These no bake breakfast cereal bars are made with cereal and peanut butter with a fun chocolate chip topping. It’s a quick and easy breakfast option that the kids will love!

I’m always looking for grab and go breakfast options to keep the kids well fueled in the morning such as egg muffins and breakfast burritos. Cereal bars are one of their favorites, these bars make a great after school snack too!

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Cereal bars stacked on a sheet pan topped with colorful sprinkles.

Trying to get three kids out the door in the mornings is no easy task. I try and be as organized as possible so that no time is wasted, and part of that means preparing breakfast in advance. I created these cereal bars as a grab-and-go option for the days when there’s just no time to sit around the table and have a leisurely meal.

How do you make cereal bars?

These no-bake cereal bars start with a blend of old fashioned oats, crispy rice cereal, and wheat germ. Peanut butter, brown sugar and corn syrup are added to the mix for sweetness and to help bind everything together. The cereal mixture is pressed into a pan, then topped with candy coated chocolate chips for a fun finishing touch. Chill your bars, then slice and serve!

Cereal, oats, wheat germ and brown sugar in a bowl.

Tips for cereal bars

  • Wheat germ can be found in the breakfast or baking aisles of most grocery stores. It’s also often available in the bulk bins.
  • Be sure to use rolled old fashioned oats, not quick oats in this recipe.
  • You can use smooth or crunchy peanut butter, I typically use smooth.
  • The candy coated chocolate chips are sold in little bottles in the baking aisle with the sprinkles. If your store doesn’t carry them, feel free to substitute miniature chocolate chips or a different type of sprinkles.

Peanut butter, brown sugar and corn syrup in a bowl.

Are cereal bars healthy?

These bars contain oatmeal, wheat germ and peanut butter, which are all nutritious foods. The bars do contain sugar to add some sweetness. If you’re looking to make the bars a little healthier, you can reduce the amount of sugar to 1/3 cup, and substitute honey or brown rice syrup in lieu of the corn syrup.

A square pan filled with a peanut butter and cereal mixture.

How long do cereal bars stay fresh?

These cereal bars will stay fresh for up to one week. I prefer to store my bars in the fridge, as they may soften at room temperature if it’s a warm day. You can also freeze your bars. Wrap each bar individually in plastic wrap, then store in a resealable freezer bag for up to 2 months. Thaw at room temperature, then enjoy.

Cereal bars on a plate with colorful candy coated chocolates on top.

Breakfast bar variations

This is a basic bar recipe, and you can add other ingredients to customize the flavors to your tastes.

  • Raisins
  • Toasted Coconut
  • Chopped Nuts
  • Protein Powder
  • Cinnamon
  • Freeze Dried Fruit

These no-bake breakfast bars are a great way to feed your family in a hurry. The peanut butter adds a nice dose of protein and healthy fat to keep everyone full all morning long and the cereal is full of vitamins and minerals, making this a breakfast choice you can feel good about giving your kids. These bars are not just for the kids, my husband also likes to grab one on his way to work!

More easy breakfast ideas

5 from 4 votes

Cereal Bars

AuthorSara Welch
Cereal bars stacked on a sheet pan topped with colorful sprinkles.
These homemade cereal bars are made with peanut butter, oats, wheat germ and rice cereal for a wholesome snack or breakfast option.
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time5 minutes
Chill Time1 hour
Total Time1 hour 15 minutes
Course Breakfast
Cuisine American
Serves 12 bars


  • 2 cups rolled old fashioned oats
  • 2 1/2 cups crispy rice cereal
  • 1/4 cup wheat germ toasted in a pan for 1-2 minutes until golden brown and fragrant
  • 3/4 cup light corn syrup can also use honey
  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup candy coated chocolate chips or miniature chocolate chips
  • cooking spray


  • Line a 9 inch square pan with parchment paper, then coat the pan and parchment with cooking spray.
  • Place the oats, rice cereal and wheat germ in a large bowl. Stir to combine.
  • Place the corn syrup, peanut butter and brown sugar in a pot on the stove over medium heat.
  • Cook for 2-4 minutes or until peanut butter has melted, stirring occasionally.
  • Pour the peanut butter mixture into the oat mixture. Stir until well combined.
  • Press the cereal bar mixture firmly into the prepared pan. Gently press chocolate chips into the top of the bars.
  • Chill for 60 minutes or until firm. Cut into 12 pieces, then serve.


Serving: 1g | Calories: 251kcal | Carbohydrates: 36g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Sodium: 166mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 16g

This post was originally published September 10, 2015 and was updated on June 26, 2019 with new content.

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Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    Breakfast bars are the BEST go-to meal for busy mornings! I can’t tell you how many times they have come in handy! This recipe is going to save my mornings; delish!

  2. Where did you get those gorgeous bags with the ruler printed on the side???

    LOVE the recipe but have not made it yet…

    1. I got them at a local party goods store but this was a few years ago! You may be able to find something similar from Amazon or Oriental Trading Company.

  3. I used smooth Peter Pan. They stuck together but I was thinking more like rice Krispy bars. My 22 yr old son loved them and said make them again. I will measure more closely next time. After 1 minute in microwave the honey was about to boil over and it did mix nice. I also used special K very berry and Rasin brand crunch. As I said my son loved them.

    1. Hi Debra, the reason for heating the honey is that you want it to be hot enough to thoroughly mix with the peanut butter. The honey/peanut butter mixture should be thin enough to coat all of the cereal and should firm back up as it cools. I’m sorry your bars didn’t hold together – what kind of peanut butter did you use?

  4. What a great way to keep weekday mornings under control! Heck, I think I might make a double-batch and use it for the adults in the house, too. Thanks for sharing! #client

  5. I love that these utilize the microwave so there’s no large pot to clean. My family loves bars, so these will be a winner in my house.

  6. My mom used to make brownies on Sunday mornings, she said the only way to get four kids out the door on time for church was to give us chocolate for breakfast. I was an adult before I really realized it is a dessert not a breakfast food! haha! I’m glad you found a yummy bar to get your crew going! It looks great!

  7. What a delicious looking breakfast bar! They look easy to make (no-bake is the best!) and even easier to devour 🙂