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Best Ever Rice Krispies Treats

5 stars based on 31 votes

best ever rice krispies treats

I’m always hesitant to say a recipe is the “best ever,” especially for a dessert like Rice Krispies Treats that everyone knows and loves. But once you’ve tinkered around with a recipe for weeks — asking your kids, their friends, and basically anyone who passes through your house (tutors…cable guy…electrician…?) to sample different versions — you can say it’s the “best” with some confidence. Sure, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with the original back-of-the-box recipe but it can be made so much better with almost no effort. So why not? Start with more butter (lots more), and brown it. Increase the marshmallows, and then stir some in at the end for extra gooeyness. Add vanilla — of course! And don’t forget the salt, because a little salt makes anything sweet taste so much better. (And if you want to take it up a notch further, check out this Rice Krispies Treat recipe made with an extra secret ingredient.)

ingredients

Begin by melting the butter in a large pot over medium-high heat.

melting-butter

After the butter melts, it will begin to bubble, foam, and turn golden around the edges. Eventually it will turn a dark golden color and smell nutty — watch carefully, it will go from golden brown to burned quickly. (You’ll see little bits of brown sediment forming; that’s okay.)

brown-butter

Once the butter is browned, remove the pan from the heat and add all but 2 cups of the marshmallows, the vanilla, and salt.

melting-marshmallows-salt-vanilla

Place the pot over low heat and stir the mixture with a wooden spoon until the marshmallows are completely melted. Remove the pan from the heat and add the cereal.

adding-cereal

Using a rubber spatula or wooden spoon, stir until evenly combined. Add the reserved marshmallows.

adding-extra-marshmallows

Stir until they are softened and partially melted — you want pockets of goo.

melting-marshmallows

Press the mixture into an even layer in the prepared baking pan and let cool for at least an hour.

cooling-in-pan

Use the foil overhang to lift the treats onto a cutting board, then cut into squares. Enjoy!

Rice-Krispie-Treats-1

Best Ever Rice Krispies Treats

Servings: 18 to 24 squares
Cook Time: 15 Minutes
Total Time: 15 Minutes, plus one hour to cool

Ingredients

  • 12 tablespoons (1-1/2 sticks) unsalted butter
  • Two 10-oz bags mini marshmallows, divided
  • 3/4 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 8-1/2 cups Rice Krispies or crispy rice cereal (use gluten-free if needed)

Instructions

  1. Line a 9 x 13-inch pan with heavy duty aluminum foil and lightly grease with softened butter. Set aside 2 cups of the marshmallows.
  2. In a large pot, melt the butter over medium-high heat (save the wrappers for pressing the mixture into the pan). After the butter melts, it will begin to bubble, foam, and turn golden around the edges. Eventually it will turn a dark golden color and smell nutty -- watch carefully, it will go from golden brown to burned quickly. (You'll see little bits of brown sediment forming; that's okay.) Once the butter is browned, remove the pan from the heat and add the remaining marshmallows, vanilla, and salt.
  3. Place the pot over low heat and stir the mixture with a wooden spoon until the marshmallows are completely melted. Remove the pan from the heat and add the cereal. Using a rubber spatula or wooden spoon, stir until evenly combined. Add the reserved marshmallows and stir until they are softened and partially melted (you want pockets of goo). Transfer the mixture to the prepared pan and, using the butter wrapper or damp fingers, press the mixture gently into an even layer in the prepared baking pan. Let cool at room temperature for at least an hour.
  4. Use the foil overhang to lift the treats onto a cutting board, then cut into 18 to 24 bars, depending on how large you'd like them. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 days.
  5. Note: To freeze, place in layers separated by wax paper in airtight container. Freeze for up to 6 weeks. Let stand at room temperature for 15 minutes before serving.

Nutrition Information

Powered by Edamam

  • Per serving (24 servings)
  • Calories: 162
  • Fat: 6g
  • Saturated fat: 4g
  • Carbohydrates: 27g
  • Sugar: 15g
  • Fiber: 0g
  • Protein: 1g
  • Sodium: 93mg
  • Cholesterol: 15mg

Reviews & Comments

  • These are amazing! I am not normally a fan of rice krispie treats but I needed to make them for my son’s daycare. After I made them, the batch didn’t even make it to daycare because my husband and son ate so many of them. They are fantastic!

    - Lindsay on October 19, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    These were amazing! Great recipe!

    - Kay on October 8, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Omg… Finally found the recipe for PERFECT rice krispy treats! Yes!

