A healthy version of the childhood classic, these no bake, vegan and gluten-free peanut butter rice krispie treats are topped with melted dark chocolate and flaky sea salt for an elevated, indulgent dessert. There's also a healthy dose of omegas that are hidden within this sweet treat!
These secretly healthy chocolate peanut butter rice krispie treats are vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free, have no marshmallows, and require 0 baking time.
This recipe is insanely easy to make and only calls for 8 ingredients, most of which you probably have on hand! It's also endlessly customizable for my friends with allergies. Unlike classic rice krispies, these are made without marshmallows. I promise, they're even better than the original.
- Peanut Butter: This keeps the rice krispie treats together without having to use marshmallows.
- Brown Rice Crisps: It wouldn't be rice krispies without 'em! Make sure you get gluten-free ones (if you're not gluten-free, don't worry about it, the recipe would come out the same)!
- Hemp Hearts: Okay, this might seem like a strange ingredient, but trust me on this. You'll get a ton of nutrients and it just makes this treat a bit healthier - I promise you won't notice them at all.
- Maple Syrup: for a natural sweetness
- Vanilla: because it makes everything better. Honestly, vanilla is my 'baking' version of garlic - it's just a MUST.
- Salt: to balance out the sweetness
- Dark Chocolate Chips: For our chocolate layer!
- Coconut Oil: This helps the chocolate melt more smoothly and lends to a softer consistency once the chocolate sets.
I can't decide whether it's amazing how easy this recipe is to make or if it's just flat-out dangerous.
- Start by lining an 8x8 dish with parchment paper and set aside.
- Add peanut butter, brown rice crisps, hemp seeds, maple syrup, vanilla, and salt to a large bowl. Mix until completely combined. Pour into the prepared pan and spread into a flat, even layer using a rubber spatula (images 1-3).
- In a small bowl, add chocolate chips and coconut oil and microwave on high for 30-second intervals, stirring in between, until chocolate is completely melted. In total, I microwaved it for 1 minute and 30 seconds, so 3 rounds (images 4-6).
- Pour the melted chocolate over the rice krispie mixture and tilt the dish so the chocolate covers it completely. Place the dish in the fridge for a half-hour or until the bars are completely set and chocolate has hardened. Sprinkle with sea salt and cut into 9-16 bars, depending on the desired size.
Recipe Substitutions & Variations
I truly think this recipe is perfect as is, but here's a few swaps that you can try if needed!
- Use puffed quinoa instead of the brown rice crisps.
- Feel free to swap peanut butter for any other nut or seed butter. I'd recommend almond, cashew, or sunflower butter. Using natural is best, as it is easier to incorporate.
- Swap maple syrup for agave or brown rice syrup.
- Instead of coconut oil, you can use vegan butter.
- For added flavor, you can use a fun flavored chocolate bar as opposed to just plain dark chocolate!
- If you don't want hemp hearts in this recipe, feel free to take them out. Like I said, you can't tell they're in there in the first place!
- Depending on the consistency of your peanut butter, you may need more or less brown rice crisps. Regardless, I would recommend starting with 2 ½ cups of brown rice crisps and add more (up to 3 cups) as needed. If you use a thicker peanut butter (think Jif or Skippy), you'll likely need to stay at 2 ½ cups of brown rice crisps. But if you're using natural, runny peanut butter (think Justin's), you'll likely need 3 cups of brown rice crisps.
- Run your knife under hot water before cutting the bars. This will make it easier to slice through them and will help you avoid cracking the chocolate layer.
- Let the bars sit at room temperature for at least 5 minutes before serving so they can soften up a bit!
- If you don't have natural peanut butter, just heat up your peanut butter in the microwave for 10 seconds so it's a bit softer and easier to mix.
Store any leftovers in an airtight container either in the fridge for 1 week or in the freezer for up to 2 months. If you're storing in the freezer, I'd recommend separating the bars with wax paper so they don't get stuck together. When ready to eat, let them reach room temperature as described above.
If you make these rice krispie treats, be sure to snap a pic and tag me on Instagram. If you have any questions or feedback at all, send me an e-mail or leave a comment below! I hope you love them as much as we do!
Peanut Butter Rice Krispie Treats
- Line an 8x8 baking dish with parchment paper and set aside.
- In a large bowl, mix together peanut butter, hemp seeds, brown rice crisps, maple syrup, vanilla, and salt until completely combined.1 ½ cups creamy peanut butter, ⅓ cup hemp hearts, 2 ½ - 3 cups brown rice crisps, 3-4 tablespoons maple syrup, 2 teaspoons vanilla, ¼ teaspoons salt
- Using a rubber spatula, press the rice krispie mixture into a flat, even layer in the prepared dish.
- In a small bowl, add dark chocolate chips and coconut oil. Microwave for a total of 1 minute and 30 seconds, stopping every 30 seconds to stir.1 ½ cups of dark chocolate chips, 2 tablespoons coconut oil
- Pour melted chocolate over the rice krispie mixture and tilt the dish or use a spatula to spread the chocolate evenly/cover the bar mixture entirely.
- Place the dish in the fridge for at least 30 minutes or until the bars are completely cool and chocolate has set and hardened.
- Sprinkle with sea salt and cut into 9-16 bars (depending on how big or small you'd like them). Enjoy!sea salt