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Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Nori Furikake Chex Mix: Hapa Food

Furikake is a dry Japanese condiment usually sprinkled over rice. It contains things like: dried fish flakes, sesame seeds, tiny bits of seaweed, egg, teeny shrimp, wasabi, and usually flavored with salt or soy. My favorite to sprinkle over rice is the one with lots of savory bonito tuna flakes, called katsuobushi.

A typical furikake bottle
Now I am sure everyone reading this blog knows what chex mix is. It is something very American, at home at casual parties and tailgates. Game day snack food, it has also seen many a college dorm study session.  My boyfriend always picks out the rye chips out of chex mix. And all the red sour patch kids out of my sour patch kids. With impunity.

Setting aside my boyfriend's annoying quirks, this is a traditional hapa food, taking American chex mix and putting a twist on it. Before commercial chex mixes were in stores, chex cereal was spiced up at home.  This is the Japanese American version.

The flavor is sweet/salty, like Japanese arare/kakimochi (rice crackers).  If you make it and it seems too intense, just add an extra couple cups of dry material.

There are tons of different recipes out there for this, but I adapted FOODjimoto's because I liked the idea of the Tapatio and the Worcestershire sauce adding some complexity. I upped the Tapatio, for extra kick, but it was still mild. Instead of almonds, feel free to substitute peanuts, cashews, or anything that strikes your fancy going down the grocery aisle. I don't care for wheat chex, but that's up to you. Besides bugles, try some corn chips! Be creative!

Nori Furikake Chex Mix

4 cups each of rice and corn chex
1 bag of bugles (approx 7 ounces)
1 bag of pretzels (approx 7 ounces)
My little gift bags!
1 bag of almonds (approx 1 lbs)
3/4 cup butter
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup karo syrup
3/4 cup canola oil
2 tbs shoyu
2 tbs Worcestershire sauce
2 tbs Tapatio
1 bottle of nori komi furikake*

*Nori komi furikake sometimes is labeled in  English under the name "nori goma furikake" or "nori gomi furikake."

Preheat the oven to 250 degrees Fahrenheit.  In a small saucepan, combine the butter, sugar, syrup, and oil and heat over medium, stirring until the sugar dissolves and the butter melts.  Take off heat and stir in the shoyu and two sauces.  Pour over the dry material in a big aluminum foil roaster. I like these because you can just throw them out afterwards, but you can also line a couple 9"x13" pans in foil.  Stir the mix well to distribute the sauce. Place in oven and every 15 minutes stir to continue to coat the pieces well.  After the first stirring, sprinkle the entire bottle of furikake over the chex mix, stirring well.  Continue to bake and stir every 15 minutes, until the sauce has completely evaporated, normally about 45 minutes to an hour. Let cool completely, then serve.

This makes a lot, and my boyfriend and I can only eat so much, so I packaged some of it up to give to my aunts and grandma.

See Also:
Butter Mochi: Hapa Food
Confetti Coconut Cake
Tsukemono and Furikake Donburi


  1. I just wanted to let you know that this is really yummy and I love the Asian take on the Chex Mix.

  2. What is tapatio & about how long do you bake it for?

  3. What is tapatio & about how long do you bake it with tossing every 15 minutes?

    1. Tapatio is a popular hot sauce (you can substitute a different one of course). It depends on the humidity, but generally about an hour. I'll add that to the recipe, thanks!

  4. I can't find the nori gomi. Can I use a different one? I found nori goma

    1. Nori Gomi, Nori Komi and Nori Goma are all the same thing. I've updated the recipe to include that information.

  5. 3/4 cup or Tbs or whay measure of canola oil?

    1. Cup! Thank you for pointing that out, I have updated the recipe. I can't believe no one else pointed that out in over FIVE years!