This reindeer chow is a Christmas Chex mix that is loaded with sweet, salty and chocolate flavors and is perfect for feeding a crowd. No holiday party is complete without a big bowl of reindeer chow!

Chocolate muddy buddies, holiday M&M’s, peanut butter cups and pretzels all come together for a festive snack mix that’s easy to make and fun to eat! Enjoy reindeer chow with holiday favorites like Christmas crack, crock pot candy and peppermint bark!

A tin of reindeer chow with chocolate coated chex, M&M's and pretzels.

You have been warned: this reindeer chow is addicting! I may or may not have grabbed a handful every time I walked by on the day I made this awesome Chex mix. It’s the ultimate Christmas snack with the perfect blend of sweet and savory and it features the classic flavor combination of chocolate and peanut butter.

This chow puts me in the mood for some of my favorite homemade Christmas candy recipes like buckeye balls, cake truffles and rum balls.

Reindeer Chow Ingredients

To make reindeer chow you will need Rice Chex cereal, semisweet chocolate chips, peanut butter, brownie mix, Christmas M&M’s, mini peanut butter cups and small pretzel twists.

How Do You Make Reindeer Chow?

To make this reindeer chow recipe first place your cereal in a large bowl. In a separate microwave safe medium sized bowl, microwave the semi-sweet chocolate chips and peanut butter until they melt. Stir them together until smooth. Pour the chocolate over the cereal and toss it until the chocolate coats the cereal. Place brownie mix into a gallon size resealable bag. Add the chocolate coated Chex to the bag. Shake so that the cereal becomes coated in the brownie mix. Spread the cereal on a piece of parchment paper on a baking sheet. Let the cereal cool and dry. Mix together the dry cereal with M&M’s, mini peanut butter cups and pretzel twists and enjoy!

A sheet pan of Christmas muddy buddies mixed with candy and peanut butter cups.

Tips For The Perfect Dish

  • If you don’t want to use brownie mix, you can use powdered sugar with some cocoa powder mixed into it.
  • Make sure your bag is sealed before you shake it!
  • Kids love to help make this recipe.
  • You don’t need an oven for reindeer chow which makes it a delicious no bake recipe. If you want other no bake treats, check out my avalanche cookies and my no bake peanut butter cookies!
  • Put some reindeer chow out on Christmas Eve for Santa’s reindeer.
  • This Christmas Chex mix makes a large batch, so it’s perfect for a holiday party or to package up in tins or cellophane bags for gift giving.

Quick Tip

Before stirring in chocolate candies, make sure to cool the cereal to room temperature. You don’t want any of the candy getting soft or melting.

A tin filled with reindeer chow snack mix.

Recipe FAQs

How long does reindeer chow last?

If you store reindeer chow in an airtight container in a refrigerator it will stay good up to two weeks. If you have a cool countertop you can store it up to 4 days an airtight container.

Where did reindeer chow originate?

Reindeer Chow is the holiday themed version of sweetened Chex mix known as Muddy Buddies, or puppy chow. Reindeer Chow also has candies and pretzels. People have been making versions of puppy chow, Muddy Buddies or sweet Chex mix since at least the 1960s. Many of the early versions of sweetened Chex mix come out of the Midwest.

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Flavor Variations

This recipe is a delicious treat as written; however, you can change it to fit your own taste!

  • Nut Free: Simply use white candy melts instead of the peanut butter for the muddy buddies, and instead of miniature peanut butter cups you can use mini marshmallows.
  • Powdered Sugar: If you want the cereal to look more white like a Christmas puppy chow recipe, simply replace the brownie mix with powdered sugar.
  • Cereal: You can use other flavors of cereal such as Corn Chex, Chocolate Chex, Corn Flakes and Cheerios or use a cereal mixture. I do recommend using some Chex because they hold the chocolate and brownie mix well.
  • Chocolate: If you prefer the flavor of white chocolate chips or milk chocolate chips you can use them.
  • Candies: You can use other candies or small cookies such as Peanut Butter M&M’s, Peanut M&M’s, Rolo caramels, Reese’s Pieces, mini Oreo cookies and Cadbury Snowballs.
  • Nuts: You can add roasted nuts like pecans, cashews, peanuts, almonds or walnuts. You can even add chocolate covered nuts.

