Rice Krispie Treats {The Best Ratios}

May 17, 2020

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Homemade Rice Krispie Treats! Made with the perfect amount of cereal, marshmallows and butter. The fastest, no-bake treat that never disappoints!

Looking for more easy to make cereal treats? Try my recipes for Puppy Chow, Cornflake Cookies and Sweet Chex Mix.

Stack of cut rice krispie treats on a platter.

Rice Krispie Treats with the Best Ratios

Rice Krispie treats were first made back in 1939 by Malitta Jensen and Mildred Day at Kellogg’s company for a fundraiser. They’ve lasted for generations as such a popular treat here in the U.S.

And for good reason. These are one of the easiest, quickest treats you can make and they only require 3 simple ingredients you make likely already have on hand. Plus they are inexpensive.

Then of course there’s the fact that people of all ages love them. Sometimes if I don’t know what to bring to a party I just go with rice krispie treats and I rarely return home with any left.

Rice Krispie treats were actually one of the very first things I learned how to make. And since then it’s probably a bit crazy how many times I’ve made them (definitely in the hundreds).

My version (or I should say my Mom’s version, she taught me how to make these) uses the same ingredients as the classic, I just use different ratios.

We are talking more marshmallows and more butter! It makes them deliciously sweet and chewy, and perfectly rich and buttery!

Once you try them this way you’ll likely never look back! These addictive treats are just too good!

Overhead image of rice krispie treat squares on a wooden cutting board.

Rice Krispie Treat Recipe Ingredients

Only 3 basic ingredients needed to make these:

  • Rice Krispies cereal: A crucial ingredient to this recipe. While you can add other mix-ins the majority of this treat should be the cereal.
  • Mini marshmallows: An equal weight of large marshmallows can be used as well, just keep in mind they’ll take longer to melt.
  • Salted butter: I like to use salted butter to balance out all the sugar of the marshmallows (there’s almost 1 1/4 cups sugar in the marshmallows so without the proper amount of salt they’ll be way too sweet). If unsalted butter is all you have on hand then dissolve 1/4 tsp salt with the butter when melting.

The classic version uses 3 Tbsp butter, 1 (10 oz) package marshmallows, 6 cups rice krispies cereal. This recipe uses 1/2 cup butter, 1 (16 oz) package marshmallows and 7 cups rice krispies cereal.

Image of three ingredients needed to make rice krispie treats shown here. Includes rice krispies cereal, mini marshmallows and butter.

How to Make Rice Krispie Treats

  1. Prepare baking dish: Spray a 9 by 9-inch or 13 by 9-inch baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.
  2. Have proper amount of cereal ready: Measure out Rice Krispie cereal into a bowl and set aside.
  3. Melt butter in pan, then melt marshmallows: Melt butter in a pot over medium-low heat. Add marshmallows and cook, stirring constantly, just until marshmallows have melted.
  4. Toss in Rice Krispies cereal: Remove from heat, pour in Rice Krispies cereal. Gently fold mixture to evenly coat.
  5. Spread into baking dish: Pour mixture into prepared baking dish. Using a spatula that has been coated with non-stick cooking spray, gently press and spread mixture evenly into baking dish.
  6. Let set: Let rest at least 30 minutes before slicing (for sturdier bars wait about 2 hours).

Collage image of 6 steps to make rice krispies treats in a pot. Includes melting butter, melting marshmallows and stirring in rice krispies cereal.

How long do Rice Krispies Treats keep?

Rice Krispies treats can be kept in an airtight container at room temperature up to 3 days.

Can they be frozen?

  • Yes Rice Krispie treats can be frozen. I just pulled some out of the freezer recently and they were delicious!
  • To freeze them be sure to put layers of parchment paper between layers so they don’t get stuck together, wrap in parchment then store in an airtight container up to 6 weeks.
  • Thaw completely at room temperature before enjoying.

Hand removing rice krispie treat from batch.

Are Rice Krispie Treats gluten-free?

  • It will depend on the brand of ingredients you use.
  • The classic Kellog’s Rice Krispies are not gluten-free (they contain malt flavoring which is derived from barley). But you can however find other crispy rice cereals that are, such as Nature’s Path.
  • Butter and marshmallows are generally gluten-free but just be sure to check the labels.

