Our Favorite Rice Krispie Treats Recipe

The ratio of cereal to marshmallow makes or breaks a rice krispie treat– literally! For extra gooey and buttery rice krispie treats, use this recipe. Adding a little extra butter and marshmallow, plus a splash of vanilla extract and a pinch of salt makes all the difference.

Rice krispie treats cut into squares

I wasn’t going to publish this recipe because– really– how many ways can one make a rice krispie treat? (Hello cake batter rice krispie treats from forever ago!) The internet is flooded with these classic marshmallow squares, but I figured you might like to know how I’ve been making them over the years…? Maybe? Hopefully?

This is, without question, the best way to make rice krispie treats and I have a few tricks up my sleeve to guarantee that the treats are extra marshmallow-y, extra gooey, extra buttery, extra flavorful, and extra AWESOME. I make these whenever I need something quick and guaranteed crowd-friendly. In fact, I just served a double batch at a big cookout over the weekend. Not a single square left.

Crispy rice treats are a totally retro dessert and once you take that first bite, you’re instantly reminded why they’re a staple. So good!!

Stack of rice krispie treats

Video Tutorial: How to Make Rice Krispie Treats

5 Ingredients in These Rice Krispie Treats

You only need 5 simple ingredients for these no-bake squares.

  1. Butter: Like all good desserts, the base of great rice krispie treats is butter! You need 3/4 cup, which is 12 Tablespoons or 1.5 sticks.
  2. Marshmallows: These krispie treats are extra marshmallow-y without falling apart. You need 2 10-ounce bags (about 11 heaping cups) of mini marshmallows.
  3. Vanilla Extract: This is an easy addition that turns a good rice krispie treat into a great rice krispie treat. You only need 1/2 teaspoon, but what a difference it makes!
  4. Salt: Salt is another little addition I add to my rice krispie treats. Like vanilla extract, salt is a super convenient ingredient and you don’t need much of it. Just a pinch adds a depth of flavor otherwise absent from crispy rice treats.
  5. Rice Krispies Cereal: What’s a crispy treat without rice krispies cereal? The best!

Melt the butter and marshmallows in a big pot on the stove, then remove from heat and gently stir in the remaining ingredients. I just use my handy 5.5 quart dutch oven. It’s the perfect size!

Melted marshmallow butter mixture for crispy rice treats in a pot

Rice krispie treat mixture in pink pot

Best Ratio of Marshmallow to Cereal

An important factor in a rice krispie treat recipe is the ratio of marshmallow to cereal. Too much cereal and the squares will taste dry, crunchy, and bland. Too much marshmallow and the squares will be too sticky and fall apart. The best ratio for a 9×13 inch baking pan is 2 10-ounce bags of mini marshmallows (11 heaping cups) and 9 cups of cereal.

To prevent any kind of sticking, line your baking pan with greased parchment paper. I just lightly spray the parchment paper with a little nonstick spray.

Pan of rice krispie treats with spatula

The #1 Trick for Rice Krispie Treats

Do you want an extra buttery melt-in-your-mouth marshmallow square? Of course you do. In order to achieve this, do NOT pack the rice krispie treats down into the baking pan. Use greased fingers or a greased spatula to softly spread and stretch the mixture into the pan, then use a flat spatula to very gently press the mixture down. Do not compact it with force otherwise your treats will be thin and hard. Instead, just lightly press the treats down into the pan. Butter the back of a flat spatula or spray with a little nonstick spray to prevent sticking. Your treats will be soft yet crisp and not overly crunchy. 🙂

I recommend doing this with my scotcheroos, too!

Rice krispie treats

rice krispie treats

That’s basically it! I don’t need to convince you that rice krispie treats are delicious, but I hope you try these little extras (the vanilla, salt, ratio of marshmallow to cereal) the next time you need a recipe for these marshmallow squares.

How do you make rice krispie treats?

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Rice krispie treats cut into squares

Our Favorite Rice Krispie Treats

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 5 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour, 15 minutes
  • Yield: 20 treats
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Cooking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

This is our favorite recipe for classic rice krispie treats. Adding a little extra butter and marshmallow, plus a splash of vanilla extract and a pinch of salt makes all the difference! Let them set for at least 1 hour before cutting into squares.


Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup (170g; 1.5 sticks) unsalted butter
  • two 10 ounce bags (11 heaping cups) mini marshmallows
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • pinch salt
  • 9 cups (270g) crispy rice cereal

Instructions

  1. Line a 9×13 inch baking pan with parchment paper. Lightly grease the parchment. I always use a very light mist of nonstick spray. Set aside.
  2. Melt the butter over medium heat in a very large pot. Once melted, add the marshmallows. Stir the mixture until the marshmallows are completely melted.
  3. Remove from heat, then immediately stir in the vanilla extract and salt. Finally, fold in the cereal. Make sure each piece of cereal is coated with the marshmallow mixture.
  4. Transfer mixture to prepared pan. Using a rubber spatula (greasing it lightly helps), gently spread mixture to fit the pan. Lightly grease the back of a flat spatula and very gently press the mixture down into the pan. Do not pack it down with force, just lightly press down so it’s secure in the pan.
  5. Allow treats to set for at least 1 hour at room temperature and up to 1 day. Cover tightly if leaving out for more than a few hours.
  6. Lift the rice krispie treats as a whole out of the pan using the parchment paper. Cut into squares.
  7. Cover and store leftover treats at room temperature for up to 3 days. To store, place in layers between sheets of parchment or wax paper.

Notes

  1. Freezing Instructions: Rice krispie treats aren’t the best dessert to freeze because the texture isn’t always completely the same after thawing. That being said, you can still freeze these squares. Freeze in layers between sheets of parchment or wax paper in a freezer container for up to 2 months. Thaw at room temperature before serving.
  2. If gluten free, check labels to ensure all products are certified gluten free.
  3. For the pinch of salt, I always add a little less than 1/8 teaspoon.

Adapted from Kellogg’s

Keywords: marshmallow

161 Comments

  1. I was wondering if you could formulate a recipe for British flapjacks? Theyre not pancakes as Americans would call them, look like rice crispies but with oats. Ive been looking for a good recipe, the ones on the internet are much too sweet and sickly. Id trust your recipes without a second thought.I hope youll consider it, sure lots of British readers would appreciate it too :).

    1. Hell yes! Adding my vote to the British/overseas viewers. I’ve made Sally’s raisin granola bars and streusel bars (healthy version), which is the closest I’ve gotten to a flapjack that actually tastes of oats haha

  2. Elpida Morfetas says:

    I wanted to love this recipe and although it tasted great with the addition of the vanilla and pinch of salt, I found the butter excessive. I followed the recipe in terms of the cereal and marshmellow amounts, but the butter was pooling at the bottom of the pan. I know it doesn’t taste to have dry rice crispy squares but I found the amount of butter made the recipe greasy.

  3. I would use a 1/2 bag of Heath Bar butter brickle bits (or however much you want). Sprinkle them in as you’re folding the Rice Krispies into the marshmallow mixture. And that sounds great!

  4. jennifer martin says:

    I heard you can put a can of sweet condensed milk in your rice Krispy treat so they won’t get hard is that true

  5. Hi! Would these hold together well on a cake pop stick?

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Yes, that should work Tina. Just make sure the treats are completely cool before you cut them so they maintain their shape.

  6. Great recipe, best one I’ve tried! Take a small square of parchment paper and use that to press the warm mixture down into the pan. It’s easy, won’t stick and it keeps your hands clean.

  7. I normally do not enjoy baking/cooking with marshmallow since it is so sticky and I make such a mess of it but since my kids keep asking for Rice Krispie treats, I went ahead and gave this recipe a try. They came out perfect and delicious. Will keep this and use again. Very easy to make!

  8. Dolly @ Little Home in the Making says:

    This is our favorite Rice Krispie Square recipe! We’ve tried it a few times and it’s absolutely TO DIE FOR! Spreading it in the pan just so is key to squishy, marshamallowy goodness!

  9. Oh thats GREAT thank you so much cant wait to make them thank you for your quick response I personally LOVE ALL of you recipes I make them every Month

    THANK YOU SO MUCH

  10. I’m a US ex-pat and was thrilled to find a bag of marshmallows at the supermarket recently!! I whipped these bad boys up (thanks for giving grams in your recipes; my bag was an odd amount so it was easy to do some quick math) and they were gone before I knew it. My daughter declared these are the very very best sweet thing I have ever made. (Hmm, why do I bother with complicated baked goods when this one hits a home run with hardly any effort?!?) Here’s hoping I find a reliable marshmallow source soon. It was great to have a taste of home, but even better with your additions. Thanks, Sally!

