Scrabble

No, not the board game. I’m talking about the party mix! If you’ve never heard of Scrabble, you are seriously missing out. It’s like Chex Mix on steroids. If you make this, you’ll never go back to that bland stuff in a bag again. (Now, I’m not knocking ALL Chex Mix– I still love me some of the Cheddar kind, but the boring plain variety in the blue bag? No thanks.)

This recipe is pretty synonymous with Christmas for me… maybe because that’s when we usually make it. Probably because Christmas is when there are a lot of unsuspecting people to foist goodies off on. You’ll want those people around because this recipe makes a LOT of party mix, and it’s thoroughly addicting. After you make it through an entire batch by yourself, you’ll be begging people to take it off your hands so that you can still fit into your fat pants next week. This would be great to make for any party, like say, the Superbowl? So you have something to do with your hands between all the excitement (read: the new and funny commercials!).

For a change in scenery, you’ll notice different counter tops and hands. I made this at my mother’s house, and I confess, for a whole lot of the process, SHE made it while I took pictures and offered a running commentary. I’ll also say, it feels a whole lot more absurd to take pictures of every step of the process when someone else is waiting for you. But moving on! This recipe is time intensive enough as it is without you having to listen to me blathering on.

Scrabble Ingredients

You’ll need: Rice chex, corn chex, wheat chex, cheerios, pretzels, mixed nuts, canola oil, seasoned salt, garlic powder, worcestershire sauce and optional: rye chips.

Roaster Pans

You’ll also need two large roaster pans.

Corn Chex

You’ll start by splitting your cereal up between the two pans. We started with the corn chex

Wheat Chex

Followed by the wheat chex…

Rice Chex

And the rice chex. It’s not terribly important how much goes in each pan, just try and put about half the box in each pan.

Cheerios

Split the cheerios between the two pans.

Pretzels

Same with the pretzels.

Rye Chips

There was only 1 bag in the ingredients picture, but I had two bags of rye chips, so we poured one bag in each pan.

6 cans of nuts

Finally, open all of your nuts, and pour them on top of everything else. A word to the wise: you can not put too many nuts in this. It’s impossible to do. Of course, the nuts is exactly what makes this kind of expensive to make. We used six cans of nuts, and it seemed like a lot at the time, but we were still picking through the mix wishing there were more. Don’t SKIMP!

Mixing up the cereal

Get your hands in there and get everything mixed up so we can move on to the seasoning.

Canola oil

This is where I apologize. My mother does not believe in measurements. I’m pretty sure it’s just to torture me. Anyways, pour some oil in a bowl. My mom used a canola blend.

Season Salt

Shake in some season salt. Just some. Mom says, “I don’t measure…”

Garlic Powder

Add some garlic powder. Mom says, “I don’t measure…”

Worchestershire sauce

Pour in some Worcestershire sauce. Mom says, well, you know. Give it a good stir.

Ladling the oil mixture

Ladle the seasoning mixture over the cereal mix.

More ladling

Keep ladling until you’ve used up your bowl of seasoned oil.

Stir in the mixture

Give everything a good stir

Oven for 15 minutes

And put the pans in the oven at 255 for 15 minutes.

Back out of the oven

After 15 minutes, you’ll take the pans out of the oven, and stir up the scrabble mix.

Another round of spices

Mix up another batch of seasoning to pour over the cereal.

Stirring then back in the oven

Give it a quick stir, and then the pans go back in the oven for another 15 minutes. We ended up adding a third round of seasoning to the Scrabble because there was still a lot of cereal that didn’t seem to have a coating on them. When you’re satisfied with the seasoning, you’re going to continue baking the mix in 15 minute increments. Keep in mind that the flavor will be stronger as it cooks.

Every 15 minutes or so, take the scrabble out of the oven and give it a quick stir. It will be done when it no longer looks shiny. The whole process takes a couple of hours, but trust me when I tell you that it’s worth it!

Back on the counter

When it cools, portion it out into air tight containers to keep it fresh, and enjoy!! I used a few large Ziploc containers, and a couple plastic bags. Total yield… I had 2 large round ziploc containers, 2 large rectangular ziploc containers and 2 gallon sized plastic bags. And that’s not including the large container I managed to dump on the kitchen floor before I got the lid on it. Yes, I did think about crying.

Finished Scrabble Mix

Seriously. Look at this… I just want to crawl through the screen and eat that! Or make another batch, and I’ve already eaten enough Scrabble to hold me over for a year.

34 Comments so far

  1. Polly on January 29th, 2009

    I have never either heard of Scrabble (food mix) or seen anything similar to this before. It certainly looks like a good idea – most of the snacks that are available in the supermarkets taste so artificial some even like dog biscuits (pretzles). It looks like a really good idea – the trouble is, they look quite scumptious – they might even mostly all be eaten by the time that guests arrive!!

  2. Marcus on January 29th, 2009

    dang jenn, this looks good. I might have to go out and hook this up. Thanks.

