Why This Recipe Works
- The chaat masala is a spice blend that adds funky, salty, spicy, and sour flavors to the Chex mix.
- Adding the chaat masala to the cereal after it has toasted, while it's sticky and warm, keeps the spices from burning.
- Mix and match cereals, nuts, and crackers to accommodate your tastes.
A favorite gas station snack of mine has always been Chex mix. The erratic combination of cereals and seasonings reminds me of bhel puri chaat, which is what inspired me to make a chaat-spiced version of the classic. I made the mix to my taste, with extra corn and rice Chex, few wheat Chex and pretzels (because who needs 'em?), and an absurd amount of chaat seasoning. I admit, it's probably more seasoning than necessary, but, as someone who's known for digging through a bag of Doritos for that one extra-cheesy chip, I don't see the point of snack foods if they don't leave your blood pressure elevated.
Chaat masala, the spice mixture used throughout South Asia for the popular street foods known as chaat, combines funky, salty, spicy, and tart flavors, transforming anything it's sprinkled on. Feel free to mix and match your favorite cereals and snacks, using the recipe below as a template. Toasting the cereals low and slow with the butter and sugar mixture gets them extra crisp and sticky, ready for you to shower on the spices.
Chaat-Spiced Chex Mix
The funky, salty, spicy, and tart flavors of chaat masala spice mix transforms anything it's sprinkled on.
4 cups (120g) corn Chex (see note)
3 cups (90g) rice Chex (see note)
1 cup (30g) wheat Chex (see note)
2/3 cup (96g) peanuts
1 cup (40g) pretzel sticks
2 cups (90g) bagel chips
2 cups (60g) small rice crackers
2/3 cup (155g) unsalted butter
2/3 cup (135g) light brown sugar
1/4 cup (60ml) fresh juice from about 2 limes
1 tablespoon (15g) kosher salt
6 tablespoons (70g) chaat masala spice mixture
Preheat oven to 250°F (120°C). In a large mixing bowl, combine Chex cereals, peanuts, pretzels, bagel chips, and rice crackers.
In a small saucepan or in the microwave, melt butter with brown sugar, then remove from heat and stir in lime juice and salt.
Pour butter mixture over cereal mixture and toss to coat evenly.
Spread mixture in an even layer on a foil-lined rimmed baking sheet and bake, tossing every 15 minutes, until dry and crisp, about 45 minutes.
Sprinkle chaat masala over Chex mix while still warm, tossing to evenly coat. Let cool and eat, or store in an airtight container for up to 3 months.
Rimmed baking sheet, mixing bowl
Feel free to use any kind or combination of Chex cereals, as long as the total amount is maintained.
|Nutrition Facts (per serving)|
|Servings: 12 to 16|
|Amount per serving|
|% Daily Value*|
|Total Fat 13g||16%|
|Saturated Fat 6g||30%|
|Total Carbohydrate 26g||9%|
|Dietary Fiber 2g||9%|
|Total Sugars 9g|
|Vitamin C 2mg||12%|
|*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.|