  11. Turned out great! I used brown rice crisps, a few partial bags of stale marshmallows, and even some colored marshmallows, to finish up the stuff in my cabinet. I love that stale marshmallows (I’m talking cut them out of the bag sticky, and tough) make perfectly delicious Rice Krispie treats! Love the addition of salt and vanilla. Yummy.

    1. Love it! I do this too. I had a bunch of partial bags of old marshmallows in a basket on top of my fridge. Added in some fresh marshmallows to achieve the weight needed. We have a celiac in the house so I used gf brown rice krisps but didn’t have 9 cups worth so I threw in some cheerios (hey it doesn’t technically have to be rice cereal, right?) . It does take a little longer for the stale marshmallows to melt but once they come into contact with the butter they puff up like fresh bought!

  12. very good but the marshmallows were brown

  13. Simply fabulous easy treats! Thank you!

  14. Will this work with vegan marshmallows or marshmallow fluff?

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Brenda! Marshmallow fluff/creme stays in its “liquid”/thin consistency, where marshmallows will help solidify the treats. We don’t recommend substituting fluff, but we haven’t personally tried vegan marshmallows so we’re unsure of how they’d work in this recipe. If you give it a try, we’d love to know how it goes.

      1. I have made these multiple times now in the last three months. Has to be my favourite sweet snack to take into work as I only have a short break and these are easy to eat and a batch lasts me two weeks. This time, I threw some Chex type cereal into the mix as well. Still amazing! Highly recommend this recipe. Thank you!

  15. Laurie Shultz says:

    Hi! I would love to make this! I want to add peanut butter because it reminds me of my childhood & it tastes so wonderful! How much should I add to this recipe?

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Laurie! We recommend adding 2/3 cup creamy peanut butter and reducing the butter to 1/2 cup (1 stick).

      1. Laurie Shultz says:

        Thank you! I was way off on my guess so I really appreciate your help!

  16. I tried this recipe, and added in just a sprinkle of Fruity Pebbles, mostly for a bit of color. My children absolutely devoured them. My biggest regret is that I couldn’t give it more than 5 stars!

    1. Hello! I live in Italy and can only find large marshmallows here, approximately how many ounces of large marshmallows do you think I would need to use? Thank you 🙂

      1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

        Hi Mary, you’ll need about 20 oz. total of marshmallows. Enjoy!

  17. Would these be too gooey to dip in chocolate?

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Kristina, after the bars have cooled and set, you should easily be able to dip them in chocolate.

  18. Sharon Deacon says:

    I made these for a potluck dinner with friends, and let me tell you they were the “talk” of the meal! My friend, who is a chef, cannot stop raving about them! People are calling them “crack,” in a good way! haha People couldn’t get enough of them. This was just a month ago, and now it seems it will be the “go-to” item for all our get togethers (which makes me happy, as they really were so darn easy to makes!) Thank you so much for such an amazingly easy, yet tasty wonderfully delicious recipe!)

  19. Can I use regular size marshmallows?

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Janette! You can use the full size marshmallows. You will need 20 oz total.

  20. These are delicious!! My bf & I eat them all within a day when I make them. I am wondering if you have the nutritional breakdown for this recipe? Would love to Jane as I’m a meal tracker. Ty

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Brandi! So glad you love these Rice Krispie treats. We don’t usually include nutrition information as it can vary between different brands of the same ingredients. Plus, many recipes have ingredient substitutions or optional ingredients listed. However, there are many handy online calculators where you can plug in and customize your exact ingredients/brands. Readers have found this one especially helpful: https://recipes.sparkpeople.com/recipe-calculator.asp

  21. These were fantastic! So easy and absolutely delicious.

  22. Usually, when I make Rice Krispie treats over the stovetop, they stick to the bottom. These didn’t and were so delicious! Even using old marshmallows!

  23. Kristin Crosby says:

    Browned the butter & added a touch of Maldon salt on top . . . perfection. On our second batch this wk.

  24. How many days in advance can you make these without freezing them?

    1. Michelle @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Becky, You can leave them at room temperature for up to 3 days. To store, place in layers between sheets of parchment or wax paper.

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