Meatless Monday Challenge

Crunchy Peanut Butter Cheerio Bars

on July 1, 2021
last updated April 24, 2023
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These simple, 4-ingredient, protein-packed Peanut Butter Cheerio Bars are salty, sweet, and nutty—talk about snack-time perfection!
Peanut Butter Cheerio Bars wrapped in parchment

Looking for a protein-packed, heart-healthy snack to grab on the go and keep you satisfied for hours? These Crunchy Peanut Butter Cheerio Bars take four simple ingredients and turn them into a yummy and healthful treat!

Eat ’em for breakfast, with lunch, or as an afternoon pick-me-up, these addicting little peanut butter bars are never a bad idea!

stack of cheerio bars

As an environmental scientist, I am always trying to find ways to combat food waste, and cereal is one of those things I buy on sale, thinking they’ll be a great solution to busy mornings, but then forget about the box in the back of the pantry.

But when you use it to create a crunchy, nutty, salty, and sweet on-the-go snack, you can bet my family won’t let these bars go to waste!

Peanut Butter Cheerio Bars Tips and Tricks


Grab Your Ingredients

Four simple ingredients are all you need! Depending on the salt content in your peanut butter and peanuts, you may want to add some flaky sea salt on top, but taste them first!

This recipe is designed for the use of Original Cheerios. Using Cheerios with flavoring such as Honey Nut Cheerios, Strawberry Cheerios, etc, will probably make your cereal bars too sweet. If you don’t have Cheerios, check out these Granola Bars!

Here’s what else you’ll need:

overhead view of all ingredients needed for peanut butter cheerio bars on a light wood background - honey, peanut butter, peanuts, cheerios

Heat Things Up

Heating the peanut butter and honey together makes it easier to combine, and loosens the mixture so you’re able to coat the Cheerios. Add the peanut butter and honey to a large pot over low heat, and stir until the two melt together.

Then, remove from heat, add your Cheerios and peanuts, and fold carefully to coat, trying not to crush your cereal.

Green tip: try buying raw, locally sourced honey. Generally, smaller-scale honeybee operations harvest honey in the fall, when the bees produce it in excess.

Let It Set In A Cake Pan

Line an 8-inch square cake pan with parchment paper so you can easily remove the bars once they set.

Once your ingredients are all combined, you’ll add it to the cake pan and use a spatula to carefully press the mixture down, so that it solidifies and holds its shape as it sets.

Use the backside of a small spatula, being careful not to completely crush the cereal. It’s crunchiest when the Cheerios keep their shape.

pushing cheerio bar mixture into cake pan to set

Be Patient

Your bars will go from sticky and crumbly to easy to hold in your hands in about 3 hours. Once you press your mixture down into the cake pan, stick the whole pan in the refrigerator to allow the peanut butter and honey to solidify around the peanuts and Cheerios, forming your snack bar.

In a pinch, freezing them will speed up the process, but it does change the texture a bit, so only use this hack if you need to.

Storing These Cheerio Bars

I like to individually wrap them so they’re easy to grab on the go. Store them in the refrigerator in an airtight container to keep them crunchy.

They’ll stay fresh and delicious for about 1 month.

peanut butter cheerio bars on cooling rack

Why You Should Make These Peanut Butter Cheerio Bars


  • They keep you full. Protein-packed and with whole grains.
  • They’re balanced. The perfect combo of salty, nutty, and sweet in every crunchy bite.
  • They last! Make them ahead of time and snack on them for a month.

If you’re loving these Peanut Butter Cheerio Bars and are looking for more fun recipes with cereal, check out this Cinnamon Toast Crunch Cheesecake and Fruity Pebbles Cookies.

Peanut Butter Cheerio Bars wrapped in parchment

Crunchy Peanut Butter Cheerio Bars

5 from 5 votes
Marley Goldin
PIN Print RATE
These simple, 4-ingredient, protein-packed Peanut Butter Cheerio Bars are salty, sweet, and nutty—talk about snack-time perfection!
Prep Time 2 minutes
Setting Time 3 hours
Cook Time 3 minutes
Total Time 3 hours 5 minutes
Servings 8 bars

Ingredients
  

  • 3 tablespoons honey (or agave for vegan)
  • cup peanut butter (smooth or crunchy)
  • 3 cups Original Cheerios
  • ½ cup shelled peanuts
  • 1 handful of sea salt (optional)
Shop Ingredients on Jupiter

Instructions
 

  • Line an 8-inch square cake pan with parchment paper and set aside.
  • Add the honey and peanut butter to a large pot over low heat and stir until combined.
  • Use a spatula to fold in the Cheerios and peanuts, being careful not to crush the Cheerios, until the Cheerios and peanuts are completely coated.
  • Transfer to lined cake pan and use your spatula to lightly press the mixture down flat.
  • Refrigerate until completely solid—about 3 hours. Cut into bars in the size of your choice. Sprinkle on some sea salt for a salty-sweet finish (optional).
  • Individually wrap and store in the refrigerator.

Pro Tips

  • Depending on the salt content of the peanut butter and the peanuts you are using, you may or may not want to add the extra salt—taste them first!
  • This recipe is designed for the use of Original Cheerios. Using Cheerios with flavoring such as Honey Nut Cheerios, Strawberry Cheerios, etc, will probably make your cereal bars too sweet.
  • Love cereal? I’m sure you’ll love this collection of my best recipes using cereal!
Course Snacks
Cuisine American
Diet Vegan, Vegetarian
Keyword 5 Ingredients or Less, Cereal, Cheerio Bars, Easy, Peanut Butter
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4 thoughts on “Crunchy Peanut Butter Cheerio Bars”

  1. Sounds delicious and I plan to make them for my 2year old granddaughter. Question: Can these be frozen?

    1. Judy, you will win major Grandma points- my (almost) 2 year old absolutely loves them!! Yes, they can definitely be frozen for up to 6 months and retain their freshness and crunchiness. Freezing them will cause them to be a little extra chewy when you first take them out, so just keep that in mind for your little one. They go back to normal when fully thawed!

      Thank you for this question, I’ll make sure to add this info to the post 🙂

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