Spicy Cheerio Nut Bars

 

Spicy Cheerio Nut Bars

I can’t believe how quickly summer flew by, but alas, here I am gearing up for my last semester of grad school. I’m not looking forward to inundating my planner with due dates, but school supply shopping is always a thrill. It’s not that I NEED more cute notepads, brand spankin’ new pens (I have a drawer full of them), highlighters in every color imaginable, but the back-t0-school shopping spree never gets old. This time I did most of my shopping in Korea so I’m eager to bust out my unique items…

And begin note-taking! To me it’s as therapeutic and exhilarating as spending a day at a spa is for some. What can I say? To each his own, right?

Spicy Cheerio Nut Bars

Snacks…they are super important, too. Note taking and focusing in class won’t be happening if my tummy is growling, that’s for sure. Since school is at least an hour away from my place, I always make sure to carry with me at least 2-3 power snacks, that contain good sources of BOTH protein and carbohydrates. Eating just carbohydrates leaves me feeling unsatisfied and hungry soon after.

In light of this month’s Recipe Redux challenge, “Bars and Bites for Brown Bags,” I’m bringing Spicy Cheerio Nut Bars to the party. Ever since I made these spicy nut clusters to go along with my Mexican Oat Pudding, they became a pantry staple. I’ve made about 3 batches for us and the Hungryman’s co-workers, who were lured by his lunchbox. One of them said it tasted like sopapillas…I can see that.

Spicy Cheerio Nut Bars

The flavor profile was such a huge hit that I wanted to experiment and create other snack ideas. Making bars wasn’t a far stretch. I knew I wanted to throw some carbs into the mix so that’s when Cheerios entered the picture. Multigrain Cheerios to be exact. Why Cheerios? I purchased 2 ginormous boxes from Costco as they were on sale, that’s why ;).

Spicy Cheerio Nut Bars

Texturally, these bars are crunchy as well as sticky, which reminds me of Kind bars. Sweet at first but followed by a kick from the spices, they are sure to keep you energized for note taking, study, or whatever activity you choose to do ;).

Here’s my VERY first short cooking video! I do want to venture out into making more in the future, but boy, was it a challenge. I guess I was trying to do too many things at once. Perhaps I should enlist the help of the Hungryman rather than being a one woman show. I had my camera on a tripod, and while I really wanted to get into the food, it didn’t turn out as sharp and clear as I wanted. Not even close. In any case, I shall keep at it. Hopefully, I will muster up enough courage to actually show my face and talk on the video as well. Until then, say hello to my hands ;).

Spicy Cheerio Nut Bars
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Serves: 12 bars
Ingredients
  • ½ cup roughly chopped almonds
  • ½ cup roughly chopped walnuts
  • ¼ cup sunflower seeds
  • ¼ cup pumpkin seeds
  • 1 Tablespoon flaxseeds
  • ½ cup Cheerios (I used multi-grain)
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon chili powder (preferably Mexican)
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 Tablespoon coconut oil
  • ½ cup honey
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 300F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or Silpat. Mix nuts, seeds, and Cheerios in a bowl. Toss thoroughly with cinnamon, chili powder, cayenne pepper, and salt. In a small saucepan over medium low heat, warm the coconut oil and honey, about 6-8 minutes. Be careful not to burn and stir frequently. It will foam up as it cooks. Immediately, pour liquid mixture over the dry mixture. Mix well, scraping the bottom thoroughly. Spread the mixture evenly onto the prepared baking sheet and bake for 20-25 minutes, until golden brown, tossing at the halfway point. Allow for it to cool COMPLETELY, at least 30 minutes, or until hardened (and sticky). Cut into bars (be sure to do this on parchment paper to prevent sticking) and store in an airtight container.
Notes
Calories 158; Total fat 10g; Saturated fat 2g; Sodium 58mg; Total Carbohydrates 15g; Sugars 10g; Protein 4g

Lovely comments

  1. says

    Congrats on your first “hand video” -Love it :-) These bars look super yummy too-can’t wait to make them for my kids (and for myself) with some Nature’s Path gluten-free O cereal!

  2. says

    I actually love how you did this video!!! The speed, rhythm and melody of the song, and your purty self made it A+. And oohlalaaaaaa these remind me of spicy Kind Bars! Those are actually really good and you could probably sell these if you wanted to. ;)

  3. says

    LOVE the spicy, savory take on this month’s theme! I’m a sucker for spice and cinnamon so these are definitely on my to-make list.

  4. says

    I think you will understand (many people don’t!) that I really miss the stationary stock up and renewed note taking that came with the start of the academic year. I’d have liked to be a perpetual student I think!

    I love cheerios but tend to eat them quite recklessly, so these bars are a great portion controlled snack ;)

    • says

      Haha, I can totally relate! I may go through a withdrawal period come December ;). And I hear ya..mindful eating goes out the door with Cheerios. Hope you give this snack a try!

  5. says

    I can totally relate the the back-to-school shopping! All those cute notebooks somehow look a hundred times more appealing… And you’re right, healthy snacks are an important part of staying focused! These bars look like they totally fit the bill. I’m going to have to try them soon – I have an undying love for cheerios, so anything that involves the addictive cereal looks awesome to me. (; I love the video! You did a great job, and that mixture looks like something I’d be eating raw straight from the bowl before it even had a chance to get into the oven… yum.
    Pinning this!

    • says

      Haha glad to know I’m not alone. Thank you so much for your kind words! It truly was a challenge not to eat it raw, but I’m proud of myself for practicing self control ;). Can’t wait for you to try!

  6. says

    I caught this lovely recipe on Pinterest earlier, and pinned it immediately. Your recipe is a perfect traveling snack, and sounds sooooo good!!! Take care, Terra

  7. says

    I love that you did a spicy and not sweet bar like usual! I’m a part of the “21st posting” RR group so I typically don’t see the recipes from the other group, but I’m glad I decided to look at this link up as well!

    xoxo Sarah Grace, Fresh Fit N Healthy.

  8. says

    I think you did a great job on your video and loved the ending :) Crunchy snack bars are my favorite and I love the sound of the spice in here!

  9. says

    Min! These bars look like the great snack to take to work!! I’ve missed reading your posts – and now that I’m back from my vacation in Italy, so glad I’m reading your blog again! :) Sending love dear friend!

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