Tuesday, April 12, 2011

PayDay Bars (Sugar free option) (UPDATED)

I saw this reminder of a favorite dessert of mine at Erin's "Making Memories....One Fun Thing after Another" and her name for this fabulous treat is O'Henry (Where Have You Been All Of My Life) bars - she's funny like that!

And obviously, while making memories, she makes wonderful recipes too.

This has been a very favorite recipe of mine for some time. I got it from my dear friend Janean, who often makes it for ladies gatherings. I simply cannot! resist it either.

(In the original recipe, directions say to boil this mixture 1 minute - the change is that you just heat sugar and corn syrup until sugar is dissolved.  This makes for a better texture that is sticky and not as hard.)

When I made it for a bake sale a few years ago, folks returned the second day wondering if we had more Payday Bars.  *-*  (Yes, I had made more!)

It's a quick and easy dish to whip up anytime.

This is the most repeated recipe in my kitchen and is also in my first cookbook.

I have enjoyed serving this for samples at my booksignings.  No one can resist the wonderful smell of these tasty treats! It's a real 'drawing card' of interest.

I tell everyone to make these when someone is at home, otherwise no one else will ever know you made them, because they'll be G-O-N-E!

They're irresistible for sure!

One of my sister-in-loves recently told me you can purchase sugar-free honey.  Of course, it isn't true honey, but it's an awesome substitute for karo syrup.

Here's proof...

This time I used Splenda and the sugar free honey for the base.


(UPDATE: I'm not sure 'sugar free honey' is even available in stores any more....just wanted you to know). 

Feel free to use full-sugar products if you want...or make it reduced sugar or even sugar free.  Your choice!

Honestly, the only difference I can tell is that the sugar free are not quite as sticky as sugar full. 

But either way - this is something you'll want to make often.

Enjoy every tasty delicious fantastic awesome bite!

(My sis-in-love has frozen these, and I was amazed I couldn't even tell!)

OK...OK...I'll get to the recipe now...

These are the sugar free ones

(From The Better Baker)

1 cup white sugar
1 cup light corn syrup
1 cup peanut butter, smooth or crunchy
1 tsp. vanilla extract
6 cups Rice Chex
(I use about 7-1/2)...there's enough of the gooey sauce to cover more than 6 cups
1 c. nuts, optional

Lightly grease a 9" X 13" X 2" dish. Measure cereal into a large bowl.  In medium saucepan, heat sugar and corn syrup until sugar is dissolved - do not boil. Remove from heat and stir in peanut butter and vanilla until well blended.  Pour over cereal (& nuts if using) and mix well. Press into prepared dish.  Cool and cut.  (If you can wait!)

Oh how I love licking the pan!

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Linked to Totally Tasty Tuesday
Sweets for a Saturday
Ingredient Spotlight
Gooseberry Patch Roundup - Picnics & Potlucks


  1. Hey Marsha~
    My second graders would be all over these! I'm going to keep these in mind next time I bring a treat to school! Yum!

  2. Jane - they would definitely love you more then than they do already if you spoiled them with this simple and easy sweet treat! GO FOR IT! =)

  3. Yum is all I can say. I am diabetic and will be trying these soon.

  4. Yum! I think I could down the whole pan. :)

    I need you to email me...Cook Book Project!

  5. Thanks for sharing this one.My children would surely love it. I saw your blog while hopping.I am your newest follower.I have a blog too.. www.cookiedropletsetcbymarelie.com

  6. These are very good!! How do I know? I have ate them....What a great treat, and making them sugar free, an even better treat.

  7. Thanks so much for your sweet comment on my blog! I sure do love being a stay-at-home-mommy for my baby girl--best job in the world. :)

    These bars look so good! I'm your newest follower and would love for you to pop by again soon and become a follower, as well! I host a linky party each week called So Sweet Sundays and this recipe would be perfect to share! :)


  8. You out did yourself on these....can't wait to make them! Blessings, K

  9. I've got a recipe like this coming up tomorrow (I think). I got the recipe from my mother-in-law and then added Nutella. Yum!