December 16, 2014

Butterscotch Haystacks

Crunchy, salty chow mein noodles and peanuts covered in butterscotch. These eat a lot like chocolate covered pretzels with a perfect combo of salty and sweet!

No one in my house can remember what these things are called! And it’s hilarious! Brutus and Husband are having a particularly hard time with it and I have laughed at their expense all week long! Especially since I torture Brutus by telling him he can’t have one until he gets the name right.

They have called them fence posts, hay bales, scarecrows, barn doors, farm boys, straw stumps and more that I can’t even remember.

All they know is they like them. A lot. I was worried we wouldn’t eat them all and when I checked last night, they were all gone! Poof.

I grew up with these things so I was shocked when Husband didn’t know what they were. If you’re like Husband and haven’t heard of them, they eat a lot like a chocolate covered pretzel. They’re sweet and salty, creamy and crunchy all at the same time.

Traditional haystacks just have chow mein noodles in them but I thought it would be fun to add dry roasted peanuts. And packing in a little extra protein is never a bad idea. They lose their haystack shape a little this way but I don’t think anyone minds. Feel free to make them without the nuts – just double the chow mein noodles and the recipe works perfectly.

This recipe was shared at the Weekend Potluck!

Butterscotch Haystacks! Crunchy, salty chow mein noodles and peanuts covered in butterscotch. These eat a lot like chocolate covered pretzels with a perfect combo of salty and sweet!

haystacks, butterscotch, candy, christmas, peanut butter, no bake, recipe, best, easy
Yield: 45 Haystacks


prep time: 20 minscook time: total time: 20 mins


  • 2 11-oz. bags butterscotch morsels
  • 3/4 cup peanut butter
  • 2 teaspoons vegetable oil
  • 1 5-oz. can chow mein noodles
  • 1 1/4 cups salted dry-roasted peanuts*
  • Wax paper or parchment paper


Gently melt butterscotch morsels, peanut butter and vegetable oil over medium-low heat in a saucepan (or in a double-boiler), stirring constantly, until morsels have melted and mixture is smooth.

Add noodles and peanuts to a large bowl. Pour butterscotch mixture over noodles and peanuts and gently stir until everything is evenly coated.

Use two tablespoons to drop little “haystacks” of the mixture onto wax paper or parchment paper. Leave haystacks to firm up for approximately 4 hours. Once set, store at room temperature in an airtight container.

*you can omit the peanuts and double the chow mein noodles for traditional haystacks
Created using The Recipes Generator

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  1. Love the idea of adding peanuts. Now I know what to do with the leftover chow mein noodles I have from a chicken salad!

  2. We called these bird's nests or haystacks depending on the occasion they were made for. For Easter they were birds' nests and in the fall they were haystacks. I've heard them called chow mein cookies too.

  3. I just ordered your cookbook from Amazon as a Christmas gift to me from me. Each time I need a recipe I come browse your website. Now if I lose my internet connection, I will still be able to figure out what to eat.:)

  4. At Easter time we would make these into little bird's nest shapes in a muffin pan and add 3 jelly beans or malted milk eggs to the cute. I can't wait to try your addition of peanuts.

  5. I made these in home ec class back in the 70's but we used potatoe sticks

  6. I've been making these since The Seventies. My Aunt always made them for family parties. They are called "Trifles" in the Betty Crocker Cookbook from back then. I've only ever used Butterscotch Morsels, Chow Mein Noodles, and Salted Cashews in mine. Our whole family loves them! I think I'll try the peanut butter in them! I'm from Pennsylvania.

    1. same here.....since '73....from my Auntie....she added about a half tablespoon Crisco to a bag of butterscotch chips, melted over low heat. Then 2 cans of Lachoy noodles and a can of cashews about 11/2 cups were added and then dropped onto waxed paper, chill till set.
      I too, will be trying it with PB.

    2. My grandma made them with the peanut butter and butterscotch chips but instead of oil she used butter and instead of the peanuts she used cashews

  7. I'm sure they don't really taste like "sweat" do they? ;) Thanks for your lovely commentary and recipes.

  8. I make something similar...but use a combo of semi-sweet and butterscotch chips. I swear that when we have them in the house, I hear them calling my name!

  9. My mom made something similar when I was growing up, but it was a package of butterscotch chips and a jar of peanut butter melted together and then 6 cups of corn flakes mixed in thoroughly; then dropped by the spoonful onto baking sheets and refrigerated. We called them "Mars Munchies" and to this day they are traditional Christmas time treats in our family. I am intrigued by the texture option of the chow mein noodles. I'd probably just use crunchy peanut butter and skip adding whole peanuts. Thanks for the idea!

    1. That is a wonderful idea. I'm not a huge peanut fan and I bet that will do the trick. Texture wise it is so similar to pretzels. I have only had chow mein noodles and bs chips so I will use just the chunky on. Great idea, thank you both for doing all thinking for me.

  10. This is my son's favorite candy...After they are set up I drizzle melted chocolate over them.... I call them Muddy

  11. We did these in Home Ec in high school, but we used potatoe sticks that came in a can.

  12. Do they taste like butterscotch or peanut butter

  13. We always add chow main noodles, peanuts and regular cheerios then drop onto the wax paper. They are delicious. Using crunchy PB doesn't provide the same flavor as regular peanuts. Enjoy! Got to love it!


Hi there! While I'm not able to respond to every comment, I try hard to answer any questions that haven't been addressed in the post, recipe or in other comments. And though I may not respond to them all, I do read each and every comment and I LOVE to hear from you guys! Thanks, y'all! - Mandy