No-Bake Honey Nut Cheerios Snack Bars


Growing up, Honey Nut Cheerios were a pantry and breakfast table staple.

I recently bought an economy-sized box that was on sale and needed to make something with them or else we were going to be eating them until Christmas.

No-Bake Honey Nut Cheerios Snack Bars - Fast, easy breakfast/snack bars at averiecooks.com

These fast, easy, bars cost just a fraction of storebought bars to make, they’re healthier, and they’ve got fun, bright colors.

In the past I’ve used Golden Grahams, Special K, Chex, Rice Krispies and  many others in recipes, but never the classic O’s until these.

MY OTHER RECIPES

No-Bake Honey Nut Cheerios Snack Bars - Fast, easy breakfast/snack bars at averiecooks.com

I have many other microwave and no-bake granola bar recipes. See the Related Recipes below. These Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Granola Bars (no-bake, vegan, GF) are my favorites for something that has the texture of a Quaker Chewy Granola Bar and are a cinch to make, while still staying in the healthy realm.

I wanted these to be a snack bar or breakfast bar, on the healthier side, while branching out from recipes I’ve already made or tried.

No-Bake Honey Nut Cheerios Snack Bars - Fast, easy breakfast/snack bars at averiecooks.com

Normally I use corn syrup in my microwave bars because it’s cheap, and it makes an excellent glue to bind ingredients. Very little can escape it’s tacky grip.

However, for these I used honey to play up the honey flavor from the cereal. I will be honest, honey does not make as good of a glue as corn syrup. If I were to remake them, I’d use corn syrup.

At room temperature, the bars do get soft and loose, and you’ll need to store them in the fridge.

No-Bake Honey Nut Cheerios Snack Bars - Fast, easy breakfast/snack bars at averiecooks.com

I stirred in raisins for extra texture, flavor, fiber, chewiness, and oomph. I know some people don’t like raisins, so feel free to omit them or use dried cranberries, apricots, or another dried fruit.

The recipe is very flexible and you could also stir in honey-roasted peanuts, sliced almonds, or a handful of your favorite trail mix.

No-Bake Honey Nut Cheerios Snack Bars - Fast, easy breakfast/snack bars at averiecooks.com

I topped them with chocolate-covered sunflower seeds. If you have a Trader Joe’s in your area, don’t buy them unless you have really good self-control. They’re crunchy, chocolaty, and one step away from eating chocolate candy-coated sprinkles. So good.

They give a fun, bright pop of color to otherwise boring brown bars, and since I knew I was putting these in my 6 year old’s lunch box, I wanted them to be cheery. If you can’t find them in your area, no biggie. Just use another small seed, nut, or omit.

No-Bake Honey Nut Cheerios Snack Bars - Fast, easy breakfast/snack bars at averiecooks.com

Between the honey, cereal, raisins, and chocolate-covered seeds, the are were on the sweet side. A sprinkling of Kosher salt cuts that and plays up the salty-and-sweet aspect.

I wish the Cheerios I ate as a kid were this fun to look at.

No-Bake Honey Nut Cheerios Snack Bars - Fast, easy breakfast/snack bars at averiecooks.com

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.

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.
Only Eats

Related Recipes

No-Bake Samoas Cookie Granola Bars (vegan, GF)

No-Bake Samoas Cookie Granola Bars (vegan, GF) - Healthy granola bars that taste like Samoas Cookies. Easy recipe at averiecooks.com

Snickerdoodle Cookie Granola Bars (no-bake, vegan, GF)

Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookie Granola Bars (no-bake, vegan, GF)

Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookie Granola Bars (no-bake, vegan, gluten-free) @averiecooks.com

Sunflower Seed Butter Granola Bars with Chocolate Drizzle (no-bake, vegan, GF)

No-Bake Peanut Butter Marshmallow Cereal Bars (GF)

No-Bake Peanut Butter Marshmallow Cereal Bars - Easy 5-Minute Recipe at averiecooks.com

Cinnamon Oatmeal Date Bars with Chocolate Chunks (no-bake, vegan, gluten-free) – (no-bake, vegan, GF) – Taste like cinnamon oatmeal

Vegan Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Coconut Oil Protein Bars (no-bake, vegan, GF) – Recipe from early 2010

Pumpkin Spice Peanut Butter and Chocolate Chip Granola (vegan, GF)

Browned Butter Rice Krispies Treats (GF) – The best RKTs I have ever had. Double the butter and it’s browned, for great flavor and soft, buttery, chewy bars

Browned Butter Rice Krispies Treats (GF)

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Granola Bars (no-bake, vegan, GF)

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Granola Bars (no-bake, vegan, GF)

Are you a Cheerios or cereal fun?