That’s not a typo – poppy chow is a lighter twist on an old favorite recipe called “puppy chow,” or sometimes “muddy buddies.” The cereal is replaced with popcorn, which is lighter in calories and carbohydrates by volume. A few other little tweaks have been made to this recipe to make ita little less unhealthy without sacrificing taste. This makes a great edible homemade holiday gift!
You can also try making this recipe with other substitutes for cereal – sliced almonds, whole almonds, coconut flakes, or pumpkin seeds! To make it vegan and dairy free, look for vegan chocolate chips.
Poppy chow is a lighter twist on "puppy chow," traditionally made with Chex cereal.
- 7 tablespoons virgin coconut oil (divided)
- 1/2 cup popcorn kernels
- 1 cup dark chocolate chips
- 1/2 cup natural peanut butter
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 cup powdered sugar
|Make the popcorn: In a large stock pot, melt 3 tablespoons oil over medium high heat, add 3-4 popcorn kernels, and cover. When the kernels pop, add the remaining kernels and cover. Remove from heat for 30 seconds, then return to heat. Once the popping starts, continuously shake the pot gently back and forth until 2-3 seconds pass between pops. Remove from heat. |
|Melt the chocolate chips, peanut butter, remaining coconut oil, and vanilla extract in the microwave or in a double boiler. Discard all unpopped kernels and toss with melted chocolate mixture in a large bowl. Toss until all popcorn is coated. Let cool until chocolate mixture is tacky but not hot, then toss with powdered sugar, 1/2 cup at a time, until popcorn is coated. Let cool, then store in an airtight container. |
“Puppy Chow” Flavored Pumpkin Seeds
This recipe is from Chocolate Covered Katie, a healthier dessert blog. It is very easy to make, and quick because there is no baking involved. It tastes like a rich chocolate cream pie, but is made with a vegetable (pumpkin) instead of cream, making this recipe lower in saturated fat, higher in beneficial nutrients, and can also be made vegan/dairy-free! This recipe can be made gluten-free if you skip the pie crust, making it into more of a mousse, or making your own pie crust with a nut base. I found that the mixture has a stronger pumpkin taste at first, but tastes more just like a chocolate pie after chilling for one day.
If you’re highly motivated, you can make this pie with fresh, homemade pumpkin puree. If not, use canned. You may find that certain brands, especially organic brands, have a different taste from the canned pumpkin with which you are more familiar. That is because canned pumpkin can be made with different blends of pumpkin and other squash. This may be off-putting, but again, this pie seems to lose the strong pumpkin flavor after one day.
You may find pumpkin in an aseptic carton (brand name Tetra Pak) rather than a can. Please note that these cartons are not recyclable in all areas, so check here to find out if these shelf-stable cartons can be recycled where you live.
Chocolate Pumpkin Pie (No Bake)
It tastes like a rich chocolate cream pie, but is made with a vegetable (pumpkin) instead of cream! This makes the pie much lower in saturated fat and higher in nutrients, and also can be made vegan
- 1 cup dark chocolate chips (look for dairy-free/vegan if making for a crowd with vegans or milk allergies)
- 1 3/4 cup pumpkin puree (or 1 can (not pumpkin pie mix))
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 teaspoons cocoa powder
- 16 drops liquid stevia (or replace with a little extra sugar to taste)
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 store-bought pie crust
|Melt chocolate in a bowl in the microwave, heating for 30 seconds at a time and stirring, repeating until just melted. |
|Place pumpkin, sugar, cocoa powder, vanilla, and salt in food processor and puree. Add melted chocolate and puree until very smooth. You can taste the mixture at this point and add a little more sugar if necessary. |
|Pour pumpkin mixture into pie crust and use a spatula to smooth it out. Refrigerate until firm, at least 4-6 hours. This pie seems to taste more like a chocolate cream pie and has less pumpkin flavor after being refrigerated for one day, which you may consider a good thing! Serve chilled. |
Shown in a whole grain pie crust, which you may be lucky enough to find at your grocery store!