Lemon Puppy Chow: If you love the classic muddy buddies recipe and lemon, then you’re going to love this easy recipe too! Using white chocolate instead of milk chocolate, add lemon juice and zest, and a few other ingredients and this easy snack recipe is ready in just 20 minutes!
Originally published in June 2019, updated in May 2023.
We absolutely love the classic puppy chow recipe but we also have so much fun coming up with different versions like this one. This hot chocolate muddy buddies recipe is perfect in the winter, while the lemon muddy buddies are perfect in the summer.
Using cereal to make no-bake desserts is very common, and we love using different kinds for different recipes. These Fruity Pebbles Rice Krispie Treats are a fruity version of the classic rice krispy treat, and these Lucky Charms Treats are such a fun twist too.
❤️ Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- Refreshing: With the lemon flavor, it’s so refreshing for the warmer months. It’s still a sweet treat but not too heavy and has the perfect amount of lemon flavor.
- Easy recipe: Zesting your lemon may be the most work that you have to put in to this recipe, and even that is easy!
- Ready in only 20 minutes: In just a few minutes, you can have a snack, ready to conquer that sweet tooth!
🧾 Ingredients Needed
Nothing fancy is needed for this recipe! These simple ingredients can be found at most grocery stores.
- Butter – We use unsalted for this recipe but honestly, you can use salted if that’s what you have on hand.
- Cereal – We usually use rice square cereal (such as Rice Chex) but we’ve also used Corn Chex and those taste amazing as well.
- White Chocolate Chips – There are many different brands of white chocolate chips but we prefer using Guittard or Ghirardelli because they’re a great quality of chocolate when melted and for taste.
Note: You may not need all 4 lemons. (It can depend on the size of your lemons and if you’ll be using the lemon’s juices from the same lemons you’ll be zesting.) You can zest first, and then slice the lemons to get the 2 Tablespoons of juice.
- Lemons – if you don’t have enough lemons to get the lemon juice from, you can use store-bought lemon juice. But remember, you’ll still want the lemon zest and even though it doesn’t sound like it’s enough to matter, it’s important.
👩🏻🍳 How to Make Lemon Puppy Chow
Grab a couple of bowls, one medium-sized, and one large bowl. You’ll be melting the chocolate, butter, and lemon together in the medium bowl and pouring it over the cereal that will be in the biggest bowl. So make sure to use a large bowl that will hold and allow room to stir 9 cups of cereal.
*Be sure to see the recipe card below for the full ingredients list & instructions!*
✅ Recipe Prep – Important!
First, you’ll want to zest at least 4 Tablespoons of lemon zest and make at least 2 Tablespoons of lemon juice from your lemons.
Next, pour cereal in to large bowl, so when the chocolate has melted, you can quickly pour over the cereal before it hardens.
STEP 1. Lemon coating. Pour white chocolate chips, lemon juice, zest, and butter in a medium-sized, microwavable bowl.
STEP 2. Melt chocolate. In 30-second intervals, melt the chocolate in the microwave, stirring well after each time, until melted. (This was a total of 3 times for us.)
STEP 3. Pour over cereal. Next, pour melted chocolate over cereal and gently stir until combined.
STEP 4. Add half the powdered sugar. Next, pour half of the sugar on top of the melted chocolate-covered cereal and stir again, gently.
Tip: When stirring, stir slowly and be careful not to mash the cereal so it breaks. You want to try and keep the pieces whole for easy snacking.
You can also add the chocolate-covered cereal to a brown paper bag or ziptop bag, and then shake to coat with powdered sugar if you prefer.
STEP 5. Add remaining sugar. Then, pour the remaining powdered sugar on top of the cereal and stir until coated again. Serve!
💭 Recipe Pro Tips
- Spread and Cool. You can pour the lemon puppy chow on a baking sheet after coating for it to fully cool before serving, if desired.
- Extra Powdered Sugar. Feel free to sprinkle extra powdered sugar on top just before serving if the chocolate has consumed a lot of the sugar and you prefer a dusting.
- Crunchy/Chewy Texture. The combination of the lemon juice and the white chocolate can create a chewy texture to this snack recipe, yet there’s still crunch in some areas too! It’s the perfect texture combo! If yours has this texture, you’ve made the recipe correctly!
🍽 Serving Suggestions
- Laid-back snacking: This recipe is great for snacking on the weekends or for a movie night.
- Party snack: Serving this at a party is a crowd-pleaser and everyone loves the lemon twist to a classic favorite.
- Serve on top: Take things to a whole other level and add on top of a bowl of ice cream for a crunch snack with a creamy soft serve.
- Store any leftovers in an airtight container or it can get stale.
- You can also freeze any leftovers if needed. Place in a freezer-safe container and freeze for up to 3 months.
🍋 More Lemon Recipes You’ll Love
If you have lemons and are looking for other recipes to use them in, these are our most popular lemon recipes that you’ll love:
Lemon Puppy Chow
- 9 cups rice square cereal or corn square cereal (such as Chex)
- 12 ounces white chocolate chips
- ¼ cup or 4 Tablespoons unsalted butter
- 4 Tablespoons lemon zest
- 2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 cup powdered sugar plus extra for garnish
- Prep cereal: Pour cereal into a large mixing bowl.
- Make lemon chocolate: In a separate microwaveable bowl, add white chocolate chips, butter, lemon zest, and juice. Microwave in 30-second intervals, until the chips are melted and you are able to mix completely.
- Cover cereal: Pour the melted mixture, over the top of the cereal, and gently stir to coat.
- Mix: Once evenly mixed, pour cereal mixture in to a large, resealable bag. (You can also stir in bowl if you don't have a bag but only be gentle so you don't break the pieces.)
- Sugar: Pour about 1/2 cup powdered sugar on top of cereal, seal bag & shake.
- More sugar: Once coated, open bag, and pour remaining powdered sugar over cereal.
- Coat: Seal bag & shake again, or if stirring in bowl, stir until evenly covered. You can sprinkle on more powdered sugar if desired, as a garnish. Enjoy!
Nutritional information is based on third-party calculations and should be considered estimates. Actual nutritional content will vary with brands used, measuring methods, portion sizes and more.
I followed this EXACTLY except didn’t note the “wait until it’s cooled before you store it in an air tight container” = two batches of soggy puppy chow. Do not miss this muy importante step!
Oh no! Sometimes my batches turn out “chewy.” I believe it’s the combo of lemon and the white chocolate. It’s hit or miss at times. But I still love it when it’s chewy! 🙂
So delicious! It tastes like lemon meringue pie. It’s a great summer snack!
Yay!!! I love that you said that… it does! I also think it tastes like the Lemon Coolers cookies that used to be sold in stores and that I miss so much. 🙂