Baking has been a wonderful companion through quarantine. However, it’s now the height of summer. The last thing I’d like to do on a 90-degree day is turn on my oven, which makes my apartment hot even if the AC is running. It’s the perfect time for no-bake treats, and these vegan peanut butter cereal bites are my new favorite!
Technically speaking, this is a three-ingredient recipe. That’s not something I’m often able to pull off, but in this case, it works. You can jazz the recipe up with a pinch of sea salt, a little vanilla extract, or a drizzle of melted dark chocolate, but each one of those things is an option. To make the no bake cereal snack bites, you only really need peanut butter, agave syrup (or maple syrup), and cereal O’s.
The O’s in this case are the Sprouted Oat O’s from my favorite cereal maker, One Degree Organic Foods. I could go on and on about this brand and how much I love their products. The sprouted grain breads are the most tender sprouted breads I’ve ever tried. The rolled oats are fresh, filling, and not only organic, but also free of glyphosate. (They’re responsible for my favorite, wholesome snack cookies.) The whole grain flours add nutty flavor, fiber, and a wonderful sweet aroma to bread. The brand sources from trusted farming partners and allows consumers to trace all of the ingredients in their foods.
The Sprouted O cereals from One Degree are a wonderful summer breakfast. I add a sprinkle of the One Degree shelled hemp hearts and some fresh fruit to mine, along with non-dairy milk. It’s a filling (but not hot or heavy) start to the day. The O’s have both fiber and plant protein for satiety, and I love that they contain chickpeas as well as oats. It never hurts to have a legume with breakfast!
One Degree’s Sprouted O’s come in two flavors: sprouted oat and sprouted cacao. You can use both flavors for these vegan peanut butter cereal bites. Or, you can use a combination, as I did above. When I tested the snack bites, I tried three different versions:
Just One Degree Organic Sprouted O’s, peanut butter, and agave syrup.
A 50/50 mix of Sprouted Oat and Sprouted Cacao O’s, plus peanut butter, agave, and a pinch of sea salt.
Sprouted O’s, peanut butter, and agave, plus some messy drizzling of melted dark chocolate chips. Yum.
A few things I learned in testing the snack bites:
When I did this, I ended up with peanut butter that actually started to get grainy. Exactly a minute and 15 seconds is the perfect amount of time to warm the ingredients up in the microwave. If you don’t have a microwave, warm them in a double boiler until they’re easy to whisk and runny.
I found that it was good to incorporate the O’s into the warm peanut butter and syrup mixture fast, using a spatula. Then, I allowed them to rest for about two minutes. That little pause will make it easier to scoop them into little mounds for snacking.
It’s best to allow the snack bites to cool thoroughly before you enjoy them. They won’t end up crispy, like cookies or rice crispy treats. Even after you cool them, they’ll be a little sticky. The bite itself will be pliable, but the O’s will be nice and crispy once you bite into the whole thing. You can store them in the fridge if your home is warm, or at room temperature if it’s cool.
As I mentioned, the ingredient list here is wonderfully short! But there are a few things to know about each of the ingredients you choose.
Use a smooth peanut butter for this recipe. In fact, the smoother, the better! If you’d like to add more texture to the bites, you can do that by stirring in chopped nuts or seeds, but be sure to use a smooth nut butter. If you have a peanut allergy, you can use a sunflower seed butter in place of peanut—I tested that and thought it was delicious.
I tested the bites with agave syrup, brown rice syrup, and maple syrup. The brown rice and agave syrup bites held together more easily than the maple syrup version. I recommend brown rice syrup or agave syrup if you have either (the former can be a little hard to find in stores), but maple syrup is OK if you don’t.
The simplicity of these snack bites is the very thing I love about them, so I didn’t get too fancy with additions. I do think it would be fun to add slivered almonds, mini vegan chocolate chips, or sunflower seeds to the mix! I’d recommend substituting a half cup of any of those ingredients for a half cup of the cereal O’s if you try it. It’s important to keep the ratios of dry ingredients to wet ingredients consistent here.
For my chocolate drizzle, I simply melted 4 ounces of vegan chocolate chips in my microwave. The mixture will be wonderfully rich, not runny. The drizzling is the fun part! Keep your vegan peanut butter cereal bites on the same parchment that they cooled on. Then, use a whisk to drizzle. You might need to wave it around in the air to help spatter the chocolate. Wear an apron and don’t be afraid to make a little mess 🙂
Once you’ve done your spattering, you can allow the chocolate to cool. At this point, transferring the cereal bites to a fridge will speed up the process. When it cools, it adds the most wonderful chocolate + PB flavor to the bites. It turns them from a simple treat into an extra special—but still pretty simple—one.
Hope you’ll get a kick out of these easy, crispy, sticky, sweet little treats. I haven’t been able to share them with any kiddos, but I’m guessing that they’re very kid friendly. In addition to being an energy-boosting, spirit-lifting snack for the rest of us.
You can find the full recipe for vegan peanut butter cereal bites over at the One Degree Organics website now. Enjoy!
This post is sponsored by One Degree Organic Foods. All opinions are my own. Thanks for your support!