To me, it’s not the holidays without reindeer chow. It’s incredibly delicious and couldn’t be any easier to make. In about 20 minutes you can have a fun and festive treat that everyone will love!

More Holiday Treats

Reindeer Chow Video

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Please leave a 5-star 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 rating in the recipe card below & a review in the comments section further down the page.

5 from 78 votes

Reindeer Chow

AuthorSara Welch
Christmas Chex Mix
No holiday party is complete without a big bowl of reindeer chow! This Christmas chex mix is loaded with chocolate flavor and is perfect for feeding a crowd.
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time1 minute
Total Time11 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Serves 20


  • 6 cups Rice Chex cereal
  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1 cup dry brownie mix or 1 cup powdered sugar mixed with 1 1/2 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1 bag Christmas M&M’s 12 ounce bag
  • 2 cups mini peanut butter cups
  • 2 cups pretzel twists


  • Place the cereal in a large bowl. In a medium bowl, combine the chocolate chips and peanut butter. Microwave the chocolate mixture for 30 second intervals until melted; stir until smooth.
  • Pour the chocolate mixture over the cereal and use a spatula to gently toss the cereal in the chocolate until completely coated.
  • Place the brownie mix inside a resealable gallon sized plastic bag. Add the chocolate coated cereal. Seal, then shake until cereal is coated in the brownie mix.
  • Spread the cereal out in a single layer on a sheet of parchment paper; cool completely until dry.
  • Combine the cereal, M&M’s, peanut butter cups and pretzel twists, then serve.


  1. If you don’t want to use brownie mix, you can use powdered sugar with some cocoa powder mixed into it.
  2. Before stirring in chocolate candies, make sure to cool the cereal to room temperature. You don’t want any of the candy getting soft or melting.
  3. Make sure your bag is sealed before you shake it!


Calories: 434kcal | Carbohydrates: 65g | Protein: 10g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 2mg | Sodium: 686mg | Potassium: 306mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 20g | Vitamin A: 220IU | Vitamin C: 2.5mg | Calcium: 76mg | Iron: 8.6mg

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5 from 78 votes (65 ratings without comment)

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Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    I made this as Christmas gifts for friends and co-workers. I had enough to give out about 75 or more gift size bags. Everyone loved them and some close friends demanded Tupperware bowlfuls not the fight size bags.. It’s easy to make, adaptable to changing ingredients and a lo cost recipe. Also great for parties or movie night.

    1. It makes about 12 cups of snack mix, so the number of bags depends on the size of your bags and how much you add to each bag!

  2. 5 stars
    So good! Had to sift some extra powdered sugar afterwards cause it wasn’t getting all the nooks n’ crannies in the ziplock bag. Otherwise DELISH! Going to put small portions in cupcake liners for COVID friendly serving.

  3. 5 stars
    I make this every year now for holiday gifts as everyone loves it! I get cute tins at the dollar store and an amazing gift is done! Love your recipes!

    1. I’m not sure how well this would hold up to the freezer, the powdered sugar would probably melt as would the M&M’s from the condensation when thawing. But it will stay fresh in an airtight container at room temperature for a while!

  4. I want to make this in my classroom but we won’t have heat! Do you think I could use chocolate syrup instead of melting chocolate?

    1. Wilton sells a candy melter…looks like a little melting pot type thing. Just plug it in and put the candy in there.

  5. At Christmas time, Hershey’s sells a candy that looks like M&Ms but is safe for people with peanut/treenut allergies. (M&Ms aren’t safe.). Rolos are a nice suggestion. If you still want a safe peanut flavor, Sunbutter is an option for replacing peanut butter.

  6. If put in an airtight container does this chow stay fresh? How long can it be stored that way?
    Looks wonderful and sounds delish.Thank you.

  7. 5 stars
    This a wonderful holiday treat. To make it even more special, take scoops of the chow and put it in holiday themed , foil cupcake holders and bring them to a holiday party. They will disappear quickly!