Cereal Bars

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5 from 551 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.

Stop buying expensive pre-packaged cereal bars and make your own with this simple cereal bars recipe! It’s better than anything store-bought and so much healthier for you.

They make a healthy alternative to packaged snack bars. They take seconds to make and are seriously delicious!

Table of Contents
  1. Why this recipe works
  2. Ingredients needed
  3. How to make cereal bars
  4. Tips to make the best recipe 
  5. Recipe variations
  6. Storage instructions
  7. More healthy snack recipes to try
  8. Frequently asked questions
  9. Cereal Bars (Recipe Card)

Why this recipe works

These bars may look impressive, but honestly, they are so simple to whop up.

  • 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, transfer it into a pan, and wait for it to set. 
  • Easy to customize. Change up the cereal, add flavor extracts, and use other nuts or seed butter: the possibilities are endless!

Ingredients needed

These cheerio bars are so easy; besides the cereal and syrup, there isn’t much else needed to make. Here is what you’ll need:

  • Cereal. Any crispy cereal works, including Cheerios, 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

Homemade cereal bars are easy to make: just ensure you have a large enough bowl to mix everything in.

  1. Prep the ingredients: Add 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.
  2. Make the bars: Add the syrup/almond butter mixture to the mixing bowl with cereal and mix until combined.
  3. Set, slice, and serve: 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.

Tips to make the best recipe 

  • Use a crispy cereal. No one wants soggy or soft cereal bars, so make sure you start with fresh and crisp cereal. Check the expiration date and discard any crushed pieces.
  • Avoid overmixing. Similar to the earlier point about crispy cereal, another reason why the cereal could soften is due to overmixing. Prevent this by mixing everything together slowly and just until the cereal is mixed in.
  • Use a sharp knife. Always use a sharp knife when cutting these into bars to prevent them from crumbling or falling apart.
  • Line the pan. Even for non-stick pans, I always line them. It makes clean up a breeze and keeps everything in place.

Recipe variations

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.

What cereal bars are good for diabetics?

Dependant on the individual, a general rule of thumb for choosing a cereal bar for diabetics would be ones that include healthy fats, fiber, and no added sugar.

cereal bar recipe.

Cereal Bars

5 from 551 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

Ingredients  

  • 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

Instructions 

  • 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.

Notes

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. 

Nutrition

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

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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Comments

  1. I am going to try this recipe to use up some toasted O’s cereal I have, but after that I am not going to purchase this cereal anymore because I recently read that calcium carbonate (which is listed in cereal ingredients) is sometimes contaminated with lead–no one should consume lead, thank you.

    1. So let me understand your comment. You do not wish to ‘purchase’ the cereal anymore as it contains harmful contaminants… however, you don’t want to waste what you currently have on hand, so you will eat it anyway??? Does this make any sense to you?

  2. 5 stars
    I made these bars with Cheerios, American Dream Peanut Butter Cheesecake peanut butter and Maple Syrup. Simple and Delicious

  3. Hi there!

    Do you know if these would work without the peanut butter? I work in a school and everything has to be nut free, but it seems like a great snack to make with the students!

  4. Hi I was wondering if you have any recipes for this without using a nut based butter? My daughter is allergic to all nuts and has celiac.
    Thanks