Tips for the Best Rice Krispie Treats

  1. Use good quality marshmallows. I like to look for a bag a marshmallows that’s full of air, with fluffy marshmallows and avoid packages with damp marshmallows stuck together.
  2. Use fresher marshmallows and avoid using those from an opened and dry package. They won’t melt as well.
  3. Cook over medium-low heat. Resist the urge to cook over a hotter temperature because this will caramelize the sugars and make the treats tougher and dry.
  4. Be gentle with mixture once you add the cereal. It’s delicate and can easily be crushed down into powder. Just gently fold mixture with a rubber spatula, folding from under and tossing over.
  5. Toss long enough for marshmallow mixture to be evenly distributed or you can end up with pools of marshmallow in some areas while there’s not enough in others.
  6. Don’t skip greasing the spatula. It makes spreading so much easier, and cleaner.
  7. Be patient and let set properly. I know they are delicious nice and gooey but if you want them to hold any short of shape then wait at least 30 minutes – even better is 2 hours (though that rarely happens around here). You could speed it up by popping them in the fridge for a while.
  8. Enjoy within a few days before they go stale. Make a half batch if you don’t think they’ll get eaten within a few days.

Tip Regarding Sweetness

If you don’t like very sweet treats then you can up the rice krispie cereal amounts to 10 cups to stretch those sugars out.

Rice krispie treats on a cutting boards.

Variations

Stack of cut rice krispie treats on a platter.
5 from 4 votes

Rice Krispie Treats

The perfect homemade Rice Krispie Treats! Made with the perfect amount of cereal, marshmallows and butter. The fastest treat that never disappoints!
Servings: 16
Prep10 minutes
Cook5 minutes
Resting30 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup (226g) salted butter, diced into 1 Tbsp pieces*
  • 1 (16 oz) bag mini marshmallows (10 cups)
  • 7 cups (210g) Rice Krispies cereal

Instructions

  • Spray a 9 by 9-inch or 13 by 9-inch baking dish with non-stick cooking spray. Measure out cereal into a bowl and set aside.
  • Melt butter in a pot (about 5 quart+) over medium-low heat. Add marshmallows and cook, stirring constantly, just until marshmallows have melted.
  • Remove from heat, pour in Rice Krispies cereal. Gently fold mixture to evenly coat.
  • Pour mixture into prepared baking dish. Spray a spatula with non-stick cooking spray and use it to spread and gently press mixture evenly into baking dish.
  • Let rest at least 30 minutes (for sturdier rice krispie treats wait about 2 hours), then cut into squares.
  • Store in an airtight container in a single layer or with parchment paper between layers for up to 3 days.

Notes

Also try browned butter rice krispie treats: Brown the butter in the pot then remove pan from heat, add marshmallows and stir. Return to medium-low heat to help melt fully then stir in rice krispies cereal.
Nutrition Facts
Rice Krispie Treats
Amount Per Serving
Calories 193 Calories from Fat 54
% Daily Value*
Fat 6g9%
Saturated Fat 4g25%
Cholesterol 16mg5%
Sodium 145mg6%
Potassium 16mg0%
Carbohydrates 34g11%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 18g20%
Protein 1g2%
Vitamin A 1058IU21%
Vitamin C 8mg10%
Calcium 3mg0%
Iron 4mg22%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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16 Comments

  • Amy

    Mine got super hard the very next time and I wrapped some in Saran Wrap in a air tight container and some just in air tight container with no Saran Wrap both where still super hard. Any suggestions on this

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      That could be that the marshmallow mixture was cooked a little too long or at slightly too high of a heat and can sort of caramelize and toughen the marshmallows. It could also just be something to do with the marshmallows used to begin with.

  • Tara

    I’ve been searching for the perfect Rice Krispie treat for many years and this recipe fits the bill! My husband and I gobbled them down in two days and he’s requested another batch this week. Delicious! I used Whole Foods brand brown Rice Krispies to make them gluten free, and I plan to try the dash of vanilla extract in the next batch. Quick question. I noticed the marshmallow/butter mix was a bit heavier/pooled in the bottom portion of the bars. Should I have stirred the krispies a bit longer to ensure the mix set?

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      Yes I would stir a little longer and since it’s a different brand of rice krispies you may just need to add a little more (they may be larger or something). So glad to hear you both have enjoyed these!

      • Katie

        This has been my go-to recipe for years. So so so good!! For the past couple years I have added another handful or two of miniature marshmallows while stirring the melted concoction and cereal together. It leaves melty marshmallow chunks throughout and makes it even yummier…..if that’s possible!!

  • Pam Avoledo

    My go-to vending machine treat. It’s sticky but oh so yummy! I loved as a child and still eat it now.

  • Robert

    I do essentially the same, the only variation is I like to add a little vanilla extract, and I add a splash of milk.

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      A little splash of vanilla is delicious too, thanks for your ideas!

  • LDavis

    Tastes just like my childhood! Sweet ❤️
    I love this recipe, it’s a keeper and makes others smile when you make them.

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      Yes such a nostalgic recipe. Can’t go wrong with this one!

  • Carie Saak

    This was my moms recipe too and by far better than the current one they give. I could eat the whole pan!!

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      Moms sometimes just now best :). And I agree I could eat way too many of these.