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. 

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. I’ve seen Cake Batter/Funfetti Puppy Chow being done several times before. Most recipes I see call for powdered cake mix. I went off the beaten path and came up with my own version, sans cake mix. 

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. 🙂

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  addictive. Consider this your warning. 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! Now, excuse me while I go eat this for the rest of my life.

 *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.

Follow me on Instagram and tag #sallysbakingaddiction so I can see all the SBA recipes you make! 

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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! I still need to hang it.}


Comments are closed.

  1. These look delicious! I love chocolate puppy chow/muddy buddies and I can’t wait to try these!!

  2. Jeannie Fraser says:

    Damn you, damn you…I gained four pounds reading this and didn’t even try them yet!

  3. Amber Bosler says:

    I tried to make a batch and had this same problem, I realized it was because adding the extracts to the already warm chocolate immediately cooled it, making it hard. I thought it was because I bought white chocolate chips (didn’t read the recipe closely enough before I shopped). Anyway, because I had 3 bags of chocolate chips left (and I’ve made white chocolate popcorn just fine with them before) I tried again.
    This is what I did:
    In microwave safe bowl I added 1 bag white chocolate chips, 1/4 cup butter, 1 tsp each of vanilla, butter, and almond extract, 2 tbsp milk (I had no cream) and 1/4 to 1/2 tsp salt (counteracts the extra sweet of the chips).
    I covered and cooked it 30 seconds at a time, stirring in between.
    It took about 1:30-2min total, and some good stirring and I got a nice smooth and not to thick mixture.
    I mixed it in with 5 cups of chex and about 1/2 bag marshmallows.
    They melted a bit but not too bad. added the sprinkles and shook in powdered sugar.
    I made two batches, one without salt and one with. I like the one with salt better. Also might cut down on the almond a bit next time, but it is ADDICTIVE and delicious . Thanks!

    1. Thanks for the detailed report back! It is addicting, I know. Love the idea of marshmallows too.

    2. Cheri Goertz says:

      Thanks for your post, I appreciate your input on the this recipe. I will give it a try before the 4th. Thanks!

  4. Hi Sally,

    This looks so yummy and perfect birthday treat for my son to take to school and share with his friends. Because of the “NO NUT” policy in school I had to buy CandiQuik candy coating in vanilla flavor (Meijer Brand) to make this because its one of the few chocolates that doesn’t have nuts listed in the ingredients. I also couldn’t find butter extract so I won’t be adding that too. Do you think this will work? If not I was going to make your soft baked funfetti sugar cookies so either way I will be using one of your yummy recipes. Thanks for any help you can give me! 🙂

    1. Hi Lauren – this will work just fine without the butter extract. I’m sure it will be a big hit! You can always make it easier for yourself and jsut melt the candiquik and pour over the cereal (without butter or cream) and then add sprinkles and powdered sugar.

      1. Could I add the extracts and skip the cream and butter for more of a funfetti flavor? I’ve never used candiquick before and I’m not sure how much taste it has on its own. Obviously I’m not much of a baker so any help you could give me would be great!

      2. Hi Lauren – the extracts will cause the white chocolate to seize if you do not use the butter and cream. Instead, skip the extracts and cream/butter and just melt the Candiquik. It has no strange flavor – just sweet/white chocolate flavor.

  5. Hi Sally! Thank you for always getting back to me so quickly all the time. You are the first blog to ever respond so quickly to posts and this has made me a new life follower! Just wondering how far in advance these can be made and how to store them. I want to make them for a birthday party thus weekend for my son! Hope you had a wonderful day! Thanks in advance, Alicia!

    1. Hi Alicia – I would make these the day before. They don’t tay super crunchy like most puppy chow mixes do. I’m glad you enjoy my blog and are a follower. 🙂 Thank you for that! Have fun at the birthday party!

  6. I’m dying to try these but I have a box of Crispix at home and am wondering why you say to use Rice Chex instead. Do you think the Crispix will work or will it change the flavor?

    1. Hi Tami – it’s not for flavor, it’s because I’ve had the crispix break on me. Crispix is much more fragile than chex. The chex keep their shape. Try the crispix if you prefer it though.

  7. You are my new best friend! I’m American, but live in Scotland, and we can’t get anything here (I’m sorry, but you can keep your haggis and Scotch eggs). I make everything from scratch, and all those recipes needing Jell-o or cake mixes are a no go. I love Puppy Chow (that’s how I always knew it, too), but THIS is a masterpiece! Thank you sooooo much! I’m so happy to have found this site!

  8. We just make this. It is yummy and gone! We also covered popcorn with the white chocolate mixture. That is gone as well! I used a vanilla, butter and nut extract and Baker’s white chocolate squares. This recipe made me a super hero mom on this rainy summer day in the mountains. Thanks. I am enjoying the recipes on your site.

    1. I love that idea of white chocolate/cupcake popcorn – I must try it! Let me know what else you make sometime, I love hearing about it!

  9. Hi Sally,

    Thank you for such a wonderfully, yummy post! I had a couple questions. I wanted to make the puppy chow the day before the party but I saw your comment about the crunch factor and leaving out the butter. Is there a big difference in taste leaving out the butter and are you referring to the actual butter or butter flavoring?



    1. Hi Ande! There isn’t too much of a different in taste. Perhaps just less buttery, but that’s about it. Just melt some white chocolate (with no extracts), pour over cereal, add sprinkles and powdered sugar. Thats what I do when I make this a few days in advance.

      1. Hello again. 🙂

        So leave out not only the butter but also the Imitation butter flavor and the almond extract too?

        I’m really not trying to be difficult.

  10. I’m so making this for my birthday next weekend! I’m curious, though, why you say not to use Crispix…here in Canada we can’t get Chex, other than Honey Nut. Which might be good too..

