Salted Brown Butter Rice Crispy Bars

Salted Brown Butter Rice Crispy Bars When I first saw this recipe by Smitten Kitchen, I didn’t know how I felt about tampering with the classic Rice Krispie Treat (one of my childhood favorites).  Several weeks later, I decided to test the recipe at a dinner party (appropriately, a modern spin on the classics dinner party).  A perfect balance of gooey, crispy and salty, the final product was a smash hit and definitely the favorite dish of the night.  Since then, I have made these Salted Brown Butter Rice Crispy Bars numerous times.  With only four ingredients and minimal effort, these treats are a top “go to” dessert in my repertoire.  Continue reading for the recipe.

Marshmallows, Rice Krispies and Sea Salt

Salted Brown Butter Rice Crispy Bars
Slightly adapted from Smitten Kitchen.

1 stick (4 oz.) unsalted butter, plus extra for the baking dish
1 10 oz. bag marshmallows
Heaping ¼ teaspoon flaky sea salt, plus extra for topping
6 cups Rice Krispies cereal

Salted Brown Butter Rice Crispy Bars

Butter a 9″ x 13″ baking dish and set aside.

In a large pot, warm butter over medium low heat.  The butter will melt, then foam and bubble, then start to brown.  You will notice little brown bits forming at the bottom of the pan.  Stir frequently during this process and keep your attention on the pot.  The butter can go from wonderfully brown to burnt in just a few moments.  You will know the butter is done when it gives off a nutty aroma and turns a golden brown (check out this great resource for how to brown butter).

Turn off the heat and add the marshmallows, stirring until smooth.  Add half of the cereal and stir to incorporate.  Sprinkle in the flaky sea salt and remaining cereal and continue stirring until everything is fully mixed together.

Transfer mixture to the prepared baking dish.  Using a silicon spatula (or piece of parchment paper), press mixture into the dish in an even layer.  Sprinkle with additional flaky sea salt to taste (I added almost another ¼ teaspoon).

Let cool, cut into bars and enjoy!

Makes 12 – 14 bars.

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39 Responses to Salted Brown Butter Rice Crispy Bars

  1. 1

    [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by CoolSpinster, Muddy Lops and Muddy Lops, Brandon Matzek. Brandon Matzek said: Salted Brown Butter Rice Crispy Bars http://bit.ly/aj3M6H A modern spin on a classic treat made with only 4 ingredients and minimal effort. [...]

  2. 2

    Great “grown-up” bars!! Love them – love your lighting.

  3. 3
    Michelle says:

    I am a sucker for anything with a salty caramel . . . these bars look fantastic – a really nice update to everyone’s childhood favorite!

  4. 4
    Kristen says:

    Rice Crispy Treats have long been my cooking nemesis. Why I have trouble making one of the most simple desserts known to man is a mystery. I might just be able to handle browning butter and adding the marshmallows after the heat….the more complicated the instructions, the better my chances of success for some reason. Adding salt sounds wonderful…like adding salt to caramels. YUM!

  5. 5
    Morgiana says:

    Hey thanks for sharing! I love the recipe and the pics :) Now I know what I’ll be making next :) Thank you!

  6. 6

    This is a fantastic idea. And the salt is perfect!

  7. 7
    Suchitra says:

    Wow, this is a great recipe! loved it- Thanks for sharing

  8. 8
  9. 9
    Marie says:

    This is cool. I can’t wait to try them :)

  10. 10

    Nice bars! Bet it tastes absolutely wonderful.

  11. 11

    OMG, I’m in love! I want some NOW, NOW, NOW!!

  12. 12
    Eileen says:

    This is the adult version of rice crispy treats. Love it!

  13. 13

    Fancy rice crispies…but still basic ingredients and simple. I love it! Definitely planning on giving this one a shot…thanks!

  14. 14

    I’ve been making quite a few rice krispies lately but I love this version and will have to try this soon, thanks!

  15. 15
    lynne says:

    yum! they look delicious. great idea :)

  16. 16
    Becky says:

    I’ve made many rice crispy bars and I will definitely try this one. I’ve never browned butter before on purpose.

  17. 17

    I love that there are so many versions of crispy bars! My mom made them when I was younger and it is fun to recreate some with my kids. Love that there are so few ingredients!

  18. 18
    Brandon Matzek says:

    @Kristen Good luck! These are guaranteed to taste good :)

    @Becky Brown butter is really delicious and can be used in both sweet and savory ways. Sizzle in some sage for a few moments for and you have a savory sauce that works well with ravioli or squash (or ravioli stuffed with squash!).

    @Kim My mother always made rice krispie treats when I was younger. She would later send them in care packages while I was away at college. I think I am going to send her a batch of these over the Holidays. It’s always nice to return the love :) Enjoy!

  19. 19

    Divine! The grownup’s version of rice crispy treats! Love it!

  20. 20
    Loong says:

    oh..this is the kind of snack you will have for chinese new year but a sweet version.

  21. 21
    Gree says:

    Wow, these look so good, I think if one can improve upon a rice crispy treat this is the way to do it!

  22. 22
    Kocinera says:

    What a cool take on rice crispy bars! I’ve just recently discovered all the wonders that is browned butter and I can’t get enough. I’ll bet these taste amazing!

  23. 23
    Lisa says:

    I could bathe in brown butter while eatuing rice crispy treats. Combining the two is brilliant. Everything is better with butter, but even better with brown butter. Definitely trying these!

  24. 24

    The classics are wonderful but making an “adult” modern version is outstanding. A must try!! Enjoy your Labor Day Holiday!

  25. 25

    My 70-year old mother still makes rice-crispy treats for every occasion and hauls them to everyone she knows who needs a pick-me-up. I love them for that very reason, but I think you’ve provided me with new reason to love them! Thanks for sharing!

  26. 26
    Vibey says:

    I LOVE treats, and this looks like it would lift them right up and out into another realm altogether. Can’t wait to make these!

  27. 27
    Heather says:

    This is pretty much the only way Rice Krispie Bars could get any more delicious. :)

  28. 28

    Four ingredients, minimal effort… this is my kind of recipe. As always, beautiful photos.

  29. 29
    Noreen says:

    This sounds awesome!! I love doing a simple dessert when I host a dinner…this one is totally on the menu for my fall dinner party!

  30. 30

    Drooling…a sophisticated version. Will try!

  31. 31
    Kelli says:

    looks wonderful!

  32. 32

    What a great idea to make them salted! I bet that makes all the difference.

    I can’t wait to try this recipe. Looks delicious!

  33. 33
    Gree says:

    Salty and sweet..is there really any better combination? I don’t think so, thanks for sharing this, i am thinking of using it for my upcoming dinner party!

  34. 34
    Elainegan says:

    Looks super healthy!

  35. 35
    Joy says:

    That looks so good. I never thought of using a brown butter for this wonderful treat.

  36. 36
  37. 37

    I love that there is only four ingredients – and that one of them is marshmallows. Too good. Thanks.

  38. 38
  39. 39
    Georgane says:

    We’re getting spoiled with these… I can’t wait to try making them myself…Thank you Brandon

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