Mixed Berry Rice Cereal Bars

Celebrate the birth of America with fireworks of flavors! Mixed Berry Rice Cereal Bars are as patriotic as they are delicious!

Happy (almost) 4th of July my fellow Americans! I hope you all are enjoying a relaxing long holiday and soaking up some of the gorgeous weather. Four-day weekends are a true thing of beauty aren’t they??

Mixed Berry Rice Cereal Bars | AreYouKitchenMe.com

This holiday has always had a very special place in my heart… When we were kids, we always went to my grandma’s house in Newark, where my extended family lives. We would have a cookout, go to the Granville parade, watch the fireworks at OSU Newark, and play with sparklers until our fingers were burnt. Some of my favorite childhood memories are laying with my brother and cousins in Grammy’s hammock and eating the same star-shaped cookies she got every year.

Mixed Berry Rice Cereal Bars | AreYouKitchenMe.com

I miss these nostalgic days, and my grandmother. For nearly 20 years we held on to the very same tradition- down to sitting on the same dirty “tar blankie” at the parade every year. And although I’m sad we no longer munch on the local red, white, and blue sugar cookies, I love finding ways to make new creations from old traditions!

Mixed Berry Rice Cereal Bars | AreYouKitchenMe.com

Case in point, these rice cereal bars! I wanted to call these rice crispy treats, but that would be misleading. They don’t have any marshmallows and they don’t have that same gooey consistency. Instead, they remind me more of those (gross, sugary) “milk and cereal” bars they sell in the grocery isle. A nice firm bite, lots of crunch, and burst of berry flavors sprinkled throughout!

Mixed Berry Rice Cereal Bars | AreYouKitchenMe.com

The ingredients list is super short for this recipe, but if you’re confused about coconut butter, head over to this post where I walk you through how to make it. Sure, you could buy it at the store but it’s so much more cost effective and just as easy to do at home! Oh, and if you’re having a hard time finding freeze-dried berries, Meijer, Whole Foods, and Trader Joes always seem to have them.

Mixed Berry Rice Cereal Bars | AreYouKitchenMe.com

Whether you’re cherishing old traditions or starting new ones, I wish you a holiday that is sweet and delicious and filled with all of the people you love!

Mixed Berry Rice Cereal Bars

Yield: 16 bars

Celebrate the birth of America with fireworks of flavors! Mixed Berry Rice Cereal Bars are as patriotic as they are delicious!

Ingredients

  • 4 cups crisp rice cereal
  • ¾ cup coconut butter (learn to make your own in minutes!)
  • ½ cup maple syrup
  • 2 Tbs. coconut oil
  • 2 tsp. vanilla
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 cup each, freeze dried strawberries and blueberries

Instructions

  1. Prepare an 8x8 square baking dish by lightly rubbing it with coconut oil, lining it with parchment paper, and oiling the paper.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together the cereal and dried fruit, reserving some for topping.
  3. In a small heatproof bowl, add coconut butter, maple syrup, and coconut oil. Warm in 20-second intervals in the microwave until warm and smooth (about a minute). Stir in vanilla and salt.
  4. Pour the wet ingredients over the dry and use a large spoon to stir gently until completely incorporated. Immediately pour the mixture into the prepared pan and smooth down the top.
  5. Place in the fridge for a few hours or in the freezer for about an hour, until totally firm. Drizzle with extra melted coconut butter and dried fruit and freeze for a few minutes until solid. Slice and enjoy!
http://www.areyoukitchenme.com/mixed-berry-rice-cereal-bars/

Mixed Berry Rice Cereal Bars | AreYouKitchenMe.com

What I Ate Wednesday

When your day starts out crummy but ends with chips and guac, things really turn around! Sometimes What I Ate Wednesdays are full of surprises!

Holyyyyy humpday, honeys. We did it! It’s halfway through the week! I’ve got my eye on a four day weekend that just can’t come soon enough. Ya feel me?

What I Ate Wednesday | AreYouKitchenMe.com

I had a rough start to the day. After munching on our banana and making it all the way to the gym, I realized I had forgotten to wear a headband. Working out without a headband is something of a nightmare for me (hello frizzy hair) but I pushed through a killer leg day.

What I Ate Wednesday | AreYouKitchenMe.com

Turns out, that was just the start to my day’s madness. I had forgotten to grab something from the store so we ran to Kroger at 6:30am, putting me behind my normal schedule. Likely because I was rushing in the kitchen, my hand slipped while pouring my smoothie and half of it poured out all over the counter and floor. Seriously so tragic… I obviously didn’t take a picture of my defiled breakfast, so let’s just stare at this lovely smoothie bowl from last weekend…

What I Are Wednesday | AreYouKitchenMe.com

I finally got my life together enough to make it to work and sipped on some matcha. Due to my slight breakfast, I was ravenous early and snacked on a giant organic apple.

What I Are Wednesday | AreYouKitchenMe.com

Leg day always renders me endlessly hungry so I had an early lunch to satisfy the hunger beast. I tossed some spinach with balsamic vinegar and topped it with a chopped cucumber and cherry tomato salad with kalamata olives, edamame, and hemp seeds. I always crave big crunchy salads during the day and this guy definitely hit the spot.

