Cupcake Puppy Chow

Addicting snack mix that tastes like cupcake batter! Made without cake mix.

cupcake puppy chow

I’m really sorry for doing this to you. No really, I am.

I’m putting you in danger of the world’s most addicting, sweetest snack. If you like cupcakes, you’ll like this. If you like white chocolate, you’ll like this. If you like sprinkles… holy moly batman… you will LOVE this.

PS: This is NOT dog food.Β 

Puppy Chow aka Muddy Buddies is this.

cupcake puppy chow in a glass bowl

I have received many, many, many requests for a new puppy chow variety. Last summer, I brought you S’mores Puppy Chow. Over the holidays, I brought you Peppermint Crunch Puppy Chow. You (and certainly I) LOVE this stuff. It was only a matter of time until I added sprinkles.

I made this chow just last night and I couldn’t wait one stinkin’ second to share it with you. It would be considered a crime if I made you wait.

The idea of this puppy chow came to me at work yesterday. It’s true, I daydream about sprinkles.Β I’ve seen Cake Batter/Funfetti Puppy Chow being done several times before. Most recipes I see call for powdered cake mix.Β I went off the beaten path and came up with my own version, sans cake mix.Β 

2 images of cupcake puppy chow in glass bowls

Today’s snacky little treat tastes like cupcakes. Buttery, funfetti cupcakes infused with sugary sprinkles. Slightly crunchy, very powdery, and covered in my magic “cupcake” formula. This gooey sweet stuff to be poured all over your Chex cereal. Begin by melting butter, heavy cream, and white chocolate candy melts over low heat in a saucepan. Stir everything constantly until the white chocolate is melted. The mixture will be buttery and “goopy” – very thick and very dense. If you are questioning its thickness, stop. It is supposed to be thick.

Remove the white chocolate/cream/butter mixture from the stove and stir in 2 magical ingredients: butter emulsion and almond emulsion. You can use butter extract and almond extract instead. I used almond emulsion and butter extract, as shown in the photo below. When exposed to high heat, the alcohol in extracts causes the white chocolate to seize, so the heavy cream is used to prevent the chocolate from seizing. If you’d like to purchase alcohol-free based flavorings, I recommend the bakery emulsions that I linked above.

If you’d rather make this puppy chow without purchasing emulsions or extracts, simply leave them out. The puppy chow, coated in white chocolate and sprinkles, will still taste like and look like funfetti I promise. πŸ™‚

2 images of almond extract and imitation butter flavor in a bottle

I used almond extract/emulsion and butter extract/emulsion instead of vanilla because I find that the two mixed together bring an impeccable “batter” flavor to the recipe. You may certainly use vanilla extract/emulsion as well (1 teaspoon), but do NOT leave out the butter or almond.

Pour the mixture over the Chex cereal. Using more cereal than 4.5 cups means less cupcake white chocolate in each bite. Since the mixture is so thick, you’ll really have to stir it into the cereal. Careful not to break the cereal as you mix it up. Everything will be warm since the white chocolate mixture just came from the stovetop. Wait a couple minutes before pouring on your sprinkles. Not too long, or else they won’t stick. Cover the coated cereal with assorted sprinkles.

Now comes the fun part. Grab a large zipped top bag, add 1.5 cups of powdered sugar, pour in the coated cereal and shake. Shake shake shake until all the cereal pieces are coated in sugar. Just wait until you taste what’s inside that bag!

If you thought shaking the cereal in powdered sugar was fun, what until you take that first bite. You have just made the best cupcake-y snack in the entire world. I realize cupcake-y is not a word, but I can hardly focus on anything but puppy chow right now.

I like to think I have a large amount of self control, but this is something I could NOT stop picking at. I even had a handful before breakfast this morning and again after my run. Scary Β addictive. Consider this your warning.Β PS: this stuff is very sweet.

cupcake puppy chow in a glass bowl

cupcake puppy chow

An easy, no bake recipe that only takes about 15 minutes. Dangerous, I tell ya. Put your party hats on, get your balloons ready because having this recipe is certainly something to celebrate!Β Now, excuse me while I go eat this for the rest of my life.

Β *The puppy chow will not be as crunchy on day two. If you prefer your puppy chow to remain crunchy, simply leave out the butter. Melt the white chocolate or almond bark according to package instructions before adding the extracts/emulsions.

