Appetizers Tailgate Party

Bourbon Bacon Chex Mix

September 30, 2011

Bourbon Bacon Chex Mix. Sounds like the best thing you’ll ever eat, right? Well, it is! Last weekend I was in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, for the big Alabama/Arkansas matchup. My cousin-in-law, Philip, puts this shindig together every two years, and boy can he plan a party! While his Razorbacks weren’t victorious that day, this party was certainly in my top 5! I don’t think there was ever a moment where I wasn’t shoveling food in my face, and I definitely can’t complain when it’s a Bama victory.

tailgatingcornhole, tailgate trailer with TV

mascotsbig Arkansas made his debut this year after Big Al towered over little Arkansas two years before


I brought this Chex Mix and it was a huge hit! Sure to be a crowd pleaser and pretty easy to make, although messy (but who minds a little bacon grease on your hands, right?).

Bourbon Bacon Chex Mix

So, how’s it taste?

This Chex Mix is addicting. I don’t care how full I got, I was still making room for this. It’s the traditional flavor of Chex Mix, which is deliciously savory, but the coating of this recipe is sweet and spicy. It’s a flavor explosion in your mouth with crunch. Butter, brown sugar, corn syrup…you know this is going to be good! I almost substituted regular chili powder for the chipotle chili powder but DO NOT DO IT! I had never heard of chipotle chili powder until this recipe and it’s now my new obsession. Smoky and spicy, it smells like heaven and tastes even better. That mixed with the sweet and savory, plus BACON and BOURBON and PECANS. It’s awesome. That’s why I’m screaming at you in all caps in this post. I used Jack Daniel’s in my version so technically it’s whiskey bacon Chex Mix, but feel free to use your favorite bourbon/whiskey. You could also use mixed nuts, or peanuts, or whatever nut combination you like instead of the pecan halves.

Jim 'N NicksThere’s always going to be some good eats when Jim ‘N Nick’s show up!


ribsMmm, ribs!

Yield: 20 servings (1/2 cup each)

Bourbon Bacon Chex Mix


1 bag (15 oz.) Chex Mix® traditional snack mix
1 cup pecan halves
1/2 lb. bacon, crisply cooked and crumbled
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup butter
1/4 cup light corn syrup
2 tbsp. bourbon (or whiskey, I used Jack Daniel's)
3/4 tsp. chipotle chili powder


1. Heat oven to 300°F. Line two 15x10x1-inch pans with foil. Spray foil with cooking spray. In large bowl, mix snack mix, pecans, and bacon. Set aside.

2. In 2-quart saucepan, heat brown sugar, butter, and corn syrup over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until bubbly around edges. Cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally; remove from heat. Cool 2 minutes. Carefully stir in bourbon and chipotle chili powder. Pour over snack mixture; toss until evenly coated.

3. Spread snack mixture on pans. Bake 15 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes, to caramelize mixture. Cool completely, about 1 hour. Break into pieces.

per serving: 230 calories, 12g fat, 24g carbs, 1g fiber, 3g protein

recipe by Pillsbury

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  • Vivek September 30, 2011 at 11:42 am

    I am so jacking this recipe for the next Vandy tailgate!

    • Leah September 30, 2011 at 11:50 am

      Do! It’s awesome!

  • Susan in the Boonies September 30, 2011 at 12:01 pm

    I make Chex Mix ever Christmas: it’s tradition!

    I am so printing this recipe out! I don’t think I can wait till Christmas, either!

  • Erin @ One Particular Kitchen September 30, 2011 at 3:53 pm

    OMG OMG OMG. This looks AMAZING!

  • Shannon October 2, 2011 at 10:57 pm

    I had a chance to taste this and it is soooo amazing! I had extra and took it home to the husband and he freaked out, it was so good and highly addictive. I can’t wait to make batches of this goodness for my tailgating and get togethers!!!

  • Jamie September 17, 2012 at 9:56 pm

    Any way to make this without corn syrup?? I am dying to try this but I steer clear of corn syrup so I’m wondering if you have any suggestions for a substitute? Honey maybe….?

    • Leah September 18, 2012 at 6:55 am

      Honey is sweeter and has a different taste, but I think you could try it. I’ve only made this with corn syrup, so I’m not sure what the results will be.

  • B December 17, 2012 at 3:14 pm

    Jamie…you can substitute (real) maple syrup for the corn syrup.

  • Devin March 29, 2013 at 2:00 pm

    This is INCREDIBLE. I doubled the bacon & served it for our housewarming. It was gone within a couple of hours. Super addicting!

    • Leah March 29, 2013 at 3:04 pm

      Double bacon…never a bad idea! Happy you enjoyed it!

  • Stephanie April 20, 2013 at 7:51 am

    I am making this for tonight…can I make it early or should I wait until it is closer to serving time? How long does it keep? Thank you so much – the guys are going to flip over this!!!

    • Leah Short April 20, 2013 at 8:52 am

      Hi Stephanie! Yes, you can make it early if you want. I made it the afternoon before I served it and it lasted all the next day and night. It’s good stuff!

  • Stephanie April 20, 2013 at 8:23 am

    Sorry… me again! I only have regular chili powder. Do you think adding liquid smoke would be okay? Or maybe smoked paprika? I could just go to the store, I suppose 😉

    • Leah Short April 20, 2013 at 8:55 am

      Hmm, I’ve never tried it that way, but you could experiment! Although I’d probably go pick up the chipotle chili powder. It’s fantastic and you’ll probably get requests to make this again. 😉

  • Stephanie April 20, 2013 at 2:10 pm

    Well..I love you! I found McCormick’s Southwest Seasoning (chip. chili, garlic, onion, pepper). There are going to be a lot of happy people tonight. I should bring the recipe, but I will just send them to your site. (This is hoping my husband will not eat it all before hand.) Next time…doubling bacon! Thanks.

    • Leah Short April 20, 2013 at 5:11 pm

      Awesome! And yes, more bacon is never a bad idea!