These no-bake, homemade cereal bars are perfect for toddlers and are an easy breakfast or snack to make together. They only require 5 ingredients!
Since when did cereal bars (or breakfast bars...what do you call them?) get so expensive and terrible tasting? They're chock full of refined sugar and processed ingredients, and it's just all so unnecessary.
These homemade cereal bars are a much healthier version without all the refined sugar. These aren't refined sugar free (because they have mini chocolate chips), but the chocolate chips are optional. These bars are largely naturally sweetened by honey. The peanut butter gets melted with the honey to make the most deliciously sweet glue to hold the cereal together.
My kids love these cereal bars -- and the best part is that they can practically make them themselves, minus the whole stove top thing.
And did you know there's so many cool things to learn about Cheerios, too?! They have a fascinating history. I digress.
Ingredients You'll Need
- oat-based "O's" cereal (like Cheerios)
- puffed rice cereal (like rice krispies)
- peanut butter (creamy)
- mini chocolate chips
How to Make These Homemade Cereal Bars
In a small sauce pan over medium-low heat, melt your peanut butter and honey together until well combined (#1). Pour peanut butter mixture into a larger bowl that has your oat-based and puffed rice cereals (#2). Mix until combined.
Then gently fold in mini chocolate chips (#3). Spread into a 9" square pan that's lined with parchment paper. Use a measuring cup to flatten the mixture out (#4). Don't forget the corners!
Stick the entire pan in the freezer for about 20 minutes then take them out to cut them into rectangles or squares.
Homemade Cereal Bars Without Sugar
Take out the mini chocolate chips! They're totally delicious, but these are already sweet thanks to the honey so they aren't a "necessary" ingredient.
Gluten Free Cereal Bars
Want to make these gluten free? Use all Cheerios instead of the puffed rice cereal if you want to make these gluten free or be sure to buy gluten free rice cereal.
Tips to Keep in Mind
Here are some random tips that are important when making these:
- Mini chocolate chips work best because they're smaller and stick better to the cereals.
- Stick them in the freezer before cutting them. That makes them much easier to cut in whatever shape you want. Speaking of that -- these would be adorable using whatever cut cookie cutters you have at home.
Can you freeze homemade cereal bars?
Absolutely. I prefer these cereal bars be kept in the freezer actually. They keep their shape and don't get as sticky as when they're stored at room temperature or in the refrigerator. You can also eat them out of the freezer after 3 minutes -- they don't need a lot of "defrost" time.
How long do these cereal bars last?
In the freezer, these bars will be good for 2-3 months, so it's a great idea to double or even triple the recipe to keep a large amount in the freezer ready to go.
Other No Bake Treats for Kids
- My favorite no bake chocolate oatmeal cookies. These bring me right back to my childhood.
- Chocolate Raspberry Tart (GF, dairy free, refined sugar free)
- Chocolate Pomegranate Tart (also GF, dairy free, refined sugar free)
5 Ingredient Homemade Cereal Bars
- 3 cups oat-based cereal (like Cheerios)
- 1 cup puffed rice cereal
- ½ cup creamy peanut butter
- ½ cup honey
- ¼ cup mini chocolate chips (optional)
- Line 9" square pan with parchment paper. Set aside.
- In a small sauce pan, melt peanut butter and honey. Add to large bowl with Cheerios and puffed rice cereals and stir until combined. Add chocolate chips (if desired) and gently stir one more time.
- Spread cereal mixture evenly into pan, pressing down slightly to make bars flat and even on top. Don't forget about the corner. Stick in the freezer for 20 minutes before cutting.