Monday, July 1, 2013

Pride Puppy Chow (Adaptable for the Fourth of July)

Celebration Puppy Chow - No Bake and Adaptable for Any Holiday (from

While every other blogger is prepping recipes to share in advance of the Fourth of July, the biggest holiday of my week has already passed: The Pride Parade. It's kind of a big deal around here. I've gone every year since before I lived in Chicago, and it's always a happy, energetic event that I really look forward to.

But this year, until a few days ago, I wasn't sure I was going to attend. Sorry to be a whiner, but I've been  exhausted from a rough work week and a wedding the other night that went very late. I just wanted to lay low. But some friends were going and, long story short, we threw together a last minute pre-parade brunch plan that ended up being a blast. Nothing is quicker, and more adaptable than Puppy Chow - which, by the way, is for humans only, not dogs - and my favorite adaptation to just about any recipe that involves Nutella.

Celebration Puppy Chow - No Bake and Adaptable for Any Holiday (from

I've added Nutella to Puppy Chow before, and I highly recommend it. It always tastes more gourmet (as much as can be expected with something called Puppy Chow) with the hazelnut flavor than it does with the traditionally-used peanut butter that you've probably seen in other recipe. 

Not that the crispy, sweet and chocolate-hazelnutty mixture needs a helping hand, but I wanted to brighten it up to make it look a little more festive and appetizing in the bowl. It's hard to make this snack look terribly appealing because, by the time you cover the chocolate layer with powdered sugar, everything turns this sort of colorless greyish-brown that is unappetizing enough to act as your first line of defense...against yourself...from eating the entire bowl in the blink of an eye. Sadly, as soon as you taste it, you will no longer register the slightest observation of how it looks, since you will be busy shoveling handfuls in your mouth. But that's a whole other issue.

Celebration Puppy Chow - No Bake and Adaptable for Any Holiday (from

The sprinkles were intended to convey both deliciousness (because obviously sprinkles make everything enjoyable to consume) and - given that they are rainbow sprinkles, obviously - Pride. But you can, and should, feel free to replace these with any holiday-appropriate sprinkles (like red, white and blue, perhaps?) to make this simple, addictive treat appropriate for any occasion.

And if this feels like a bit of a cop-out Fourth of July post, don't worry: I have you covered. Stay tuned on Wednesday for something a little different that will definitely put a little sparkle in your Fourth.

Celebration Puppy Chow - No Bake and Adaptable for Any Holiday (from

Festive Nutella Puppy Chow

4 cups sturdy cereal (I recommend corn Chex)
1/4 cup chocolate chips
2 Tablespoons butter
1/2 cup Nutella*
1 1/4 cups powdered sugar
1/2 cup festive sprinkles (optional, if not using, use an additional 1/2-3/4 cup powdered sugar)

*Note: I like Puppy Chow to be as crispy as possible so, given that and the fact that we were eating this at 10am, I went light on the Nutella. If you prefer thicker-coated cereal in your Puppy Chow, use 1 cup Nutella and 1 3/4 - 2 cups powdered sugar.

Pour cereal into a gallon zip top bag and set aside.

In a heatproof cereal bowl, combine chocolate, butter and Nutella. Microwave on high for 1 1/2 minutes. Stir until completely mixed and melted.

Pour chocolate mixture into the zip top bag with the cereal and gently massage into the cereal to coat. Then pour 1 cup of the powdered sugar into the bag and shake 2-3 times. If the sugar soaks in completely and is not visible at all, add the remainder of the sugar and shake 2-3 more times. Finally, add the sprinkles and continue to shake gently until cereal is thoroughly and evenly coated with sugar and sprinkles.

Makes just over four cups of puppy chow. Store in an airtight container at room temperature.

Celebration Puppy Chow - No Bake and Adaptable for Any Holiday (from

If you are having a celebration, you can also adapt my Celebration Cookie Cups with event-appropriate sprinkles

If you are a fan of chocolate and Nutella combined, you'll be a big fan of my Nutella Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Of course, if you're a Nutella purist, you'd probably prefer Nutella Swirl Pound Cake

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  1. Yummm! I've actually made Nutella puppy chow before, and there really is no going back to the peanut butter once you've got a taste of that delicious hazelnut. I love that you made these adaptable for pride or 4th of July. There's nothing sprinkles can't do, is there? (:

  2. I'm lovin' the rainbow sprinkles. So festive and perfect for the parade and the 4th of July holiday!

  3. I completely agree! Puppy chow should always be made with Nutella if you ask me :) I'm glad you like my crazy last-minute concept! I may make them again for the Fourth, depending on whether I can find the appropriately patriotic sprinkles in time (there are infinite varieties available on Amazon, in case you were curious!).

  4. Thanks, Eva! They do make things much more festive, don't they?

  5. I love the spirit this puppy chow is in! I'm in love with the ingredients too!

  6. omg, I LOVE puppy chow and I love the idea of adding sprinkles to it to make it more festive, how fun! Maybe I'll whip this up for our trip to Pennsylvania this weekend!

  7. Anne ~ Uni HomemakerJuly 3, 2013 at 12:51 AM

    I had to Google puppy chow because I only know it by dog food. :D hee hee... I love chex mix especially when there's Nutella and chocolate action involved... I can snack on these all day! :)

  8. Dog food! I've never heard that name before. It's also known in some circles as "muddy buddies", but I am solidly a "puppy chow" girl. :)


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