The original is a nod to Rice Krispies Treats with the addition of a few flavors and the deletion of gluten. I wanted to keep with the gluten-free theme since I'm on that kind of kick this week, but I wanted to amp it up even more.
Man, I always forget how much I love cereal. I'm a huge breakfast eater. Huge. But I really just never think of cereal. When I do, it's heavy, hearty, fatty goodness like peanut butter or pumpkin seed granola or eggs and avocados (holy yum, Batman). But there are so many great alternatives out there. I'm more prone to eating cereal dry, by the handful, for a snack. Like, instead of potato chips.
Anyway, you can use any cereal you want in this recipe. I chose gluten free Vanilla Chex. They are so freaking good. You'll see in the photos that I did crush them up a bit (not into a powder, but just so they'd be a bit smaller and compact) before I measured them out. The other sorta odd thing I did? I froze these. I don't know why, but I love them just out of the freezer, just barely thawed a little. Read on for the recipe and pics.
CRANBERRY TWISTED PEANUT BUTTER CEREAL TREATS
- 5 cups gluten free Vanilla Chex cereal (crushed slightly before measuring)
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1/2 cup natural peanut butter (or other nut butter of your choice)
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries*, chopped (whatever size you like)
- small or medium baking sheet (or any pan with edges) and parchment paper
Take a long sheet of your parchment paper and line your baking sheet or dish with it lengthwise. Make sure the paper is hanging over the ends of the pan - this will make it easier for you to pull the entire batch out of the pan when you're finished so you can cut it into squares (or hearts! or flowers! or whatever cookie cutter you love!).
In a medium bowl, stir together peanut butter and honey. Put mixture in microwave for 20-30 seconds, until peanut butter is melty and the mixture is smooth. If it's not melted after 20-30 seconds, continue microwaving in ten second intervals until it is.
Add Vanilla Chex to your peanut butter honey mixture and mix well. It will take a few minutes to get the cereal incorporated and evenly coated, but it will come together - and it will be a little sticky. Once combined, mix in your cranberries. *I used a mixture of half cranberries and half cherry flavored cranberries.
Press your mixture firmly into your baking dish. Make sure you pack it down, otherwise it will crumble when you take it out. If you want to add anything to the top (HELLO, SPRINKLES!), now is the time to do it, Add your topping (chopped pecans or almonds would be great, too) and press into mixture.