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Are Rice Krispies Gluten Free? | Plus a Favorite Recipe

Are Rice Krispies Gluten Free? | Plus a Favorite Recipe

I’ve got 5 brands of gluten free Rice Krispies Cereal to try (and none of them is Kellogg’s). Plus, my favorite way to make extra-soft traditional rice crispy treats.

Rice Krispies are not gluten free, but I've got 5 brands of crisp rice cereal that are gluten free. Plus, my favorite way to make extra-soft traditional rice crispy treats.

When crisp rice cereal isn’t just rice

Since rice is naturally gluten free, you might wonder, are Rice Krispies are gluten free (the Kellogg’s brand)? Conventional Kellogg’s Rice Krispies are made with malt syrup, derived from barley, which is a gluten-containing grain. They are most definitely not gluten free.

In 2011, though, Kellogg’s introduced a gluten free variety of their famous snap, crackle and pop Rice Krispies that was sold in conventional grocery stores all over the U.S. However, they were discontinued in the U.S. just a few years later. The gluten free variety is, however, still available in Canada.

When they were first available in the U.S., my gluten free son had only had Erewhon brand crisp rice cereal, and they’re great. I’ve used them for baking for years. But I had a fondness for Kellogg’s brand, as I grew up eating them, so I bought a box. They were, well, pretty much the same as I remember—and tasted very similar to 3 of the 5 brands below.

Rice Krispies are not gluten free, but I've got 5 brands of crisp rice cereal that are gluten free. Plus, my favorite way to make extra-soft traditional rice crispy treats.

Fortunately, now there are tons of brands of gluten free crisp rice cereals available for purchase. Some are a little more precious than others and are a bit more expensive.

Cereal is pretty expensive, in general, though (gluten free or not). I’ve always found cereal to be a poor investment for the morning’s nutrition.

But it’s fast and always ready when you are. As long as it’s low in sugar and high in whole grains, I’m fine with it for my kids.

The following are 5 brands of gluten free crisp rice cereal that I think are worth a try. Some are more expensive than others, and some are more like Kellogg’s and are little wrinkled puffed rice grains. Others are a more puffy, more youthful-looking grain. The choice is yours!

One Degree Organic Foods GF Sprouted Brown Rice Crisp Cereal

Rice Krispies are not gluten free, but I've got 5 brands of crisp rice cereal that are gluten free, like One Degree Organic Foods brown rice crisps cereal.

I honestly had never heard of the One Degree brand before I started my search for gluten free rice crispy cereal varieties. The box is smaller than most at 8 ounces; since most others are 10 ounces, a relatively universal price means that this variety is more expensive by 25%.

I really like these little puffy grains, though. They’re unlike the Kellogg’s Rice Krispies variety, which is wrinkled like a raisin. That’s neither good nor bad. It’s just a matter of personal preference.

They’re nice and snappy, stay crisp in milk, are only very lightly sweet, and the grains are sprouted which some say is better for your gut. They are great in Rice Krispy Treats (recipe below), too.

Here are the other details about One Degree:

  • Size of package: 8 ounces
  • Price you should expect to pay: About $4.25
  • Availability: Okay. I purchased this cereal at Vitacost.com, and have seen it on Target.com. It’s sold on amazon.com, but the prices are terrible (at least as of this writing)
  • Other common allergens: none (but states that it’s processed in a facility that uses soy, tree nuts and dairy)
  • Ingredients: organic sprouted whole grain brown rice, organic coconut sugar, unrefined salt, tocopherols (vitamin E)

Nature’s Path Gluten Free Crispy Rice Cereal

Rice Krispies are not gluten free, but I've got 5 brands of crisp rice cereal that are gluten free, like Nature's Path Crispy Rice cereal

Like One Degree brand, this Nature’s Path crisp rice cereal is puffy, not wrinkly. That is not ageist, it’s just a fact.

The only really noticeable differences between Nature’s Path and One Degree are price (Nature’s Path is less expensive) and availability (I see Nature’s Path in many stores, both brick and mortar and online). Nature’s Path has two types of sugar (cane sugar and molasses) and One Degree has only coconut palm sugar, but I don’t detect a difference in taste or crispness.

