Let’s all close our eyes for a moment and return to our childhood, shall we? Where we enjoyed easy-to-make desserts like rice krispy treats and muddy buddies.
Now imagine, if you will, that these two famous treats come together to form one mega-delicious ultra-dessert that is just as easy to make as either of the two on their own but so much greater than the sum of its parts.
This, my friends, is what we have here. Two childhood favorites – Muddy Buddies and Rice Krispy Treats – combined into one amazingly delicious, just-as-easy-to-make dessert.
muddy buddy krispy treats
- 3 Tablespoons butter (salted or unsalted will work, I use unsalted)
- 1/2 cup peanut butter
- 1 (10 ounce) bag marshmallows
- 2 cups (or one small bag) chocolate chips
- 5 cups crisp rice cereal
- 1/2 cup to 1 cup powdered sugar
- Line a 9×13” pan with foil and/or parchment and grease generously with butter or nonstick cooking spray.
- **Stovetop Instructions** Heat a large pot over medium/medium-low heat. Add butter until it is almost melted, then add peanut butter and marshmallows until melted. Add chocolate chips, stirring until they are mostly melted, then add cereal. Remove from heat and continue stirring until the cereal is fully coated in marshmallow mixture. If it starts to harden, return to the burner and continue stirring.
- **Microwave instructions** Cut butter into cubes and place into a large bowl with peanut butter and marshmallows. Microwave in 30 second increments, stirring in between each session, until the mixture is almost completely melted. Add chocolate chips and continue microwaving in 30 second increments until chocolate is almost completely melted. Add cereal and stir until the cereal is completely coated with the marshmallow mixture.
- Pour mixture into prepared pan and press gently but firmly to ensure they keep their form. Allow to cool completely at room temperature or in the fridge before cutting.
- Trim edges (if you like clean edges, like I do, and cut into desired size squares. These are pretty rich so you can probably get away with 1 to 1 1/2 inch squares if you wanted.
- Place about 1 cup powdered sugar in a bowl and coat each square with powdered sugar. Alternatively, if you want less powdered sugar (but why would you!?) you can just dust the top and bottom of the squares with powdered sugar.
- Store in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
I trimmed the edges of my krispy treats then, not wanting to waste them, threw those edges into a ziploc bag with some powdered sugar making muddy buddy krispy treat 'bites' essentially. These were also delicious and a great snack for when you want to distract yourself (or your hubby) from eating the pretty squares 😉 You could also do this with the entire batch, just crumble it into bites and toss them with powdered sugar. Yes, they're that good.
Baked Bakery’s “Good Morning Sunshine” bars have been on my ‘to do’ list for practically forever, and who knows why because they’re so fricking easy to make that I basically feel like the laziest person ever for not making them. I finally got around to make them, but as i was reading through the recipe I just wanted there to be more.
The standard recipe is pretty solid on its own, it’s got cereal, peanut butter, sugar (duh), and a drizzle of chocolate on top, but it also had chopped peanuts which for some reason I am generally not a fan of in my snacks. I like peanuts, I eat them quite frequently, but crunchy peanut butter? No thank you. Nuts in my cookies? Get out of here. Nuts in a quick bread? Pass. I know, I’m a crazy person.
Apparently our local Starbucks has a new pastry in stock these days. I don’t know if it’s legit new or just “new to us” new, but it is called the Michigan Cherry Oat Bar… and it happens to be Mr. Eats’ new favorite thing these days. So, of course, he requested that I make a from-scratch version. When I told him that would be difficult to do having never tasted the sweet treat, one appeared at our home within days.
Since I couldn’t share my holiday basket recipes with you in December (that would have spoiled the surprise for the recipients!), I’ve decided to share them with you in January! Here’s a quick peek at what we’ll be covering…
- Gingerbread blondies
- Peppermint bark
- Parmesan-thyme crackers
- Cheddar crisps
- Cinnamon-apple bourbon
- Toffee chip shortbread cookies
Today’s topic: Peppermint bark.
