“I’ve missed you,” I whispered to my favorite brand of peanut butter when I discovered it had finally been restocked on my grocery store’s shelves.
What? You don’t have conversations with your sweet spreadable condiments? Sounds like a personal problem.
I clearly have a very close and shamelessly proud relationship with peanut butter, and enjoy the creamy concoction in more ways than I can count.
The obvious choice is eating it by the spoonful straight from the jar, but I’ve been having a lot of fun making this recipe for peanut butter honey puffed rice treats lately.
No, these are not a nutty riff on classic Rice Krispies Treats™ made by those adorable little culinary gnomes – my recipe cuts down on processed sugar by not including any marshmallows.
They’re not energy balls either, though they did make me bounce around quite a bit in pure bliss.
These addictive confections don’t care if you categorize them as a cookie, dessert, breakfast item, or midnight snack. They just beg to be devoured faster than they were made.
Which isn’t hard to do.
Made with six simple ingredients – five if you don’t count the salt – they come together in a snap…
… crackle, pop.
Sorry, I had to.
Though I don’t mind whipping up the occasional muffin, baking isn’t my forte. That being said, I revere a sweet recipe that doesn’t require me to turn on my oven.
If you feel me on that, you’ll be crushing on these crunchy morsels too.
And making a protein-rich whole grain snack that can be stored in the fridge and nibbled on throughout the week is a bonus for everyone, the perfect addition to your meal prep routine.
Organic brown rice cereal is at the center of this recipe, and it’s an easy find online or at the grocery store.
Just keep in mind that the crisped rice cereal we’re using is made from whole grains, which gives these treats a tiny added boost in the nutrition category.
Shh. Don’t tell the kids that.
But you can tell them that they’re sweet, delicious, and crispy!
I highly recommend using butter in this recipe for its creaminess and flavor, but you can transform these into dairy-free one-biters by swapping in coconut oil or your choice of vegan margarine.
And although a classic sweet and nutty peanut spread is central to the flavor profile of these treats, it’s not the only star here.
Dried cranberries add another level of texture, tart flavor, and nutrients. It’s what we love to use in other no-bake snacks for extra chewiness, like our pecan chocolate crunchies. But currants or cherries would be excellent stand-ins.
Once formed and nestled into their candy cups, you could even drizzle them to your heart’s content with melted dark chocolate and sprinkle them with flaky sea salt for an amplified sweet and salty spin that your taste buds never saw coming.
But even without any extra toppings, these delicious puffed rice treats are nearly impossible to stop eating once they’ve chilled to perfection.
Even if you didn’t start by diving into a dialogue with your most beloved brand of peanut butter, don’t worry.
These snacks will whisper sweet nothings into your ear and have you hooked before you know it.Print
Need a no-bake snack to satisfy your sweet tooth? These crunchy treats are a fun mix of brown rice cereal, peanut butter, and dried cranberries.
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1/4 cup creamy peanut butter, room temperature
- 1 1/4 cups brown rice crisps cereal
- 1/4 cup dried cranberries
- In a medium-sized saucepan over medium heat, add the butter, salt, and honey. Once the butter has melted, stir to combine. Add the peanut butter. Cook, stirring occasionally until well-combined, about 3 minutes.
- Remove the pot from heat and fold in the rice cereal with a rubber spatula, coating it in the peanut butter mixture. Fold in the cranberries.
- Arrange 20 mini muffin cups on a serving tray or baking sheet. Using a heaping tablespoon as your guide, drop even portions of the mixture into the paper cups. Chill in the fridge until firm, about 30 minutes.
- Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week.
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 5 minutes
- Category: Cereal
- Method: Stovetop
- Cuisine: Snack
Keywords: brown rice, cereal, peanut butter, honey, cranberry
Step 1 – Gather, Prep, and Measure Ingredients
Prepare a serving tray or baking sheet with 20 paper candy cups. If you only have mini muffin cups, which are bigger, this recipe yields about 10 treats. The candy cups are perfect for making these bite-size.
Make some room in your fridge to fit the tray.
If you’re using a natural peanut spread that’s stored in the fridge, measure out the 1/4 cup you need for the recipe and bring it to room temperature.
Measure the butter. You want to make sure to use the unsalted variety for this recipe so you can control the salt content, and avoid oversalting. You could also substitute coconut oil or vegan margarine instead for a dairy-free version of these treats.
Step 2 – Make the Liquid Mixture
Place the butter, salt, and honey in a medium-sized saucepan over medium heat. It will seem like a large pan for this amount of ingredients, but remember that you’ll be stirring in the cereal later.
Once the honey has dissolved and the butter has melted, stir to combine together.
Add the peanut butter to the pan and use a silicone spatula to thoroughly stir it into the ingredients melted in the pot. Continue stirring occasionally until the ingredients have been completely combined to form a smooth mixture. This will take about 3 minutes.
Step 3 – Add the Cereal and Cranberries
Take the pot off the heat and quickly fold the rice cereal into the melted sauce with a rubber spatula.
When the cereal is completely coated in the sauce, gently fold in the cranberries. You want to make sure they’re evenly dispersed so you get a few in each treat.
Step 4 – Form and Chill
Fill each paper candy cup with a heaping tablespoon of the mixture.
A tablespoon-size measuring tool helps to shape the mixture l – when you turn the spoon upside down and it slides into the cups, the mound will have a rounded top.
If you want an even better tool to help you perfectly portion them, you can also use a tablespoon-sized cookie scooper with a release button for this step.
Place the serving tray or baking sheet filled with the treats in the fridge and chill until they’re firm, for about 30 minutes.
Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week.
Another Nut Butter?
Don’t mind if I do.
Creamy almond, sunflower seed, or even cashew would work beautifully in place of the peanut butter in this recipe. Go nuts! Or seeds!
No matter how you prepare these decadent treats, they’re sure to be a family favorite, or a heavily-requested confectionary recipe at the holidays.
Will you give these a white chocolate drizzle and a sprinkle of crushed salted peanuts like I’m planning to try the next time I make them, or follow the recipe exactly as is? Share your culinary creativity in the comments below! And don’t forget to give this recipe a five-star rating if you loved it.
Nuts for peanut butter? So are we! Spread the love and try these recipes next:
Photos by Fanny Slater, © Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details. Originally published by Shanna Mallon on . Last updated on August 29, 2022.
Nutritional information derived from a database of known generic and branded foods and ingredients and was not compiled by a registered dietitian or submitted for lab testing. It should be viewed as an approximation.
About Fanny Slater
Fanny Slater is a home-taught food enthusiast based in Wilmington, North Carolina who won the “Rachael Ray Show” Great American Cookbook Competition in 2014, and published her cookbook “Orange, Lavender & Figs” in 2016. Fanny is a food and beverage writer, recipe developer, and social media influencer. She was a co-host on the Food Network series “Kitchen Sink,” was featured on Cooking Channel’s longtime popular series “The Best Thing I Ever Ate,” and continues to appear regularly on the “Rachael Ray Show.”