My daughters have been eating me out of house and home lately. There’s really only one brand of ceral bar on the shelves that they can have due to their allergies. For 6 bars it’s going to cost $2.50, easily. With 3 daughters, that’s hardly worth it. So I’ve been on the look out for both affordable and nut-free/corn-free. I made a double batch (which is what the pictures will show) and got 33 bars. I’ll give the recipe for a 9X13 pan since most people wouldn’t want to make a double batch, though.
3 cups crispy rice
3 cups chocolate crispy rice (pebbles)
1 cup sunflower seeds or soy nuts
1/2 cup sunbutter (my experience is sunbutter cooks better than soy butter)
1 bag 10-12 oz marshmallows
2 tbsp milk
In a large bowl combine the cereals and sunflower seeds/soy nuts.
(keep in mind that what is shown is a DOUBLE batch…twice the amount the recipe states)
Stir constantly over low to medium low heat until melted and smooth.
This took me a while because it was so sticky and stringy like taffy left in the Texas sun on a car dashboard. Keep going until it pours (albeit slowly) off the spoon. Definitely consider doing this in non-stick cookware or a very well seasoned cast iron pot.
Next, pour it into the cereal mixture and mix WELL. This is hard and requires some muscle. Toward the end I dumped it out on the counter and was kneading it quite harshly to get it to combine thoroughly. It would be easier if there was more of the moist mixture, but that would prevent the bars from holding as well and they’d be stickier.
Then press into a bar pan, 9X13, or larger (like I did for my double batch. I think I used what is called a “half sheet” pan but it might be a sheet. I always get confused about that. It’s twice the size of a 9X13 though) that is heavily greased. I actually had to pound it with my fists to get it to smooth out and be even and firm. It was quite satisfying. 😀
Let it set for an hour and then turn it out onto wax paper or the shiny side of freezer paper.
I used a large chef’s knife sprayed with oil to cut it since it was still pretty sticky. My double batch got cut into 33 typical granola bar sized bars for a calorie count of 250 calories, 11g fat, 13g sugars, 4g fiber, 9g protein. Given that I made these for my kids, the fat content isn’t really an issue. My kids are skinny minnies with food allergies. The cost count turned out to be about $12 for 33 bars, but they’re more nutritionally sound than a good portion of kid friendly bars out there and I know whats in them. My next batch will have 2 cups less of the rice cereal and switch it up with wheat germ, flax, and maybe some bran cereal.
Oh and taste test? These won the approval of the kiddos who are exceptionally picky.