    1. Hi Jen! Crispex is just a little too tender and more prone to break as you mix with the white chocolate. If you are careful, it might work.

  11. Is vegan butter an ok substitution for the salted butter stick? I have to eat only dairy free / gluten free foods. If this isn’t an ok substitution, what is? This could be an awesome gluten free snack if I can get all the ingredients edible for myself!

    1. Yes, vegan butter will be just fine.

  12. I used the Ghirardelli Classic White Baking (could not find Almoond bark anywhere this time of year).

  13. Hey Sally I can’t believe you made up so many different puppy chow mixes. I love the cookies and cream one. Thanks so much for the shout out on that one.

    1. You are so welcome, Trinity!! Maybe we can make one of the recipes next week at the lake. 🙂 See you on Wednesday for mini golf!

  14. I feel silly asking but ive never used cream for anything are you referring to heavy whipping cream for the cupcake puppy chow? b/c when I was at the store they weren’t very helpful in making a decision. Plz help I really want to try this.

    1. Hi Dayna! Yep, heavy whipping cream is heavy cream.

  15. Will do Sally-thanks! By the way, I made your snickery-snicker doodles and pumpkin spice puppy chow. Both were wickedly indulgent and amazing. Thanks for the great recipes!

    1. Yum – two great (and very sweet and indulgent!) choices. 🙂

  16. Sally! This looks amazing – I’m wondering how many cups would be equal to 10 oz – if you know, that would be super helpful for me 🙂

    1. 10 oz of what? Of the rice chex cereal?

      1. Oh sorry – the white chocolate candy melts

      2. Typically pure white chocolate or almond bark are measured in ounces, not cups. You’ll need slightly over 1 cup of either though. Unless you chop it up very finely, it’s tough to measure either in a cup!

  17. I was wondering how long this will hold up. I was thinking about making some and sending it to my sister for christmas. I want the crunch so I know to not add the butter, but will it still be crunchy after a few days?

    1. This puppy chow doesn’t stay crunchy like most puppy chows because of the heavy cream, butter, and extracts. Yes, you could leave out the butter and just use the cream/extracts, but the puppy chow wouldn’t stay crunchy for days. Maybe an extra day or two.

      Those ingredients (butter, cream, extracts) are for the “cake batter/cupcake” flavor. However, you could simply leave out the butter, cream, and extracts and just melted the white chocolate and mix with the cereal. Then add sprinkles. It will taste more like white chocolate, not “cake batter” – but this way you could send it to your sister and it would still be crunchy.

      I hope this makes sense! All in all, this puppy chow isn’t super crunchy as is.

  18. If you leave out the butter for the cupcake puppy chow do you still use the cream with the extracts or the extracts only?

    1. Yep, the cream and extracts.

  19. I can only find the white chocolate chips, no candy melts available at my grocery. can I use these anyhow and do any ingredients need to be changed?

    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!

  20. These were super easy and tasty. Mine tasted mostly like almond. I used Watkins almond extract (and McCormick butter flavor) and noted to try reducing the almond amount next time. This made me question if different brands and extract vs emulsion really can influence the taste. I love your blog and our family already has recipes that have become favorites…skinny double chocolate chip muffins, monster cookies…yum! Thanks.

  21. Are you getting tired of me commenting all over your blog? I’m a teacher and sometimes all I can think about at school is getting on your blog to recipe read your latest recipe! Anyway, I have like 4 containers of vanilla icing invading my cabinets leftover from gingerbread house decorating with the kindergarteners. I’ve been wondering what would happen if I used melted icing as a puppy chow ingredient…do you have any thoughts? PS…had your latest peanut butter chocolate smoothie the other night for dinner. O.M.G. Thanks Sally!

    1. I am very, very intrigued with the idea of using frosting in this puppy chow Jamie Lee! I have never melted canned frosting before but something tells me this could work. You must try it. I mean, it won’t possibly taste bad!

      Love that smoothie so much. And I always love hearing from you. Never tired of the comments!

  22. If I’m going to omit the butter, do I leave out the cream as well?

    Looks great!

    1. Never mind! Saw the comment above.

    2. No, you’ll want to melt the white chocolate and cream together. Enjoy!

  23. I made these the other day for my cousin’s birthday party, and they were gone in about 5 minutes!!! And I doubled the recipe! That’s how good they are!! I love love love cake batter and puppy chow, and what’s better than the two together? Seriously, they tasted like HEAVEN in puppy chow form. Haha. Thanks so much Sally!!

  24. Just made a batch for an Easter get together tomorrow and of course my husband and myself HAD to try a few bites 😉 Delish! I can’t wait to see the kiddos try it tomorrow!

  25. Any suggestions for substituting the chocolate chips? I want to make this for someone with a nut and chocolate allergy. Thanks!

  26. Bless you – I have Celiac and can’t eat the versions with the cake mix. I will definitely be trying it!

  27. LOVE!!!! Cant wait for my little sister to try this! This will definitely be a go to.

  28. I just finished making this for a party tonight and they taste SO good! I didn’t follow the recipe exactly – I used white chocolate chips and heavy whipping cream- but they still taste amazing. I was planning on serving them as appetizer but they’re so deliciously sweet, I could even use them as dessert. Thanks for the recipe!

  29. Sally, I used Vanilla Chex….YUM!!!!!

  30. Im wanting to make these for our 4th of July potluck today. The problem is that its an outside party and we live in Arizona. So whatever i bring needs to be able to withstand 110 degree temperatures for a couple hours! Im wondering if I adding merengue powder would help prevent the puppy chow from getting so sticky and melting in the heat?

    1. Natalie, I think these will be fine. Perhaps you can keep in the shade? I’ve never tested it with meringue powder, so I’m just unsure.

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