Christmas reindeer crack, or Christmas chow, is a festive twist on the classic puppy chow recipe.
With its salty-sweet crunch, you’ll have to fight Rudolph for your share!
It might be the tradition to leave some carrots out for the reindeer, but I think they’d be grateful for something a little different this Christmas Eve.
In fact, I’ll bet Santa would be happy to dig in too!
Christmas Reindeer Crack
There are a few variations when it comes to chow recipes, and I do happen to love a big bowl of dark chocolate goodness.
But this Reindeer version is just so festively sweet; I have to make it every year.
Chex Mix makes the perfect base for all of these recipes.
It’s crunchy, light, and not overly salted, making it the perfect partner for sweet white chocolate.
I love the combination of crisp corn Chex with crunchy peanuts, and the pretzels not only give you pops of salt, but the flavor is just the right amount of savory.
Although you can use any colored M&M’s, using red and green just scream Christmas!
The whole batch is held together with plenty of creamy white chocolate.
The only thing missing here is a sprinkling of edible glitter.
Some like it with white chocolate, and some like it with milk. Either way, this recipe is going to be delicious!
- Mini Pretzels – pretzels are essential for that tremendous salty flavor and crunch. You could use pretzel sticks or Nibblers if you like bigger pieces. I prefer to use these Christmas shaped pretzels for extra cuteness.
- Cereal Squares – one thing almost all of these recipes agrees on is the use of Chex Mix. It is perfectly textured and flavored to pair with any kind of chocolate and comes in a variety of flavors, from chocolate to caramel.
- Dry roasted peanuts – feel free to leave these out if you want to make it nut-free, or go for another kind of nut if you have a favorite. I just like the roasted flavor they offer and a different sort of crunch.
- M&M’s – I prefer to use M&M’s over regular chocolate chips because they have a softer bite to them. Plus, they add great color! Not only that, but they also come in a Christmas variety, including peppermint.
- White Chocolate – although you can use dark or milk chocolate, I think the white looks super pretty against the red and green M&M’s. Be sure to use good quality chocolate as cheaper brands don’t always melt smoothly.
Tips & Tricks
This recipe is no-bake and super simple.
I like to make it for parties, serving in a big bowl, or as little gifts in adorable, festive bags.
And although it’s nice and easy, here are a few tips that will make it perfect every time.
- Have your tray lined and ready before you start, as you’ll need to pour the mix out quickly before the chocolate begins to set.
- Use a big bowl! You need to toss the whole batch in chocolate and will need the extra room to get everything coated.
- Toss the mixture in the chocolate like you would toss a salad. If you try to stir, pieces can break, and you might miss bits on the bottom.
- As mentioned, you’ll want to get good quality chocolate since it will melt far better and coat everything well.
- If you can, use a double-boiler to melt the chocolate since it’s a little more gentle.
- A double-boiler is a pot with a couple of inches of water set to simmer. Place a metal bowl to cover the top, without touching the water, and let the steam melt the chocolate.
- Be careful not to get any steam or water in the chocolate, as it will cause it to seize up and become lumpy.
- If using a microwave, melt in 20-second bursts, frequently stirring to avoid burning.
- Once most of the chocolate has melted, stir for a few minutes to help melt the rest, rather than putting it back in the microwave.
How Long Does This Mix Last?
I would recommend making this as close to the day you need it as possible.
That being said, if stored in an air-tight container, it should last up to two weeks.
Keep it in a cool, dry place to avoid the chocolate from melting.
Variations of Christmas Reindeer Crack
I’m sure Prancer and Dancer and Donner and Vixen are all huge fans of this white chocolate delight.
But I have a feeling Comet, and Cupid and Dasher and Blitzen are all dark chocolate lovers.
As for Rudolph? He’ll eat it all!
To make everyone happy, why not try out a few different recipes and see which is your family’s favorite?
- Try using different flavored Chex Mix’s, such as chocolate or caramel.
- To make it gluten-free, use gluten-free pretzels and corn or rice cereals.
- Try mixing some almond bark with your white chocolate for a fresh and nutty taste.
- Change up the M&M flavors and colors, or use Reese’s Pieces.
- Dried fruits with dark chocolate would make an excellent combination.
- Switch out the plain pretzels for these festive mint and white chocolate pretzels instead.
- Mini marshmallows would make a sweet and sticky addition.
- Try some sprinkles or edible glitter stars to add a touch of magic to the mix.
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