The inspiration for this monster munch mix comes from my favorite movie theatre treat. I like to mix together buttered movie theatre popcorn with Reese’s Pieces while taking in a flick. It is the absolute best combination of sweet and salty!
So to make this Halloween snack mix, I took that flavor profile to the next level—mixing together popcorn, Reese’s Pieces, salted peanuts, pretzels, and everyone’s favorite fall candy—candy corn. And then I slathered it all in a peanut butter caramel coating and topped it with an orange candy drizzle and sprinkles. Let’s do this!
What do I need to make this monster munch?
For the mix, we recommend popcorn, mini pretzels, roasted peanuts, candy corn, and Reese’s Pieces. If you’d like, you swap in other small candies instead: candy eyes would be fun and spooky, and M&Ms would be delicious!
For the coating, you’ll need:
- Unsalted butter
- Creamy peanut butter
- Heavy cream
- Candy melts (optional)
- Sprinkles (optional)
We used orange candy melts, but green and black would be festive, too!
How do I make this snack mix?
To make peanut butter monster munch:
- Mix the popcorn, pretzels, peanuts, and candies and then spread them onto two large and rimmed baking sheets.
- Melt the butter over medium-high heat, and stir in the honey and sugar. Stop stirring, and cook until the mixture smells caramelized and looks darker in color (more on knowing when this is done in a sec!).
- Remove from the heat and stir in the salt, peanut butter, and heavy cream.
- Drizzle the peanut butter sauce over the dry ingredients, and toss to coat.
- (Optional) If you want to be extra festive, drizzle with melted candy melts and sprinkles.
- Let the monster munch cool so that the peanut butter caramel sets, and then transfer to serving bowls. You may need to break up some of the larger pieces.
How do I know when the caramel is done cooking?
When it comes to the texture of the final mix, you have a bit of flexibility with this recipe. If you want it to be crunchy and crispy like standard caramel corn, you can cook the peanut butter caramel coating a bit longer to the hard crack stage (about 300°F, but I don’t have a candy thermometer, so I just use the ole water glass trick). If you want it a bit fudgier, just cook it until the soft crack stage (about 280°F). I like it this way because a lot of the elements are still crunchy—the peanuts, pretzels, Reese’s pieces—but the whole mix is a bit creamier. It’s a bit like a candy bark that way. Both ways work (although I would say the hard crack would be best for putting in cute little baggies and distributing as gifts). Whatever bakes your cookie. Or caramels your corn.
Enjoy! Happy Halloween!