What I'm Bringing to the Picnic: Browned Butter and Miso Crispy Rice Treats

Think crispy rice treats are boring? They don't have to be! These treats get a sophisticated makeover with the sweet and savory flavor combination of browned butter and miso.

Browned Butter and Miso Crispy Rice Treats || A Less Processed Life

We are well into June and summer is just a few short weeks away. And that means it's picnic season!

Browned Butter and Miso Crispy Rice Treats || A Less Processed Life

When it comes to picnics, my favorite meals to pack are simple ones. Give me a loaf of crusty bread (don't forget a knife!, although rusticly-torn bread also adds a little bit of charm), some cheese, and freshly sliced tomatoes, and I'm a happy girl indeed.

Browned Butter and Miso Crispy Rice Treats || A Less Processed Life

But if you know me at all, you know that I am a big fan of dessert. Nothing bums me out more than a special meal that doesn't end with some sort of sweet treat. (Perhaps I should schedule a sugar intervention? Hmmm ... Nah.)

Now, I don't expect (or even most times want) something elaborate. Heck, even just a delicious morsel of chocolate often does just fine. But for a picnic, finger-friendly bars are the way to go. These Browned Butter and Miso Crispy Rice treats definitely check all the boxes. They are sweet, of course, but also have a deepened flavor from the nuttiness of the browned butter and umami savoriness from the miso. While they might be a little fancier than the recipe straight from the cereal box, they are just as easy to make.

And let me tell you, they are deliciously addictive. You will be the star of the picnic or potluck if you bring these to the table.

Browned Butter and Miso Crispy Rice Treats (printer-friendly version)
makes twelve 2-inch squares

8 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 tablespoon white or yellow miso
1 10-ounce package mini marshmallows
6 cups crispy rice cereal

1. Coat an 8-inch square cake pan with cooking spray. Set aside.
2. In a large pot, melt the butter over medium heat. Continue cooking as the butter begins to foam, then turn clear and golden, and then light brown bits start to form on the bottom and the butter gives off a nutty aroma. (I like to gently swirl the pot by hand to help the butter brown evenly.)
3. Turn off the heat and stir in the vanilla and miso paste. The mixture will foam slightly on the addition of the liquids.
4. Then stir in the mini marshmallows and continue stirring until completely melted. If the mixture is not hot enough to melt the marshmallows, turn the heat on low and stir until the mixture is smooth.
5. Remove the pot from the stove and stir in the crispy rice cereal. Once evenly coated, quickly spread the mixture into the prepped cake pan, using a spatula to press it evenly into the pan. Let cool completely before cutting into bars with a sharp knife. Store any leftovers in an airtight container at room temperature.


  1. I wonder if these could be made with quinoa somehow....

    1. I bet puffed quinoa would work instead of rice. (E.g., this stuff: https://nuts.com/cookingbaking/grains/quinoa/puffs.html)


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