Homemade Rice Krispie Treats

Homemade Rice Krispie Treats are the best kind of no bake dessert. These krispie treats, made with just five ingredients, are simple to make at home and also easy to elevate for the season with a few tricks! Makes 48 bite-sized treats.

Love easy dessert recipes? You’ve got to try Saltine Cracker Toffee and Peanut Butter Chocolate Fudge.

Two rice krispie treats are stacked on top of each other on a cutting board

I’m a sucker for a Homemade Rice Krispie Treat, and so are my kids.

So much so that we’re basically doing a series of these no bake desserts because we could all use more of things like these in our lives.

This is the classic version, and we’ve painstakingly tested and tastetested to confirm that they’re the best Rice Krispie Treats ever.

Why I love this recipe

Homemade Rice Krispie Treats are decadent and delicious and so incredibly simple to make. They’re also insanely easy to eat (and keep eating.)

I love that this recipe strikes a balance between sweet and salty, and it’s the perfect balance because it doesn’t go too hard either direction.

It also serves as an excellent base recipe to add other flavors, colors and festivities to. And it’s fun to make with kids.

Depending on your kids’ ages, you can have them help at the stovetop. If they’re too young, they can help out with the measuring and the patting down (so long as they have a watchful eye and helping hand to assist, if necessary, since these are hot when they come out of the pot.)

Other easy desserts to make with your kids: No Bake Scotcheroo Cookies | Dessert Nachos (Halloween, Christmas, Easter Candy Leftover idea!) | Valentine’s Day Dessert Board | Christmas Chex Mix | Chex Mix Puppy Chow | Peanut Butter Pretzel Bites

Got sweet teeth? Check out my Dessert Recipe Index for inspiration.

Bowls holding crispy rice treat ingredients on marble

What you need to make this recipe:

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Let’s talk ingredients!

In addition to the tools above, you’re going to need some ingredients to make this recipe, too! Chances are, you might already have some of them in your fridge or pantry. Scroll down to the recipe card for the full measurements and instructions.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Crispy rice cereal—use your favorite brand! I’ve been known to make these with the whole wheat variety for my kids, but honestly, any variation is good.
  • Butter—you can use salted or unsalted butter. If using salted butter, don’t add the salt. If using unsalted butter, you need a little extra sprinkle of salt. I have more details about this below so you know how much to add, promise.
  • Kosher salt—only to be added if you’re using unsalted butter!
  • Vanilla extract—this adds just a little more flavor, in my opinion, and the combination of vanilla with marshmallow and butter is simply divine.
  • Marshmallows—mini marshmallows melt best and easiest!

How to jazz up crispy rice treats

Look, you can make Rice Krispie Treats for any occasion or celebration. All you need is a vision and some additional products to make ‘em happy.

We’ve used candy melts, as well as sprinkles and chocolate-coated candies to decorate our rice krispie treats to elevate them for holidays.

Here are a few more ideas:

  • Stir in rainbow sprinkles at the very end, and transform these into Confetti Rice Krispie Treats. Use any color of sprinkles to add color and festivity to these no bake treats.
  • Dip in white chocolate or dark chocolate on top to make Dipped Rice Krispie Treats. You could also do this with colorful candy melts.
  • Switch up the extract. Use the same amount of almond extract, lemon extract, peppermint extract in place of the vanilla extract to switch up the flavor in these no bake dessert bars.
Collage showing how to make rice krispie treats

How to make Homemade Rice Krispie Treats

Prepare the pan. I like using a 9”x13” baking dish and lining it with wax paper. This will make removing the crispy rice treats easy. You can also give the paper a spritz with nonstick cooking spray to ensure your treats will remove easily. Set aside.

Measure out the cereal into a large bowl, and set aside. We won’t be mixing these in the bowl itself , but having this measured out before our marshmallow-butter mixture is melty is important.

Make the krispie treat base. In a large pot, melt the butter over low heat with the salt, then add marshmallows and stir. Continually stir until these have melted completely, then splash in the vanilla and stir.

Mix the treats. Turn off the heat, and pour the cereal into the pot with the marshmallow mixture. Stir quickly until the cereal is completely coated.

Make the bars. Pour the mixture into the prepared baking pan. Gently spread it into an even layer with a rubber spatula. If your spatula begins sticking, spritz with the nonstick cooking spray.

Pro tip: Do not be tempted to press down hard on the mixture because this will make your treats more compact.

Let the treats cool for about an hour, then cut into rectangles (or any shape you desire) with a sharp knife.

Collage showing how to shape rice krispie treats

Frequently Asked Questions

What can you use instead of marshmallows for Rice Krispie Treats?

Marshmallows are an integral part of krispie treats, so I do not recommend finding a substitute for them.

How long does it take for Rice Crispy Treats to harden?

The treats harden as they cool, so it’ll take at least 30 minutes after they’ve been in the pan.

What happens if you put too much butter in Rice Krispie Treats?

I’ve read that too much butter will lead to soggy krispie treats. 

Can you use old marshmallows for Rice Krispie Treats?

No. Please don’t. As marshmallows sit in the pantry, they lose moisture and their texture changes. They will have a harder time melting, and when they do, they will become more of a gelatinous blob. They run the risk of overcooking and making tougher krispie treats because you’ll need to cook them for longer.

Collage showing how to cut crispy rice treats

Quick Tips and Tricks for the best crispy rice treats

  • Use fresh marshmallows. They melt more easily and will provide a better texture for your treats. (How do I know this? I’ve attempted this recipe with older marshmallows, and they didn’t turn out quite right.)
  • Store in an airtight container at room temperature for 2-3 days. After this point, the treats will begin to harden.
  • Make them your own. There are so many rice krispie treat variations out there, so have fun with them! Add sprinkles, frosting and more to make ’em unique and perfect for holidays.

More rice krispie treat recipes:

A stack of homemade rice krispie treats in a pan
Yield: 48 (1 ½") squares

Homemade Rice Krispie Treats

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Cooling Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes

Homemade Rice Krispie Treats are the best kind of no bake dessert. These krispie treats, made with just five ingredients, are simple to make at home and also easy to elevate for the season with a few tricks!

Ingredients

  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 10 oz. mini marshmallows (about 6 cups)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 6 cups crispy rice cereal

Instructions

  1. Line a 9”x13” baking dish with wax paper. This will make removing the crispy rice treats easy. Set aside.
  2. Pour the crispy rice cereal into the large bowl, and set aside.
  3. In a large pot, melt the butter over low heat with the salt.
  4. Once the butter has melted, stir in the marshmallows. Continually stir until completely melted.
  5. Add the splash of vanilla, and stir.
  6. Pour the cereal into the marshmallow mixture, and stir quickly until the cereal is coated.
  7. Pour the cereal bar mixture to the prepared baking pan and gently spread the mixture into an even layer with a rubber spatula. (If the mixture begins sticking, spritz the spatula with the nonstick cooking spray.) Do not press down hard on the mixture, as your treats will be more compact.
  8. Let the treats cool completely, about 1 hour.
  9. Cut into squares with a sharp knife, and enjoy within 2-3 days.

Notes

I cut my treats into 1.5” squares. If you cut yours larger, you will have less.

How to store: Store in an airtight container at room temperature for 2-3 days. After this point, the treats will begin to harden.

Recommended Products

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Nutrition Information:

Yield:

48

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 45Total Fat: 2gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 4mgSodium: 30mgCarbohydrates: 8gFiber: 0gSugar: 4gProtein: 0g

Nutrition facts are an estimate and not guaranteed to be accurate.

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