Have you ever thought of baking a Chex mix in your smoker? This snack mix is perfect for celebrating Christmas or cheering up a long winter evening.
We have a tradition of making party mix around the holidays, and baking it over wood and charcoal really kicks the flavor up a few notches! Instead of our usual recipe with cheese puffs and pretzels, I thought it would be fun to experiment with a sweeter profile, so I added some Christmas-colored M&M’s. It certainly is a hit at our house.
To get started, mix the following in a bowl:
- 4 cups Cheerios
- 3 cups wheat Chex
- 3 cups corn Chex
- 1 cup dry roasted peanuts
- 1/2 cup cashews
In a small kettle, make your sauce:
Melt the butter and mix it with the other sauce ingredients. You can substitute the last two items with your favorite seasonings. The Meadow Creek rub is pretty salty, so if you swap it out with a rub that’s low in salt, you might want to add some regular salt.
Pour the sauce over your dry mixture and stir it well. There should be enough butter to coat all the cereal. Dump the mix into a 9x13-inch aluminum pan.
For this recipe, I used my Weber kettle grill, fired with 100% hardwood lump charcoal on the one side and a chunk of apple wood. I set the pan on the opposite side with the lid turned so the vent was directly above the pan.
This recipe would be great for a pellet smoker, Big Green Egg, or an offset smoker too. You could use any kind of fruit wood or pecan wood for smoking.
Besides giving the mix a smoke flavor, you want to bake the sauce into the cereal. The time and temperature are flexible, but you want to "kiss" it with smoke and heat the mix enough to crisp the cereal and shrink the Cheerios a bit.
If you have a smoker that has trouble getting up over 250 degrees in the cold, that isn't a problem. At 225–250 degrees F, it will take 1-1/2 to 2 hours. On my Weber kettle, I used a bit too much charcoal, so my grill ran at 400 degrees and the mix was done in 45 minutes.
Who doesn't love those tiny savory Cheerios baked in Worcestershire sauce and butter? They are the best!
If you’re cooking at higher temperatures, stir the mix every 15 minutes; at the lower temperature, every 30 minutes should be enough.
Let the mix cool for fifteen minutes and add 1 cup of red and green M&M’s. If you add them while the mix is still hot, the candy will melt and split.
Try freezing some of the party mix in an air-tight container or in a vacuum sealed bag. I think it tastes better after a couple of weeks in the freezer, because the flavor has more time to mix.
About the author: Lavern Gingerich is a writer and the digital marketing manager for Meadow Creek Barbecue Supply.
This story is taken from StoryQue Magazine and used by permission.