  3. Stephanie on January 30th, 2009

    That looks YUMMY!!!

  4. redkathy on January 30th, 2009

    I would probably torture you too ’cause I rarely measure things just like your mother. Unless of course I’m following a recipe to the tee… which is also rare for me. :) Anyhow, thanks for the great snack recipe!

  5. Wanda on January 31st, 2009

    Hi Jen, This mix is awesome. I grew up with this recipe but it was called Trash. I really prefer your name of the recipe. LOL This would be great for a Super Bowl Party.

  6. Sweepstakes Girl on January 31st, 2009

    WOW, look at all those pictures! This is an excellent blog post and a great idea for Super Bowl Sunday!!!

  7. Jenny on February 2nd, 2009

    This looks pretty good. I’m a measurements girl, myself. I measure almost everything even if it’s a recipe I have made multiple times. I hate the thought of screwing up a recipe by over- or under-doing it! I know it’s not too likely, but it make me feel better to measure.
    ~Jenny~

  8. Chameleon on February 2nd, 2009

    We used to make this stuff by the bucket for parties when I was in my teens! I’ve been trying to write up some of the coffee cake and muffin recipes I’ve made all my life for my coffee blog and realizing that – I don’t measure anything because I learned from my grandmother whose idea of a measurement was “pick up some sugar in your fingers like this and sprinkle it three times around the pot then put the rest back in the sugar bowl.” I tagged you over at my blog because I love your picture and text format for recipes!

  9. Carole on February 3rd, 2009

    Wow, that looks so good!! We’re having a Daytona 500 party in a few weeks and I think this might be just the thing to make.

  10. tammy on February 4th, 2009

    O.k. Jenn so you just made me forget that I am on a mission to lose weight. The scrabble looks just like what my Uncle used to make every year at Xmas time. And now I can taste it in my mouth and I haven’t even made it. Thanks for tempting my taste buds. I will definitely make some after the weight loss challenge is over……because I can’t stop once I start eating it.

  11. Crista on February 4th, 2009

    Soooo yummy!

  12. Michelle on February 5th, 2009

    It’s a conspiracy – you and your ‘Scrabble’ are out to sabotage me and my lame-butt diet!! THANKS!
    THIS looks amazingly delicious and much better than any bagged Chex-mix that I typically buy! :)

  13. nipsy on February 6th, 2009

    I am so snarfling this recipe up. Anything I can make in bulk and save for my snack hungry kids is a good thing.

  14. Anna on February 7th, 2009

    I think you hit the nail on the head with that “Chex Mix on steroids” comment; this looks fantastic, and appears to be enough to feed a small army… ;) I’ll have to make this some day.

  15. ChristineLVT on February 7th, 2009

    Chex Mix on steroids- LOL. I love it.

  16. Rich Dansereau on February 8th, 2009

    That looks really good. I have never tried to make it but it is one of my favorite snacks. Might give it a try.

  17. Erik on February 8th, 2009

    Ha! My father taught me to cook. He never measured, either. His only real instruction to me was to “Put in as much of everything that doesn’t make it taste like something else”. Turned out to be pretty good instruction or lack there of. Cooking is an intuitive art, it can be replicated, but for many…it is an extension of themselves.

    My wife and I are creating a cookbook and because of my father’s aversion to measuring, we have hired an assistant to try to track the pieces, scoops, pinches, dashes and dustings I do when I cook. :)

    I suppose if we didn’t my cookbook would look more like an ingredient list.

  18. Tricia on February 9th, 2009

    Yummy! But wow, that batch would last about a year in our house … I think, well maybe not. LOL

    I’ve been craving Bits and Bites or something similar to your Scrabble lately (don’t recall a mix like this being called Scrabble before (not in Canada anyway)) but I haven’t been able to find it in the stores. Odd … but now I know how to make it. Thanks!

    I don’t think we have Chex here in Canada, but I’m sure I can find something similar. Yep I think I might try making a small batch. Thanks!

  19. PlaygroundforParents on February 15th, 2009

    This is one of those recipes where half would be gone before the guests even arrive. Thanks for sharing!

  20. Sharon Watson on March 1st, 2009

    I have been wondering about the original of this recipe for years. My mother has been making it for at least 51 years. I first remember it when we moved to our new house in 1956, when I was eight years old. Like you, it has been a staple in our family every Christmas since then. Your recipe is almost identical to Mom’s, except she has the exact measurements! Also, you are the only one to include cheerios, We nixed these from the recipe early on because we didn’t like them. She also has one more, secret ingredient which you don’t include. The pretzels she used were longer and thinner than those you can find today. I think they were called “Mr. Salty”. I do know they came in a box.

    We don’t know the original source of Mom’s Scabble because the women who gave it to her died years before it first appeared on the Chex boxes. Mom is Eighty-three and this is the first year she hasn’t made it because she can no longer lift the panfuls from the oven. I made five batches just for the family and it still wasn’t enough. Thanks to Walmart for having the Chex Cereals on sale for $2.00 a box and making this possible.

