When I was a kid, I eagerly awaited that magical moment in late fall -almost always pushing toward Thanksgiving- when my mom would feel like the weather and season was right for making chex mix. The making of the family sized batches of our favourite snack mix fell into the purview of my duties and it was one that I took very seriously. When I was a kid, I skimped on the wheat cereal portion because it didn’t ding my chimes. I didn’t like the way it soaked up the butter and seasoning. Somewhere along the line, though, my taste buds did a 180° and they became my favourite thing in the entire bowl; valued high above pretzels and rice chex and maybe even rubies, had they been present.
These days, I keep up my mom’s tradition of not making chex mix until we are breathing down Thanksgiving’s neck. Somehow it makes it seem even more special. That doesn’t mean I’m cravings-free the rest of the year, though. I had a whole box of bite-sized shredded wheat cereal hanging around my pantry when I did a purge the other day. For one reason or another, I felt like it had no business being in there any more, so I dragged it out of the dark corner where it was languishing and decided to make it into a snack. It doesn’t count as chex mix if you don’t put Chex in it, right? RIGHT? Besides, my intent for these was to use the classic snack mix method to create a cheesy snack.
I used my usual garlicky butter mixture (perfected, lo these many years) on the whole wheat cereal, toasted à la chex mix (while not being chex mix) and tossed it with a serious dose of White Cheddar Cheese Powder (that’s an affiliate link folks) to make a buttery, garlicky, crunchy Cheddar bomb of a snack. To say they didn’t last long at our house might be the understatement of the century. These were voted “the best after school snack EVAH!” (emphasis: theirs.)
Mercy, those were good. I foresee many batches of these to hold us over ’til chex mix season.
If you’re looking for more fun, healthy snacks, try our Hummus After School Snack Board and Za’atar Tortilla Strips for Salads and Snacks! You’ll definitely want to try our Fudgesicles Frosties and Homemade Fudgesicles (Fruit or Agave Sweetened), too!
Whole Wheat Cheddar Garlic Snacks
- It probably goes without saying, but I am going to say it anyway; don’t use frosted mini wheats here. That would be all kinds of a train wreck.
- There is no doubt at all that this recipe calls for a lot of butter, but shredded wheat soaks it up, so it takes quite a bit to coat everything as desired.
- My all-time, tippity-top fave Cheddar cheese powder is made by Hoosier Hill Farms and purchased through Amazon. I use it for my Homemade Cool Ranch Doritos, Cool Ranch Cheese Curds, Cool Ranch Doritos Taco Bowls, and on my kids’ favourite version of popcorn. I love that it’s White cheddar (sans food dyes) because I have a white Cheddar fixation. Besides that, there is a complete lack of day-glo orange fingers after eating stuff dusted with it, so it makes me feel like I’m winning at this parenting thing, if only temporarily.
- If you’re in a bind and can’t wait for your cheese powder to come in, you could make a Parmesan version of this using the ubiquitous shaker-top parm available at just about every grocery store in North America. It won’t be quite the same product, but it’ll still be eminently edible!
- Why not bake the cheese on? It’s a preference. I like that it’s dusty and cheese powdery like a great cheese popcorn or a cheese cracker. I haven’t tried baking it on because we liked it so much the way I made it first and there was a chorus of “Please don’t mess with it!”, so if you give it a go, would you let me know how it turns out?
Whole Wheat Cheddar Garlic SnacksRate Recipe
- 1 box bite sized shredded whole wheat cereal 16.4 ounces-ish
- 2 sticks butter
- 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- 1 teaspoon celery salt or seasoned salt
- 1 teaspoon granulated garlic or garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon granulated onion or onion powder
- 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
- 1/3 cup Cheddar cheese powder
- Preheat oven to 275°F.
- Add the bite sized shredded wheat to a large mixing bowl. Melt the butter in a saucepan or in a bowl in the microwave. Whisk in the Worcestershire sauce, celery salt, granulated garlic and onion, and cayenne pepper. Drizzle this over the bite sized shredded wheat and toss to coat evenly. Spread in a single layer on a half-sheet pan and bake for 1 hour, stirring every 15 minutes, or until crunchy. Toss the cheese powder in while the cereal is still hot.
- Eat warm or let cool to room temperature before transferring into a container with an airtight lid. This is best eaten within a week of being made, and can be re-crisped in a 275°F oven if they start becoming stale.
Nutritional information is an estimate and provided to you as a courtesy. You should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe using your preferred nutrition calculator.
did you make this recipe?
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Delicious! I’m glad hubs was searching for uses for shredded wheat. I will definitely make this again.
Thanks so much for taking the time to rate the recipe and let me know you love it, Kathleen!! You made my day!
