When we were kids, my mom would give my sister and I each a quarter a day for snacks at the Haven pool when we’d go swimming with our babysitter.
That quarter could get you some licorice or Now and Laters, but I would often hoard my coins for several sessions until I had enough to get a cold Twix from the pool’s freezer. It was always worth going a few days without a treat to bite into that icy candy bar.
I still like to toss candy into the fridge or freezer at home. I’m not sure what it is about a cold chocolate bar that’s so appealing, but I always love them.
That was part of what I liked about this week’s recipe, because these no-bake bars are chewy and crunchy and chilly right out of the fridge—a perfect combination.
This recipe comes from the blog “Barefeet in the Kitchen” by Mary Younkin. You can find the original at https://barefeetinthekitchen.com/no-bake-chocolate-cereal-bars-recipe/. Because this was such a simple recipe, my only change was swapping in crunchy peanut butter instead of creamy.
No-Bake Chocolate Crunch Bars
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup honey
- 3/4 cup creamy or crunchy peanut butter
- 3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 2 cups cornflakes
- Line a 8-by-3-inch bread pan or a 6-by-6-inch square pan with parchment or waxed paper (hang it over the sides to help remove the bars later) and set aside.
- In a large, microwave-safe bowl, combine the sugar, honey and peanut butter and heat for 30 seconds at a time, stirring in between, until everything is smooth. Add in the chocolate and stir until the chocolate is melted.
- Dump the mixture into the prepared pan and press it down evenly.
- Place the bars in the refrigerator for two or three hours to set up. Pull the bars out of the pan using the paper and transfer to a cutting board.
- Cut into bars the size of your choosing and store in an airtight container in the fridge.
I’m not often as big of a fan of no-bake cookies as many people are, but these were a slam dunk. Using honey for part of the sweetener gave these a richness that I really liked, and the crunch of both the cornflakes and crunchy peanut butter was excellent.
It’s probably a good thing this recipe makes a smaller batch of bars, since we managed to eat all of them in pretty short order.
I would say you could get away with using a normal 8-by-8-inch pan, too, but part of these bars’ appeal is how nice and thick they are.
They were also a nice, cool treat out of the fridge for a few days, which I really appreciated on some warm evenings. And, as a bonus, I didn’t even have to put on a swimming suit to enjoy them.
This piece first appeared in print on Oct. 3, 2019.
Spice Up Your Life is a weekly newspaper column written by Lindsey Young in south central Kansas and sponsored by Main Street Co. & Kitchen Corner in Newton, Kan. Visit their website at shopmainstco.com.