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Crunchy Chex cereal coated in peanut butter, chocolate and powdered sugar. These muddy buddies (aka puppy chow) are an easy no-bake treat made with 6 ingredients in just 15 minutes!

puppy chow in white bowl
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Favorite No Bake Treat

I’ve shared a few fun variations like my trail mix muddy buddies or lemon muddy buddies, but I realized I hadn’t posted the classic version yet. So today I’ll show you how to make muddy buddies AKA puppy chow. It’s super easy and is seriously addicting. Just one bite and you’ll be hooked!

If you’re looking for an easy gluten-free dessert to whip up in a pinch, these muddy buddies are perfect for you. There’s absolutely no baking required (you only need a microwave) and they’re ready in 15 minutes from start to finish. The end result is a sweet and crunchy snack full of peanut butter and chocolate flavor.

This recipe makes a smaller batch of muddy buddies. I find that it’s the perfect amount for my family, but it’s also super easy to double for a crowd! It’s one of my favorite desserts to make for family movie night. It’s also great for gifting to neighbors and friends during the holidays.

Why This Recipe Works

  • No baking required. On days where you don’t feel like heating up the oven, this puppy chow recipe is the perfect option. All it needs is a quick zap in the microwave!
  • Quick. Prepped in just 15 minutes, this muddy buddy recipe is a great dessert to make when you you’re in a pinch.
  • Textures and flavors. Crunchy, creamy, sweet and chocolatey, this delicious treat has a little bit of everything and is basically addicting after just one bite!
  • Great for all ages. Kids and adults both love these Chex mix muddy buddies.

Ingredients Needed

Muddy buddy ingredients on marble counter.
  • Chex cereal: I personally think Rice Chex cereal has the best flavor and texture. If you can’t find that type, then corn Chex will also work.
  • Chocolate chips: Semi sweet chocolate chips are my favorite to use.
  • Peanut butter: I like to use a little bit more peanut butter than the original recipe calls for. It adds the perfect flavor. Make sure to use the creamy kind (not drippy or oily). I prefer Jiff or Skippy.
  • Butter: This mixes with the chocolate and peanut butter to add a layer of richness.
  • Vanilla: Add a dash of pure vanilla extract for an extra boost of flavor.
  • Powdered sugar: This coats the muddy buddies for the perfect hint of sweetness.

Variations

Although these taste delicious as-is, you can mix in a few extras for some added flavor, color and crunch. One of my favorites to add in is peanut butter M&M’s or use Reese’s pieces to make Reese’s muddy buddies.

  • Use chocolate Chex
  • Peanut butter M&M’s
  • Chocolate chips
  • Mini marshmallows
  • Reese’s pieces
  • Chopped Oreos
  • Sprinkles

How to Make Muddy Buddies

Step by step collage showing how to make muddy buddies.
  1. Melt. Melt the chocolate chips, peanut butter and butter in a bowl in the microwave. Then stir the mixture until completely smooth. Once smooth, mix in the vanilla extract.
  2. Mix. Pour the cereal into a large bowl, then pour the melted chocolate on top. Gently stir until the cereal is fully coated.
  3. Coat. Transfer the chocolate mixture into a gallon sized zip top bag and pour in the powdered sugar. Seal the bag and shake until all of the muddy buddies have a nice coating of sugar.
  4. Cool. Pour onto a piece of wax paper to cool completely.

5 star review

Love this!!! Makes a perfectly sized batch for our family of 4. It’s such a great movie night snack!!

– Shannon
Muddy buddies in a white bowl.

Expert Tips

  • Melting the chocolate. You don’t want the chocolate to burn, so be careful when melting the mixture in the microwave. It’s helpful to work in 15 or 30-second intervals so that it stays smooth and you have more control over the consistency.
  • Coating in sugar. Use a gallon size plastic bag to toss the chocolatey Chex mixture with powdered sugar. If the bag is super full, you might want to work in two batches or use two bags for tossing. You want to make sure it gets well coated so that each piece has that deliciously sweet taste.
  • Mix-in’s. If you’re adding in mix-in’s such as M&M’s or Reese’s pieces, wait to add them until after you coat the muddy buddies in chocolate and powdered sugar. That way they won’t stick to the cereal and become clumpy.

Recipe FAQs

How do you store muddy buddies?

Store the muddy buddies in an airtight container or bag at room temperature or in the refrigerator. They will stay fresh for up to 5 days. You can also freeze up to 3 months.

What is the difference between muddy buddies and puppy chow?

There isn’t any difference. In different regions, people call it different names, but it’s essentially the same recipe. Some other names it goes by is monkey munch or reindeer chow.

Why is it called puppy chow?

Puppy chow is another name for muddy buddies. I believe it got that name because it resembles dog dog in looks (but certainly not in taste).

puppy chow in bowl

Want more no-bake desserts? Try this delicious Snicker’s popcorn, chewy Golden Graham bars or these popular no-bake cookies.

More Chex Mix Recipes

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Muddy buddies in a white bowl.

Muddy Buddies

5 from 10 votes
↑ Click stars to rate now!
Author: Jamielyn Nye
Crunchy Chex cereal coated in peanut butter, chocolate and powdered sugar. These muddy buddies (aka puppy chow) are an easy no-bake treat made with 6 ingredients in just 15 minutes!
Prep Time: 15 mins
Total Time: 15 mins
Servings: 8

Ingredients 

Instructions

  • Pour the Chex cereal in a large bowl. Set aside.
  • Combine the chocolate chips, peanut butter and butter in a microwave safe bowl. Microwave for one minute. Stir until melted. Microwave an additional 15 seconds if needed. Alternatively you could cook over a double broiler. Remove and let sit 1-2 minutes to cool slightly.
  • Stir vanilla into the chocolate and then pour chocolate over Chex cereal. Stir until well coated. 
  • Place chex mix in a zip top bag. Add powdered sugar and shake. Add more powdered sugar if desired. Pour onto a piece of wax paper to cool.

Notes

Variation: Feel free to add in extras like M&M’s (we love to add in peanut butter M&M’s), chocolate chips, chopped oreos, nuts or mini marshmallows. 
Storage: Store in air tight container or zip top bag for up to 1 week. Store in the freezer for up to 3 months. 

Nutrition

Calories: 291kcal | Carbohydrates: 41g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 8mg | Sodium: 252mg | Potassium: 248mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 16g | Vitamin A: 417IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 78mg | Iron: 10mg

Nutrition provided is an estimate. It will vary based on specific ingredients used.

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American

Did you make this recipe? Don’t forget to give it a star rating below!

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