Happy fall, y’all! This is the day I’ve been waiting for all summer, and the season I enjoy being in the kitchen the most. It’s the time of year when I shift my summer spices to the back of the drawer in order to make room for those that pair well with apples, squash, pumpkin, and other favourite fall foods.
I think of the next few months as the time of year when cinnamon, cloves, allspice, nutmeg, and ginger are essential flavours, and I like to infuse everything from soups to pastas to puddings with these warming spices. So naturally, when I recently made some lunchbox snacks for my kids, I couldn’t help but add a hefty dose of cinnamon to the bowl, adding a seasonal spin to a beloved childhood treat.
Spicing these cereal bars aren’t the only upgrade I made to this classic crispy snack. I also replaced the corn syrup-laden marshmallows with naturally sweetened syrups and added some sunflower seed butter to the bowl, ensuring these stay nut-free and protein packed. The addition of brown rice cereal made these extra healthy, not to mention a little hippie, but they were both beloved and devoured by my boys telling me I might be on to something. Feel free to use regular rice cereal, if you prefer, and peanut or almond butters if nuts aren’t a concern, just don’t skip the cinnamon—it’s a seasonal requirement now that fall has officially arrived.
Healthy Cinnamon-Spiced Rice Cereal Treats
Makes 16 squares
- ½ cup pure maple syrup
- ½ cup brown rice syrup
- ½ cup sunflower seed butter
- ¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
- 4 cups crisp rice cereal
Prep and Cook:
- Line an 8×8-inch square pan with a sling of parchment paper or grease it generously with neutral-flavoured oil.
- In a large saucepan, bring the maple and rice syrups to a rolling boil for 1 minute, stirring frequently with a rubber spatula. Remove from the heat and stir in the sunflower seed butter, cinnamon and salt, ensuring everything is evenly mixed and smooth.
- Fold in the cereal, dump the mixture in the prepared pan, and press it firmly and evenly into a single layer. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let sit until firm, about one hour.
- Remove from pan and cut into squares. Treats can be stored in an airtight container for up to three days.
Good to Know:
Brown rice syrup can be found in most major grocery stores (check the organic aisle), natural foods stores, and the Bulk Barn.