healthy-ish puppy chow pilled up in a blue bowl

Healthy-ish Puppy Chow

Healthy-ish puppy chow is the same puppy chow {or muddy buddy} mix you know and love, with just a little healthier spin.

Puppy chow {or muddy buddies, whatever you want to call it} takes me back to my grade school days. I picture those small Ziploc bags stuffed with the powdered sugar goodness at bake sales.

healthy-ish puppy chow in a blue bowl with puppy chow scattered around it

Stuffing your hand into the bag, now completely coating in powdered sugar. Bringing a large handful of the peanut butter, chocolate-y goodness to your mouth.

The perfect crunch of the Chex cereal, making each bite more and more addicting.

This healthy-ish version of puppy chow still contains all of those elements: peanut butter, chocolate, crunchy cereal and powdered sugar. We’re just health-ifying it a little bit today.

Healthy-ish puppy chow: the base

Typically, puppy chow would start with Chex cereal. My issue with Chex? You have to be extra careful when stirring, so as to not completely break all of the Chex apart.

box of oat squares cereal spilled on a table surrounded by a peanut butter jar, bag of dark chocolate chips and powdered sugar

Instead, I decided to use a heartier cereal {which in turn, I think helps you eat less because it fills you up faster}. These oat squares from our local Hy-Vee grocery store are the knock-off brand of the Kellogg’s Oatmeal Squares and still taste just as good.

Because they’re made from whole grains and are a good source of fiber, I thought they would make the perfect healthier base to our healthy-ish puppy chow.

Healthy-ish puppy chow: the essentials

Puppy chow, in and of itself is a pretty simple recipe. Four main ingredients that all come together in one mouth-watering combination.

Besides cereal, we need to use something to coat the crunchy cereal so that the powdered sugar sticks to it.

Peanut butter and chocolate seem to be a logical combination when it comes to this sticky coating.

top - melted chocolate and peanut butter in a bowl. bottom - melted chocolate and peanut butter poured over ceral

Rather than regular peanut butter and milk chocolate, I’m subbing in natural peanut butter and dark chocolate.

One thing to really pay attention to when it comes to your natural peanut butter purchasing is to make sure the ingredients on the label are only peanuts and salt.

There are a few brands out there that list ‘natural’ on the front of their label, when in-fact there are still additional add-ins like palm oil, that are not necessary for natural peanut butter.

Yes, you’re still going to have to stir it since the natural oils separate to the top, but at least you know that you’re truly having natural peanut butter.

overhead image of healthy-ish puppy chow in a bowl

Dark chocolate is a great source of antioxidants, and makes it the perfect combination with the natural peanut butter.

Melt the two together and pour over the cereal. I poured it all into a big bowl and stirred to start to coat everything. Then I put the lid on my favorite Pyrex bowl and shook to make sure the peanut butter chocolate mixture was coating every single cereal piece to perfection.

Healthy-ish puppy chow: the sweet coating

For today’s healthy-ish puppy chow I opted for my favorite organic powdered sugar by Wholesome.

I love this powered sugar because they don’t use refined sugar to make it. Instead, they use unrefined, unbleached organic cane sugar, grinding it to make powdered sugar.

Once all of the cereal has been coated in that chocolate and peanut butter goodness, scoop the cereal from the bowl into a large Ziploc bag.

up-close image of healthy-ish puppy chow

I used a one cup scoop to accoplish this. Trying to pour the mixture into the bag straight from the bowl just becomes one large mess. So scoop instead of pour.

Now comes the powdered sugar. Add one cup at a time to the Ziploc bag and shake until all the coated cereal starts to turn a dusty brownish white.

That last cup of powered sugar should turn the cereal into white crunchy pillows of super addicting goodness.

I love that by mixing everything all together you get some single pieces of coated cereal, and sometimes monster clumps that formed together. Creating a peanut butter chocolate bomb you’re going to never want to stop eating.

Do you have a favorite bake sale treat from when you were a kid?

Looking for more simple sweet treats? Check these out:

Healthy Peanut Butter Cups

Healthy Peanut Butter Cookies

Healthy Apple Crisp

Healthy-ish puppy chow is a slightly healthier version of the traditional puppy chow {or muddy buddies} that you know and love. Still made with peanut butter and chocolate, and coated in powdered sugar, find out what makes this a little healthier version of the bake sale classic. #peanutbutterandchocolate #healthydessert #puppychow #muddybuddies #fouringredients #easyrecipe #easydessert
Healthy-ish Puppy Chow
Prep Time
10 mins
Total Time
10 mins

A slightly healthier version of the traditional puppy chow {muddy buddies}, made with healthy cereal, organic powdered sugar, natural peanut butter and dark chocolate

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: 10 minute recipe, bake sale, chocolate, easy recipe, four ingredients, peanut butter, puppy chow
Servings: 10
  • 1 {14.5 oz} box Oat Squares cereal, about 5 1/2 cups
  • 3/4 cup dark chocolate chips
  • 3/4 cup natural peanut butter*
  • 2-3 cups organic powdered sugar
  1. In a large bowl, add the cereal and set aside. 

  2. In a medium-sized bowl, add the chocolate chips and peanut butter and microwave until melted.**

  3. Pour the melted peanut butter/chocolate mixture over the cereal and stir until all cereal pieces are coated. 

  4. Scoop the coated cereal into a large Ziploc bag with a 1 cup scoop. Pour in one cup of powdered sugar and zip the bag closed. 

  5. Shake the bag so that the powdered sugar starts to coat the cereal pieces. Add the remaining cup{s}*** and shake up until it’s white and coated in powdered sugar. 

Recipe Notes

*Note: make sure to look at the ingredients on the label, noting only peanuts and salt for ingredients. 

**Note: I microwaved mine for 30 seconds, and then 15 seconds, stirring after each time. This will vary depending on your microwave strength. 

***Note: if you don’t mind that it’s not bright white, you can use two cups of powdered sugar. If you want it to be whiter, like traditional puppy chow, I would suggest using the third cup. 

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