July 6, 2010 by Flora Dawn
If you spent any part of your childhood in America, I bet you ate a rice crispy treat. They are crunchy, sweet, and gooey all in one bite. What kid could resist?
Well, as soon as you go gluten free you realize Kellogg’s Rice Crispies are off limits. For whatever reason though, many people believe they are gluten free, but they contain malt. Here is a direct quote form Kellogg’s FAQ At this time, we do not offer products suitable for consumers on a gluten- or wheat-free diet.
Like everything else gluten free, cereal does come with a bit of sticker shock. Gone are the days when you can get a box for $1 using coupons and a sale. A box of gluten free cereal seems to run in the $4-5 range.
We really like Erewhon brand cereals and they make several suitable rice crispy alternatives that are in fact gluten free. They taste great and are fairly healthy.
I haven’t had a lot of luck using all puffed rice cereal, which is significantly cheaper. It just doesn’t have the same crunch. However I have used a cup or two in the bars and it works fine. So if you are trying to stretch you dollar, this might be an option.
So, the original Rice Crispy Treat recipe is fine. Nothing wrong with it at all. However, I wanted to make a slightly more creative batch so I added some vanilla and peanut butter and then coated them with melted chocolate. That idea I get from my mom. Growing up she always coated bars and brownies with melted chocolate. Mom was right, everything is better with chocolate.
I also reduce the cereal by one cup, I like the treats to be a little more marshmallowy. Okay, so that is probably not a real adjective, but you know what I mean. And not that they weren’t great before, but I think the minor changes I made make them a little more grown up.
I did store these in the refrigerator because we are having a heat wave. Okay, so probably not really a heat wave, but for Oregon, it is really hot. Like above 70 degrees. I wasn’t sure the chocolate would set at room temperature.
So these were really great tasting. The peanut butter/chocolate combination is classic and oh so good. And even if you decide to omit the peanut butter, do try the melted chocolate on top. It is very good.
Any child eating gluten free will be thrilled that they can eat rice crispy treats again. They so quick and easy, not to mention utterly delicious, there really is no excuse not to make them.
Peanut Butter Crispy Rice Treats
I like to make these bars really thick, so I use an 8×8 square glass pan, but you could also use a 9×13 if you prefer. However, you’ll have to melt more chocolate to cover the top entirely.
- 3 Tb butter
- 1 (10 oz) bag marshmallows
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup peanut butter
- 5 cups gluten free crispy rice cereal (we really like Erewhon brand) or a combination of crispy rice/puffed rice cereals
- 1 cup chocolate chips
- Grease an 8×8 square pan or line with foil.
- Melt the butter in a large pan or dutch oven over low heat. Add the marshmallows, vanilla, salt and peanut butter, stirring constantly until melted and smooth; this takes several minutes.
- Remove from heat and add cereal, stirring until well mixed. Scrape the mixture into the prepared pan and press it into the pan with a greased spatula (or you can place a piece of waxed paper over it and press down, this prevents you from burning your hands).
- Place chocolate chips in small, microwave-safe bowl and heat in 30 second intervals until melted; stirring as needed. Spread melted chocolate over the bars and allow to set completely, about 2 hours at room temperature (or you can place them in the refrigerator or freezer to speed up this process).
- Cut bars into squares and serve.