Maple Brown Butter Rice Krispie Treats are a classic treat with a seasonal twist from maple extract and brown butter. Absolutely divine!
Rice Krispie treats are classic, but a perfect marshmallow bar is all about the ratio of butter and marshmallow to cereal. The perfect bar is chewy and buttery. To achieve this consistency, I increased the amount of butter and marshmallow to give these bars the ideal gooey texture.
This Maple brown butter version is a delicious seasonal twist, but the base recipe can be used all year long.
Base recipe ingredients
Increasing the butter and marshmallow to cereal ratio results in the perfect amount of chewiness.
- butter - we're using one whole stick!
- marshmallows - two 10-ounce bags of miniature marshmallows are used in these bars. Reserve half of one bag to stir into the mixture for extra pockets of marshmallow goodness! I love using mini marshmallows - they melt quickly and are perfect for folding in extra.
- cereal - we need 6 cups of crispy rice cereal in this recipe.
Maple brown butter version
- brown butter - browning the butter only takes a few extra minutes and it adds the most wonderful nutty flavor.
- maple extract - 2 teaspoons adds a wonderful punch of fall flavor
Tips for making
Marshmallow bars are known for being sticky and hard to handle, but I'm sharing tips to make preparation easier.
- Spray the pan with baking spray and line with parchment. Then spray the parchment. The bars can easily be lifted out of the pan for slicing.
- Set out all of the ingredients so they are ready to go. These bars come together quickly, especially once the butter and marshmallow mixture is melted.
- Use a silicone spoon or spatula for stirring the cereal-marshmallow mixture. The gooey mixture won't stick as much to silicone.
- The increased amount of butter in the recipe also makes the mixture easier to work with. The mixture doesn't set up as quickly, making it easier to fold in the mini marshmallows and spoon the mixture out of the pot and into the baking pan.
- Spray hands with baking spray before pressing the cereal mixture into the pan. This prevents the mixture from sticking all over your fingers.
Other flavor varieties
You can use the base recipe and adjust it for any of these delicious flavor combinations:
- Sweet and salty - Add vanilla extract and a touch of salt to the base recipe.
- Fruity - Use fruity pebble cereal in place of crispy rice cereal.
- Birthday cake or confetti - Fold sprinkles into the cereal mixture.
- Cookies and Cream - fold in crushed Oreo cookies.
- Springtime - use pastel-colored marshmallows. These are perfect for Easter.
More sweet treat recipes you may enjoy
- Butterscotch Bars with Vanilla Cardamom Icing
- Peanut Butter S’mores Bars
- Frosted Nutella Rice Krispie Treats
- Frosted Christmas M&M Cookie Bars
- Fudge-Filled Peanut Butter Bars
Maple Brown Butter Rice Krispie Treats (+ best base recipe)
- ½ cup unsalted butter
- 20 ounces miniature marshmallows (divided)
- 6 cups crispy rice cereal
Maple brown butter version
- 2 teaspoons maple extract
- Prepare the pan: Spray a 9x13 pan with baking spray, line with parchment paper, and spray the paper. Set aside.
- Heat a large, heavy-bottomed pot over medium-low heat. Add the butter and heat until melted. To brown butter, continue heating the butter until it turns golden brown and brown bits form on the bottom of the pan. This will take approx. 5-7 minutes.
- Stir in 1 ½ bags of mini marshmallows. Stir until completely melted. Add the maple extract. Then stir in cereal. When the cereal is evenly coated with the marshmallow mixture, fold in the remaining marshmallows.
- Transfer the cereal mixture to the prepared pan. Spray hands with baking spray and press the mixture evenly into the pan. Set aside to cool and set, approx. 60 minutes.
- Using the parchment paper, lift the bars out of the pan. Slice into squares. Store in an airtight container for up to 3 days with parchment paper in between the layers.
- For traditional treats, melt the butter but skip the browning step and proceed with instructions, omitting the maple extract.
- Using a silicone spoon or spatula will reduce sticking with the marshmallow mixture.
Nutritional information is an estimate and will vary depending upon the exact amounts and specific ingredients used.