When I make a commitment, I try my hardest to follow through with it no matter how significant the commitment is.  One of my biggest pet peeves is when someone says they will do something and then does not stick to what they said they would do.  Sometimes I say that I will make a treat for something and then life gets busy and I feel like I don’t have the time to make anything.  Enter the beauty of no-bake treats!

With no-bake bars and cookies, you can literally have a sweet to serve in a matter of minutes.

When I was too young to use the oven myself, but still had sweet cravings that needed to be satisfied, I would make these bars that were a combination of cornflakes, peanut butter, milk chocolate chips and a little corn syrup and I could have them made in minutes and easily demolish the whole pan myself.

I may have more kitchen privileges and freedom now, but that doesn’t mean that I have lost my love and appreciation for bars that are made by melting some ingredients together and folding in some cereal or oatmeal.  I promised to bring treats to work earlier this week, but returned back home from a road trip at 8:00 pm and just wanted to relax.  These bars were the perfect treat that allowed me to keep my commitment to bring a treat to work, but were so quick to make that I had plenty of time for relaxation and smutty tv catchup.

No-bake Choco-oat Peanut Butter Cereal Bars

by Mercedes Porter

Keywords: no-bake dessert snack chocolate peanut butter oatmeal bar

Ingredients (20 bars)

  • 1/2 cup (8 Tbsp) unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/3 cup, plus 1 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 1/2 cups oats
  • 2 1/2 cups puffed rice cereal
  • 1/4 cup peanut butter OR chocolate chips

Instructions

Line an 8X8-inch pan with aluminum foil. Spray foil with nonstick cooking spray.

In a medium saucepan, combine butter, sugars, cocoa powder and milk. Heat over medium heat, stirring to combine.

Bring to a boil and boil for 1 minute.

Remove from heat and stir in vanilla and peanut butter. Stir until peanut butter is incorporated.

Add cereal and oats to cocoa mixture and stir to combine.

Pour mixture into prepared pan and pat down evenly. Sprinkle with 1/4 cup peanut butter or chocolate chips and press chips gently into bars.

Freeze for 30 minutes, remove from pan using foil, and peel foil off before cutting and serving.

Recipe adapted from Averie Cooks

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combine butter, sugars, milk and cocoa and boil

remove from heat and stir in vanilla and peanut butter

add cereal and oats

pour mixture into prepared pan, spread evenly and sprinkle peanut butter chips over the top

chill, lift out of pan using foil, peel foil off and cut

What is your favorite no-bake treat?

 

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After being on a cruise for ten days, I can say that one stereotype about cruises is true: there is serious potential for weight gain.  A buffet breakfast and four-course lunches and dinners can take a toll on the waistline.

Now that my sleeping schedule is back on track, I am also trying to get back to a healthier eating routine.  One of my major downfalls on the cruise was the bread basket with six different types of bread and the best butter that was delivered to the table before each meal.  Naturally I wanted to sample each type of bread and slather it with this perfect salty, yet sweet butter.  Cutting back on the amount of butter I consume was an easy way to eat healthier now that I am back home.

I was recently asked sample and review Rich & Creamy Melt Organic Spread.

This opportunity could not have come at a better time for me.  Melt is a healthy butter alternative that is made with a blend of virgin coconut oil, flaxseed oil and other hearth-healthy oils.  One of  flaxseed oil health benefits is that it is very high in heart-healthy Omega-3’s.

Not only does Melt Organic Spread taste rich and satisfying with a slight hint of coconut flavor, but it is trans fat-free and contains no hydrogenated oils.  I don’t claim to be a nutritionist, but those are certainly two things I try to minimize in my diet.

Melt has a perfectly creamy, spreadable texture right out of the refrigerator.  I find it perfect for spreading on my morning english muffin, sautéing veggies for a curry or stir fry and even incorporating into baked treats.  Coconut is one of my favorite flavors so it is always a welcome addition to what I am making.

I don’t know how it gets much better than a healthy butter alternative that may actually be good for you thanks to heart healthy oils.  Melt Organic Spread is a delicious and satisfying spread that you can feel good about eating.

