Puppy Chow Recipe: Peanut Allergy Variation

Dec 7, 2023

If you don’t know what a Take 5 bar is (and if you’re not allergic to peanuts), I recommend trying one for a scrumptious treat. My childhood friends can tell you how I had one every single day of elementary school during morning recess, then how I would open up a JIF-peanut butter-2-go snack pack in history class to dip my sliced apples in, and even now my favorite thing about frozen yogurt is the crumbles of Reese’s peanut butter cups on top. So you can only imagine how devastated I was to find out that the love of my life was allergic to peanut butter. My husband, Rob, is 100% worth the sacrifice I had to make, but I have had to learn a few substitutes to my favorite food ever since we got married. I am very thankful that he is not anaphylactically allergic to other nuts and that we live in an era where almond butter is usually available.

Peanuts on a granite countertop

A few things to know about allergic reactions

There is a scale to measure the severity of one’s allergy, ranging from a mild irritation that might not even be noticeable to a severe life-threatening whole-body response. This is called anaphylaxis, and symptoms include impaired breathing, throat swelling, fainting, and dizziness.

As you can sense from the symptoms listed above, the anaphylactic response is extremely dangerous. In these cases, make sure to avoid any physical contact with peanuts – even playing with a toy that another child had played with after eating peanut butter can cause a reaction. As an adult, Rob can generally sense if peanuts are present in which case he avoids eating or touching those foods. However, a child might not notice the allergen, so we recommend taking every precaution possible.

Data shows that about 3% of children deal with a peanut allergy (and it is the food allergy most often associated with severe reactions), so I know that I am not alone in finding and creating substitutions in this department. Thankfully, we live in an era that is much more aware of common allergies and we are glad to see preventive measures taken at schools and restaurants, and even the variety of substitutes in grocery stores. 

Family photo sitting on a couch

How we use almond butter to replace peanut butter

For our little family, almond butter has been a relatively easy replacement to peanut butter. We can make AB&J sandwiches for lunch, snack on celery sticks dipped in almond butter, and we’ve been successful making a non-peanut-butter curry sauce for chicken skewers. But I will never forget the first time that Rob got to experience a favorite treat for many kids out there: Puppy Chow. I won’t exaggerate and say that it changed his life, but I did feel like a very adequate wife for finally presenting him with a delicious treat that he had grown up watching most of his friends consume at birthday parties or sports tournaments. This recipe is an easy version for what you would find on the back of a Chex cereal box, but I also add a special ingredient to give this dessert a superfood boost.

Super Almond Butter Puppy Chow Recipe


  • 9 cups Rice Chex™ cereal
  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup almond butter
  • 1/4 cup butter 
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/4 cup WonderCow colostrum powder

Kids hands reaching into a bowl of puppy chow

Instructions for how to make Almond Butter Puppy Chow

  1. Pour cereal in a large bowl; set aside.
  2. In a medium microwavable bowl, microwave chocolate chips, almond butter and butter on High for 1 minute; stir. 
  3. Microwave about 30 seconds longer or until mixture can be stirred smooth. 
  4. Stir in vanilla. 
  5. Pour mixture over cereal, stirring until evenly coated. 
  6. Divide into two large Ziploc bags.
  7. Add ¾ cup powdered sugar and ⅛ cup colostrum powder to each bag. Seal bags and shake until well coated. 
  8. Spread on waxed paper to cool. 

We store our puppy chow in the freezer and usually enjoy it after the girls are in bed – we recommend pouring your serving into a cereal bowl so that you don’t eat the whole bag in one sitting! Just speaking from experience 🙂 Also, saving it in the freezer until your kids go to sleep will greatly elongate the lifespan of your puppy chow… 😉 


If you like this Almond Butter Puppy Chow, you might like this recipe too!

Empty bowl

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