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Recipe | Brown Butter Bourbon Rice Krispie Treats

Brown Butter Bourbon Rice Krispie Treats recipe

I have found almost all recipes can be improved with the addition of one of three things: bourbon, bacon, and extra salt.

I chose to experiment with improvement number one last week, when making Rice Krispie Treats.

Last month, my friend Carlyn made the brilliant decision to bring brown butter Rice Krispie Treats to a potluck at my place. As soon as I took the first bite, I remembered why my little sister and I used to make these and eat them right out of the pot for movie marathons, and I delighted in the smoky nuance of the brown butter. These were clearly now in the Fancy category.

And I say if you’re going to go Fancy, go all the way. Which is why when salivating at the memory of those treats a few weeks later and knowing I needed to make some, I wondered, what would take these traditional treats to the next level?

Extra salt? Probably not needed, especially since the butter I had was already salted.

Bacon? Okay. I would have probably said yes to this except I didn’t have any on hand. So don’t be surprised if you see a new recipe next week with an extra B ingredient.

Bourbon? I swear the buffalo on the Buffalo Trace Bourbon bottle winked at me. Fortunately, I speak buffalo, so I knew that meant, loosely translated, “Hell, yes.”

And a star was born. The kind I like to put in my mouth.

How might you, too, create such magic? Well, basically, you’ll just make a few small updates to the traditional recipe, like so:


  • 3 Tbsp. butter (salted, obviously)
  • 2 oz. of your favorite bourbon
  • 1 10 oz. package of ginormous marshmallows, OR four cups of the wee ones
  • 6 cups of Rice Krispies or generic cereal equivalent

The Path to Nirvana:

Grease a 9 x 13 baking dish with some butter or cooking spray. Letting John Travolta and Olivia Newton John serenade the dish may also work.

Measure out your marshmallows and Rice Krispies in advance. Melted butter-bourbon-marshmallow goo is not something to let linger. It’s time sensitive, and may also be sensitive to adult content.

In a big old saucepot (not yourself), melt that butter over low heat and wait for it to brown.

Toss in a shot of bourbon, enjoy the steam bath on your face, and breathe deeply. This is the aromatherapy/spa portion of the recipe.

Dump in those marshmallows and keep stirring like you mean it (I like to use a big wooden spoon), until the marshmallows have melted and blended into one gooey whole.

Add in your krispies and stir it up. Make Bob Marley proud.

Press the mixture into your 9 x 13 dish and gaze lovingly upon your creation. (Please feel free to skip this step and use that wooden spoon for its other purpose—spooning something, into your mouth, right out of the saucepot).

While you wait the agonizing five to ten minutes for your treats to cool, pour yourself a shot of bourbon (this is when you get to be the saucepot).

Sip, then sample. I find that bourbon really helps to bring out the bourbon in the treats.

Last but not least, dissolve into bliss. You did it! And I bet you’ll probably do it again.





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About Jen Violi (31 Articles)
Jen Violi is the author of Putting Makeup on Dead People, a BCCB Blue Ribbon Book, and finalist for the Oregon Book Awards. As a mentor, editor, and facilitator, Jen helps writers unleash the stories they’re meant to tell, from blogs to websites to award winning books. With advanced degrees in creative writing and theology and certification in the Gateless method, for twenty years Jen has facilitated retreats and workshops and mentored and nurtured hundreds of writers as they find their voices, hone their manuscripts, and take creative dives and leaps. Jen’s writing has been featured here in Sweatpants & Coffee, Lady/Liberty/Lit, Nailed Magazine, Mookychick, The Baltimore Review, Annapurna Living and more. Find sanctuary for your story at and
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2 Comments on Recipe | Brown Butter Bourbon Rice Krispie Treats

  1. Sounds fantastic. I am tweaking a Bourbon pound cake recipe now!

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