Cheap Recipe: Peanut Butter & White Chocolate Rice Cereal Treats

16 Oct

For a printable version of this recipe and complete ingredients listing, click here.

Plain old Rice Krispie Treats ain't got nothing on these rich bars!

Plain old Rice Krispie Treats ain't got nothing on these rich bars!

While Jamie was home sick this week, I decided to pamper him with fun activities and a few indulgences.

After quick trip on Tuesday morning to our local Wal-Mart, we came home with a $5.00 DVD of “Stuart Little” (which we already have watched 4.5 times as of Thursday evening!) and fixings for Jamie’s favorite dessert, the illustrious Rice Krispie Treat.

Back at home, however, I was poking through the cabinets after Jamie didn’t eat his lunch when I ran across a few more items that caught my interest: a jar of peanut butter, a bag of peanut butter chips, and a bag of white chocolate chips.

Wondering if I couldn’t add a little food value to the cereal with a cup of peanut butter while jazzing the flavor up a bit to make them “special” RK treats, I added the extra ingredients to the countertop and dove in.

The finished product won rave compliments from both Jamie and Hubby, and was inhaled by toddler and father alike.

Melt butter and peanut butter together.

Melt butter and peanut butter together.

A word to the wise, however–if you’re used to scarfing down two or three regular RK treats at a time like me, check yourself. This variation on a theme is MUCH richer than its simpler predecessor, so a pan of these will go a lot further! (Plus, I like to make thicker RK treats, so you’ll notice an increase in the amount of cereal and marshmallows.)

Add marshmallows and stir. Wooden spoons are good for this.

Add marshmallows and stir. Wooden spoons are good for this.

Begin by melting 1/2 cup (one stick) butter or margarine with 1 cup creamy peanut butter in a large pot over low-medium heat.

Add one-and-a-half bags marshmallows (about 50-55 jumbo marshmallows) and stir

Add salt and vanilla extract to creamy mixture.

Add salt and vanilla extract to creamy mixture.

frequently for several minutes until all large pieces are incorporated smoothly  into the peanut butter mixture.

Add 1/2 tablespoon salt and 1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract to the pot and stir well. Remove from heat.

Immediately add 8 cups Rice Krispies cereal (generic will do just fine!). Some say to do this gradually, but I find I can get them all evenly coated better if I do it at once.

White chocolate and peanut butter chips add some extra "sweet spots" to this version.

White chocolate and peanut butter chips add some extra "sweet spots" to this version.

Quickly mix in 1 cup peanut butter chips and 1 cup white chocolate chips. You’ll have a better chance of them staying in semi-solid pieces if you do this directly after the cereal step rather than

Snap. Crackle. Pop.

Snap. Crackle. Pop.

all at once, but don’t wait too long or the whole thing will start to set up while it’s still in the pot.

As soon as candy pieces are evenly distributed, spoon contents of pot into well-greased 9″ x 12″ pan. I just use a big plastic covered container (like Rubbermaid or GladWare) for this so it’s easy to get a really good seal on the top between “raids.”

Once the mixture has been spooned into the pan, coat one side of a sheet of wax paper with nonstick cooking spray and lay it greased-side-down over the mixture. Press firmly on the top of the wax paper until all areas of the pan are uniformly “smushed” into a dense, flat rectangle.

Mix it, mash it, stir, stir, stir...

Mix it, mash it, stir, stir, stir...

Make sure there aren't any loose pockets--you want a big, dense brick! (Doesn't that sound good?)

Make sure there aren't any loose pockets--you want a big, dense brick! (Doesn't that sound good?)

(Some people use a greased spatula for this or other equipment, but I like to just use my knuckles so the wax paper trick lends itself well to that without making a mess.)

Remove the sheet of wax paper, cover pan with lid, and allow to set approximately 30 minutes or until cooled and completely set up. Serve by cutting and separating into individual squares.

In hindsight, I think this might have been even more tasty with some actual dry- (or honey!) roasted peanuts thrown in the mix for good measure instead of the PB chips, so…that’s something to think about. 🙂 Enjoy!

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2 Responses to “Cheap Recipe: Peanut Butter & White Chocolate Rice Cereal Treats”

  1. lailablogs October 17, 2009 at 7:01 AM #

    Simple and great treat … Looks really good …
    Laila .. http://lailablogs.com/

  2. Emily October 23, 2009 at 3:49 PM #

    If you can find some cheap, marshmallow creme is great in place of the marshmallows. It melts faster and more evenly and is a bit easier to work with. (Also vegetarian-friendly, as it does not contain gelatin.)

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