I like to make things and share them with other people. It’s just an appreciation thing. Food is my go-to thing, obvi…and sometimes I try to make something that’s an old fave. Something simple, maybe even with a bit of childhood nostalgia.
Whenever I stay with friends, I try to bring a little something as a hostess gift. These treats ended up being the perfect gift for my friend, who LOVES the classic version, because they take to air travel quite well, wrapped up tight and stowed in a carry-on. The salty caramel melts into the gooey, buttery marshmallow mixture, making the flavor similar to the classic version but deeper and more special from the caramelized sugar. A sprinkling of coarse salt takes them over the top and into gifting territory.
Salted Caramel Crispy Rice Squares
This recipe combines the standard ingredients for crispy rice treats with buttery, salted caramel. Making the caramel sauce is the only additional step and one that is totally worth it. I’m sure you could use store bought caramel sauce in a pinch.
Salted Caramel Sauce:
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup water
2 Tablespoons butter, unsalted
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
In a medium, heavy bottomed saucepan, combine sugar and water heating to melt sugar. Cook the syrup until it becomes dark golden brown–take it as far as you dare without burning the sugar. Remove from heat and quickly stir in the butter, to combine, then the cream, salt, and vanilla. The mixture will steam and bubble furiously, so be careful not to scald your hand as you stir. Caramel should be smooth and glossy. Pour into a heatproof jar and prepare the remaining ingredients.
Crisp Rice Squares:
4 cups mini marshmallows
2 Tablespoons unsalted butter
1 recipe salted caramel sauce
6 cups crisp rice cereal
smoked or plain sea salt for sprinkling
Lightly grease a 9x13inch baking pan. Set aside.
In a large pot over medium heat melt together the butter and marshmallows, add the caramel stir to combine. Add the crispy rice cereal and mix well to coat evenly. Press the mixture into the prepared pan and allow to set for several hours before cutting. Wrap squares individually with plastic to store. Will keep 1 week at room temperature.