These gluten-free rice krispies treats are soft and gooey with the perfect amount of crunch. Quick and easy to make these no-bake treats are extra special thanks to a mix of melted and whole mini marshmallows, a good sprinkle of salt, and a dash of vanilla.
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Rice Krispies treats are just one of those classic treats that everyone loves. I mean, what’s not to love about the crunch of crispy rice coated in buttery marshmallows?
What is frustrating is that Kellogg's stopped making gluten-free rice Krispies cereal. But no worries we have you covered.
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📖Why This Recipe Works
Simple ingredients make this no-bake dessert perfect for an after-school snack or kid-friendly baking project. This recipe is allergy friendly. In addition to being gluten-free it is egg-free and can be made with dairy-free or vegan butter.
But what makes these special is a good amount of salt and lots of vanilla. If you are making rice crispy treats there is no reason to make them boring!
Use our guide to find the right gluten-free crispy rice cereal and let's get started.
🥣Is Kellogg's Rice Krispies Cereal Gluten-Free?
o Kellogg's Rice Krispies cereal is not gluten-free. Their regular product contains malt flavor (also called barley malt or barley malt syrup). Kellogg's no longer makes a gluten-free version.
Other brands that are NOT gluten-free:
- Market Pantry Toasted Rice Cereal
- Meijer Crisp Rice (not the box says GF, but it contains barley malt syrup)
My favorite substitute for Rice Krispies is the Millville Rice Cereal from Aldi.
Other substitutes include:
- Rice Chex (will be a cereal bar but still delicious!)
- Nature's Path Organic Crispy Rice Cereal (okay but not my favorite for rice crispy squares)
- Barbara's Organic Brown Rice Crisps
- One Degree Organics Sprouted Brown Rice Crisps Cereal
- Kroger Rice Cereal
Whatever you use, be sure to look for malt or any barley derivative on the ingredient label. They contain gluten. And as always, watch out for cross-contamination from "traces of wheat" and shared lines.
Note: Great Value (Walmart brand) shows two rice versions of cereal- Rice Crisps (no gluten ingredients) and Rice Crispers (contains barley malt syrup). So be careful and double-check.
Tip: Do not use rice puff cereal, it has to be crispy rice cereal to hold up to the weight of the marshmallow.
Unsalted Butter - Cut into smaller pieces so it melts more easily.
Marshmallows - I use mini marshmallows so they melt more quickly and easily with the butter. If you can only find regular marshmallows, that’s fine, they will just take longer to melt.
Vanilla Extract - Gives the marshmallow mix a flavor depth and warmth.
Kosher Salt - Cuts the sweetness and enhances flavors.
See the recipe card for exact quantities.
⏲️How to Make Gluten-Free Rice Krispies Treats
This delicious no-bake treat comes together so quickly! It is important to have your baking pan prepped before starting. This recipe makes a 9x13 pan but you can use a 9 or 8-inch square pan for a thicker treat.
You can line your pan with parchment or coat it with cooking spray, coconut oil, or butter. Be sure to get up the sides of the pan.
Step 1- Melt the Marshmallows
In a saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add all but 1 cup of the mini marshmallows, then reduce the heat to low and stir until melted and smooth.
Remove the melted marshmallow mixture from the heat, then mix in vanilla and salt. Stir until combined.
Step 2- Mix
Add in the cereal and remaining marshmallows, then gently mix until combined. It will be thick and hard to stir.
Transfer the cereal mix to your prepared pan. Wet your hand hands with water and gently press the mixture into the pan. Do not press too hard, it will create dense hard treats.
Let the treats sit at room temperature for one hour before cutting and serving.
👩🏻🍳 Expert Tips
- Line or grease the pan. You can use parchment paper or cooking spray. Either one makes it so much easier to remove the treats once they’re done.
- Stir gently when you add the cereal. If you go at it too hard, you’ll just crush the cereal.
- Give the treats at least 1 hour to set. If you try to slice into them too soon, they will be much too gooey and sticky.
- Brown butter - Add another layer of flavor by browning the butter before you melt in the marshmallows. To brown the butter, warm over medium heat, stirring constantly, until it turns a golden/amber color and foams around the edges.
- Add Mix-Ins - Feel free to load your treats up with other mix-ins such as chocolate chips, white chocolate chips, festive colored M&Ms, etc. Don’t go too heavy on the mix-ins though. If there’s too much, the treats won’t hold their shape.
- Vegan Rice Krispies Treats - Use dairy-free butter, your favorite brand of vegan marshmallows. Perfect for those with multiple food allergies.
These gluten-free rice krispies treats will stay fresh for 2-3 days at room temperature. After that, they will start to harden. Just cover the baking dish with plastic wrap or store them in an airtight container.
More Gluten-Free Treats
💬Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, you can use regular-size marshmallows cut into pieces, but I don’t recommend it. While some of the marshmallows are melted to hold the treats together, we’re also keeping some whole to add texture to the bars.
For that reason, mini marshmallows work best!
Yes! Marshmallows are gluten-free. However, I recommend checking the packaging to make sure they are certified gluten-free before you use them.
No. Regular crispy rice cereal is not gluten-free. However, you can easily find a gluten-free alternative to the name-brand stuff. My favorite is Millville rice cereal from Aldi. It’s gluten-free and close in texture to regular crispy rice cereal.
How do I make sure rice krispies don’t get hard?
To make sure the treats don't get hard don't overcook the marshmallow. Cook only until just melted, then remove them from the heat.
Don’t push down too hard. Gently press the rice krispies into the pan. If they get too packed in, they will be too tough.
Serve fresh. The longer they sit, the harder they will get.
Yes, you can make rice krispies treats ahead of time, then store them in the freezer for up to 6 months.
To freeze, line the rice krispie treats on a baking sheet and freeze on a baking sheet until hardened. Transfer to ziplock bags or a freezer-safe container and store. If you’re stacking the treats up, I recommend putting a piece of parchment paper between each layer to prevent sticking.
When you’re ready to serve, let the treats thaw at room temp, then dig in!
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Gluten-Free Rice Krispies Treats
- Line a 9x13 inch baking dish with parchment paper or coat with cooking spray. Set aside.
- In a large saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Once melted, add in all but 1 cup of the marshmallows. Reduce heat to low and continue stirring until completely melted.6 Tablespoons unsalted butter, 16 ounces mini marshmallows
- Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla and salt. Add the cereal and the remaining 1 cup of marshmallows and gently stir until combined.1 teaspoon vanilla extract, ⅓ teaspoon kosher salt, 7 cups gluten-free crispy rice cereal
- Pour into the prepared baking dish. Press gently with your fingertips just until completely spread out. Allow to set at room temperature, about 1 hour.
- Kellogg's Rice Krispies cereal is not gluten-free and they no longer make the gluten-free version. I like the Millville rice cereal from Aldi. It is gluten-free and close in texture. You can use any GF cereal brand you like check the labels for malt and barley, neither are safe for those with celiac disease or anyone on a gluten-free diet.
- Do not use puffed rice cereal.
- To prevent sticking, wet your hands before pressing the treats into the pan.