That’s a bold title, but I’m actually really confident in this assertion. These are the best rice crispy treats you’ll ever eat. Just do exactly as I say and you, too, will be the hit of every party, gathering, or after school snack.
A few things before we begin. (I’m not going to tell you a long story about how I visited a beautiful marshmallow field in the spring of 1989 where I discovered the perfect fluffy morsels. I promise.) These are very specific tips to make these little squares of heaven the best they can be.
Tip #1: Don’t buy name brand cereal. The name brand has a coating on them that makes the rice crispies less absorbent. You want the off-brand rice crispies for maximum absorbency. I prefer the Aldi brand, but Wal-mart, Kroger, etc. will probably work too.
Tip #2: If you want to brown the butter, do it. When I brown my butter, the rice crispy treats get a little crunchy on top which you might like. If you want a softer rice crispy, don’t brown the butter. I think both ways are good and, depending on time and the way the wind is blowing, I’ll do one or the other.
Tip #3: My recipe calls for a whole box of cereal. This is going to make a lot of rice crispy treats. This is a good thing, but they definitely won’t fit in a 9×13 pan. I prefer a baking sheet lined with parchment paper for this recipe.
Tip #4: When you add in the cereal, you can remove the pot from the heat or leave it. Either is fine, but the end result will be a little different. If you leave it on, the mixture will melt the final marshmallows into little pockets of goodness. If you remove it from the heat, the final marshmallows will retain more of their original shape. Do whichever way you like.
Tip #5: When you transfer the mixture to the cookie sheet, don’t mash it down. You want fluffy, airy rice crispy treats so just pour the goodness out as evenly as you can and try not to mess with it too much. If I have to spread it and the spatula isn’t working, I grab another piece of parchment paper and use that to spread it. It doesn’t stick to the parchment.
Okay, that’s it. Here’s what you need:
– 12 ounces rice crispy cereal (about 12 cups)
– 30 ounces of mini marshmallows (or three bags)
– 12 tablespoons of butter (1 1/2 sticks)
– 1 teaspoon salt
– 1 teaspoon vanilla
Don’t argue about these amounts or question them. Don’t let that evil little voice inside your head say that’s just too many marshmallows. We don’t accept that kind of negativity here.
1. Spread parchment paper over a baking sheet and set aside.
2. In a large pot, melt butter on medium-low heat. Brown if you’re feeling fancy.
3. Add about 25 ounces of marshmallows, reserve 5 ounces for later.
4. Stir constantly so marshmallows and butter don’t burn. Once marshmallows are completely melted, add salt and vanilla.
5. Add rice crispies and stir until mixture coats the cereal. (See note above about whether or not you want to remove the pot from heat when you do this.)
6. Add in the remaining 5 ounces of marshmallows and stir until incorporated.
7. Transfer to the parchment-lined baking sheet. Spread it as evenly as possible without smashing the mixture down. Air is your friend here.
8. Let cool and enjoy.
These don’t last long in our house and there are never leftovers if we take them somewhere, but if you do need to store them, it’s best to let them cool completely, cut them into squares, and store them in an airtight container. I use parchment paper to separate the layers, otherwise they will all stick together.
If you make these, let me know what you think!