I’ve yet to meet a kid who doesn’t love cereal. In fact I bet that it’s one of the only foods that kids and adults would devour morning, noon and night. Take rice crispies for example. They are an all time classic for all ages. As a kid when my brother and I were competing for space in the grocery cart and being shuttled down the aisles (I’m sure causing nothing but trouble) the only thing we could agree on was cereal, specifically rice crispies. The same was true when it came to deciding which special treat to make when cooking with my mother. Requiring only a few ingredients, rice crispy treats were always one of our favorites.

Rice crispy treats endure, but they aren’t the healthiest thing you can give your kids. Instead I created these Rice Crispy Treat Balls for my latest book Weelicious Lunches implementing a few switcheroos, I use almond butter and rice syrup in lieu of marshmallows (which also means no GMO-laden corn syrup) and roll them into fun little single serving balls instead of big ol’ bars.

Looking for a simple homemade recipe to make to make for the holidays? Watch this video to see how to make healthier rice crispy treats. This one doesn’t even require cooking!

About the Author

Catherine is a mama of three. A Kentucky girl living in California. Here’s what I know: all kids can be great eaters and mealtime must be easy. I create simple, healthy recipes the whole family will love.


  1. These look so easy & good, plus it looks like all the ingredients are gluten free, Several of my family members need to follow a GF diet, so I’m eager to make these for the next family event.

  2. I’m going to make these for my grandbaby girl. I’d like to find where you can copy the recipe?

  3. Made these today to use as the “rice” in “sushi” for Chinese New Year! They were fabulous. My 3 year old and I put gummy fish on top and wrapped with natural fruit strips…far from the healthiest combination to put on these yummy treats, but it was fun for the kids and now I have a wonderful rice crispie treat for future use without the nasty gummy fish!

  4. Hi from Australia 🙂 Just made these late last night as we are having a playdate today so I thought the kids would like them. I of course had to taste test them….YUM! I had to make a couple of variations though as my local health food store and grocery store was out of rice syrup. So I used Coconut syrup and I used cashew butter instead of almond butter. I high recommend trying them with coconut syrup ! I also pushed them into fun shaped ice cube trays (the Ikea ones) so they will be fun shapes for the kids too. Thanks 🙂

  5. […] this vegan pudding is not as cute-looking as rice crispy treat balls or banana dog bites, the rich, creamy taste makes up for it. I added peanut butter to the recipe […]

  6. Hi, I tried to roll these into balls, but they fell apart. Did I not cook it long enough? They taste great though!

  7. You two are the cutest! I think my munchkins would really dig these although I can see them following Chloe’s lead and chowing down before I get to turn them into any sort of shape.

  8. They are definitely chewy! You get a little crisp from the rice cereal. The texture is pretty similar, maybe a bit softer, to rice krispie treats!

  9. While the flavor is good, there isn’t any “crisp” to these. I’ve tried two batches, both on the chewy but no crisp at all side. Should these have a chewy not crispy texture?

  10. Never mind my question! I just scrolled down and read through the comments and found the answer – 3 to 3 1/2 cups. Thanks for sharing.

  11. How many cups of Rice Krispie cereal does this recipe call for? Sounds like a great alternative to the usual recipe using marshmallows.

  12. Oh my gosh, the video is so cute. Your daughter’s giggle just cracked me up, she’s so adorable. I wish I’d had your book when my hooligans were small. You really make lunches so much fun Catherine. I’m adding rice syrup to my grocery list, but I may need to hit the city for it. Our small town is not too hip when it comes to ingredients. I call it the culinary black hole.

  13. We have a corn allergy in our family so I am sooo happy to have a corn-syrup free version of these! Thank you!

  14. I love your recipes but rarely watch them (hello nosy toddler!). I’d love to be able to read the directions and watch when I can.

  15. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again….I love it when you cook with your children! Pam Steadman (below), you can buy brown rice syrup at a food co-op, health food store, or nowadays at nearly any grocery store. Lundberg makes a good one.

  16. Unfortunately, no. The agave won’t set up like the rice syrup does to hold everything together.

  17. These look much better than the regular ones. I will definitely make these and no one will probably know the difference. Chloe is adorable!!!

  18. What kind of Rice Krispies are you using? The regular ones have BHT in them. Which I try to avoid.

  19. Looks great – thanks! One suggestion for the video recipes — can you also write-out the recipe too so we can just print out a recipe card? Thanks much!

  20. Did I miss the part on how much cereal to use? I’ve watched it 3 times but still haven’t found it.

  21. Hi, this is so great! If you don;t have the rice syrup…..Which I will totally buy! Can you skip it or will it all fall apart?
    Thank you!

  22. THANKS for this idea! I love sneaking protein into my kids! 🙂 I am also going to try this with Sunflower Butter instead of Peanut Butter, since that is banned at school. I wonder if these would be good with Trader Joe’s Speculoos Cookie Butter?

  23. As a parent of a nut allergy kid (yeah it sucks) I recently found that Sunbutter (sunflower seeds) are an excellent substitution for peanut butter. I even use sunflower seeds instead of walnuts/pinenuts in pesto. Overall, the whole family prefers it to Almond butter and other nut free butters.

  24. thank you Catherine McCord. Since rice krispie treats seems to be one of the only things Pia isn’t allergic too we are really into them- what a great alternative.

  25. Or soy butter. WOWbutter, IM Healthy, and there’s another brand out there… also Sneaky Chef makes a yellow lentil butter.

  26. Be careful with sunbutter. My peanut/nut allergic son ate a whole jar of this and when I began my second he had a reaction to that and is now allergic to sunflowers!

  27. What could I substitute to make these peanut butter free? As that is banned in my daughters school.

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