Thanks for the recipe. I used olive oil instead and in near future try olive oil and avocado oil mixed. We loved!!!
Thanks so much, Beverly! I’m so glad you loved it!
Steve Bator says
Great snack but back up on that butter….
Hi Steve- I like the amount of butter as written. 🙂 Feel free to adjust for your own preferences.
I substituted 2 tablespoons of butter with olive oil, added some herb sprinkle, Tony’s, and tossed it with Parmesan cheese before baking. Absolutely delicious!
Thanks so much for taking the time to rate the recipe and let me know you love it, Annie! Those changes sound delicious. 🙂
Great recipe! I did it with the Parmesan and turned out really well. Thank you!
I’m really glad you love it, Heather! Thanks for taking the time to let me know!
Hello, just came across this recipe and want to use up a box of shredded wheat and make a savory snack. Just had one question. Do you think it would still be delicious if I left the cheese powder out? I don’t have any, don’t feel like spending the money to buy some, and most of all it sounds like a very processed food product, which I’d rather avoid.
I am not sure as I haven’t tried it. I use a pretty decent cheese powder from Nuts.com or Hoosier Hill Farms that I like, so I feel good about that. Dried cheese powder is often just that. 🙂 Even so, I’m not worried about it. If you give it a go without the powder, please let me know how it turns out.
Thanks for this recipe. I have just joined Forks over knives so was looking for some acceptable snacking food. I love chips and crackers which are generally not allowed. I eliminated the butter and sprayed the shredded wheat with Braggs liquid amino acids and then added the dry spices (eliminating the Worcestershire) and then baked them. I think it’s going to work for me – no fat and just one tsp of salt. Thanks for the inspiration.
Why can’t I use parmesan cheese instead?
Hi Ele- You can certainly use Parm if you’d like, but it won’t coat the crackers quite as evenly or thoroughly as the powdered cheese.
YUMM-O. Your thoughts about the timing of making Chex Mix as being something in the air (my interpretation) and Languishing Partial Boxes of Wheat Chex on the shelf discovered during a “purge” are so-o-o like me as well — Ur too funny! Anyway, I was glad to find this recipe cause’ all other searches for “what can I do with wheat chex” have disappointingly yielded muddy buddy recipe or a variant thereof. Going to try it!
Arrghhh! Okay, it was for shredded wheat, but I got wheat chex, which is my fave part of Chex mix — I will totally try both ways!!
I’m betting that will actually taste quite good!!! I may give it a whirl, too!
I did not read thru all of your great cooks notes til now. Its interesting that U recommend the Hoosier cheese powder, I have not tried it, but not long ago I learned about it from a blog I can’t remember & I now I have tol absolutely use your link to purchase it —
I hate day-glo orange fingers too, but is only a minor inconvenience when I’ve made my own cheese popcorn using a packet of orange cheese powder from a mac and cheese box (just haff to remember a damp washcloth with my bowl of orange-ness) –works pretty good when in a pinch, and waiting for that awesome Hoosier cheese to arrive. And don’t forget the washcloth : )
This sounds fabulous! Do you think this would work in an air fryer?
Hi DeAnn- Unfortunately, I haven’t tried in in an air fryer. I think it might work theoretically, but I don’t have any guidance for you. 🙂 Please let me know if you give a go!
I just did it with rave reviews! I preheated my air fryer to 255 degrees for 5 minutes and placed the cereal as evenly as I could on the bottom. Cooked for 30 minutes and shook about every 8 minutes. Came out perfectly! Definitely keeping this in rotation for snacks!
Nice, DeAnn! Thanks so much for taking the time to let me know what worked out well for you and thanks for rating the recipe!
Two sticks of butter is 8 oz. Your recipe calls for 16 oz of cereal. That is a fat-to-cereal ratio of 1:2. Is that really right? Other recipes that you can find online typically call for 2 TBSP of butter or margarine (1 oz) for 6 cups of cereal (ca. 6 oz for Chex), which is a ratio of fat-to-cereal of 1:6. I’m not worried about the “healthiness” of the snack, just want the recipe to come out right. Half a stick would make more sense.
That is the correct ratio, Paul. I fear no butter 😀
I made a lighter version…. Used Trader Joes shredded wheat (it doesn’t get as soggy as Post brand), 1 stick of butter, added 2 dashes of smoked paprika and mixed the cheddar powder in with the butter. It turned out super tasty. Probably not as good as with 2 sticks of butter, but certainly satisfied the savory, crunchy craving!
Did you use garlic?
SUPER yummy, thanks so much for the recipe!
Aly ~ Cooking In Stilettos says
My pantry loves you right now Rebecca – this, the Cool Ranch Doritos, Homemade Ranch Mix – I’ve been bookmarking like crazy!