Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Crisp and Spicy Snack Mix

The moment I saw this recipe, I couldn't wait to try it, but I knew that a few of the ingredients would pose vegan problems. Similar to a homemade Chex mix, the original was based on Crispix cereal, pretzel twists, Wheat Thins, and Cheez-It crackers.

Regular Crispix very well may be vegan, but I preferred to use the organic Heritage Bites from Nature's Path. Shaped like Crispix and with similar rice/corn ingredients, I could be sure that this variety was vegan: www.naturespath.com

For the pretzels, many standard companies are vegan by default. However, in favor of supporting organic ventures, I bought the tiny twist pretzels from Newman's Own Organics: www.newmansownorganics.com

Original Wheat Thins, as well, look to be vegan from the ingredient list. But I am not a fan of Nabisco - try either the wheat crackers from Whole Foods' 365 organic brand, or the Crispy Wheats from Back to Nature: www.backtonaturefoods.com

Cheez-its, you can imagine, were a bit tougher, since although organic varieties of cheese crackers abound, they still boast that they contain, "100% organic cheddar cheese!" Instead, I bought the rosemary crackers from Whole Foods' 365 organic brand, figuring that the sharp herb-y taste of the rosemary might mimic the sharp bite of cheddar - my experiment seems to have worked just fine!

Ok, now that we have those preliminaries out of the way...

In a large bowl, combine 2 cups corn and rice cereal, 1 cup tiny pretzel twists, 1/2 cup wheat crackers, and 1/2 cup 'cheddar' crackers.

In a small bowl, whisk together one and half tablespoons melted vegan butter (such as Earth Balance), 1 tablespoon ginger stir-fry sauce, 1 teaspoon chili powder, 1 teaspoon cumin and 1/4 tsp. salt. (For the stir-fry sauce, try the certified vegan Ginger Tamari sauce from Premier Japan: www.edwardandsons.com)

Drizzle over the cereal mixture, tossing to coat. Spread in a single layer on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray, and bake at 250 degrees for 30 minutes, stirring every ten minutes.

1/2 a cup is 120 calories. Because of the warmth from the spices, this mix makes the perfect snack to bring along on just about any winter activity - ice skating, skiing, snowshoeing, or just a walk around a cold neighborhood. Enjoy!

corn and rice cereal $2.99
pretzels $2.99
wheat crackers $3.39
rosemary crackers $2.29
ginger stir-fry sauce $2.99

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The Vegan Pantry

  • Vegan yogurt - Whole Soy http://www.wholesoyco.com/
  • Vegan milk - Silk http://www.silksoymilk.com/
  • Vegan Feta - Sunergia http://www.sunergiasoyfoods.com/
  • Vegan Cheese - Galaxy Foods http://www.galaxyfoods.com/
  • Vegan Eggs - Ener-G http://www.ener-g.com/
  • Vegan Butter - Earth Balance http://www.earthbalance.net/product.html