    - Kristina Gusman on October 1, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    I made a batch for my kid’s birthday treat for her classmates and they all LOVED it, including the teacher who couldn’t resist sneaking a bite before the birthday song was sung…..
    I used Trader Joe’s rice krispies and marshmallows (less “bad stuff” in the ingredients than Kraft brand) and they turned out really delicious. The big marshmallows took a little time to melt but wasn’t too tedious.
    The browned butter heightened the taste – highly recommend!! Am making again this weekend….

    - Ponyo on September 15, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    My husband always loved the large rice krispie treats with the partially melted marshmellow, but my attempts only ever tasted ok. This is the perfect recipe if you like that little bit of marshmellow chunk in your treat! Everyone loves this recipe!

    - Nicole on September 15, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Omg, this was the best rice krispy treat I have ever had in my life. My kids loved them too! The instructions were so easy to follow.

    - Tiffany on September 14, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    First time making Rice Krispie treats. Recipe was great. Unfortunately put husband’s grandfather’s cake pan in dishwasher and ruined it. Can I add peanut butter to this recipe?

    - Byul on September 14, 2017 Reply
    • Sorry to hear about the cake pan!! I haven’t added peanut butter to these, but a few other readers have commented that they’ve added a few tablespoons with good results.

      - Jenn on September 15, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    This is the best recipe ever! I love these. I am not usually a fan of homemade rice krispie treats. I made these for my family and decided to try one and I am hooked. I have mixed in mini chocolate chips, almond butter, butterscotch chips and mini candy coated chocolate pieces. Each time they come out delicious!

    - GiGi on September 14, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Best ever indeed. The butter browning process was a little intimidating (the butter spits!), but it takes these to another level. I love how this recipe makes taller, more substantial treats than others I’ve tried. My family also loved the little marshmallow pieces flecked throughout. This will be my go-to Rice Krispies Treats recipe.

    - Christina on September 14, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    These rice krispie treats were DELICIOUS! The browned butter added a layer of scrumptious flavor and the marshmallows added at the end added a little extra texture. The kids loved it and the teacher as well!
    Thanks for another tasty easy-to-prepare recipe!

    - Ponyo on August 27, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Thank you so much for posting this great step by step tutorial/recipe! First time making rice crispy treats and they turned out great! Added sprinkles at the end before putting in the pan and then added more on top after pressing the mixture into the pan. Very happy!

    - Leslie on August 24, 2017 Reply
  • I am making these for my son’s wedding. They are going to surround the chocolate fountain. I would like to do some flavored ones any suggestions??? Has anyone tried to swirl colors? I’d like to figure out how to get a burgandy color swirl

    - Becky on August 22, 2017 Reply
  • I want to add some color with some mini M&m’s. Any thoughts on the best way to this? I’m afraid if I just sprinkle them on the top they will fall off easily?!?

    - Lisa on August 19, 2017 Reply
    • Hi Lisa, I think you could get away with that. I’d add them along with the cereal. LMK how they turn out!

      - Jenn on August 22, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Better than what I’d imagined. I got a little nervous upfront about the Browning of the butter but it was a simple.

    - Irene Insignares on August 4, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    I’ve made mine like this before, only what I’ve also done (to get the campfire marshmallow flavor) is toast the marshmallows under a broiler to brown them a bit before scraping the mess into the pot. That’s probably about the only thing you could do to this to take it up another notch and still maintain the feel of a classic (e.g. not adding peanut butter or chocolate chips, or anything else that would degrade the simple and pure flavor).

    - Phanes on August 1, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Not an exaggeration – I have made these at least a dozen times and heard from more than a dozen people that this recipe for Rice Krispies is the best they’ve ever had! Thanks for making me look like a rock star chef Jenn!!

    - Tamera on July 25, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    I made these for the very first time! It was a big hit with my family. Very tasty and gooey!! Will never buy them again, will always make homemade ones. I do have 1 question, if I use the regular size marshmallows how much should I use? Thank you so much for sharing your recipe!

    - Jen Tozzi on July 17, 2017 Reply
  • I can’t find 10 oz bags of marshmallows so how many cups total do you need?

    - Erica Roywr on June 23, 2017 Reply
    • I did some very crude math and I believe you’d need a total of about 12 cups. Hope you enjoy!

      - Jenn on June 23, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    These bars were amazing, our 17 year old farm helper said they were the best he had ever had! i tried making them without browning the butter (forgot, didn’t have the recipe in front of me so went of memory) and i think that and the salt are the secret. They are truly amazing.
    Thanks!