What I Are Wednesday | AreYouKitchenMe.com

What I Are Wednesday | AreYouKitchenMe.com

What I Are Wednesday | AreYouKitchenMe.com

The Wellness Committee hosted a Local Matters cook-off event in the afternoon and we had a BLAST competing in teams in a Chopped-style competition. After having only 20 minutes to use the secret ingredient farro, all of the teams came up with some incredible dishes! My team made an Asian stir fry and a grain salad with asparagus, red cabbage, cranberries, apple, and a blueberry basil vinaigrette. After the competition, we got to sample the other teams’ dishes and I basically had a second lunch. Such a fun event!!

What I Are Wednesday | AreYouKitchenMe.com

After work, we dashed out the door to meet up with friends and my parents. One of our neighbors won a beer brewing contest and got to brew his beer with Seventh Son Brewery. So of course we had to go grab a pint on keg-tapping day! Then we talked down to a newish restaurant, Cosecha for some Mexican food. Of course, we order some chips + salsa + guac for starters. Per usual, I was full by the time the chips were gone but I somehow found room for a vegetable tostada. It was just alright but I tried a few bites of other’s dishes and everything way pretty good!

What I Are Wednesday | AreYouKitchenMe.com

And then we went home and fell asleep on the couch. <– hahaha that might as well be my motto… I wish I had more fun evening adventures to share but we’re old folks! Even though my day started off a little rocky, ending it with chips and salsa pretty much evened the scales and made for a great day…

Sriracha Avocado Toast

Just when you think your spicy mouth may ignite… Cool + creamy avocado saves the day! The story of Sriracha Avocado Toast is a feisty one!

Do you ever get on a kick where you eat the same thing everyday for like, weeks? I’m a serious creature of habit so when I find something I like, I stick to it until I’m completely burnt out. Evidence: I’ve eaten my Chocolate Cherry Beet Smoothie every morning for the past few months. (Not burnt out! …yet.) I once went on a nearly year-long spree of raisin snacking- I put them in everything, on everything, and munched on them for a daily snack. I can’t touch the things anymore…

Sriracha Avocado Toast | AreYouKitchenMe.com

There’s one obsession I doubt I’ll ever get sick of… Avocado toast. Sometimes, when I don’t feel like thinking up dinners for the week, we’ll buy a loaf of bread and a half dozen avocados and eat toast all week. No shame in that lazy dinner game.

Sriracha Avocado Toast | AreYouKitchenMe.com

While I usually enjoy my smashed avocado toast with just a squeeze of lemon and a bunch of flaky sea salt, it can be fun to switch things up a little! Sometimes I’ll add a smear of vegan mayo, a heaping pile of sprouts, or some strawberries for that sweet and salty combo. The possibilities are truly endless! The one thing I hadn’t tried yet was adding both crunch + spice to my creamy toast…

Sriracha Avocado Toast | AreYouKitchenMe.com

Adding a crispy texture and a pop of spice makes this toast nearly explode in your mouth! There’s so much happening on one piece of bread! All thanks to the powerhouse Toasted Hemp Seeds from Manitoba Harvest. When Manitoba sent me some products to sample, I had never tried the crispity crunchity toasted guys. At first bite, I was hooked on the crunch but couldn’t quite put my tongue on what they reminded me of… I finally concluded that they’re a bit like teeny sunflower seeds- except you eat the shell!

Sriracha Avocado Toast | AreYouKitchenMe.com

I’m a big hot sauce fan but I have to admit, my bottle of sriracha often gets lost in the back on my pantry. I dug it out because I just knew a drizzle of the good stuff would pair perfectly with the sriracha-flavored toasted seeds. Weeeeooo! I’m so glad I was right about that one. Because the avocado and bread cool down the spice level so much, you’re left with a great flavor and perfect crunch.

Sriracha Avocado Toast | AreYouKitchenMe.com

Not only will Toasted Hemp Seeds knock your flavor socks off, they pack the same healthy punch as Manitoba’s hemp hearts. If you missed it, I shared some of the many health benefits in my Matcha Hemp Energy Bites post. Long story short, they’re great for you, ok?

 

Crunchetize me (and the toast), captain.

Sriracha Avocado Toast

Cook Time: 5 minutes

Just when you think your spicy mouth may ignite… Cool + creamy avocado saves the day! The story of Sriracha Avocado Toast is a feisty one!

Ingredients

  • 2 pieces of your favorite bread (GF if necessary)
  • 1 avocado, mashed
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • Pinch of black pepper
  • Sriracha
  • 2 Tbs. Sriracha Toasted Hemp seeds
  • Chives, for garnish (optional)

Instructions

  1. Toast the bread until browned to your liking.
  2. Mash the avocado with salt and pepper and then spread on bread. Garnish with hot sauce, hemp seeds, and chopped chives.
http://www.areyoukitchenme.com/sriracha-avocado-toast/

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