FollowΒ me on InstagramΒ and tag #sallysbakingaddiction so I can see all the SBA recipes you make!Β 

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cupcake puppy chow in a glass bowl

Cupcake Puppy Chow

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 4 and 1/2 cups
  • Category: Snacks
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American


Addicting snack mix that tastes like cupcake batter! Made without cake mix.


  • 4 and 1/2 cups Rice Chex cereal*
  • 1/4 cup salted butter
  • 3 Tablespoons heavy cream (no substitutions)
  • 10 oz white chocolate candy melts or pure white chocolate
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract*
  • 1 teaspoon butter extract*
  • 2/3 cup assorted sprinkles
  • 1 and 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar


  1. Pour the cereal in a large bowl, set aside.
  2. In a medium saucepan over low heat, melt the butter, cream, and white chocolate. Stir constantly until the white chocolate is fully melted. The mixture will be very thick and buttery. Remove from heat. Stir in almond extract and butter extract.
  3. Pour warm white chocolate mixture over cereal. Stir it all together gently, making sure not to break the cereal. Wait about 3-4 (no longer) minutes and gently fold in the sprinkles – you don’t want the sprinkles to lose their color.
  4. In a large zipped top bag or covered container, add the powdered sugar. Pour the white chocolate covered cereal into the large bag or container. Seal the bag or container and shake until all the cereal is coated with the powdered mixture.
  5. Discard excess powder and enjoy. Store at room temperature up to 2 weeks – please see note above about the “crunch” factor.


  1. Cereal: Do not use Crispex– I’ve found that it breaks easily.
  2. Extracts: You can make the puppy chow withoutextracts still maintaining a funfetti look and basic white chocolate flavor.

Keywords: cupcake puppy chow

framed print that says love and cupcakes are all you need

{Words to live by!Β I still need to hang it.}


Comments are closed.

  1. Jess @ OnSugarMountain says:

    OMG why is cake batter/funfetti so freaking adorable?! I actually have never had puppy chow but this one…it’s covered in sprinkles..and they’re calling my name…

    oh and gorgeous photos! πŸ˜€

  2. I’ll def try this. I found your blog while googling cake batter recipes and am thrilled you love it because you have so many recipes dedicated to it! Your pictures are great, but I noticed they’re mainly of the finished product repeatedly. Any plans to snaps shots of various steps in the baking process? It would be really helpful. Thank you for sharing your recipes πŸ˜€

    1. Hi there! Than you so much, and I’m glad you found my website! Unfortunately, with two full time jobs, and only having time to bake in the evenings, I can’t post the well-lit, in-step photography that I’d like to publish on my website. perhaps in the future, though. Thanks!

  3. Laura! I didn’t even see you PB puppy chow. I hae plans to make a “pb explosion” puppy chow next. I cannot stop putting this stuff down. I swear, “addicting” is an ingredient hiding in this chow. πŸ˜‰

  4. Dang, girl. I have never tried any kind of puppy chow, but with almond extract in the ingredient list, there is no way I can resist this one! Thanks for being a genius and giving us a cupcake batter recipe that does not include a cake mix!!

    1. Thanks Jenn! I’m glad this recipe worked out so well without cake mix. πŸ™‚

  5. Chef Amber Shea says:

    Holy crappp. It’s like you created this recipe FOR ME. White chocolate, almond extract, and sprinkles? I would like to fill a room with this stuff and swim in it. Like a delicious, grown-up ball pit.

    Anyway, I KNOW you said no substitutions, but I bet you anything that full-fat canned coconut milk could stand in beautifully for the heavy cream! πŸ™‚

    1. Hahaha grown-up ball pit! I love it. I’ve never tried a no-bake recipe with full fat coconut milk from a can before, I prefer to use cream. But if you try it, let me know!

  6. This will be the next recipe that I make of yours without a doubt! How fun! What a great idea and I love anything that resembles a cupcake!

    1. You’d LOVE this stuff Mercedes! And thank you for the well wishes last night, I’m feeling much better today and back at work. πŸ™‚

  7. Ashley @ Kitchen Meets Girl says:

    I just asked my 5-year old if he wanted me to make “him” some of this puppy chow….you know, so I would have an excuse to run to the kitchen right away to make this. Gorgeous shots too, Sally. I love how the sprinkles just make everything pop!

