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Course: party food, Snack
Keyword: Sweets

AB's Christmas Crack

ACTIVE TIME: 10 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 43 minutes
Yield: 6 quarts
For decades, my family used to make this horrifyingly addictive candy-like stuff during the holidays that we always called "white trash." This year, I was yearning for an upgrade, so we added espresso powder and crushed cocoa nibs.
You're welcome/I'm sorry.
Photo by Lynne Calamia
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  • 3 1/2 cups Cheerios
  • 3 cups Rice Chex cereal
  • 3 cups Corn Chex cereal
  • 2 1/4 cups plain M&M's candies
  • 2 1/2 cups salted mixed nuts
  • 2 cups small pretzels
  • 1/4 cup cocoa nibs (easily acquired via the web)
  • 5 cups white chocolate chips or finely chopped bars (we like Ghirardelli) (also, see note)
  • 1/4 cup instant espresso powder NOT coffee ground for espresso
ACTIVE TIME: 10 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 43 minutes
Yield: 6 quarts


  • Combine the Cheerios, Rice Chex, Corn Chex, M&M's, nuts, pretzels, and cacao nibs in your biggest mixing bowl.
  • Roll out a couple large sheets of wax or parchment paper on a work surface away from direct sunlight or heat.
  • Combine the white chocolate and espresso powder in a medium-size, microwave-safe bowl and nuke on high power in 30-second increments, stirring with a silicone spatula between each blast. After about 5 nukes (yes, that's a technical term), the chocolate would start to melt and smooth out. If there are still a few solid chips here and there after 5 blasts, don't worry about it as it's better to under-melt a bit than to burn even a little of the mass.
  • Pour the melted chocolate over the cereal mixture and mix very well with a large silicone spatula, or better yet, your hands wearing disposable gloves.
  • Divide the mixture in half and spread evenly on the wax or parchment paper. Leave it for at least 30 minutes to set before breaking up and stashing in airtight containment.
Note: Don't get me started about why white chocolate is called "white chocolate" even though it's not actually, technically, or legally, chocolate.
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