Rice Krispies Treats have been around since 1939 when home economists at Kelloggs melted marshmallows and mixed them with the popular puffed rice cereal. The company didn’t get around to selling commercial treats until 1995, which gave home cooks plenty of years to come up with new twists on an old favorite
For “Treat: 50 Recipes for No-Bake Marshmallow Treats” (Clarkson Potter, $14.99), Stephanie Banyas came up with dozens of innovative spins, including raspberry cheesecake, gingerbread, lemonade key lime and these puppy chow treats that get a salty crunch from pretzels. She also includes marshmallow recipes, but store-bought ones will save you a ton of time and cleanup.
Puppy Chow Pretzel Treats
6 Tbsp. unsalted butter
3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips
3/4 cup creamy peanut butter (do not use natural peanut butter)
1 (16-oz.) bag marshmallows or 15 ounces marshmallow spread
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
Pinch of sea salt
6 cups puffed rice cereal
1 cup coarsely crushed pretzels
2 cups confectioners’ sugar
Using 1 tablespoon of the butter, grease the bottom and sides of a 9-inch-by-13-inch glass or nonstick baking dish.
In a medium pan set over medium heat, melt the remaining 5 tablespoons butter. Add the chocolate and peanut butter, and stir until smooth. Add the marshmallows, reduce the heat to low, and cover the pan. Let stand until the marshmallows soften, 2 minutes. Fold in the vanilla, salt, cereal and pretzels, and stir gently.
Scrape the mixture into the prepared dish and spread evenly with a piece of wax paper. Refrigerate until chilled, about 15 minutes. Cut the treats into 1-inch bars.
Sift the confectioners’ sugar into a bowl and toss the treats in the sugar until well coated. Serve. Makes 88 pieces.
— From “Treat: 50 Recipes for No-Bake Marshmallow Treats” by Stephanie Banyas (Clarkson Potter, $14.99)