Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Peanut Butter Pretzel Bars

I'm a big fan of the Clif Mojo bars...my favorite flavor being Peanut Butter Pretzel.   It must be the healthy protein of the PB combined with the crisp crunch of the pretzel.   Or something.   In any case, when I found this recipe in the book Bakeless Sweets by Faith Durand (courtesy of my public library), I knew it was going to happen.

Warning:  these are more like dessert and less like a healthy cereal bar.   Don't let it stop you.  

And they're bakeless which means that your kitchen won't get all hot in the middle of summer.   

What You Need
1 cups packed brown sugar
1 cup light corn syrup
2 cups mini marshmallows
3/4 cup peanut butter (as always using the Kroger crunchy honey nut)
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 cups think pretzel sticks - break most of them in half
4 cups Golden Crisp cereal (or other puffed wheat cereal)

If you want some chocolate drizzle:
3 tablespoons semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 teaspoon vegetable oil
(heat in a microwave bowl on low heat until just melted and then stir until smooth)

What You Do
Line a 13x9 baking pan with foil and lightly coat with cooking spray.  

In a large saucepan (big enough for all the pretzels and cereal too), bring the corn syrup and brown sugar to a boil over medium heat.   Turn off the heat and add the marshmallows, stirring until they are half melted and then add the peanut butter stirring until well combined (aka sticky peanut buttery goodness).    Then add the vanilla and salt.   Mix in the pretzels and puffed wheat and stir to coat.   Turn the mix out into your pan.    You're going to want to press it firmly into the pan....this is a challenge to do without your fingers sticking to everything.   If you have a second silicone bake mat, lightly spray it with cooking spray and use it to to push the mix into the pan.  

Chill for 1 hour and then slice into bars.    I used a big chefs knife - if everything gets too sticky, run the knife under hot water between slicings.

To drizzle or not to drizzle....
You can chocolate drizzle it before you put it in the fridge to cool or afterwards once you cut the bars.    I opted to wait until after I cut the bars (this is probably very inefficient, just saying).    My drizzle technique is pretty basic:  a spoon of chocolate, a pretzel bar and a hope that the drizzle doesn't go flying onto the wall.

What do you think of the peanut butter pretzel combination?  


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