This Salty Sweet Honey Mustard Popcorn Snack Mix is quick and easy to make, and perfect for parties, homemade gifts, and school lunchboxes!
When my father-in-law passed away last January, I was incredibly moved by all the women who rushed to support my mother-in-law. Everyday, it seemed like someone showed up with tea, an offer for a walk, a box of cookies, a roast chicken, or her favorite Indian take-out.
I asked one of them how she had first met my mother-in-law 30 years ago, and she responded, “Oh, I was her dental hygienist.”
I was blown away. I mean, I have a hard enough time making friends with my peers, let alone my healthcare providers!
But it turned out that my mother-in-law and her dental hygienist had kids the same age, and so they became friends.
It was then that I realized something. These women were my mother-in-law’s mom squad. All these years later, they are still supporting each other.
Since then, I’ve made an effort to push myself outside my comfort zone and socialize with women I really like but don’t necessarily know very well. It can be awkward and uncomfortable (suggesting getting together feels like asking them out on a date!), but I have never regretted it, and after a while I’ve gotten more confident and it has become easier.
And if I ever do feel shy, there is a tiny voice in my head whispering, your mother-in-law made friends with her dental hygienist. You can ask this woman if she wants to meet up for a run.
This past weekend, I invited a bunch of other mothers from the neighborhood over for a clothing swap. I was a little nervous, but I tried not to stress too much, clean too much, or make too much food. Surprise, surprise, I have a tendency to do that 😉
In the spirit of keeping things casual and easy, I made this Salty Sweet Honey Mustard Popcorn Snack Mix.
I’m not even the hugest fan of snack mixes (I’m more of a cheese plate girl, thank you very much), but I find this version totally irresistible. The ingredients are so easy. It’s just:
Dry mustard powder
Onion and garlic powder
Toss the popcorn, pretzels, and Chex in a big bowl. Melt the rest of the ingredients in a saucepan, pour over, and toss to coat. Lastly, bake in a low oven for about 40 minutes until it’s ultra crispy and your kitchen smells divine.
Side note: a few of my girlfriends are dairy-free, so I actually made this with Earth Balance and it came out great!
This recipe was a huge hit at the clothing swap. Way more importantly, I feel like I strengthened these new, fledgling relationships, and I was reminded of that great CS Lewis quote:
“Friendship is born at the moment when one person says to another: What! You too? I thought I was the only one.”
Salty Sweet Honey Mustard Popcorn Snack Mix
This Salty Sweet Honey Mustard Snack Mix makes a great party appetizer or school lunchbox treat! To make it dairy-free, use Earth Balance in place of the butter. For vegan, use maple syrup in place of the honey, and for gluten-free, use your favorite gluten-free pretzels. You can pop your own popcorn for this recipe, or use the plainest store-bought popcorn you can find. I used Trader Joe's Reduced Guilt Popcorn.
- 8 cups plain or lightly salted popcorn I used Trader Joe's Reduced Guilt Popcorn
- 3 cups small pretzel twists
- 3 cups Chex cereal I used a mix of corn and rice Chex
- 6 Tablespoons unsalted butter or Earth Balance
- 2 Tablespoons honey
- 2 Tablespoons yellow mustard
- 1 Tablespoon dry mustard powder
- 1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 1/2 teaspoons each onion powder and garlic powder
- 3/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
Preheat the oven to 250. Line two baking sheets with parchment. Combine the popcorn, pretzels, and Chex in a large bowl.
Combine the butter, honey, mustard, mustard powder, Worcestershire sauce, onion and garlic powder, and salt in a small saucepan and heat over medium-low until melted and smooth. Pour over the popcorn mixture and toss to coat.
Divide the mixture between the prepared baking sheets and bake until dry and fragrant, 30 to 35 minutes. The mix will keep well in an airtight container for at least a week.