    - Katherine Winquist on June 22, 2017 Reply
  • 4 stars

    To step these up another notch use almond extract instead of vanilla.

    - Becky T on May 30, 2017 Reply
  • What size box of Rice Krispies do you buy to get the 8 1/2 cup of cereal?
    The family size is 24oz, but I also have an 11oz box of Fruity Pebbles I wanted to make into treats.
    Would I need to cut the recipe in half to do an 11oz box of cereal?

    - Jasmin on May 29, 2017 Reply
    • I believe the small box of Rice Krispies is 12 ounces and that’s what I’ve used. 11 ounces of the Fruity Pebbles should be enough. Hope you enjoy!

      - Jenn on May 29, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    These were delish! The only thing that I didn’t like was the aluminum foil did not work out so great. When I started to cut them into squares, it stuck to the rice krispies treats so much that I had to use a knife to cut foil off. I will def be using this recipe again just won’t use tin foil tho!?

    - Alaine on May 20, 2017 Reply
    • Hi Alaine, It’s important to use heavy duty foil (such as Reynolds) — if you don’t have it, you can also use parchment paper.

      - Jenn on May 22, 2017 Reply
      • 5 stars

        They now have non-stick foil. That’s what I use. (typically, the non-stick side is the dull side)
        😉

        - Steve Nathan on July 30, 2017 Reply
  • I most definitely will try this because no doubt it has to be a winner. Whenever I make Rice Krispie Treats I spray my stirring utensil w/cooking spray, it helps keeps things from getting so sticky. I also spray the pan for easy removal. I will give the foil method a try. Usually they don’t last long enough to be cut, just pull off some and gobble.

    - Ruby on May 19, 2017 Reply
  • 4 stars

    How long can you keep them? I wanna make them now and keep them for 2 months til the event I’m using them.

    - Sara Nyambayar on May 13, 2017 Reply
    • Hi Sara, You can freeze them for up to 6 weeks. To freeze, place in layers separated by wax paper in airtight container.

      - Jenn on May 13, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    This recipie IS the best ever! I’ve already made them twice. Trying to restrain myself and not eat the whole pan! The goey pockets of marshmallow was a genius idea!

    - Sarah on May 11, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    These are absolutely delicious. The chunks of marshmallows from the 2C you hold out and the salt are what make these stand out. I am next going to try the recipe with the Golden Grahams!
    Thank you for sharing this Jenn.

    - Mary Manzer on May 11, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    My kids love this, esp the extra gooey factor!

    - Lisa Lee on May 11, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    The brown butter really makes a difference.

    Thank you for another great recipe.
    Heidi

    - Heidi Van Stone on May 5, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    I made these Rice Krispies and didn’t want to share. The brown butter, salt and vanilla made all the difference! YUM!

    - Beth H. on April 29, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    These are definitely kicked up a notch !
    Love them!

    - Maria morelli on April 27, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    I just made these and they ARE the best Rice Krispies Treats ever! I’m going to have to hide them from my sister!

    - Vicki on April 14, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Oh my goodness. These are too good for my health. Way too easy to whittle off an edge here and there : ) I can’t wait to try your other version! Thank you!

    - Jamie on April 9, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    These are absolutely delicious! I never liked Rice Krispie treats, but these are a keeper!!! The golden ones are even more amazing 😉

    - Heather M. Jacoby on April 6, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    My husband and I agree…these are the best Rice Krispie treats we have ever had.

    - KA in Colorado on March 31, 2017 Reply
  • 5 stars

    Made these for my teenage son and his friends and they just about inhaled the platter. Had to immediately make a second batch. Thank you!!

    - Stephanie on March 28, 2017 Reply
  • I live in a country where marshmallows are hard to come by, but that jarred Fluff stuff is plentiful. How would you modify this recipe to use Fluff instead of marshmallows? (Or would that be a terrible idea? I’ve never had Fluff!)

    Thank you!

    - jess b on March 23, 2017 Reply
    • Hi Jess, I’ve never tried it but on the Rice Krispies website it says that 1 jar (7 oz.) marshmallow crème can be substituted for marshmallows, so you’d need 2 jars. Please lmk how it turns out if you try it!

      - Jenn on March 23, 2017 Reply
      • 5 stars

        I added the LorAnn peanut butter oil extract in with the butter, vanilla mixture and then browned.

        Once the marshmallows had melted I added a shake of cinnamon and 2 rounded tablespoons of peanut butter to melt together. Then added the Rice Krispies.

        Amazing recipe!

        - Cathi on July 9, 2017 Reply

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