Sweet and Spicy Snack Mix (for a crowd!)

posted by Andrea | 11/6/2018

Dave and I are big snackers! We definitely enjoy full meals, but we also love little snacks between each meal and before we go to bed.

We love all types of Chex mix, popcorn, nuts, trail mix, granola, pretzels, candy corn mix, and more — especially this time of year and throughout the holiday season.

Today’s recipe for Sweet and Spicy Snack Mix is a newer favorite of ours. I got the recipe from a friend this summer — and WOW is it good!

I’ve made it a few times for food gifts, and I’m sure I’ll make it a few more times for holiday parties. It’s the perfect balance of sweet, salty, spicy, savory, crunchy, chewy, and oh so delicious!

The only thing I don’t like about this recipe is how difficult it is to stop munching on it!

Recipe for Sweet and Spicy Snack Mix

{print recipe}

Makes a lot — at least 20 cups. 

INGREDIENT: 

  • 5 c. tortilla chips (crunched up a bit)
  • 5 c. Rice Chex or Crispix cereal
  • 1 bag (3.5 oz.) popped popcorn (neutral flavor is best)
  • 1 can (16 oz.) mixed nuts
  • 1/2 c. butter
  • 1/2 c. corn syrup
  • 1 c. brown sugar
  • 1 Tbl. Chili powder
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. ground Cayenne

DIRECTIONS:

Preheat oven to 250ºF. Spray a very large roasting pan or sheet pan with cooking spray.

Dump the chips, cereal, popcorn and nuts into roaster.

In a medium pan, melt butter over medium heat, add in all the other ingredients and stir until bubbly and completely liquified.

Pour caramel mixture over cereal mixture and stir.

Bake in preheated oven for 1 hour, stirring every 20 minutes or so.

Once mixture is baked, dump it out onto wax paper to cool. Break apart any really big chunks and store in an air-tight container.

Eat and enjoy!

Doesn’t it look yummy!?!?!

I promise it tastes amazing too!

This mix makes a fantastic food gift for teachers, coaches, instructors, bus drivers, group leaders, or anyone who you might like to treat with something — but not necessarily buy a full-fledged gift.

I scoop it into these cone-shaped bags (affiliate link) and often tie some candy or chocolate along with a little note. This food gift is always well-received!

The next time you need to bring a snacky food to a gathering of any type, gift this sweet and spicy snack mix a try. My only suggestion is to bring several recipes cards with the recipe printed out as you’ll be asked for the recipe all night long!

What are your favorite snack mixes?

Visit my virtual recipe box for more simple, delicious, family friendly recipes!

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Filed under: FoodHoliday FoodsEntertaining

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13 comments

  1. sherry

    11/20/2018

    How many cups of popcorn in a 3.5 oz bag?

    [Reply]

  2. Linda B.

    11/08/2018

    Looks delicious! Is the pan you bake it in really hard to clean? Just wondering if I should try a big disposable pan instead of my roaster.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    It IS delicious — and no, the pan isn’t hard to clean at all. It’s not “gooey sticky” like a Rice Krispy bar, the caramel coating just absorbs into the mixture and does not stick to my pan at all.
    That said, I do always spray my pan with cooking spray before (just in case).

    [Reply]

  3. Debbie Sanders

    11/06/2018

    We were just invited to a party this weekend! I know what I’m going to bring now!
    Perfect timing!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    yay — you’ll be the hit of the party!

    [Reply]

  4. Kathy

    11/06/2018

    Just curious, Andrea…what size of the treat bags did you use in the photo here?

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    I’m not sure if they say a size on them — they are about 16″ long, but I just cut them shorter if I don’t want to fill them super full.

    [Reply]

  5. Beth

    11/06/2018

    Looks delicious. Gluten free too.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    yes, good point! I was thinking it was probably gluten free, but I didn’t know for sure. Gluten seems to be in so many things these days!

    [Reply]

  6. Barbara

    11/06/2018

    Can you please clarify the amount of butter? Would love to make this today.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    1/2 c. — sorry, I corrected it in the post!

    [Reply]

    Barbara Reply:

    No worries. I know you are super busy.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    not actually all that ‘busy’ just “otherwise occupied” and not on my computer much when the kids are awake!
    Glad you caught my mistake early in the morning so I could quickly make the change!

    [Reply]