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.
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!!
5 Ingredients in These Rice Krispie Treats
You only need 5 simple ingredients for these no-bake squares.
- 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.
- Marshmallows: These krispie treats are extra marshmallow-y without falling apart. You need 2 10-ounce bags (about 11 heaping cups) of mini marshmallows.
- 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!
- 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.
- 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!
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.
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!
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?
More No Bake Desserts
- No-Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars
- Peanut Butter Fudge
- No-Bake Cookies
- No-Bake Cheesecake Jars
- Caramel Dipped Pretzels
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.
- 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
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- Lift the rice krispie treats as a whole out of the pan using the parchment paper. Cut into squares.
- Cover and store leftover treats for up to 3 days. To store, place in layers between sheets of parchment or wax paper.
- 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.
- If gluten free, check labels to ensure all products are certified gluten free.
- For the pinch of salt, I always add a little less than 1/8 teaspoon.
Adapted from Kellogg’s