*Melt Organic Spread provided me with a sample, but all opinions expressed, as always, are my own.

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Do the effects of jet lag intensify as you get older?  I returned from Europe on Tuesday and I have been rising before the sun (like 4:00am before the sun) and falling asleep at 8:00 like a baby.  I am really not complaining because morning hours are arguably some of the most delightful hours of the day and I know I will get back on a normal schedule eventually.

My trip to Europe was a celebration of my brothers graduating from high school,

a last hurrah before my husband begins another educational endeavor next week (yikes!)

(source)

and we also treated it as a celebration of our 3rd wedding anniversary.

This was the first cruise I had been on and I loved that this particular mode of transportation allowed you to see so many countries in a relatively short amount of time.  The trip was filled great food, lots of giggling and sights seen that we will never forget.  Here are some photos from my Baltic Adventures that I want to share with you.

Copenhagen, Denmark

Berlin, Germany

Ronne, Denmark

Gdansk, Poland

Visby, Sweden

Riga, Latvia

Tallinn, Estonia

St. Petersburg, Russia

Helsinki, Finland

If you have made it this far, you deserve to see a few funny photos!

It was an amazing trip, but I am always happy to be home!

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It still feels unreal to me that it has been one year already since I published my first post on Satisfy My Sweet Tooth.  I have enjoyed the whole blogging experience so much and you all are truly the best part.  I love the community of bloggers that I have met that feel like friends even though we have never met in person.  And I love all of the kind and thoughtful comments that you readers leave on my posts.  I could have never imagined how much time I would spend taking photographs and baking and how much I would continue to love to write.  Thank you for your support and continued reading.

I thought that in honor of Satisfy My Sweet Tooth celebrating it’s first birthday, I would share some of my favorite posts and the most popular posts according to readers.

In no particular order:

Coffee-Spiked Chocolate Caramel Bars

Peanut Butter Pretzel  and Chocolate Chip Cookies

Coconut M&M Cookie Bars

Profiteroles

Brownie Pie

Babybel-stuffed Meatballs

Caramel Pecan Turtle Bars

Chewy Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Granola Bars

Fresh Spring Rolls

Ginger Molasses Cookies

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cupcakes with Chocolate Buttercream and Peanut Butter Cups

My favorite Chocolate Chip Cookie

Is there anything in particular you would like to see on Satisfy My Sweet Tooth in the future?

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Emily and I have been the best of friends since we started college 11 years ago and were luckily assigned randomly as roommates our freshman year.

You get to know someone very well living in a teeny, tiny dorm room.  And I am so happy to say that Emily was the greatest from day one.  I love that we have stayed so close over the last decade (how old are we??!!)  and have been by each other’s sides for some of the most important events in our lives.

Emily is also the reason that I started out on this little blogging adventure.  I have always admired Emily’s dedication to healthy food and an active lifestyle and her blog, A Nutritionist Eats was  my primary inspiration for starting my blog.  Honestly, without her, I wouldn’t know a plugin from a theme and would never have been able to publish my first post 1 year ago!  How fitting that she would be providing this amazing guest post for me this week!

Mercedes and I go wayyyyy back. Like, freshman-year dorms and then friends forever back. We lived together for a total of 5 years and to say that I miss her dearly since moving to California would be an understatement. If only we had started blogging back when we were roomates! That would have been SO much fun.

 Satisfy my Sweet Tooth is my go-to site when it comes to dessert and baking, because, well, I’m not much of a baker and Mercedes is amazing. I miss testing out her recipes on a regular basis!  It only makes sense for me to share something somewhat healthy today because, well that is what my blog (fresh recipes, nutrition tips and simple ways to live a healthy life) is all about!

Once I try a salad that I like, I continue to make it on a regular basis and then eat it until I’m sick of it. My current favorite is this salad that I’ve been eating ever since my cousin made it for Easter Sunday. The ingredients are simple, the flavors delicious. I like to call it the California Salad for no particular reason other than avocados are abundent here. 🙂

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Thank you Emily!  You are the best!

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