Tuesday, February 25, 2014

No-bake peanut butter chocolate chip oat bites

I'm not sure where the weekend went, much less how it's already Tuesday.  I had lists of lists of things to do, places to go, and people to see... and accomplished approximately 10% of those tasks.  It's no outstanding victory, but it's no down-in-flames failure either.  Sometimes you've gotta celebrate the smallest of victories, right?

Self high five!

That felt good.  Let's all promise to give ourselves pats on the back and high fives more often, okay?  Deal.

Anywho, at the start of this past weekend, I had peanut butter on the brain.  I also dreamt up many grandiose plans and new recipes to use said nut butter.  But none of them quite panned out the way I imagined.

"I think I'll make chewy peanut butter cookies tomorrow," I told Matt on Friday night.  On Saturday, I made thin and crispy chocolate chip cookies.

"One more mile and it's smoothie time.  Mmm... cold... refreshing... I should make a PB & J smoothie!" I promised myself as I plodded along on the treadmill.  Hungry, sweaty, and exhausted of energy needed to create something new, I blended and guzzled a purple monster smoothie, my old (and delicious) stand-by.

"Oooh, maybe I'll test a new recipe for peanut butter waffles for breakfast on Sunday," I thought to myself on Saturday.  Whipped up delicious pumpkin pancakes on Sunday morning; they neither contained peanut butter nor required the waffle iron.

"I can't wait to sleep in tomorrow morning," I mumbled to Matt on Saturday night, already half asleep.  I woke up at 6:19 on Sunday morning; not only was it not late, it was even a minute earlier than I wake up on a weekday.

Okay, so that last one had nothing to do with peanut butter, but it's a spot-on example of how my weekend never quite got on track.  If my plans for the weekend were the rails and I the train, let's just say you would've found my caboose firmly planted in a deserted corn field somewhere in Iowa.

Though that caboose was sitting a little left of center, it was one pretty content and happy train.  Content because it had yummy bite-size peanut butter snacks to keep it company.

These petite bites hit everything on the ultimate snack checklist, making them uber addictive: crunchy, chewy, salty, sweet, chocolatey, peanut butter-y, and so poppable.  What more do you need?!  And they don't require any baking, which is great when said train is exceedingly impatient... even when it's going nowhere quickly.

Truth be told, these snacks were thisclose to not being completed because I almost face-planted into the mixing bowl.  I think I deserve another self high five for exercising enough restraint to see the process through to the end.  Never mind the fact that I ate four of them almost immediately thereafter.

Here's to the small victories in life, no matter how mini they may be.

One year ago: Ribeye steaks with blue cheese onion sauce
Two years ago: Walnut rosemary chicken
Three years ago: Peanut butter cup crunch brownies
Four years ago: Pear spice muffins

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Oat Bites
(adapted slightly from Bake or Break)
-makes approximately 24 bites

A few notes: Feel free to personalize these as you wish -- raisins, peanut butter chips, white chocolate chips or even mini M&Ms would be great additions.  Whatever you add, try to keep it to 1/2 cup quantity to make sure the bites can still retain their shape.

2 Tablespoons unsalted butter
2/3 cup smooth peanut butter
1/4 cup confectioner's sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 Tablespoons honey
Pinch of salt
1 1/2 cups Rice Krispies cereal
1 cup oats (I used old fashioned, but quick or 1 minute would work, too)
1/2 cup chocolate chips (mini would be great; I used standard size)

In a heat-safe glass bowl, melt butter in microwave.  Stir in peanut butter, sugar, vanilla, honey, and salt until smooth.  Allow to cool slightly.  Fold in cereal and oats, mixing until combined.  Fold in chocolate chips.  Form mixture into 1 1/2 inch balls (a #40 ice cream scoop works great for this) and place on plate or baking sheet.  Enjoy immediately!

Oat bites can be covered and refrigerated for up to 1 week.


  1. What is the difference between confectioner's sugar and plain sugar? Please forgive me as I do not know how to bake.

    1. No apologies -- that's a great question! Plain or granulated sugar is the white stuff we're all familiar with. It's what's most popular in baking recipes and what folks add to their coffee. Confectioner's or powdered sugar is a very fine sugar with the consistency of powder, merely granulated sugar that's been ground up by a food processor. Powdered sugar dissolves quicker and is more popular in cake frostings and is what's dusted on top of French toast. Hope this helps!