Here are the other details about Nature’s Path:

  • Size of package: 10 ounces
  • Price you should expect to pay: about $4.20
  • Availability: Pretty good. I purchased this cereal at Vitacost.com, and have seen it available from Jet.com and iHerb.com. Amazon.com has a terrible price. In the past, I’ve seen this product in Whole Foods and in my local natural foods store.
  • Other common allergens: none (but states that it’s processed in a facility that uses peanuts, tree nuts, and soy)
  • Ingredients: brown rice flour, cane sugar, sea salt, molasses

Erewhon Gluten Free Crispy Brown Rice Cereal

Rice Krispies are not gluten free, but I've got 5 brands of crisp rice cereal that are gluten free, like Erewhon Crispy Brown Rice cereal.

Erewhon was the first brand of gluten free crisp rice cereal that I tried. In fact, I used to develop recipes, along with a lot of other bloggers, for Erewhon. They paid bloggers fairly at a time when almost no one else did, which I think speaks well of the brand in general.

I was already using their products when they approached me about developing recipes. So my recommendation is not at all influenced by that past relationship.

Erewhon brand cereals are nice and simple, and always good quality. I often use their gluten free corn flakes for coating chicken fingers.

Here are the other details about Erewhon:

  • Size of package: 10 ounces
  • Price you should expect to pay: Around $4.50, but it can be much more expensive.
  • Availability: Very good. Erewhon brand is available in most larger grocery stores in my area, as well as many places online.
  • Other common allergens: none
  • Ingredients: organic brown rice, organic brown rice syrup, sea salt

Back to Nature GF Sprout & Shine Cereal

Rice Krispies are not gluten free, but I've got 5 brands of crisp rice cereal that are gluten free, like Back to Nature Sprout and Shine Cereal.

This brand of cereal is probably the most like Kellogg’s, as the grains are wrinkly and they’re made with a pretty typical sugar. The package says that they’re “batch-cooked,” but I honestly don’t know why I should care about that.

The brown rice grains are sprouted, or allowed to germinate before cooking. That’s neither here nor there for me. I just know that these little crispy rice grains taste good in milk, and are reliably gluten free. The price is a bit higher than some of the others, at least from what I’ve seen, though.

Here are the other details about Back To Nature:

  • Size of package: 10 ounces
  • Price you should expect to pay: $5.25.
  • Availability: Good. I purchased this cereal at Vitacost.com, and have seen it at plenty of large grocery stores (Shop Rite, Hannaford) and a few local natural food stores.
  • Other common allergens: none
  • Ingredients: sprouted whole grain brown rice, dried cane syrup, sea salt

Barbara’s Organic GF Brown Rice Crisp Cereal

Rice Krispies are not gluten free, but I've got 5 brands of crisp rice cereal that are gluten free, like Barbara's Brown Rice Crisps cereal.

Barbara’s brand cereal has been around for a long time, and their products used to just say “wheat free,” and weren’t necessarily gluten free. This brown rice cereal calls itself “gluten free,” but it isn’t manufactured in a dedicated gluten free facility.

According to the package, the cereal is verified to contain less than 20 ppm of gluten. Whether you are comfortable with that or not is a very personal decision. It is last on this list of 5 brands of crisp rice cereal to try for that reason.

The grains of crisp rice in Barbara’s, like Erewhon and Back To Nature brands, are wrinkly not smooth and puffy. They stay crisp in milk and are sweetened with fruit juices. That doesn’t matter too much to me, though, since sugar is sugar is sugar (for the most part).

Here are the other details about Barbara’s:

  • Size of package: 10 ounces
  • Price you should expect to pay: $4.85
  • Availability: Okay. I purchased this cereal at Vitacost.com, and have seen it at local natural food stores as well as some larger grocery stores. It’s also available at iHerb.com.
  • Other common allergens: none (package does state that it’s manufactured in a facility that also processes wheat, peanuts and almonds, so use your discretion)
  • Ingredients: organic whole grain brown rice, organic fruit juice concentrate (pear or apple), sea salt

My favorite “traditional” rice crispy treat recipe

Rice Krispies are not gluten free, but I've got 5 brands of crisp rice cereal that are gluten free. Plus, my favorite way to make extra-soft traditional rice crispy treats.

I love making Rice Krispy Treats with homemade marshmallows. They’re always less sweet than those made in a typical way, with melted butter, melted marshmallows and/or marshmallow creme, and I find that they stay fresh longer.