    1. You can make this for “him” but we all know the real reason you’re making it… right, Ashley?? πŸ˜‰ Love it!

  8. Maggie @ A Bitchin' Kitchen says:

    Hahaha, I love the disclaimer that this is not dog food. You know someone would end up with a dog with a tummyache after feeding this to them, and blame it on you πŸ™‚

    Anyway, this looks delicious – I love traditional puppy chow, and this looks like a great twist!

    1. Ha I’ve already had readers write to me asking if it was dog food! Thanks so much Maggie!

  9. Stephanie @ Eat. Drink. Love. says:

    OMG, I die.

  10. Nicole @ youngbrokeandhungry says:

    I am in love with this recipe. If this puppy chow was in my house though, it wouldn’t last more then two minutes which sure as heck isn’t a bad thing.

    1. I had to keep telling myself to stop grabbing handfuls of it! but then I kept going back for more! Thanks Nicole – you’d love this stuff!

  11. So cute and so delicious! Now, I know you said we can’t go changing the recipe, but…I sort of feel this need to be absolutely ridiculous and use Lucky Charms instead of Rice Chex. Marshmallow Cupcake Puppy Chow. Or I guess I could toss in those marshmallow bits that I’ve been seeing at the grocery store recently. πŸ˜‰ I love that colorful towel/cloth in the background! It really brings out the sprinkles and seems like summer, which is great because it’s been a balmy 5 degrees here for about a week.

    1. Caley! Love your idea for the lucky charms. this is a super sweet treat and using lucky charms would put it over the top! but you might as well go big or go home, right? And the colorful cloth is a scarf of mine. I used it to add a pop of color and accentuate the sprinkles. πŸ™‚ Love your photography eye!

  12. Lindsay @ Life, Love and Sugar says:

    Omg, this is genius! I love that there’s no actual cake mix involved! I’m going to have to try it for sure. I’m just afraid it won’t last long!

  13. Sally, you are a genius!! Love that you made the flavor of cake without using cake mix!

  14. Oh my gosh, how has no one thought of this before! I just made funfetti dip this weekend for the football game and it was a huge hit. Pretty sure you would love it! I may or may not have made your Skinny Strawberry Chocolate Chip Muffins (again) this weekend.

    1. I would LOVE funfetti dip, are you kidding? Yum! Thanks Erin and those skinny chocolate chip muffins are to die for. a favorite of mine!

  15. [email protected] Plaid and Paisley Kitchen says:

    Sprinkles and Cake batter {flavored} anything! This is why we love you Sally!

    1. thanks Chandra, you’re the best. πŸ˜€

  16. angela @ anotherbiteplease says:

    this looks so sweet, cute and perfect!!!! love that it is homemade with no box cake mix…made with extra love! and the subway art from your mom – SO cute!!!

  17. This looks fun and delish!
    Only thing is, I’ve never heard of butter extract…can I use melted butter? (maybe we don’t have the extract in Canada?)
    Will be checking out the other puppy chow flavours too!

    1. Hi Brenda, unfortunately melted butter cannot replace the extract. If you can’t find it in a store or order it online, you could leave it out. But the chow will not taste like cake batter as I’ve described with only almond extract. Give it a try though! Let me know if you try any of my versions! Thanks so much.

      1. Thx for your quick response!
        Thinking I may try some ‘Cake’ vodka in the mix… πŸ˜‰

  18. Elaine @ Cooking to Perfection says:

    Love this! I made cake batter puppy chow a few months ago WITH cake mix, but made the mistake of using too much cereal for the amount of white chocolate I had. The entire batch was still devoured, but I like the idea of using separate ingredients instead of a cake mix. And because you made it clear to use exactly those ingredients in that ratio, hopefully none of your readers will make the same mistake that I did. πŸ™‚

    1. Thanks Elaine! I like to add less cereal and more coating to my puppy chow. More cupcake batter taste in each bite. I’ve never tried this with cake mix, but I’m glad it works without it.

