Nuts and Bolts Homemade Snack Mix

Nuts & Bolts Homemade Snack Mix with a secret ingredient - bacon grease! |

There are two types of people in this world: those who snack, and those who don’t. Three square meals a day just don’t cut it for me. Sure, if I had big meals at each sitting, maybe, but I tend to get full quickly so my meals are often smaller, which means I get incredibly hungry long before it’s time for another meal. When I was packing my bag for the hospital I spent significant time shopping to make sure I had enough SNACKS. Priorities, of course. Actually, snacks may have been just about all that I used out of that much-thought-about and planned-to-the-nth-degree hospital bag, but I digress…

I love having things around the house that I can easily munch on throughout the day. Chex Mix has always been one of my favorite road trip staples, and after I made a homemade version last year, I was immediately hooked. A friend of mine posted her husband’s grandmother’s recipe for “nuts and bolts” on Facebook and as soon as I saw the ingredient list, I added everything to my grocery list.

Watch How to Make Nuts and Bolts Snack Mix:

The secret, killer ingredient in this snack mix? BACON DRIPPINGS. I asked if there was a substitute and I got the feeling that using anything else would be sheer blasphemy, so bacon grease it was! Trust me, you won’t want to use anything else either, but if you absolutely, positively MUST, then use butter.

I played around with the ingredients a bit, as her recipe didn’t include the bagel chips or Cheez-Its, but instead had Fritos. I love Fritos, but I kind of thought they would be overkill in this recipe since they’re so salty on their own. After I had made this, however, I realized that there are two other ingredients that would be fantastic:  rye bagel chips (you can buy them from and Bugles. Do they even make Bugles anymore?! I used to love them as a kid… I’d put them on my fingers and bite them off!

This recipe makes an insanely large amount of snack mix; you could cut it in half and make one large roasting pan worth of snack mix. Which is to say, still A LOT.

Give me the scoop on your favorite add-ins to homemade snack mix… I can’t wait to play around with this recipe even more!

Nuts & Bolts Homemade Snack Mix with a secret ingredient - bacon grease! |

One year ago: Oatmeal Cream Pies
Four years ago: Italian Pasta Salad
Five years ago: Triple-Chocolate Cookies
Six years ago: Banana Cream Pie

Nuts & Bolts Snack Mix

Servings 56 servings (2 large roasters)
Prep 10 minutes
Cook 1 hour
Total 1 hour 10 minutes
Course: Snack
Cuisine: American
Author: Michelle
A variation on homemade chex mix that includes bacon drippings!


  • 12
    box Rice Chex cereal
  • 12
    box Corn Chex cereal
  • 14
    box Wheat Chex cereal
  • 12
    box Kix cereal
  • 8.9
    box Cheerios
  • 13.7
    box Cheez-It crackers
  • 16
    plain bagel chips
  • 16
    pretzel sticks
  • 32
    salted peanuts
  • ¾
    unsalted butter
  • 1
    bacon grease
  • 3
    Worcestershire sauce
  • 1
    seasoned salt
  • 1
    garlic powder
  • 1
    celery salt
  • 1
    onion salt


  1. Preheat oven to 250 degrees F.
  2. Place the cereals, crackers, bagel chips, pretzels and peanuts in a large roasting pan (you will probably need to use two) and stir to evenly combine.
  3. In a small saucepan over low heat, melt together the butter, bacon grease and Worcestershire sauce. In a small bowl, stir together the seasoned salt, garlic powder, celery and onion salts.
  4. Drizzle the melted butter mixture evenly over the dry ingredients, then evenly sprinkle the seasoning mixture. Using your (clean) hands or a large wooden spoon, gently stir to ensure that all of the ingredients are evenly coated.
  5. Bake for 1 hour, stirring every 15 minutes. Allow to cool completely, then store in an airtight container or bag at room temperature for up to 2 weeks.

Recipe Notes:

Note: You can yield 1 cup of bacon grease from about 2 pounds of bacon. Just store the drippings in a glass jar or airtight container in the refrigerator until ready to use.
Nutritional values are based on one serving


Calories: 366kcal
Fat: 18g
Saturated fat: 5g
Cholesterol: 10mg
Sodium: 860mg
Potassium: 267mg
Carbohydrates: 43g
Fiber: 4g
Sugar: 3g
Protein: 9g
Vitamin A: 695%
Vitamin C: 5%
Calcium: 108%
Iron: 9.1%

Did you make this recipe?

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