Salted Caramel S’Mores Cereal Bars are sweet & chewy, soft yet crispy, and studded with little bits of caramel and sea salt! They get an extra hit of cocoa by using whole grain chocolate cereal, too!
S’Mores Cereal Bars + Salted Caramel Goodness
With summer break underway, we’ll be spending time at the pool and taking trips big and small. Something we always need for such occasions are snacks!
These bars are perfect because they’re packable, made with whole grain cereal and inspired by one of our favorite summer treats…s’mores! And, they contain an extra surprise with little chunks of caramel throughout.
But, don’t stop at snack time. Bring a tray of these to your summer celebrations and watch the grins appears on all the kids’ faces…and the kids at heart.
Ingredients for S’Mores Cereal Bars
- Salted butter
- Mini marshmallows — minis melt faster due to their size.
- Chocolate Cheerios — or other whole grain cocoa cereal.
- Caramel bits — I use Kraft brand; they are like mini caramel balls. King Arthur, Hershey’s and other companies produce caramel chips (similar to a chocolate chip) that you can sub in.
- Chocolate chips — You can chop up a chocolate bar instead.
- Coarse sea salt
It’s Easy to Make S’Mores Cereal Bars!
You have to work quickly to press the bars into the pan before the marshmallow cools too much, so measure out all your ingredients before you begin!
- In a large pot, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the marshmallows and stir until they have completely melted, then take the pot off the heat.
- Add the cereal and stir to coat evenly. Fold in the caramel bits.
- Gently press the mix into the prepared pan (see Helpful Tips below).
- Melt the chocolate in a microwave safe bowl in 30 second increments, stirring in between, until the chocolate is melted. Drizzle it haphazardly all over the cereal bars. While the chocolate is still melty, sprinkle the top with coarse sea salt.
Allow the bars to cool completely before cutting into 16 squares.
Helpful Tips + Variations
- If you want to serve these straight from the pan, give it a spritz with cooking spray to make them easier to dish out. If you’d like to remove them from the pan before cutting, line the pan with a sheet of parchment or wax paper and let it hang over the sides. Spritz any exposed areas of the pan with cooking spray.
- Use a sturdy spatula or clean hands spritzed with cooking spray to gently press the cereal into the pan. The oil will keep the marshmallow and other ingredients from sticking to you or the spatula.
- If you substitute the caramel bits for caramel chips, watch for ‘sea salt’ in the name / ingredients. Taste the chips and adjust the recipe as needed by using unsalted butter or omitting the sea salt sprinkle on top.
- If you can’t find caramel bits or they’re just out of stock (it’s happened to me!), try this variation:
- Use any flavor or combo of chocolate chips (milk, dark, white, butterscotch, etc.) in place of the caramel bits (a scant 1-2/3 cup).
- Instead of drizzling chocolate over the tops, melt caramel chews (like these sea salt caramels) to drizzle. Allow the caramel to set completely before cutting into squares.
- Don’t use caramel sauce as it won’t set up like the candies and you’ll be cleaning caramel drips off the front of your shirt!
Do You Love Chocolatey Desserts? Try These…
- Bourbon Brown Butter Mini Derby Pies
- No Bake Triple Chocolate Tart
- Nutty Irishman Brownie Bites
- Chocolate + Caramel Toffee Shortbread Hearts
Salted Caramel S’Mores Cereal Bars
- 3 tbsp salted butter
- 10 oz miniature marshmallows
- 5 cups Chocolate Cheerios or other whole grain chocolate cereal
- 11 oz caramel bits (1 bag) I use Kraft brand
- ½ cup chocolate chips or chocolate bar chopped fine
- 2 pinches coarse sea salt like Maldon
- Coat a 9 x 13-inch baking pan with cooking spray. Because you have to work quickly through this recipe, measure out all the ingredients before you start.
- In a large pot, melt butter over medium heat. Add marshmallows and stir until completely melted. Remove from heat.
- Add the cereal. Stir until well coated. Fold in the caramel bits.
- Use a spatula (or clean hands) spritzed with cooking spray, gently press the mixture into the prepared baking pan.
- Melt the chocolate chips in the microwave on high in 30 second increments, stirring in-between, until melted. Drizzle it over the top of the cereal. Sprinkle a couple healthy pinches of coarse sea salt over the melted chocolate.
- Cool completely. Cut into 16 squares.
Nutritional values are estimated and provided as a general guideline only.