in a small pan, about 1-2 minutes. Stir in the Worcestershire sauce and spices.
- Meanwhile, in a large bowl, mix together the cereals, peanuts, pretzels, rye crisps and oyster crackers. Carefully pour into the pan jelly roll pan.
- Drizzle with seasoned butter.
- Gently stir the cereal mixture in until coated. Bake for 1 hour, stirring every 15 minutes. Spread on paper towels until cooled.
- Store in an airtight container up to one week.
I don’t know about you but I am sort of worn out by life. 2020 has felt like a million years. We have a horrible president, an awful governor, and a global pandemic. Both my mom and my dog died in the past few months. Is it any wonder that I have been craving sort of nostalgic foods like Chex Mix?
I honestly don’t remember making Chex Mix when I was a kid. It really does require a lot of different ingredients that we wouldn’t always have on hand. By the time I was in middle school (or maybe elementary school?) General Mills started selling it in bags. We didn’t often get any sort of snack foods but I remember getting the “bold” mix quite fondly–possibly because it was so rare to get a packaged treat. The mix had been around for a long time before that–“tv mix” and “party mix” recipes became really popular around the 1950s when people starting owning televisions and wanting something to snack on while they were watching The Goldbergs and I Love Lucy.
Making this from “scratch” is a little tedious, I admit. I’ve tried different techniques (and the slow cooker does work if you are low on oven space), temperatures, and timing but really, the best way is 1 hour at 250, stirring every 15 minutes. It’s worth it for a well-coated, non-greasy, evenly seasoned, toasty mix. It also requires a lot of separate ingredients which can be pricy especially if you are buying each one just for this. Please do what I do and just buy generics of it all. I bought every ingredient except the rye crisps (which I bought via Amazon pantry) as generics at Aldi. The boxes of cereal are $1.20 and even picky me can’t tell the difference between that and real Chex. I would have bought generic rye crisps too but they don’t seem to exist.
So basically it’s a time-consuming, slightly pricy snack that you can buy in a bag for $3. Why make it yourself then? I’m telling you, it is worth it. One, this recipe makes at least 3 bags worth of mix. Two, the flavor really is that much better. It’s made with actual butter mixed with your own high-quality seasonings and it is so toasty tasting! You can even eat it warm from the oven. It makes your house smell like you think a kitchen in 1956 would when you came home from school. It really is so so good. If you have never had it homemade, you owe it to yourself to make it at least once. A pandemic is the perfect time, it requires no fresh ingredients and if you have a well-stocked pantry you probably could make it right now.