One of my sons cannot eat foods that contain any form of corn, so we buy our cereal at Trader Joe’s on our way home from church every other weekend. The cheaper cereals sold there are made without corn syrup and tend to be priced the same as the cheap box cereals sold in our local grocery stores.
Last weekend we ran out of cereal. I am six months pregnant with our third child and, for some reason, I really wanted cereal. The grocery stores close by don’t sell cereal that is safe for Andrew. Trader Joes is a 30 minute drive from our house and it wasn’t Sunday! So, out of pregnant desperation, I got creative. My ten minutes of creative desperation was apparently creative genius to my little boys. They gobbled this cereal right up. Recipe below…
3/4 cup strawberry jam
1/4 cup honey
1 pound of cheap oatmeal
1 cup raisins
1/2 cup cashews
Preheat the oven to 350F. Melt the jam and honey in a small pan. Stir well. Measure the oatmeal into a boul and pour the syrup mixture over the oatmeal. Stir with a rubber spatula until the oatmeal is damp. Spread in a large cookie sheet and toast in the oven for 12-15 minutes. Watch carefully – my batch was done at 12 minutes. Let the mixture cool then mix in the raisins and cashews. Store in a glass jar or a plastic bag. I wasn’t sure if the jelly needed to be refrigerated so I stored the cereal in the refrigerator to be safe.
Then the business brain in my head convinced me that I needed to sit down and do some quick math… it doesn’t make sense to do this very often unless it is also cheaper than buying cereal from Trader Joes. I was really surprised. The ingredients came from the tiny grocery section in our Walmart (oatmeal, raisins, cashews) and Costco (honey). All together, the whole batch of cereal actually cost me less than $2.00!
I’m already mulling over other variations on this… adding peanut butter and chocolate is sounding really yummy for the next try!