Cereal Bars


5 from 400 votes
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These homemade cereal bars need just 3 ingredients to make and taste better than anything store-bought! A healthy and kid-friendly snack.

cereal bars.

If you’ve made our homemade protein bars or peanut butter protein balls before, you’ll love this cereal bar recipe. It’s better than anything store-bought and so much healthier for you! 

Why this recipe works

  • Just 3 ingredients. Cereal, a sticky sweetener, and nut butter are all you’ll need. 
  • Diet friendly. Easily make this gluten-free, vegan, and/or lower sugar. 
  • Ready in 5 minutes. All you do is mix it up and transfer it into a pan and wait for it to set. 

What I love about this recipe is just how easy it is to customize. I can easily change up the flavor, use other nut butter, or even cut the sugar completely! 

Ingredients needed

As mentioned earlier, this recipe calls for three simple pantry staple ingredients. Here is what you’ll need: 

  • Cereal. Any crispy cereal works, including whole-O’s, special K cereal, or even rice crispies. 
  • Maple syrup. Binds everything together and adds some sweetness. 
  • Almond butter. Smooth almond butter with no added sugar or salt. 

How to make cereal bars

Start by adding the cereal into a large mixing bowl. Next, add the maple syrup and almond butter into a microwave-safe bowl and microwave it for 20-seconds, or until the peanut butter has melted.

Now, add the syrup/almond butter mixture to the mixing bowl with cereal and mix until combined. Transfer the cereal bar mixture to a lined pan and refrigerate it for 30 minutes, or until it has firmed up. Once firm, slice them into bars. 

homemade cereal bars.


The beauty of this cereal bar recipe is just how easy it is to customize with other ingredients or even add some fun ones into them. Here is what we’ve tried: 

  • Make it almond-free. If you can’t tolerate almonds or are allergic, switch it out for peanut butter, sunflower seed butter, or tahini. 
  • Lower the sugar. Swap out the maple syrup for sugar free maple syrup or sugar free honey
  • Keep it gluten-free. Use a celiac-friendly cereal like Gluten Free Cheerios. 
  • Add mix-ins. Chocolate chips, raisins, and toasted coconut flakes are all great additions. 

Storage instructions

To store: Avoid keeping these bars stored at room temperature as they are prone to becoming soggy. Instead, place them in an airtight container and store them in the refrigerator. They will keep well for up to two weeks. 

To freeze: Place the bars in a ziplock bag and store them in the freezer for up to 6 months. 

cereal bars recipe.

More healthy snack recipes to try

Frequently asked questions

Are cereal bars healthy for you?

Homemade cereal bars are much healthier than store-bought or packaged bars. They contain considerably less sugar, less fat, and fewer ingredients. They are also more cost-effective, too.

Is a cereal bar healthy enough for breakfast? 

On its own, a cereal bar isn’t a very satisfying breakfast and would leave you hungry a few hours later. These work well as a satisfying snack between meals.

cereal bar recipe.

Cereal Bars With 3 Ingredients | No Bake Recipe

5 from 400 votes
These homemade cereal bars need just 3 ingredients to make and taste better than anything store-bought! A healthy and kid-friendly snack.
Servings: 6 Bars
Prep: 1 minute
Cook: 5 minutes
Total: 6 minutes


  • 2 cups cereal gluten free, if needed
  • 6 tablespoons almond butter can substitute for peanut butter or sunflower seed butter
  • 6 tablespoon maple syrup can substitute for honey or agave nectar


  • Line a baking tray with baking paper and set aside.
  • In a large mixing bowl, add your dry cereal and set aside.
  • In a microwave safe bowl or stovetop, melt almond butter with your maple syrup and then pour the mixture into the crispy rice cereal and mix well.
  • Pour mixture into the lined baking tray and press firmly into place. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to firm up.


TO STORE: Avoid keeping these bars stored at room temperature as they are prone to becoming soggy. Instead, place them in an airtight container and store them in the refrigerator. They will keep well for up to two weeks. 
TO FREEZE: Place the bars in a ziplock bag and store them in the freezer for up to 6 months. 


Serving: 1BarCalories: 195kcalCarbohydrates: 21gProtein: 5gFat: 9gPotassium: 3mgFiber: 4gVitamin A: 3IUVitamin C: 3mgCalcium: 2mgIron: 3mgNET CARBS: 17g
Course: Snack
Cuisine: American
Author: Arman
Tried this recipe?Give us a shout at @thebigmansworld or tag #thebigmansworld!