    And many, many thanks to you for proving to family and friends that while my mother did not invent the mix, neither did Ralston Purina. You didn’t “make my day”. This discovery will last much longer than that and will be included in the family lore about Nana’s special Christmas Presents. Thank you again and good luck with your diet. I’ll be checking in again.

  21. bayu on March 3rd, 2009

    i like your blog very nice

  22. Laurie on December 4th, 2009

    I have grown up on scrabble! My grandmother and her friends use to make it. I have been making it myself since she is no longer with us.My mother and I can eat a entire batch in a week it is so good! We love scrabble and are so happy that it is a tradition that others share with their family cause it is very important in ours. I have my son making it now and asking for it all the time:-)YEA FOR SCRABBLE! (or trash or nuts and bolts as I have heard it called)

  23. Sara on December 7th, 2009

    THANK YOU JENN! I recently asked my 87-year-old mother for her scrabble recipe. I have been thinking about it for years and figured I’d better get it from her while she’s still with us. She dug up her old recipe card, which was so worn out and splattered with liquids that I couldn’t make out a good portion of the recipe. I can’t wait to smell the scrabble cooking which will take me back to my childhood and so many happy memories of helping mom make this for her fabulous holiday parties!!! Thanks again for filling in the blanks. Happy Holidays!!

  24. Cindy on December 9th, 2009

    OMG! This is our families favorite Christmas snack. We use Cheezits. I made this years batch with sesame sticks. Any of these goodies are good. My Grandmother’s recipe calls for 2 cups oil heated. I have found, through trial and error, That if you use a small whisk it helps mix up the Worcestershire sauce and salt. Very cool you have step by step instructions. You are so right about it being addicting. My 8 year old daughter could hardly wait for me to make it…:)

  25. Kris Swanson on December 25th, 2009

    Hi, Would Sharon Watson or anyone else who has an exact recipe please post it for those of us who grew up with Scrabble but now do not have anyone to ask. I am trying to make it for my family but I am no good at guessing measurements. It would be a blessing. Thanks, Kris

  26. Valerie Claggett on December 5th, 2010

    I was so happy to find this posting when I searched for “scrabble” recipes. I wasn’t sure if “scrabble” was a term widely used, but that’s what my grandmother always called it. I knew that the recipe on the Chex box was a short cut. Good things take time. Thanks for the beautiful photos!

  27. Karen on December 9th, 2010

    WOW! I thought my family was the only one who calls this wonderous stuff “”Scrabble.” I, too, agree, once you taste this you will pass by this section of the snack aisle! This was always a Christmas staple and offset the sweet cookies, candies and fudge so nicely!! My mother’s recipe did not include the rye chips…hope I can find them, this year! GREAT pics, too!! Thanks for the memories!!!!!

  28. Jean on December 15th, 2010

    My mother made this all the time I was growing up, (I’m now 67) then I continued the tradition with my family. I’ve made it for work before and have had several requests from co-workers to make it again this year. It’s delicious.

  29. [...] realization that something had to give, and this year, that’s the baking. I made a batch of Scrabble on Saturday and that will likely be the extent of it. There is always more than enough cookies for [...]

  30. Melissa on December 20th, 2010

    My husband’s 84 year old grandmother makes this every holiday season! I have known her for 10 years now and she always sends home a coffee can of scrabble!It is so yummy! She makes it the same way but no rye chips (which I think would be great!)

  31. Ann Allen on December 29th, 2010

    Yay for this post! My grandmother used to make an awesome version of this and my mom now makes it but it’s not the same. She uses pretzels but not the stix and she doesn’t use Cheerios……I think her recipe is off a Chex cereal box. Any kid that was raised on Christmas Scrabble knows you gotta stack the Cheerios on the Stix! Christmas may be over but I bet sometime this weekend I will make some for football food. :o)

  32. Linda on December 21st, 2011

    Growing up in the 60′s we always called this “scrabble”. My Mom made “scrabble” around Christmas. We used the same recipe you are using. Somewhere down the line the name got changed to Chex Mix and people look at you weird when you call it “scrabble”. In my family it is known as “scrabble”

  33. connie on December 5th, 2012

    fortunately, my mother in law DID believe in measuring !!! we use:

    2 cups oil
    1/2 cup wocestershire sauce
    1 tbsp salt
    2-3 tbsp garlic powder (NOT salt)

    i don’t know for sure where she got the recipe but it’s always been “scrabble” a few years ago i added crispy chinese noodles and sometimes i use crispix cereal. i also cut the salt down a bit to 2 tsp and add a lot more garlic

  34. Jessica D. on December 13th, 2012

    Thank you! This recipe is just like the one my Grammy makes! It’s perfect and you’re exactly right… It tastes like Christmas!

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