5 Mistakes to Avoid When Making Rice Krispie Treats

updated Aug 17, 2022
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(Image credit: Nealey Dozier)

When it comes to no-bake desserts, it’s hard to find anything better than ultra gooey, marshmallowy rice krispie treats. They’re a classic. While they seem easy enough to make, there are a few missteps that can leave you with bars that are far from the soft and chewy treats you hoped for. Here are five common mistakes to avoid, plus our favorite tips for making the best rice krispie treats ever!

1. Don’t skimp on the marshmallows.

This is not an area to be stingy. The best way to think about rice krispie treats is the more marshmallows, the better. We’re also pretty sure there’s no such thing as too many marshmallows. Not using enough marshmallows yields boring treats that may fall apart easily.

Follow this tip: Use a minimum of 1 1/2 cups of marshmallows (that’s a little more than a standard size bag of large marshmallows). But don’t be afraid to use more! For extra marshmallowy treats use a 1:1 ratio of marshmallows and cereal.

2. Don’t use old marshmallows.

After marshmallows have been sitting around for a while, they start to dry out and the exterior gets firm. Most importantly, they don’t melt nearly as well. Instead of becoming soft and gooey, they melt into a one giant blob.

Follow this tip: Save the older marshmallows for hot cocoa and s’mores, and pick up a fresh bag of marshmallows to ensure a really great batch of rice krispie treats.

3. Don’t crank the heat on the stovetop too high.

We get it, you want to get these quick-to-make squares set as soon as possible so you can dig in. It’s tempting to turn up the heat to speed up melting the butter and marshmallows, but resist the urge. High heat is the prime culprit for rock hard rice krispie treats.

Follow this tip: It will take a few more minutes of cook time, but melt the butter and marshmallows over low heat. You’ll be rewarded with delicious, soft and chewy treats!

(Image credit: Nealey Dozier)

4. Don’t shy away from add-ins.

Sure, the standard original recipe is always a hit, but rice krispie treats are a blank canvas that are begging for your culinary creativity to run wild. Try testing these famous rice krispies treat recipes and see which one is your favorite.

Follow this tip: Don’t be afraid to broaden your horizons and try a new variation! Consider swapping your PSL for pumpkin spice rice krispie treats. Or, try adding anything from peanut butter, Nutella, malt balls, chocolate chips to crispy, crumbled bacon.

5. You have to eat them fast enough!

Ok, so this probably isn’t a big problem for many of you, but we just want to make sure none of these sweet treats are going to waste. After a few days rice krispie treats lose their freshness and begin to go from soft and gooey to stale, rock hard and inedible.

Follow this tip: Don’t let this happen to you. Rice krispie treats are best when eaten as soon as possible after being made, preferably within three days.

Try these rice krispies treats!

What are your best tips for making rice krispie treats?