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. I may earn a small commission for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial, and/or link to any products or services from this website.

Arman Liew

I’m a two time cookbook author, photographer, and writer, and passionate about creating easy and healthier recipes. I believe you don’t need to be experienced in the kitchen to make good food using simple ingredients that most importantly, taste delicious.

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  1. I love how simple this recipe is! I hate food waste. I used to save veggie scraps to make homemade veggie broth, but it ended up just being too much work. This looks like such an easy way to deal with leftovers.

  2. I don’t eat cereal as often as I want to..it was a nightly routine for me growing up, but then I decided to save my sugar calories for ice cream. Woof.

    1. Hi Meryem- You sure can, you may need to increase just a little bit, honey tends to need a little bit more for no bake recipes 🙂

  3. hello this is my new go to recipe for morning tea – bring a plate – WHATEVER !! added coconut flakes one time and another used gluten free weetbix – just awesome – thanks so much

  4. Keeper! Delicious. Just made these using gf cheerios, peanut butter and organic brown rice syrup. Thank you so much for sharing the recipe.

    1. Hi Diane! I’ve never tried it with PB2, sorry- I don’t see it working well, as the texture of PB2 is a little different.

  5. So I definitely add protein powder to these so that they hold my husband over a bit better and they are delicious! Thanks for this!

  6. Hey, Arman ~ I tried this one today and changed it up a bit. We had Peanut Butter Puffins that were sitting around, and since I hat to waste food, I thought I’d just make them into cereal bars. I added some chocolate to the bottom of the pan first. I chopped up the Puffins into smaller pieces, along with natural peanut butter and organic agave as my sweetener. I also added some mini chocolate chips from Enjoy Life. they look de-lish…I’ll let you know how my kids like them. I might also try this recipe with chopped nuts, rather than the cereal.

    1. Thanks so much for the feedback, Dorina! I’ve made this before using all chopped nuts and it was really delicious, and only a small piece needed to satisfy- I let it cool and crystallise, and broke it like a toffee 🙂

      1. Ok, great, Arman. I have been trying to duplicate the Luna Bar flavor Nutz Over Chocolate. I have been delving into my own personal gut health, an, as such, I’ve been very, very label conscious. I am not a fan of soy and am disenchanted to see so many brands including soy in their recipes. My goal here would be to make this recipe without soy, so that my daughter can have a healthier snack. Thank you so much for inspiring me, in more ways than one. I might just launch my own little blog about good gut health. I have a site called Shine the Light Project, http://www.shinethelightproject.com…it‘s all about shining the light on human trafficking, labor exploitation, and helping people find simple ways to end slavery in their own lives. i am a big fan of the Fair Trade movement, for example, and am all about using non-GMO, high quality organic ingredients in my recipes. Feel free to stop on by my page…perhaps there’s a way for us to collaborate? You never know. Thanks, Arman

  7. So I just made these (at 10pm!).
    I made these as a special treat for my daughter’s lunch for preschool tomorrow.
    She does not get a lot of sweets in her lunchbox– mainly because naptime happens right after lunch time and this mama (and her teachers) needs her to take a nap!( ha ha). I personally can’t stand honey, but I know it’s a great way to sweeten without adding sugar (for the reason I mentioned before)
    I can’t wait to see what she thinks.

    **Note: I only had honey on hand as a sweetener and I had regular peanut butter, so that’s what I used, along with Honey Nut Cheerios. Oh, and even though I DON’T give her a lot of sugar, I DID add a FEW chocolate chips to make it even more special!!**

    Thanks for the great recipe and I can’t wait to try it with other cereals!

  8. I’m not sure how long ago this was posted but I read the ‘cheerios if not strictly gluten free’ for being an option. Is this a mis-type? cheerios are gluten free. The whole grain ones are not and I think there is 1 other of their USA line that aren’t but all the rest should be gluten free. I bookmarked this recipe and look forward to making it when I make my next order of cheerios from my favorite USA brand site. Thank you!

    1. Thanks for the feedback, Jami- This was posted around the time there was the media issues with Cheerios being under fire for not being handles correctly, thanks for the update!