I love cereal. I love cereal. I love cereal, hey hey hey hey.
I made a song because I love cereal THAT much.
I’ll confess, I don’t eat cereal though. Almost never do the scrumptious little balls of sugary ‘whole grains’ pass through my lips. Why? Because “once you pop, the fun don’t stop.” Oh wait, wrong product reference…
Cereal has powers over me that are unspeakable. It temps me, lours’ me in, then BAM. I demolish, an ENTIRE box. How does this happen? Let me tell you.
I pour 1 serving, yes I measure it (it’s a desperate attempt to NOT eat ALL of the box) into a bowl. Top it off with milk. Finish that serving in .04 seconds, but shoot I have milk left. I could drink it, or I COULD add more cereal. So I add a half a serving more of cereal. That absorbs all the remaining milk. Now my bowl is empty. Clearly I must start the process all over again. Until, alas, the entire box of cereal is. GONE. And the best is to use chocolate milk instead of regular milk. Just sayin…
You might be wondering just what cereals I love, the most. I’m embarrassed to even say. Again, remember, I don’t buy this stuff, because it has specials powers over me. BUT, if these wouldn’t send me to an early grave, I’d eat boxes of Peanut Butter Cap’t Crunch, Frosted Flakes, Cocoa Pebbles, and Honey Bunches of Oats. Cereal, peanut butter, cheese and frozen yogurt should all have their own spot in a balanced diet, wouldn’t you agree?!
About a week ago Anne tweeted asking if anyone wanted to do an Attune product review. Well, duh, I LOVE trying new products, especially healthier ones. I e-mailed her, and within a few days I had Attune products in my kitchen, begging to be consumed.
Since I’m supposed to review the product, not just inhale the cereal, in 2 minutes, then go back 16 times for ‘seconds.’ I decided to use the cereal in a recipe. Word on the street is crispy rice cereal is what ‘makes’ those Quaker Chewy granola bars just so delicious. I secretly look forward to camping trips, youth trips, and road trips, just as an excuse to buy granola bars, probably because their kinda like cereal.
I wanted to somehow recreate these granola bars, in a desperate attempt to NOT eat an entire box of cereal in 1 sitting.
FAIL. BIG FAT EPIC FAIL.
These granola are the Bomb Diggity. So instead of eating an entire box of cereal, I ate an entire batch of granola bars. Awesome. OK, maybe not in 1 sitting, it took me a whopping 2 days. Then I made a second batch. I gave that batch away, to save me from myself.
The granola bars are very versatile. Instead of molasses, try maple syrup, or honey, or agave. Instead of pretzels, try raisins, or almonds, or pecans. Instead of chocolate, use white chocolate, or peanut butter chips. Get creative with your flavor combo! I must say though, the molasses, pretzel, chocolate combo has a nice mix of sweet/salty that I just love!
8 tbsp (1 stick) unsalted butter
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup molasses
3 cups old fashioned oats (not quick cooking)
2 cup rice cereal
1 cup pretzels, broken into small pieces
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips (optional)
Line a 9×13 inch baking dish with parchment paper.
In a medium pot, combine the brown sugar with the molasses and butter. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat, then lower the heat to medium-low and simmer until the sugar dissolves, about 2 minutes. Remove the saucepan from the heat.
In a large bowl add the oats, rice cereal, and pretzels. Pour the bowl into the pot and fold the ingredients to evenly coat with the sugary sauce. Transfer the mixture into the lined baking dish and press firmly to to evenly fill the pan.
*If your hands get sticky, wet them with a little water.
Microwave the chocolate chips until melted. Drizzle the melted chocolate over the hot pan of granola bars. Let the granola mixture set in the refrigerator until firm, about 30 minutes. Remove the parchment paper from the pan, and cut into 4 inch x 1 inch bars.
To give them away I just layered them on wax paper and put them in a ziplock bag. Not the prettiest presentation, but the recipient was thrilled.
So, the cereal, what do I think about it? It’s great, simple brown rice organic cereal. Not sugary, or loaded with crazy ingredients. I appreciate that. The small grains are toasty and crispy, perfect for these granola bars AND for these Strawberry Rice Krispy Treats I made earlier this week. They also have a lot of other products, like graham crackers! We could all use a little more s’mores in our life, which means we need graham crackers :)