Candy Cane Snack Mix

There are tons of variations on the home-made holiday treat known as Chex Mix or Texas Trash. Most of them are a salty collection of cereals, nuts, pretzels, and spices. Have you ever considered a sweet version of this snacking treat?

Candy Cane Snack Mix
Prep Time: 10-15 minutes, plus refrigeration
Servings: Approximately 8

Ingredients:
5 cups rice cereal
1 cup mini pretzels
1 cup crushed candy canes
1 cup confectioner’s sugar
2-1/2 cups white chocolate morsels (cookie chips)
2 cups popcorn
1/2 cup dark chocolate morsels (cookie chips)
1/2 cup mini marshmallows (any color)
1/2 cup shelled pistachios

Place cereal and pretzels into a large bowl.

Melt white chocolate morsels in microwave for 30 second intervals, stirring between rounds, until completely melted.

Pour melted chocolate over cereal. Stir and fold until lightly coated.

Fold in crushed candy canes.

Place confestioner’s sugar into a large zip-top bag.Add cereal mixture to bag, seal and shake until the mixture is coated with the sugar.

Refrigerate contents of bag until the chocolate hardens.

Turn out content of the bag into a large bowl. Stir in the remaining ingredients.

Place the mix in a serving bowl for immediate use, or measure into airtight containers as gifts.

Store at room temperature for up to two weeks.
Obviously, there are a lot of variations for this tasty treat, just as with the salty versions.

  • Mini marshmallows now come in different colors and flavors. Mint and pumpkin spice have been spotted locally.
  • Pistachios are not the only nut out there, though the greenish tint does add a bit of holiday color to this type of mix. Try different nuts for different flavors. Crushed hazelnuts or chopped pecans will lend themselves to exciting flavor variations.
  • Cookie chips also come in a wide variety of flavors. Dark, semi-sweet, white and milk chocolate, butterscotch, pumpkin spice, peppermint and others are available in my area at local chain grocery stores.
  • Candy canes are also available in a lot of flavors! From the traditional peppermint though a range of modern candy flavors, all the way to dill pickle falvored, you can find just about any flavor base you desire.

 

For the coffee lovers in your family, you might try this:

  • Hazelnuts or almonds in stead of pistachios
  • Chocolate flavored candy canes
  • Add a quarter cup of instant coffee to the confectioner’s sugar

 

For the pumpkin spice crowd, you migth try this:

  • Pecans instead of pistachios
  • Pumpkin spice, clove, or coffee flavored candy canes
  • Add a touch of pumpkin pie soice or cinnamon to the confectioner’s sugar
  • Butterscotch or pumpkin spice cookie chips in place of the white chocolate morsels

 

For the lovers of fruity flavors:

  • Small jelly beans instead of nuts
  • Crushed hard candy of a fruity flavor (or several) instead of candy canes
  • Add lime salt (a dry powder) to the confectioner’s sugar for some zing
  • Add a bit of shredded coconut
  • Colorful mini marshmallows

Any way you put it together, this recipe is bound to be a crowd pleaser over the holidays!

— Ann Cathey

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