Puppy Chow Popcorn

Puppy Chow Popcorn has all the flavor of everyone’s favorite Muddy Buddies, but with the soft crunch of popcorn. This will be your new favorite snack!

a heaping bowl of puppy chow popcorn

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Y’all, there’s something important you need to know: My friend Chrissie wrote a book!

Chrissie is the blogger behind Off The Eaten Path, and one of my closest blogging friends. We met the year I started my blog and we bonded at an event while Instagramming comically tiny ice cream cones. (True story!)

If you don’t know Chrissie, you should! She is the most fantastic teacher. She writes about entertaining recipes, the best places to eat in Charlotte and her fantastic travel tips.

By day, she is a public defender and I always learn new things about our justice system from her. (I’ve especially learned a lot from her Instagram stories in the last week.) She also teaches local Instagram and blogging classes.

Chrissie is so generous to share all her know-how with anyone who asks! She’s just an all-around wonderful person.

And now can add teaching people how to throw amazing parties through her new book Stunning Spreads to this list of awesome stuff she teaches people.

a copy of the stunning spread cookbook with puppy chow popcorn next to it

I’m so excited about Stunning Spreads, and here’s why: This book is going to become my #1 resource when I am entertaining.

Entertaining doesn’t have to look like a huge backyard barbecue or New Year’s Eve party. It can just be having a few friends over for game night or family over for a birthday dinner.

Quite often, my entertaining looks more like the latter, but I am always looking for new recipe ideas.

stunning spreads cookbook with a bowl of Puppy Chow Popcorn on top of it

In this cookbook, you’ll find tons of easy entertaining recipes, from the fanciest cheese (and not-cheese) boards to appetizers and cocktails to desserts. There’s watermelon frosé, jalepeño poppers, chili con queso and pimento cheese deviled eggs.

There’s also a bee sting chèvre spread and a grilled brie that I cannot wait to make this summer

And so much more! There’s a recipe for every kind of party, whether it’s a baby shower or the big game.

a top view of Puppy Chow Popcorn with kernels spilling over

One of the most intriguing recipes to me is the Puppy Chow Popcorn. I love puppy chow, and I love popcorn. I had to try it!

I purchased my own copy and I asked Chrissie if I could share it with you.

She said yes, probably because she knows how much I love popcorn. It’s evidenced by this pizza popcorn and this movie theater popcorn. (Burnt popcorn is probably the only kind I don’t like, if you must know!)

kernels of Puppy Chow Popcorn spilling out of a mint green bowl

What is puppy chow?

Puppy chow is a sweet snack mix that’s made from crunchy cereal (usually Chex) that’s coated in a mixture of melted chocolate and peanut butter, then dusted with powdered sugar.

Sometimes it’s called “muddy buddies” or “monkey munch,” but I’ve always called it puppy chow. What you call it may depend on where you’re from.

My aunt always makes puppy chow for me at Christmastime, and I look forward to receiving a bag of this delicacy every year. (I know I could make it myself but somehow it tastes better when she makes it!)

a mint green bowl filled with Puppy Chow Popcorn

How to make puppy chow popcorn

Popcorn makes a fantastic base for the classic puppy chow toppings. It’s softer yet still crunchy.

It makes a great vegan and gluten-free puppy chow recipe. (Just make sure you use vegan chocolate chips and gluten-free confectioner’s sugar.) Any nut butter can also be used in place of peanut butter.

First you’ll need to make a batch of popcorn. Chrissie’s recipe calls for popping it with corn or canola oil, but I like to use this microwave popcorn popper.

I put in 1/2 cup of kernels, put on the lid and zap it for 3 minutes — then it’s ready to be transformed into Puppy Chow Popcorn!

kernels of Puppy Chow Popcorn on a white background

While your popcorn cools, melt chocolate chips, peanut butter and coconut oil, stirring every 30 seconds.

Toss the popcorn into a big mixing bowl or even a large ziptop bag. Pour on the chocolate mixture and stir til every kernel is coated. Then coat it in the powdered sugar.

Pour it all onto a baking sheet and pop it into the fridge for half an hour to set the melted chocolate.

a green bowl filled with Puppy Chow Popcorn next to the Stunning Spreads cookbook open to the Puppy Chow Popcorn recipe

I dare you not to gobble it by the handful. Seriously — Puppy Chow Popcorn is so good. Chrissie nailed it.

I hope you’ll check out Chrissie’s blog and Stunning Spreads, even if you’re not entertaining anytime soon. I could totally devour that beer cheese fondue for date night at home, or even a cheese board for lunch tomorrow.

If you will ever have people over to your house or if you ever need an appetizer to take to a potluck, you need this book. Trust me.

Happy munching! // susannah

a heaping bowl of puppy chow popcorn

Puppy Chow Popcorn

Yield: 15 cups popcorn
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Additional Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes

This popcorn is a sweet and salty spin on puppy chow (also known in some places as muddy buddies), a kid-friendly snack featuring peanut butter and chocolate and then tossed in a generous helping of powdered sugar.


  • 3 tablespoons canola or corn oil
  • 1/2 cup popcorn kernels
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 cup peanut butter
  • 1 teaspoon coconut oil
  • 2 cups powdered sugar


  1. Pop the popcorn. Heat oil in a heavy bottomed pan over medium high heat. When you think the oil is hot, test the heat of the oil by adding 2 to 3 single popcorn kernels to the oil. When the kernels pop, the oil is hot enough for the popcorn. Add all of the popcorn to the pot in a single layer and cover loosely with a lid, leaving a small space for steam to escape. Gently shake the pot occasionally as popcorn pops (to prevent kernels getting stuck to the bottom and burning). The popcorn is done when you don’t hear any more consecutive popping or you are able to count to about 5 seconds in between pops. Pour popped popcorn in a bowl and set aside. 
  2. In a microwave safe bowl, add chocolate chips, peanut butter and coconut oil. Microwave chocolate mixture in 30-second increments. After 30 seconds, remove the bowl from the microwave and stir. Continue to microwave and stir in 30-second increments until chocolate and peanut butter are fully melted (it will take about 2 to 3 times in the microwave). 
  3. Pour melted chocolate and peanut butter over popped popcorn and stir gently to combine. Dust powdered sugar gradually over chocolate-coated popcorn, stirring gently until all of the popcorn is coded in powdered sugar. 
  4. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil or parchment paper and pour popcorn onto the baking sheet spread it out into an even layer. She’ll pop corn on the baking sheet for at least 30 minutes in the fridge until chocolate is set. 
  5. Serve as a standalone snack or with a sweet and salty snack board. 


You can use a bag of unflavored popcorn for this recipe. Pop the popcorn according to package instructions and add to a bowl before adding chocolate and peanut butter. You will likely have some unpopped kernels after popping the popcorn on the stove. Make sure you pick out the unpopped kernels before mixing in the chocolate and peanut butter into the bowl. Your friends and teeth will thank you!

Printed with permission from Chrissie Nelson Rotko

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 5 Serving Size: 3 cups
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 728Total Fat: 45gSaturated Fat: 13gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 27gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 256mgCarbohydrates: 79gFiber: 5gSugar: 65gProtein: 13g

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  1. andrea Brinkley says

    You loved puppy chow the first time you had it around age 10. We asked for the recipe and made it for your teachers for Christmas for years. Sometimes we made quite a mess in the kitchen ?

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