But sometimes, you just need to whip them up in mere seconds. Below is my favorite “traditional” way to make gluten free rice krispy treats. I like to mix butter with marshmallow creme, since it’s easier to melt than whole marshmallows.

Have you ever tried to make these treats with marshmallows that aren’t incredibly fresh? It does not go well. But marshmallow creme/fluff is always fresh enough for these treats. I also like to add a few more miniature marshmallows at the last minute, since they keep everything just gooey enough. Using marshmallow creme rather than marshmallows also makes for treats that are still soft the next day.

If you don’t have fresh mini marshmallows, just leave them out. Or add chocolate chips!

Ingredients and substitutions

Dairy-free: The only ingredient that has dairy in these Rice Krispy Treats is the butter. My favorite butter substitute, Melt VeganButter, doesn’t work great as the treats are more fragile than they are when they’re made with the real thing.

Instead, I prefer Spectrum brand nonhydrogenated shortening. I do not recommend using virgin coconut oil as it won’t incorporate well into the marshmallow creme and will result in oily treats.

Marshmallow creme/egg-free: I have made this recipe using homemade marshmallow creme, and using Marshmallow Fluff brand marshmallow creme. Both work well, but both contain eggs.

If you’re inclined to make these more from scratch and/or need to make them egg-free, I recommend using my recipe for homemade marshmallow rice crispy treats. The stabilizer is gelatin, as in marshmallows, rather than egg whites, as in marshmallow creme.

Sugar-free: I’m afraid I can’t imagine a way to make these entirely sugar-free. They’re just so, well, sugary. And the cooked sugar in the marshmallow creme is part of what holds them together. If you give it a try, let us know in the comments!

Rice Krispies are not gluten free, but I've got 5 brands of crisp rice cereal that are gluten free. Plus, my favorite way to make extra-soft traditional rice crispy treats. #glutenfreerice #isitglutenfree #isitGF #treats

Like this recipe?

Prep time: Yield: 9 to 12 treats

Ingredients

5 tablespoons (70 g) unsalted butter, chopped

6 ounces marshmallow creme/fluff

1/8 teaspoon kosher salt

5 cups (150 g) gluten free crisp rice cereal

1/2 cup mini marshmallows (optional)

Directions

  • Line an 8-inch square pan with foil and spray with cooking oil spray. Set the pan aside.

  • Place the butter and the marshmallow fluff in a large microwave-safe bowl, and microwave for 30 seconds at high power. Stir, and microwave again for 30 seconds at a time stirring in between until just melted. Alternatively, place both in a medium, heavy-bottom saucepan and melt over medium heat, stirring frequently until just melted. Remove from the microwave, and allow to cool briefly until the mixture is no longer hot to the touch (otherwise, the crisp rice layer may taste as if it is stale, even if the cereal is fresh). If you melted the mixture on the stovetop, transfer it to a large, heat-safe bowl. Add the salt, and mix to combine.

  • Add the crisp rice cereal and stir gently to coat the rice cereal completely in the marshmallow mixture without crushing the cereal. Add the optional miniature marshmallows and stir gently until they’re evenly distributed throughout. Transfer the mixture to the prepared pan and press firmly into an even layer. Cover the bars with plastic wrap and allow them to sit in the pan at room temperature until set (about an hour). Remove from the pan, place on a cutting board and, using a large sharp knife and a swift motion, slice into 9 or 12 squares before serving. For the cleanest lines when cutting, place the pan in the freezer for about 10 minutes before slicing.

Love,
Nicole

Comments are closed.

  • Faith
    July 3, 2018 at 1:04 PM

    I made these exactly as written, but they fell apart even after a stint in the freezer. I thought maybe I didn’t squish them down enough or they didn’t set long enough so the next day I squeezed them down as hard as I could…but after cutting you can eat them with a spoon because they won’t hold their shape. Room temp or cold doesn’t seem to matter either. Seems to be plenty of fluff coating every bit, but they didn’t work for me. Since I now have gallons of crispies to use (thanks Walmart bulk bag…) I’m thinking of trying half fluff and half melted mallows. I wanted to like them, I really, really did!

    • Nicole Hunn
      July 4, 2018 at 7:11 AM

      Did you make any substitutions, Faith, especially in the butter? When I tried to make these with certain butter substitutes, they didn’t hold together.

