Learn how to make classic Rice Krispie Treats from scratch! This childhood favorite is made with giant, puffy marshmallows, puffed rice cereal, and plenty of butter. It’s the perfect no-bake dessert made in less than 30 minutes. There are plenty of variations, tools, and expert tips to make this the best (and fun!) dessert!
The soft, pillowy crunch of Rice Krispie Treats is possibly my favorite texture. There’s something about the simplicity and comfort of making this treat that takes you back to childhood.
Even as an adult, these are still so delicious! This recipe is a simple dump, melt, mix and eat kind of process and I’m here for it.
Why this recipe works
I hesitated to publish this recipe, because how many different ways can you actually make a Rice Krispie Treat? There are a ton of variations on the internet! Btw, are they rice crispy treats or rice krispie treats? It doesn’t really matter how you spell it, they are delicious!
This recipe is so simple to throw together! Other ingredients can easily be added to make them a part of any festive celebration.
Rice Krispies Treats Ingredient Notes and Tools
The one dreaded thing about making this recipe is the melting and stickiness of the ingredients. I strongly recommend a dutch oven or large soup pot. That way, there is plenty of room to pile in the ingredients without scorching the bottom.
- Cereal – If you can’t find the brand name, the generic store brand is a perfectly suitable option.
- Marshmallows – Large marshmallows and mini marshmallows will work fine. For the best results, use fresh marshmallows! Marshmallow creme can be used in place of marshmallows.
- Butter – margarine or “diet-friendly” butter is not recommended. Salted butter vs. unsalted will not drastically affect the recipe.
How to Make Rice Krispies Treats
Step 1: Melt the butter
In a large pot or dutch oven, melt a stick of butter over medium-low heat.
Step 2: Add in marshmallows
When the butter has melted, add the bag of marshmallows. Heat and stir frequently as they melt.
Continue stirring until the marshmallows have completely melted and the mixture is smooth – without lumps. Remove from heat.
Step 3: Add in puffed rice cereal
Working in batches, add in the puffed rice cereal in two-cup increments. This makes stirring and mixing easy. If the mixture cools and becomes too difficult to stir, turn the heat to the lowest setting to make the butter and marshmallows melty again. Be careful not to let the mixture scorch.
Continue adding the cereal and stirring until well-coated.
Step 4: Transfer to a pan
This is where things can get sticky! After the cereal is well-coated, transfer the mixture to a well-greased 8 x 8 casserole dish or cake pan.
Many recipes recommend using a buttered rubber spatula or spoon. I like to use my hands to gently press the mixture into the dish – it’s much easier! Simply spray your hands liberally with cooking spray before handling the mixture.
Wax paper can also be used.
Be careful not to press to hard or you will end up with hard Rice Krispie Treats!
Step 5: Decorate and serve
When your mixture is evenly pressed into your dish, you can decorate them with festive sprinkles or serve as is.
Allow them to cool in the pan for at least 1 hour before serving.
Tip: After the mixture is set, flip the block of treats over to reveal the smoother side.
- Seasonal sprinkles for Christmas, Thanksgiving, Halloween, and Easter
- Add food coloring to the marshmallow and butter mixture
- Add in chocolate chips or mini marshmallows while the mixture is still hot.
- Try different flavors like vanilla extract or peppermint added to the marshmallow and butter mixture.
Recipe Tips and other information
- Fresh marshmallows are key for gooey treats!
- Store the prepared treats for no more than two days at room temperature. (Ours never last that long!)
- For easy serving, cut these into squares and layer them between sheets of wax paper.
- Treats can be frozen for up to six weeks. To freeze, place the treats in layers between wax paper in an airtight container. Let them stand at room temperature for 15 minutes before serving.
Classic Rice Krispies Treats from Scratch
- 3 tablespoons butter unsalted or salted
- 1 10 ounce package of jumbo marshmallows about 40 marshmallows
- 6 cups puffed rice cereal
- In a large pot or dutch oven, melt a stick of butter over medium-low heat. When the butter has melted, add the bag of marshmallows. Heat and stir frequently as they melt. Remove from heat.
- Working in batches, add in the puffed rice cereal in two-cup increments for easy mixing.
- Add puffed rice cereal. Stir until well coated.
- After the cereal is well-coated, use a rubber spatula to transfer the mixture to a well-greased 8 x 8 casserole dish or cake pan.
- Cool. Cut into 2-inch squares and serve!
- 4 cups of mini marshmallows can be used in place of jumbo marshmallows. Use fresh marshmallows for the best results.
- Margarine or “diet-friendly” butter is not recommended.
- Instead of a wooden spoon or spatula, use your hands to press the mixture into the dish – it’s so much easier! Spray hands liberally with cooking spray before handling the mixture.
- Decorate with seasonal sprinkles for Christmas, Thanksgiving, Halloween, and Easter for a festive presentation.