Personally, I have never really liked cereal and milk. However, there are a few new cereals on the market that I can eat right out of the box. One of these is Kellogg’s Cinnabon cereal. This is a sweet treat for me.
It is hard to believe that it was more than 50 years ago when home economists at the Kellogg Company developed the kid-pleasing snack known as Rice Krispie Treats. This sweet cereal specialty is just as popular today as it was more than half a century ago. There have been many new versions over the years, but the “back of the box” recipe still seems to be the favorite.
In addition to sweet treats, unsweetened cereals can be used as a coating for chicken, fish and other meats; as a crispy topping for casseroles; or as an “extender” for making foods go further.
Crushed cereals can also be used as a flavorful crust for savory pies or as a substitute for a portion of the flour in recipes for muffins, coffeecakes, cookies and breads.
The following muffin recipe is adapted from one I developed many years ago for a contest promoting a certain kind of cereal. The recipe turned out great, but I think it would be even better using crushed Cinnabon cereal. As the cereal absorbs the apple juice, it thickens to about the consistency of applesauce. If you feel creative, you might want to use this Cinnabon mixture in other recipes calling for applesauce.
With more importance being placed on fiber in the diet, many people are taking a second look at cereal. When oat bran reached its peak in the fight against cholesterol, we saw all kinds of recipes using this newfound wonder bran.
Cereal, once considered only a quick breakfast food, has climbed to new heights as creative cooks have learned to use this pantry staple in new and exciting recipes.
⅔ cup unsweetened apple juice
1 cup sugar, divided
1 cup coarsely crushed Cinnabon cereal
1 cup raisins
1 ½ cups self-rising flour
½ cup softened butter
½ cup chopped pecans (or nuts of choice)
¾ to 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Combine the juice and ½ cup sugar in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil. Stir in cereal. Reduce heat to medium and continue cooking until the cereal has absorbed most of the liquid and the mixture thickens. Remove from the heat and stir in the raisins. Cool slightly. Combine the flour, remaining ½ cup sugar, butter, egg and cereal mixture in a large bowl. Mix well. Stir in the pecans and vanilla extract. Spoon into well-greased and lightly floured muffin tins, filling each cup about half full. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 to 22 minutes. Serve warm with butter. If desired, you can drizzle a confectioners’ sugar glaze over the muffins.
Email Prudence Hilburn at firstname.lastname@example.org