What is Chex Mix®?
Chex Mix® is a combination of Chex® cereals and a variety of other snack foods. Depending on the Chex Mix® flavor or recipe, you can find pretzels, popcorn, chocolate pieces, or peanuts, just to name a few. Once all the foods are combined there is usually a spice or coating that is baked on and can include salt, garlic powder, brown sugar, or ranch dressing mix, but traditionally will include butter. You can make them up yourself or purchase a bag of Chex Mix® at most grocery stores. There are 15 different varieties of Chex Mix® produced by General Mills, not including limited editions.
Traditional Chex Mix® is a salty snack that contains Chex® pieces, mini breadsticks, pretzels, and rye chips. The rye chips always seem to get grabbed up first. There must be something in their garlicky seasoning that tickles everyone's taste buds. Of course there are a dozen or so recipes online, and even on the back of Chex® cereal boxes, that you can whip up at home.
The first Chex Mix® was called Chex Snack Mix® and found its way on grocery store shelves in 1987. Back then you'd find peanuts but no rye chips. Chex® cereal and Chex Mix® snacks were owned by Ralston Purina but they were sold to General Mills in the 90's. Today Traditional Chex Mix® is a better choice than potato chips, but it is still high in sodium. Other varieties of Chex Mix® may also contain high amounts of sugar as well.
General Mills seems to enjoy experimenting with new combinations because they now have several varieties of Chex Mix® in every category. The categories are salty, chocolate, sweet and salty, 100 Calorie, and limited editions. But if that's not enough variety for you, their site has nearly 40 different recipes including gluten free and holiday Chex Mix®. There seems to be a Chex Mix® for nearly every occasion, including a chai crunch and a Chex® brittle.
ChexY® wasn't the first cereal to promote recipes in which cereals were used as snack foods. It was, in fact, Kix® that got the ball rolling. The first Kix® recipe was found in 1950. It would not be till June of 1952 that a Chex® mix recipe would find its way into a Life magazine.
Chex mix is ubiquitous at most get togethers now. One of the best parts about the recipe is it can be altered to suit the tastes of everyone in the house. I've seen recipes that used onion powder and dill, cayenne and paprika, and soy sauce, garlic and five-spice powder. It just depends on personal preference.
There are also endless varieties of the individual combinations of ingredients. I like using rice and corn Chex, toasted pecan halves, Cheerios, Cheezits and a healthy dose of garlic. Some people like toasted almonds and others prefer peanuts.
A sweet Chex mix in the form of muddy buddies or "puppy chow" Chex is also good. This uses powdered sugar, peanut butter and chocolate chips for a coating. It's also tasty.
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