I would just like to say that the rice krispie treat is underrated. They come together in literally five minutes and their deliciousness makes you have interesting conversations with yourself. “I already had one, I don’t need another. But they’re basically breakfast cereal, so another one is fine. Marshmallows are fat free, so it’s cool if I have a third. Oh look, that edge isn’t totally straight, I should even it out”.
Even though they’re easy, there is room for improvement. I hate when they’re too hard, or too dry, or fall apart too easily. I like when there are packets of marshmallow that didn’t completely melt, and I love when peanut butter’s involved. These revamped treats are just as easy to make, but with the addition of a few ingredients they are made just that much better. A bit of light corn syrup makes them glossier and chewier – yum, and the addition of brown sugar and vanilla deepens the flavor, giving the taste more dimension. By adding some marshmallows into the pot when you add the cereal, you’ll get those lovely pockets of chewy whiteness in each treat. I gave you specific measurements (as I specifically measured the first batch), but for the second batch I kind of just threw things into the pot in approximate amounts – feel free to do this as it worked out just as well!
Now – Rice Krispies are technically not gluten free because there is malt flavoring. It’s a very small amount, though, so unless you have celiac you may be okay eating them. My husband isn’t allergic, just avoids for health reasons, and he dug right in. I now keep a box of cereal and a bag of marshmallows on hand at all times, just in case a quick dessert is needed.
Peanut Butter Rice Krispies
Makes about 20 bars
3 tbsp. butter
1 tbsp. light corn syrup
1/4 c. lightly packed brown sugar
1/4 heaping tsp. kosher salt
1/3 c. creamy peanut butter
1 bag mini marshmallows, divided
1 tsp. vanilla extract
6 c. puffed rice cereal
1. Spray a 9×12 baking pan with nonstick spray.
2. In a large pot set over medium heat, add butter, corn syrup, brown sugar and salt. Mix until melted and smoothly combined.
3. Add peanut butter and mix until combined. Add all but 1/2 c. marshmallows (reserve the 1/2 c.) and stir until melted and combined.
4. Remove from heat and add vanilla. Stir.
5. Add cereal and 1/2 c. marshmallows and stir quickly until combined. Pour mixture into prepared pan – with wet hands or silicone spatula press mixture gently into pan until even.
6. Let sit at least 20-30 minutes before slicing into squares. Treats will keep several days air tight at room temperature.