  19. I just made this with my 8-year old son and the whole family approves. YUM!!! Thanks for yet another great recipe. : D

  20. I made this today for something to munch on for some friends at a trivia night tonight. It’s really good, I’m not sure there will be enough left for tonight! I can’t keep my hands out of the bowl!

    1. Hey Susan! SO glad to hear it and thanks for reporting back. I love this puppy chow so much. We’ve made it quite alot since last week already – lots of requests from friends and coworkers. πŸ™‚ It’s very addicting!

  21. Love love LOVE this blog! So many great recipes, especially with sprinkles πŸ™‚ I love sprinkles so much that I’m using them in my wedding for centerpieces. We are even throwing sprinkles instead of rice. Really looking forward to seeing your posts. I’m always looking for ways to use sprinkles in recipes. I have one shelf in my pantry dedicated to just sprinkles. My fiancΓ© says its a collection more less. I’m making the cuppy cake puppy chow tomorrow, can’t wait!

    1. I have plans to throw sprinkles at my wedding as well, although – I do have to want for my long-time bf to propose to start planning. πŸ™‚ That is too funny. And I “collect” sprinkles too! I have so so so many jars and containers full of them. Happy Wedding and enjoy that puppy chow Angela!

  22. I want to make this for a party this weekend. Will it work with white chocolate chips? Or does it have to be the white “candy coating” melts?

    1. Yes it will work with white chocolate chips, be extra careful melting them over the stove top with the butter – stir them constantly. Thank you!

  23. I couldn’t stop thinking about these sprinkles of love, so I made them tonight… just before midnight. I used white chocolate chips and they are fantastic! I snacked the entire time I was putting them away because they’re just so irresistible. Thank you! This is the first recipe I’ve made from you and I am eager to try more. I wish I discovered your sweet blog sooner! You and your recipes make me smile. πŸ™‚ Have a sparkly day, Sally!
    Hugs and blessings! πŸ™‚

    1. Hi Karen! Thank you so much for the thoughtful comment! It means a lot to me! And I’m so glad you made and love this puppy chow – it is a winner for me too. WE love this stuff so much!! Hope you have a sparkly day as well. πŸ™‚ Thank you so much Karen!

  24. I hope you invent a cookie-dough tasting version of puppy chow soon!

    1. I like your thinking!!! Thanks Lauren!

  25. sally this is delicious. i was making “regular” puppy chow and had just enough chex to try this out! i didn’t have quite enough powdered sugar so i added a bit of funfetti cake mix i sweet and so good! going ice fishing this weekend and puppy chow is a classic ice house snack for us! thanks for expanding my horizons in discovering other varieties besides the classic peanut butter and chocolate. curious to see what my boyfriend says about it!

    1. I wish I made some puppy chow for my road trip this weekend! I’m jealous. πŸ™‚ I hope you and your boyfriend enjoy every last sweet bite Marti! Have a fun weekend!

  26. Sally you rock! I also grew up eating “puppy chow” not mud buddies or whatever they called it…my son and I will love to make/eat this. I can’t wait to try the s’mores puppy chow too!

    1. Thanks Chrystal! I grew up calling it puppy chow too! Let me know how you like this and/or the s’mores version. πŸ™‚

  27. This looks amazing! I can’t wait to make it. I have a question about the emulsions. Do you use less than you would regular extract because they are thicker? Just wondering. I love almond extract, I mean, it’s an obsession.

  28. I think this is the most amazing thing in the world!
    I just finished this one today and had to make the Nutella Puppy Chow-I’m such an addict. I added the flavorings by sprinkling them over the cereal. It was perfect.

    1. Terri – SO glad you loved this puppy chow!! It’s definitely one of my very favorites. And that Nutella puppy chow – SO amazing. I can’t choose which one I like best!

  29. YUM!!!! I loveeeeeeeeee puppy chow so I will def look into making it again, esp since its so pretty. haha. I wish I commented more on stuff I make from your blog. I have done SO MUCH and have loved it all. <3

    1. That is SO great to hear! Let me know if you try it again Rebekah!

  30. Elizabeth D. says:

    This is a GREAT recipe, so YUMMY! Thanks for sharing!! FYI: I could not find “white chocolate candy melts”, so I used ghirardelli white chocolate chips and it came out perfectly!

    1. That’s great to hear Elizabeth! I love this stuff. πŸ™‚

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