Seasoned Snack Crackers (Amish Recipe) Make Ahead Mondays

When we moved into Amish country a few years ago, one of the things that surprised me the most was how, well, normal the Amish folks were that I met. I’m not sure what exactly I expected, but I think I fancied there’d be a little olde English* thrown around here and there; maybe thees and thous? I certainly didn’t expect to go to the farmer’s market and see a middle-aged Amish woman laughing raucously at her bake stand while holding a slice of pizza in one hand and a 20 ounce Pepsi in the other.

*Just in case any of you out there think the same thing I did, I assure you they don’t speak with thees and thous and thys and whatnot. In fact, it’s kind of ironic that I thought that since they refer to anyone who is not Amish as English.

Another big surprise for me -because apparently I build up images of various groups of people in my head- was the fact that they used store bought ingredients or items in cooking. I had visions of everything being from scratch. Granted, they do make more from scratch than your average “English” person, but they’re not opposed to taking something from the store and transforming it into something wonderful.

My friends, Ada and Anna, have been telling me for months about the seasoned snack crackers they make all the time. They promised that they were good for snacking, yes, but they also loved to break them up over salads and serve with soups or chilis. Every time they told me about it, though, they had just finished eating a batch and didn’t even have crumbs left in a bowl for me to sample. (They whip up those dishes quickly, people.) Each time they’d tell me about the crackers, I’d slink home sans sample. It finally occurred to all of us that they could just jot down the recipe. It only took a moment for them to write it down and as they handed me the card they assured me it was a simple process with four ingredients.

I had everything in the pantry that was needed -saltines, cheddar cheese powder (hence, the bright orange colour), sour cream and onion powder, and canola or vegetable oil- so I set straight to work. Twenty minutes later, I pulled two half-sheet pans from the oven full of appealing snack crackers.  The crackers were crispy and fragrant and it took little to no time before the kids smelled something that pulled them into the kitchen.  My kids have nearly perfected the art of the quick grab from a hot pan and little hands were grabbing hot crackers and tossing them to and fro in an attempt to cool them more quickly.

There was chattering, there was giggling, there were the first tentative nibbles and then? Then there was only the sound of crunching.  When there was a part in the wave of children attacking the pans, my husband and I dove in for a try. Those crackers were like giant Goldfish crackers or Cheese-Its/Cheese Nips. They were GOOD. My kids soon branched into putting paper thin slices of ham on the crackers. In very short order, they were el gone-o and many little voices were asking for more.

Since that day, we’ve made these on average of once a week, leaving a small bowl out for snacking and tucking the rest away for using the way Ada and Anna recommended; as croutons, snacks or accompaniments to soup or chili. There’s nothing quite like these for dunking in tomato soup or five-alarm chili.

Now, let’s get to the giveaway, shall we? I know that the cheddar cheese powder and sour cream powder may be hard for folks to find locally, so I’m giving away a generously sized bag of each (from my friend Ada’s store) to two different readers. Two winners! YAY! Unfortunately, this can only be open to my readers in the continental United States due to issues regarding shipping food across borders and such. What do you do to qualify for the giveaway? Here are the different ways to enter. Be sure to leave a comment for each one you do!

  • Leave a comment about your favourite quick snack food or a way you’ve been surprised by someone (or a group of someones) before. (1 entry)
  • Like Foodie With Family on facebook. (1 entry)
  • Follow Foodie With Family on Twitter (1 entry)
  • Kiss someone you love and tell me about it here. What can I say? I’m feeling romantic. My baby brother is getting married Sunday. (1 entry)

I’ll tally all of the entries and have one of my visiting family members pick a number at random to choose the winner by this Friday, August 3rd. Winners will be announced here! Good luck folks! The cheddar powder and the sour cream and onion powder are both spec-tac-u-lar on popcorn, just in case you needed another reason to want it.

One final thing before we get to the recipe. If you, like me, are not the patient type and you want to make these right away, I have two links below so you can purchase the powders through my BFF, Amazon.com. (These are affiliate links, and should you choose to purchase after clicking them, I do receive a small commission from Amazon. I just thought you should know.)
Sour Cream & Onion, 1 lb. packageCheddar Cheese Powder, 1 lb.

