Are you excited? I am! Milk & Cereal is posting a recipe for cereal! It had to happen eventually.
My number one favorite food is constantly changing, but cereal is definitely my number one at times. (And it’s in the top five when it’s not number one.) Cocoa Puffs was probably my favorite cereal growing up, but I started eating healthier cereals more often as I got older. My brother used to tease me and would say that I ate “Veggie Crunch,” hahaha. Well, I do adore Raisin Bran with an Extra Scoop of Raisins…
Now, I love my sugary cereals just as much as your average ten-year-old! (Oooh do I love them…) After all, Reese’s Puffs and Cookie Crisp are fortified with nutrients and are part of a balanced breakfast, right? That’s what I tell myself anyway. But let’s get real guys; when you’re enjoying that bowl of puffs that are high in Vitamin B12, you know in the back of your mind that you’re really eating a bowl of dessert. We just like to “sugar coat” the truth. (See what I did there? ;) )
So today’s recipe was inspired by one I came across for homemade paleo Cocoa Puffs. I’m not really into the paleo diet trend, so I don’t know if my adaptation follows those guidelines completely, but the original recipe does if you want to check it out. My homemade Reese’s Puffs are healthy and definitely not overly sweet, yet they’re still peanut buttery and chocolatey enough to satisfy that craving for your childhood favorites. It’s the best of both worlds!
(adapted from A Girl Worth Saving)
- 1 cup almonds
- 1 Tbs. coconut oil*
- pinch of salt (I use sea salt.)
- 1 egg white
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1 drop almond extract
- 1/4 to 1/3 cup flour, divided (I used All-Purpose, but any kind will do: coconut, almond, oat, etc.)
- 1 1/2 Tbsp. cocoa powder
- 1 1/2 tsp. sugar
- 2 Tbsp. peanut butter (preferably homemade)
* I realize not everyone has coconut oil on hand. Though I haven’t tried it in this recipe, I’d suggest trying crisco (or another firm fat) as a substitution if needed.
- Process the almonds in a food processor for a few seconds– Just until you have a coarse flour.
- Add the coconut oil, salt, egg white, honey, vanilla extract, and almond extract, and process until smooth.
- Stir in 3 Tbs. flour, then divide the mixture into two small bowls.
- To one bowl, stir in the cocoa powder and sugar. A soft and sticky dough will form– like a very thick brownie batter. Add a teaspoon or two of flour to make it pliable enough to roll into a ball.
- To the other bowl, add 2 Tbs. peanut butter and 1 rounded Tbs. flour.
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees (or 350 if you want less crunchy, more puffy cereal), and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- With damp hands, roll the dough into blueberry-sized balls.* Wet your hands continually to prevent the dough from sticking to your hands completely.
- Bake for about 12 to 18 minutes, depending on the puff size and oven temperature, and cool completely.
Store in an airtight container. Makes about about two cups of cereal.**
* The dough will expand a bit in the oven. My first batch of puffs were rolled into Reese’s Puff-sized balls, and they grew pretty large in the oven! I rolled my second batch much smaller, ranging from pea-sized to blueberry-sized, and they were perfect. It took longer to roll them, but they were crunchier.
** Yes, this recipe makes only about two cups, but it is very filling. Trust me. I’m one who eats a huge bowl of cereal every morning, and eating a small handful of these in milk filled me up.
I’m not gonna lie; Reese’s Puffs and Cookie Crisp find their way into my pantry every now and then (I just can’t say goodbye forever!), but man do I feel good about sitting down to a guilt-free and tasty bowl of homemade Reese’s Puffs! The mere fact that I’m eating an unprocessed cereal that my own hands made is satisfying enough. Eat these guys in a bowl of your favorite milk, or eat them as a healthy and filling snack. Either way, you can’t go wrong!
What’s your guilty pleasure cereal? Or if you don’t eat cereal, your guilty pleasure breakfast? Don’t tell me you don’t love caramel rolls… ;)
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