Monday, May 26, 2014

Peanut Butter Cup Rice Crispy Treats

Since the advent of Facebook and blogs and, especially, Pinterest... I've seen this same basic recipe in many dozens of places with about the same number of people taking credit for inventing the yummy bars.  I first learned to make them in High School, probably 1981.  It was a recipe shared by the new Home Ec teacher that year...   Her name was Cindy James. She was young, and cute and before we realized she was a teacher (barely 4 years older than most of us) all us girls were walking the halls trying to size up the new competition.  And, until the administration cracked down, she let us call her Cindy and not the more formal Miss James.

I've heard they don't teach Home Ec in school anymore... and, should that rumor be true, it's sad.  It was a great class to learn needed life skills and how to run a home and manage a family.

Cindy James' Scotcheroos
 Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly:
1 cup light Karo syrup
1 cup sugar
1 cup creamy peanut butter

Pour over 6 cups of crispy rice cereal.  Press evenly into a greased 9 X 13 cake pan.

Melt together 1 cup chocolate chips (milk or semisweet depending on your preference - mine is and probably always will be milk chocolate) and 1 cup butterscotch chips.  Spread over cereal mixture in pan.  Cool until chocolate is set then cut into bars.  Store airtight.
Inspiration picture from

I've also pressed this into a loaf pan and cut as slices.  That is a pretty presentation on cookie plates at Christmas-time or for a party!

I wrote about them here not long after making them for Derek the first time.

But, you know, at my house these things must be tinkered with...  and tinker we have!

My first alteration to the recipe...
The first time I wanted to make them, Derek pulled faces and informed me that he doesn't like butterscotch.  So I started making them with just plain milk chocolate chips, using closer to 1 1/2 cups.  I still like the hint of butterscotch in them, but they are very good with just plain chocolate on top.

My second alteration to the recipe...
I started adding about 1/2 cup more peanut butter trying to get a slightly softer texture to the finished bars.  And I eyeball it since peanut butter is so icky to get out of the measuring cup and I'm 100% of always stuck with clean-up duty.

My third alteration to the recipe...
Cut 12-15 miniature Reese's Peanut Butter Cups into fourths and sprinkle over the top of the cereal mixture.  Melt 2/3 cup chocolate chips and drizzle over the top of the peanut butter cups.  (They look very much like the picture which was what inspired the addition of the peanut butter cups.  Proudly, mine didn't last long enough to get their portrait taken!)

The next requested alteration...
He wants more chocolate!  So we're going back to the melt 1 1/3 cups of chocolate chips and spread over cereal mixture.  Cut 12-15 miniature peanut butter cups into fourths and sprinkle over the top of the melted chocolate layer.

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