Seasoned Snack Crackers (Amish Recipe) and a Simple Giveaway | Make Ahead Mondays
 
Simple saltines get a 10 minute makeover turning them into giant cheese crackers reminiscent of Goldfish, Cheese Nips and Cheez-Its turning the boring soda cracker into the perfect snack or accompaniment to chili and soup. Use as a salad topper, too!
Ingredients
  • 1 pound box of saltines (I recommend using low- or no-salt ones as the powders are generally salty enough.)
  • 1 cup vegetable or canola oil
  • ¼ cup sour cream and onion powder
  • 2 tablespoons cheddar cheese powder
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 250°F. Lay out two rimmed half-sheet pans.
  2. Open all of the sleeves of saltines and put them into a large mixing bowl. In a measuring cup, whisk together the oil, sour cream and onion powder, and cheddar cheese powder until smooth. Drizzle over the crackers and toss with your hands to coat evenly.
  3. Divide the crackers between the two sheet pans and use your hands to gently spread them out into as thin a layer as possible. Put the two pans in the oven and bake, stirring two or three times, for 20 minutes, or until the crackers feel mostly dry to the touch.
  4. Remove the trays from the oven and let the crackers cool completely before transferring to an airtight container. These are good for about two weeks after being made when stored correctly. If they start to lose their crunch, return them to a 250°F oven for about 5 minutes.

Comments

  1. Michelle W says

    I made some chocolate toffee pretzel bark last week. It was divine and my husband, who doesn’t usually get all dewey-eyed about sweets, ate it up! Then he asked when I was going to make some more!

    Oh, and I just kissed him out in the kitchen. :D

  2. Michelle W says

    I’ve been thinking (dangerous, I know) but this would probably be awesome on pretzels too, or oyster crackers. Also, if you haven’t tried Bacon Salt… I bet this would be a good recipe to try it with.

  3. Gerilynne says

    Another snazzy way to jazz up Saltines is to cover them with melted chocolate (sort of a poor man’s bark). I’m sure you could add nuts or dried fruit but it’s not necessary. The combination of sweet/salty hits the snack spot some days.

    I already follow you on Facebook.

    I kissed my husband after supper. Happy Marriage to your brother!

  4. Crystal says

    Slowly working my way through your awesome recipes since I discovered this site about a month ago!

    My favourite snack is (currently) homemade apple chips sprinkled with a bit of cinnamon and sugar or splenda. what can I say, I love my dehydrator!

  5. says

    Cheez-It® Baked Snack Crackers have always been my favorite quick snack (although I don’t eat them very much now that I’m watching my weight).

  6. says

    I kissed my husband in bed last night over my shoulder, so our lips weren’t perfectly lined up, and his kiss was very gentle — it was super sexy. (TMI?)

  7. Rhonda Ahrens says

    And I kissed my husband and kiddos via text this am as they are in MA visiting my in laws and I am home working!

  8. Amanda L says

    My favorite snack is apples and peanut butter. I also kissed my husband, he is having a tough couple of weeks.

  9. says

    Hmmm. :D I think my favorite snack is difficult to pin down…. :D One would have to be caramel corn; I love salty and sweet. But being diabetic, I don’t eat it often enough. Dang, now I’m all hungry…. :D Thanks for the generous giveaway!

  10. Janice D says

    If I am on a calorie binge or throwing myself a pity party I have buttered popcorn the old fashioned way with peanut M&M’s thrown in and it’s awesome. If it’s just an average day I am all about cheese and crackers. I LOVE cheese and usually slice up a few different flavors (my current favorite being Beechers Marco Polo Cracked Black Pepper and Cheddar) with a variety of crackers, some sliced tomato and basil from the garden. I could eat this all day so your current recipe has filled my brain with a plethera of ideas to add another layer of flavor, thanks SO much.

  11. Janice D says

    I kissed my dog on the top of her head this morning and took a moment to look her in the eyes while a scratched behind her ears and explained that it was time for me to leave for work. Her uncondiitonal love amid the chaos of life is a gift I never want to take for granted so I try every morning, no matter how late I’m running, to take a few moments to give her my undivided attention and love in return.

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