Maple-Glazed Snack Mix

From the Taste of Home website (original online), this sweet snack mix is a nice alternative to the more traditional (and savory) Chex party mix we usually have around the holidays. The recipe makes 7½ cups.


  • 2 cups Corn Chex
  • 2 cups Rice Chex
  • 2 cups Honey-Nut Cheerios
  • 1 cup miniature pretzels
  • 1/2 cup pecan halves, coarsely chopped
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  1. In a large bowl, combine the cereals, pretzels and pecans.
  2. In a small microwave-safe dish, combine maple syrup and butter.
  3. Cover and microwave on high for 45 seconds or until butter is melted.
  4. Stir in vanilla.
  5. Pour over cereal mixture and toss to coat.
  6. Transfer to a 15-in. x 10-in. x 1-in. baking pan coated with cooking spray.
  7. Bake at 250° for 45 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes.
  8. Cool on a wire rack.
  9. Store in an airtight container.


  • Vary the ingredients to your taste, using different cereals or nuts. Apple Cinnamon Cheerios might make a nice substitute, for instance, and peanuts or walnuts could easily stand in for the pecans.

Scary Spiders

A recipe from the October 2009 issue of All You (original online). This no-cook party snack will “transform packaged snack cakes into creepy crawlers.”

IngredientsScary Spiders

  • Chocolate-covered cream-filled snack cakes (such as Ring Dings)
  • Mini chocolate cream-filled snack cakes (such as 100-calorie packs of Hostess chocolate cupcakes)
  • Black licorice laces
  • M&M’s
  • Chocolate and vanilla icing


  1. Use a toothpick to poke eight holes in cake, insert licorice laces into holes and trim ends to desired length.
  2. Attach M&M’s as eyes using dots of icing.
  3. Pipe dots of chocolate icing for pupils and create fangs by piping small bits of vanilla icing.

Puff Pastry Rollups

I saw Emeril make a version of this recipe about five years ago. Immediately I knew I could make a wide range of variations that would be great finger foods for holidays and parties.

Since it relies on store-bought puff pastry, this appetizer is simple to make—but it will taste as though you’ve been slaving away all day. You can also prepare this recipe in advance and freeze it. Just pop it out of the freezer and allow it to thaw overnight.


  • 1 sheet puff pastry (one box contains 2 sheets)
  • 6 to 9 slices thinly sliced ham
  • 1/2 cup Swiss cheese, grated


To Assemble:

  1. Sprinkle counter with flour.
  2. Unfold pastry sheet on counter.
  3. Press any cracks or seams with your fingers. Dab water on any tears to help hold pieces together.
  4. Lay sliced of ham on top of the pastry in a single layer. Edges can overlap slightly. Leave 1/2" on the long edge of the side far from you free of filling.
  5. Sprinkle ham with cheese, covering all the ham.
  6. Roll pastry and filling like a jelly-roll, rolling away from you.
  7. Dab the far edge of the pastry with water and press against roll to seal as you finish the roll..
  8. Wrap the rollup on wax paper.
  9. Chill rollup, seam sides down, until firm, at least 20 minutes
  10. To freeze: wrap rollup in two layers of foil and store in a zip-top bag.
    If making several variations, be sure to add a label that indicates the filling.

To Bake:

  1. If frozen, allow the pastry to thaw overnight in the refrigerator.
  2. Preheat oven to 400° F.
  3. Sprinkle counter or cutting board lightly with flour.
  4. Slice the rollup into 1/2" slices and transfer to a baking sheet, using a thin, metal pancake turner or spatula (to avoid losing any fillings). Arrange 1″ apart on sheet.
  5. If some of the cheese falls out, simply sprinkle it on top of the slice.
  6. Bake in batches in middle of oven until golden, about 14 to 16 minutes.
  7. Cool on wire rack for 3 to 4 minutes before serving.
  8. (Optional) Serve with honey mustard or Dijon mustard.


Nearly any combination you desire can work as the filling for these rollups. Here are a few variations we like.

  • Sliced roast beef with sharp cheddar.
  • Sliced corned beef with Swiss. Serve with thousand island dressing, if desired.
  • Sliced pepperoni with mozzarella (this can be greasy). Serve with marinara, if desired.
  • Sliced turkey with cheddar or Swiss. Sprinkle with bacon bits, if desired. Serve with Ranch dressing.
  • Spread a thin layer of cream cheese on the puff pastry and top with sun-dried tomatoes and caramelized onions. (This variation cannot be frozen.)

Time Required: 30 mins

Servings: 6–8