  • Mary Lee
    July 1, 2018 at 11:03 AM

    I am wondering if the regular recipe for Rice Krispies treats can be used. Of course, one has to substitute with G F cereal. In my case, that would be easier.

  • Nikki Kratzer
    June 28, 2018 at 6:07 PM

    When you make your Krispy treats, press out thinner on cookie sheets then use in place of graham crackers s for smores — yes THey are a bit sweeter — but just add an extra piece of chocolate And it evens out.

    • Nicole Hunn
      June 29, 2018 at 5:40 AM

      Interesting idea, Nikki!

  • Bonnie
    June 27, 2018 at 11:10 PM

    Aldi has a gf crispy rice cereal that is good. I think it is Millville. And Walmart sells gf crispy rice treats individually wrapped in a box. Nice for lunches.

  • Jodi Clay
    June 27, 2018 at 5:35 PM

    Try using coconut oil instead of butter. Stays fresh for days and adds a little extra flavor but not overtly coconutty!

    • Nicole Hunn
      June 27, 2018 at 9:46 PM

      I’m glad you found something that works for you, Jodi! For others’ benefit, in my experience coconut oil makes the treats are too soft. I recommend shortening, as I describe in the ingredients and substitutions section.

  • Belle
    June 27, 2018 at 4:13 PM

    I usually just buy luck charms and use they come out great since they are gluten free

  • Lori Harris
    June 27, 2018 at 3:50 PM

    Wegmans has their own gf brand that taste exactly like Kellogg’s!

  • fancy one
    June 27, 2018 at 2:42 PM

    The malt o meal brand rice crispies is the one that I buy from Walmart, they are in a big plastic bag for about $5. Discovered them last winter and have used them for making crispy treats. We like the one made with 1 cup chocolate chips and 1/2 cup peanut butter melted together and mixed with three cups rice crisps.

  • Emily
    June 27, 2018 at 12:44 PM

    Have you ever considered what it takes to make your own crispy rice cereal from brown rice?

    • Nicole Hunn
      June 27, 2018 at 1:46 PM

      Haha, Emily, actually yes! I have. Near as I can tell, you’d need industrial equipment.

  • fancy
    June 27, 2018 at 12:27 PM

    I have found that Walmart has a gluten free rice crispy cereal in their bagged cereal section and I have used it many times and shared it with my celiac group and everyone liked the bars I made.

  • Karen
    June 27, 2018 at 11:48 AM

    When we make rice krispy treats we actually use Rice Chex. We made it for our gluten free friends and found we liked it better with the crunch and texture it adds. It’s our go-to cereal now for these treats.

    • Nicole Hunn
      June 27, 2018 at 11:55 AM

      Interesting idea, Karen! Thanks for letting us know.

  • Jennifer
    June 27, 2018 at 11:31 AM

    Malt-O-Meal Crispy Rice is also gluten free and CHEAP! I was a little skeptical at first, but I’m SUPER gluten sensitive and I haven’t had any issues with them yet.

    • Nicole Hunn
      June 27, 2018 at 11:56 AM

      That’s great to know, Jennifer. Having the name “malt” in the name isn’t great for their gluten free public relations, I bet, though! 😬

  • Nancy Spears
    June 27, 2018 at 10:57 AM

    Post Cinnamon Pebbles make great “Rice Krispie” Treats. Very Flavorful! Try also Fruity and Cocoa Pebbles. They are all gluten free. We add some peanut butter to the Cocoa Pebble Treats for extra fun.

  • Brenda Gerken
    June 27, 2018 at 10:52 AM

    I live in central NC and my favorite GF crisped rice cereal is from Malt O Meal. I can buy a 36 oz bag for about $5 at Walmart. These are GF and the only ingredients are rice, sugar, corn syrup and salt. I’m out of them currently so I can’t read the label to see if they are produced in a wheat-free facility or not. They do look like Kelloggs – wrinkled little rice puffs, but that doesn’t matter to me. I love the flavor.

    • Nicole Hunn
      June 27, 2018 at 11:24 AM

      Nothing wrong with wrinkled rice crisps, Brenda! Malt-O-Meal is a Post brand, and their website isn’t 100% clear about the gluten free status of their products. They currently list the “Crispy Rice” Malt-O-Meal brand as gluten free, but tell you to read labels. They don’t have more explicit information on their website about the facility, etc.

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