One of my absolute favorite pastimes is finding things on Pinterest to recreate, especially food! And if it’s something for the kids, that’s even better! So I’ve decided to share my experience with you guys because 1) I’m not a professional and 2) I’m not a food blogger. Don’t you appreciate it when people show you what these beautiful creations will truly look like when you’re finished? I do, and I always wonder if they’ll taste any good. I want you to see what these meals look like from a regular, busy, can barely keep my head above water mom. First up are these No Bake Honey Nut Cheerios Bars.
Don’t these look ridiculously fun and yummy?! Obviously I had to try them! The ingredients and directions seemed simple enough, so let’s go!
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
- Line an 8-inch square pan with aluminum foil leaving overhang, spray with cooking spray; set aside.
- In a large microwave-safe bowl, combine butter, honey, brown sugar, and heat on high power for 1 minute to melt.
- Stop to stir. Mixture will be on the granular side, this is okay.
- Return bowl to microwave and heat for 1 more minute on high power. Stop to stir
- 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.
- Stir in the vanilla using caution because mixture could bubble up.
- Stir in the cereal.
- Stir in the optional raisins (or nuts).
- Turn mixture out into prepared pan, packing it down firmly with a spatula and smoothing the top.
- Optionally, sprinkle evenly with sunflower seeds and salt (the salt cuts some of the sweetness and I recommend it).
- 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.
- 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.
So, the originator of the recipe preferred corn syrup and that’s what I used. I didn’t just happen to have those beautiful, colorful chocolate covered seeds on hand so I knew my bars weren’t going to look as pretty, and they don’t!
Thankfully presentation doesn’t persuade my kid at all. She’s all about texture. The verdict – she liked it ok. I think the mistake I made is using all corn syrup. Next time I would do half corn syrup and half honey. Also, I would add a pinch more salt to it to combat some of the sweetness.
Would I make these again? Absolutely. Now that I know what I need to do I think they make a great on the go snack. Please visit Averie Cooks for more tips on how to make these bars outstanding!