The first time I had peppermint bark was years ago at Williams Sonoma and at almost $30 a pop I limited myself to their free samples and other, cheaper, knock-off varieties of the holiday treat. While I was thinking about what to put in my 2014 baskets, I realized that I still had a good amount of Chocoley laying around and thought it would be perfect some holiday bark!
You can use any chocolate you like, of course, but I’ve already told you about how I love the snap of Chocoley’s Candy Molding formula, which makes a nice sturdy base for this bark without having to temper the chocolate at all. Just melt and pour, then top it with some white chocolate and a generous sprinkling of crushed candy canes on top and voila! You have a whole sheet-pan of peppermint bark for a fraction of what you would pay for the tiny bit you get from Williams Sonoma one!
- 14 ounces dark chocolate, chopped
- 1 1/2 teaspoons peppermint extract
- 14 ounces white chocolate, chopped
- 3 candy canes, chopped or crushed
- Line a sheet pan or 9-by-13 pan (for neater corners) with aluminum foil and/or parchment, smoothing out any wrinkles.
- Melt dark chocolate over just steaming water in a double boiler. (Alternatively, you can melt the chocolate in the microwave in 30 second intervals at 50% power, stirring in between each session).
- Stir in the peppermint extract and pour into prepared pan, spreading to form an even layer. Set in the fridge to firm up while you melt the white chocolate.
- In a separate bowl, melt the white chocolate in the same manner as the dark chocolate (it may take less time).
- Remove dark chocolate layer from fridge and pour white chocolate over the dark chocolate layer, spreading the white chocolate to form an even layer. Sprinkle with candy canes and return to fridge for about 10 minutes to set up.
- Set on the counter to continue firming up, about one hour, then cut into desired size chunks.
- Store in an airtight container at room temperature.
HAPPY NEW YEAR! I’m sure I should be focusing on green things and healthy recipes, but I made these gingerbread blondies over the holiday for my Christmas treat boxes and it would just not be fair for me to keep them from you.
I know exactly what some of you are thinking right now: “Gingerbread? Ew!” But, hear me out… I know that you think you don’t like gingerbread. You probably had a bite of a gingerbread house as it was under construction and spit it out in disgust, or ate the legs off of a tiny gingerbread man only to be disappointed by the flavor… or maybe you had a bite of some dry gingerbread cake that fell to pieces in your mouth.
I’m here to tell you that those, my friends, are not what gingerbread is really all about. These blondies, on the other hand, will redeem every negative gingerbread experience you’ve ever had in your life. They are soft and delightfully chewy and filled to the top with molasses and spices that will make your mouth do the happy dance.
I adapted the recipe from Mr. Eats’s favorite blondies. I kept the basic ratios the same, but punched up the spices and added a healthy dose of molasses to make these babies really shine.
- 2 2/3 cups all purpose flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp ground ginger
- pinch ground cloves
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 1 1/4 cups brown sugar, packed
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- 1/3 cup unsulfured molasses
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 350F and line a 9 by 13-inch baking pan with aluminum foil and parchment. Lightly grease the parchment with cooking spray or butter.
- In a medium bowl, mix the flour with the baking powder, salt, cinnamon, ginger, and cloves. Stir to combine.
- In a large bowl, beat butter and sugars with an electric mixer until fluffy. (If you are using a stand mixer, you will want to use the paddle attachment)
- Add eggs, one at a time, beating to incorporate the egg after each addition.
- Scrape down the bowl and add the molasses, beating until incorporated.
- Add the vanilla and continue beating another 10 or 15 seconds until it is mixed in.
- Add half of the flour mixture and beat on low just until moistened. Add the other half of the mixture and beat on low until just combined, being careful not to overmix. There should be no traces of white flour in the dough.
- Spread batter into the prepared pan - it helps if you moisten your hands and use them to help spread and pat the batter into place (it will be quite thick and sticky). Bake until edges are dry and the center is completely set, about 30 minutes. A toothpick inserted into the middle should come out clean.
- Cool completely on a wire rack and cut into squares.