No-bake Cheerio Bars

I always have a box of Cheerio’s on hand in the pantry for when my grandkids come over (they love them), but the other day I thought I might try baking with them. And then I  found this fun no-bake granola bar recipe  that I thought sounded great. I conveniently had all the other ingredients on hand so when my grandkids came over later that day we made a batch and they were great. They took them all home to take with them in their lunches for the next few days. Will definitely keep this recipe on hand , hope you give them a try or experiment with this recipe and add what you like to it!

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No-Bake Honey Nut Cheerios Snack Bars

These fast, easy, bars cost just a fraction of storebought bars to make, they’re healthier, and they’ve got fun, bright colors. They’re a texture lover’s dream between the cereal, dried fruit, and chocolate covered sunflower seeds. Use what you have on hand and enjoy. Almsot any dried fruit, nut, or seed can be substituted. The bars are perfect for quickie breakfast or snacks on the go.

Yield: one 8-by-8-inch pan, 12 snack bars

Prep Time:10 minutes

Cook Time:3 minutes, microwave

Total Time:2+ hours, for chilling

Ingredients:

1/4 cup creamy unsalted butter (half of one stick)
1/4 cup honey (light-colored corn syrup may be substituted and will keep the bars firmer at room temp than using honey)
1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
3 cups Honey Nut Cheerios (or similar storebrand cereal; plain Cheerios may be substituted for a less sweet bar)
1 cup raisins, optional (1 cup  honey-roasted peanuts, 1 cup chopped almonds, or 1 cup trail mix may be substituted)
about 1/2 cup chocolate-covered sunflower seeds, optional (I used Trader Joe’s)
pinch sea salt or Kosher salt for sprinkling, optional

Directions:

  1. Line an 8-inch square pan with aluminum foil leaving overhang, spray with cooking spray; set aside.
  2. In a large microwave-safe bowl, combine butter, honey, brown sugar, and heat on high power for 1 minute to melt.
  3. Stop to stir. Mixture will be on the granular side, this is okay.
  4. Return bowl to microwave and heat for 1 more minute on high power. Stop to stir
  5. Return bowl to microwave and heat for 1 more minute on high power. Stop to stir. On this third and final burst, mixture will become quite bubbly and foamy; use caution when removing from micro because this is boiling hot caramel and can cause burns.
  6. Stir in the vanilla using caution because mixture could bubble up.
  7. Stir in the cereal.
  8. Stir in the optional raisins (or nuts).
  9. Turn mixture out into prepared pan, packing it down firmly with a spatula and smoothing the top.
  10. Optionally, sprinkle evenly with sunflower seeds and salt (the salt cuts some of the sweetness and I recommend it).
  11. Cover pan with a sheet of foil (to prevent fridge smells), and place pan in fridge to set up for at least 2 to 3 hours, or overnight, or until bars are completely set before lifting out with foil overhang, slicing, and serving.
  12. Bars will keep airtight in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks, or in the freezer for up to 6 months. I recommend storing them in the fridge rather than room temp because they soften and get loose.

Recipe from : http://www.averiecooks.com/