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Jan 12, 2010 07:31 AM

What Is the Original Chex Party Mix Recipe?

My better half was chuffing a bowl of Wheat Chex this morning and noticed what purported to be the "original" recipe for Chex Party Mix on the box. Unfortunately, said recipe contained bagel chips and required microwaving which cast suspicion on the recipe's claims to "ur" status. All of which got me to wondering what the oldest--and hopefully closest to original--recipe for this American favorite is?

No better folks to consult than the Chowhounds.

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    1. re: lexpatti

      Now THAT'S more like it! I'll give it a whirl this weekend, with my own special hot n' spicy twist.

      1. re: Perilagu Khan

        I think this is the original:

        1/2 c. (1 stick) butter
        1 1/4 tsp. seasoned salt
        4 1/2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
        2 2/3 c. Corn Chex cereal
        2 2/3 c. Rice Chex cereal
        2 2/3 c. Wheat Chex cereal
        1 c. salted mixed nuts
        Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Heat butter in large shallow roasting pan (about 15 x 10 x 2 inches) in oven until melted. Remove. Stir in seasoned salt and Worcestershire sauce. Add Chex and nuts. Mix until all pieces are coated. Heat in oven 1 hour. Stir every 15 minutes. Spread on absorbent paper to cool.

        1. re: mrsdebdav

          Close, but the original didn't have Corn Chex in it or seasoned salt. An earlier version contains salt and garlic salt.

      2. re: lexpatti

        I have a very similar recipe written on a recipe card from the 1950s. Using today's brand names, we use Shreddies, Crispix, Cheerios and pretzels. For seasoning, we use chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder and Worcestershire sauce (no salt).

        1. re: todao

          As per the OP, it's doubtful that is the "original" recipe as it contains bagel chips and is made in the microwave. My grandma was making Chex Mix long before microwaves and bagel chips!

        2. Upon further reading it appears that the first published CPM recipe appeared on a cereal box in 1952 and included only Wheat and Rice Chex cereals (along with other ingredients). Corn Chex, supposedly, were not created until 1958 so recipes containing that cereal date from that year or later.

          Incidentally, the next time I make CPM (hopefully this weekend) I want to include filberts instead of peanuts. Unfortunately the blasted things are impossible to purchase outside of the Internet! ):

          6 Replies
            1. re: mmack66

              Oh the original didn't have pretzel sticks! My memories of this date from the 70s when pretzels had been added (and in my opinion they were the best part)

              1. re: mmack66

                You beat me to it mmack. That is the earliest Chex Mix recipe I have too. It got tweaked over the years.

                When I was growing up we used margarine instead of butter. We also added little tiny Mr. Pretzel sticks. Instead of peanuts (which many used because they were the cheapest nuts) we used Planter's mixed nuts. I remember pulling out the Brazil nuts ahead of time so they wouldn't "ruin" the mix. I didn't like them then and still don't.

              2. re: Perilagu Khan

                Trader Joes carries hazelnuts/filberts.

                1. re: Perilagu Khan

                  Hazelnuts are readily available in the SF Bay area.

                  1. re: Perilagu Khan

                    Here are a series of advertisements for the original Chex Mix from Life Magazine --

                    June 16, 1952 - Chex 'Party Mix'

                    September 29, 1952 - Chex 'Party Mix'

                    January 12, 1953 - Chex 'Party Mix'

                    February 23, 1953 - Chex 'Party Mix'

                    By the way, Corn Chex was introduced in 1958.

                    Ralston-Purina had other similar recipes --
                    November 17, 1952 - Chex 'Buttered 'n Salted Wheat Chex'

                    April 21, 1952 - Chex 'Candy Balls' & 'Cheese Chex'

                    I was trying to figure out when Ralston-Purina started including rye-chips and mini-breadsticks to the recipe as this 1987 recipe still didn't include them --

                    Working Mother - December 1987 - 'Traditional Chex Party Mix'

                    I'm very happy the recipe was published, so I can make it any way I like.

                  2. What I'd like to know is why the packaged 'Traditional' Chex Mix doesn't include Worcestershire sauce...

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: ollie675

                      Possibly because Worcestershire Sauce contains anchovies, and the mix would therefore not be considered vegetarian...just a thought.

                      1. re: critter101

                        I don't know if that is it, as General Mills 'Gardettos Original' snack mix includes Worcestershire Sauce.


                        Besides, if they were trying to appeal to the widest variety of consumers (besides vegetarians) they'd probably exclude Wheat Chex (and anything else) for those with allergies, since they've already removed nuts.


                        Why can't General Mills be true to the recipe fore-bearers and just release a more authentic version as 'Traditional' (as most know it with Worcestershire Sauce, Peanuts, Pretzels (and maybe include Sunshine Cheez-It crackers) and ditch the rye chips and mini-breadsticks)?

                        They already have 16 different versions of Chex Mix. Given the modifications to the 'Traditional' variety, I imagine they'll introduce a 'Gluten-Free' version before releasing a version more befitting of the 'Traditional' name.

                    2. Chex Party Mix Recipe - Lewiston Morning Tribune - Dec 29, 1965

                      Chex Party Mix - Life Magazine ad May 19, 1952

                      2 cups Rice Chex
                      2 cups Wheat Chex
                      1/2 cup nuts
                      1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
                      1/4 teaspoon salt
                      1/8 teaspoon garlic salt
                      1/3 cup melted butter

                      Mix Rice & Wheat chex & nuts
                      in a shallow baking dish.
                      Pour over a mixture of
                      Worcestershire sauce, salt,
                      garlic salt, melted butter;
                      stir well. Heat 30 minutes in
                      300 F oven, stirring every 10 minutes. Cool.

                      Link to original recipe in Life Magazine in Google Books: