I haven’t had real, good old-fashioned smores that are made over a campfire in far too long.
Like about twenty years, give or take, but who’s counting.
The last time I roasted marshmallows over a campfire was when I was a Girl Scout.
I have memories of being too impatient to wait for the marshmallows to toast evenly and instead, I would intentionally dip my wooden stick, with splinter-filled marshmallows speared on it, directly into the flames. The marshmallows would ignite, char, and then I’d blow out the flaming charcoal black blobs of hot molten sugar, previously known as marshmallows.
Then I’d promptly smoosh the charred marshmallows in between stale graham crackers, courtesy of the Minnesota summer humidity.
Finally, I’d set a couple jagged-edge squares of chalky, tasteless Hershey’s’ milk chocolate on top of the charred marshmallows, top it with another stale graham cracker, and bite into the gooey, charry, chalky mess and proclaim it to be the best thing I ate all summer.
But these bars are better.
There are no charred marshmallows, no chalky chocolate, no standing outside while intermittently getting bitten to death by mosquitoes the size of golf balls, sleeping on hard ground, or standing over a campfire sweating profusely.
You can almost no-bake these up in your kitchen, very comfortably. The oven is only turned on for a few minutes to toast the marshmallows and melt the white chocolate chips.
And as a bonus, not only do you get the chocolate fix you’d get in regular smores, but the chocolate in these bars is mixed with peanut butter, and Cocoa Krispies are added.
These beat camping.
Peanut Butter Cocoa Krispies Smores Bars (Almost No-Bake; with Vegan and Gluten Free options)
Makes 16 bars
5 or 6 full-size graham crackers
1 ½ cups mini marshmallows
1 cup white chocolate chips
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (or 8 squares Baker’s Semisweet Chocolate), melted
1 cup peanut butter, melted
1 tablespoon butter, melted
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 ½ cups Cocoa Rice Krispies Cereal (or regular Rice Krispies)
Preheat oven to 375° F. Line a 8 by 8-inch or 9 by 9-inch pan with foil and spray with cooking spray (Do not skip this step, do not use wax or parchment paper).
Line the pan with one flat layer of graham crackers. You will need to break the graham crackers to fill in odd-shaped places (or slice the graham crackers on a cutting board with a knife for ultra-precision). Sprinkle the marshmallows over the graham cracker layer and bake for 6 to 7 minutes, or until marshmallows have begun to puff up or are showing first signs of browning. Remove from the oven and sprinkle white chocolate chips over the top and bake for 2 minutes more and remove from the oven and allow pan to cool a bit.
Make the Peanut Butter Cocoa Krispies Layer by placing chocolate chips, peanut butter, and butter in a microwave-safe bowl and heating for 45 to 60 seconds, then removing and stirring. Microwave again for 30 more seconds, or until mixture has fully melted. Stir until completely melted and smooth. Add the vanilla extract and Cocoa Krispies and stir to coat. Pour this mixture over the top of the melted marshmallow and white chocolate chip layer.
Place the pan in the freezer for 20 minutes or in the refrigerator for at least one hour to set up completely before slicing and serving. Store the bars in an airtight container on the countertop, or freeze for up to 3 months for longer-term storage, knowing that the crackers may not be as crunchy if frozen for long periods.
To keep vegan, use suitable crackers and krispy cereal, use vegan marshmallows, replace the butter with margarine or Earth Balance, use vegan white chocolate chips or omit them. To keep gluten-free, use gluten free Rice Krispies cereal, gluten free graham crackers. Make sure all ingredients used are suitable for your personal taste preferences, dietary needs, and read all labels.
One of the reasons I decided to make these smores bars is because I’m participating in Marshmallow Madness, a contest hosted by Quirk Books and Serious Eats to celebrate the release of Marshmallow Madness by Shauna Sever.
My job was to post a recipe using marshmallows.
They didn’t ask me to post anything with chocolate, white chocolate, or peanut butter, but I think marshmallows go best with those things.
The crunch from the graham cracker base, the gooey melted marshmallows and white chocolate chips sandwiched in the middle layer, and the crunchy peanut buttery and chocolate Cocoa Krispies on the top layer are a smorgasbord of textures, and I love that.
As an aside, I found this site and decided to write on the image above to make sure and tempt you with each (labeled) layer. If anyone knows of other free sites that are straightforward, easy to use, and very user-friendly, that allow you to add text to images and “write” on them, let me know. Picnik is closing, and I don’t store my images on Google, Picassa, or Flickr and as few uploading steps, the better.
If you need more marshmallows (and white chocolate) in your life, I recommend:
Deep Dish Double Chocolate Golden Grahams Smores Bars (Vegan & GF options)
White Chocolate Vanilla Marshmallow Cake Bars
Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough & Marshmallow Stuffed Rice Krispie Bars (No Bake)
Finally, one of my Favorite Recipes of 2011, which uses marshmallows and white chocolate (and chocolate chips and peanut butter and butter and sweetened condensed milk…)
Marshmallow Peanut Butter Double Chocolate Pillowtop Bars (GF with Vegan options)
Now go make some smores in the comfort of your kitchen.
No bug bites or stinky campfire hair required.
Do you like smores? Marshmallows?
When is the last time you made smores? Or something with marshmallows?
Winner of the $50 Spa Card Giveaway announced next post.
Have a great week!
Hey there! I could have sworn I’ve been to this website before but after
reading through some of the post I realized it’s new to me.
Wow that is one delicious delight! I will have to try making one on a weekend. Thanks
WOW!! Everything looks so amazing!! I absolutely LOVE the photography and you are definitely inspiring me to get my baking on!!!
just made these last week and they were a huge hit…the layers…ahhhh…love!
I found this in a desperate panic to find a chocolate dessert to bring to dinner at my bfs sisters house. Everyone was amazed and couldn’t stop eating them, THANK YOU!!!!
So glad you loved them and everyone was impressed!
Other last minute ideas here https://www.averiecooks.com/category/dessert/bars Many are no-bake, cereal-based bars, and many (accidentally) happen to be vegan/GF.
Thanks for the nice comment!
These look Delicious! Can’t wait to make them. Thanks for the recipe.
Seriously, these look incredible! And you take the most beautiful pictures! I stumbled upon your blog and am loving it! :-)
Thank you so much!
Yummy!! I’m Pin’ing you now. :)
Beautiful bars, they look really wonderful and this is why I found them on pinterest!!!
Just stumbled on your blog from pinterest – I’m obsessed with s’mores, so these look delicious! If you haven’t found pixlr.com, it’s your best easy option for adding text to pictures. You don’t have to create an account or anything and it’s super fast. Just click on the “Pixlr Express” option when you go to the website.
OMG, i think if it was my last meal on earth, these smores are what i would want for dessert. Looks amazing!
I love your comment…thanks, Chuck :)
I love smore, but like one of the previous comment had only had them while camping (which is not my favourite passtime). These are great and I look forward to trying out the recipes.
This is food porn!
Wow. I’m speechless. This looks so good to be true!
Hmm.. Last time (and FIRST time) I had smores was last summer when I went camping. I thought smores was only something people had when camping! Now I can enjoy them all year long, THANK YOU!
Enjoy! LMK if you end up making them!
Whoa. You’re exactly right, these beat camping by a solid mile. My mouth is watering!
I love rice krispie treats and smores, so this is the perfect combo. Can’t wait to make!
Keep me posted if you do!
I will! I’m actually making them tomorrow. I have all the ingredients (except I’m subbing a chocolate bunny from easter for the chocolate chips :)
I looks delicious and incredibly tempting! I keep coming back just to see your lovely photos!
Thanks, Judit, for coming back!
Averie, each and every one of these looks mind blowingly delicious.
Awww, you are too sweet. I just got done playing in the kitchen for 4 hours…gasp! With my Babycakes cupcake maker. Post up in about 2 weeks, but I will LYK when I get it up. I was thinking of you, the.whole.time.
Wow! Those bars look incredible! Like, seriously amazingly incredible.
Thanks, Natalie! They are one of my husbands faves…but he says that once a week; that he has a new favorite :) Lol
Oh my freaking goodness… these are right up my s’mores lovin’ alley!
I stumbled onto your site today and poked around your recipes. OMG! I am in LOVE with these! Thanks for posting this!!
Thanks for saying hi and hope you stick around!
I love s’mores too, they’re the best. These are similar to a bar I posted this month too, I’ll have to try your variation next time a craving strikes!
I’ve never had a s’more! I grew up wanting them because I read about them in the Babysitters Club so often :P This looks wonderful!
Babysitters Club..blast from the past…I used to read those books, too!
I’m kind of in love with these. I’d use SunButter instead of peanut butter because of my allergy, but otherwise I wouldn’t change a thing. Yum!
I think you’d love ’em!
Are any of your neighbors moving? Because I’d love to come live next to you and partake of your delicious desserts. This is might be one of my favorites!!
I’d love it if you were my neighbor…we could each make a batch of something and then swap half of it. Ohhh the variety and fun we’d have!
what a great recipe!!! it looks amazing.
Yum! These guys look soo good. I love all the layers and flavors. Lovely shots too!
I like smores but don’t like making them because I always get too sticky. The last time I had one was at the end of summer when we had my in-laws over and made a fire in the backyard fire pit.
These look insanely good, awesome job! Great pics and colors too!
Wow, those s’mores bars look incredible!
Averie! you are just SO creative! these are gORGEOUS how do you have the patience to make all of your gorgeous creations!!!?
You are so kind, thank you. Patience comes easy for this stuff. Now, ask me to put together a piece of furniture or something like that and I have no patience!
These look wayyyy better than s’mores. I’m drooling.
LOVE the recipe! I am a nut for marshmallows (chocolate and peanut as well), we have them in the house at all times and I have even been known to heat some into a bowl with a sprinkle of coconut and eat the melty goodness :)
All right, Averie! These are insane. Love it!
Thanks for stopping by and glad they look insane to you :)
Yum! I love marshmallows! And s’mores! My husband and I camp occasionally and s’mores are a must :) Have you ever made your own marshmallows? I used Alton Brown’s recipe – A-mazing!
These look fantastic, but the real reason I’m posting is that I made your oatmeal cookies last night and they. are. amazing. Hands down the tastiest oatmeal cookies I’ve ever had, no joke. So thank you!
Thanks so much for making them and glad they were a hit!
Oh. My. Gosh. I LOVE your bar recipes!! This new one looks amazing, but I gotta say, my fav is the White Chocolate Vanilla Marshmallow Cake Bars. INCREDIBLE!
Hey, Averie, check out this book:
My friend Lisa wrote it and I thought you would like to see the title! :-)
I love that book’s title and looks like a little gem! Congrats to her on that book being published.
and I know you love those bars…try these if you get sick of thumbprints or marsh/cake/white choc bars :)
OMG, these look amazing!!! Another Averie hit! I love all the different combinations you used with these.
I love s’mores and I made a decadent version myself with homemade graham crackers and I used Ghirardelli dark carmel squares as my chocolate. Who says you can’t have s’mores in the winter?
PS, I use to and still to this day char my marshmallows when making a campfire s’more!
Glad to know I’m not the only char lady :)
I am definitely going to try making these! I don’t make anything unless it is very chocolate filled and peanut butter is always a plus!
As for programs for putting text on images their is a program called Gimp that is a free download and you can literally just save the image files as .jpeg’s and upload them as a normal picture. You can add words and much more in this program!
Gimp. Forgot about that one. Thanks for the reminder and if you make these, LMK!
LOOOOOOVE smores and can’t wait to make these!! Did you grow up in Minnesota?! Whereabouts?? (I grew up in the Rochester area.)
Yes, MN. Glencoe and then Minnetonka. Small world, huh!
I am loving the layered goodness of these bars…Every layer is worth the bite. I must try this very soon. ;)
Rice Krispie treats are my favorite! This is an awesome new take on them and I can’t wait to try this recipe!
Oh yum! These look amazing! I have to thank you! I bought that 1 pounder dark chocolate bar and your right, it’s creamy smooth and easy to melt! It’s my new favorite chocolate. Your peanut butter bars look amazing! Perfect little treat!
Girl I am telling you, that stuff is magic, isn’t it! I don’t blog about things and get ALL EXCITED unless I truly believe in a product and that was one of them :)
These look SOOOO YUMMMYYYY!!!!!!
I never want to leave your blog…never ever…I could drool over your pics pretending Im eating them all day long. I wish my skin loved sweets like this cause I’d eat them for breakfast lunch and din dins!
I have heard that what we eat, i.e. sugar, chocolate has no bearing on skin…and then have heard, it very much does. I hope you find a product(s) that works for your skin, doll!
Oh boy…these look dangerous!
Oh my GOODNESS. I make s’mores bars all the time but these are like those on crack. And they just LOOK gorgeous!
Yes, they are crack-ed up, for sure :) That choc/PB toppping takes them to new highs <-- pun intended. (corny jokes over for the nite)
yum! your recipes are sooo mouth-watering! I am craving something sweet now!
I really had to laugh at “splinter-filled marshmallows” ;)
Sadly, I only had smores once, in courtesy of my American neighbours.
Well make these and now you can have smores for the 2nd time in your life and this is a good recipe to break in the 2nd time :)
hahahaha, you can BET that I will buy some vegan marshmallows as soon as I can lay my hands on them, so I can make this recipe!
haha yes sweet treats totally beat camping…unless the camping is at a 5 star hotel and they serve you these smores poolside complete with a drink that has one of those little umbrellas. thanks for the recipe averie!
God did you read my mind, or what! That’s TOTALLY what I say. My mom used to say, my idea of camping is the Hilton :)
So sad about your s’mores history. I love s’mores…they are one of my favorite treats and make summer camp and bonfires even more fun. My first whoopie pies were these adorable s’more whoopie pies. Yummy! Your bars look delish. Best of luck in the contest!
Whoopie pie smores sound fabulous!
Haha oh man, I still have a scar on one of my toes from a flaming marshmallow that fell on me during a girl scout campout. Good times.
These bars look delicious, and far less dangerous.
yikes on the scar! That sounds like something I would do!
These peanut butter cocoa krispies smores bars look so yummy! I’m a huge fan of smores, but chocolate and peanut butter is probably my favorite combination ever. This is such a great way to combine smores, chocolate, and peanut butter!
I got ALL the pertinent flavors in
it’s all there :)
Holy sweet Moses, you had me from the title of this post!! I am so in love with all of your recipes, I feel like I need to set a side an entire weekend to make Averie desserts and basically just take a bath in vegan chocolatey goodness.
Wow these look delish and so easy.. love that. s’mores is the Best flavour combo to me!
i made s’more several times last summer, both camping with my boyfriend, and in our backyard in the outdoor fire pit on chilly and not-so-chilly summer nights. i live in canada.. it’s a lot like MN weather(i have fam there too!) so yes, we have Chilly summer nights.. i love love camping and cottage-ing, i do hate the ‘squiters tho, and i make my s’mores with lindt dark chocolate with almonds and sometimes their white chocolate with coconut. amazing. no chalky hershey’s for me :)
you make great, easy dessert recipes, it’s really awesome!
thanks for the compliments, Shira!
Man, you really loved camping, didn’t you? ;) I actually love camping, smores, sleeping on the ground, all of it. Except the mosquitoes and the humidity.
The bars look awesome, per usual. i bet you could totally no-bake them by subbing marshmallow fluff. The white choc chips would just stay in place because of the hot melty chocolatey peanut buttery goodness on top.
I’m hungry now.
Those look amazing!!! And bonus…no smoke smell to wash out of my clothes!!!!
You know it. No smokey campfire stink required :)
OMG – jaw dropped, eyes bugged when I saw these in my Google reader! I’m a sucker for any s’mores dessert, this one looks awesome. And I was the same way when I was younger – impatiently putting my marshmallow straight into the fire. Nowadays, I’m more of a slow-roasting marshmallow girl – more goo!
Well if I can get a jaw drop, my mission was accomplished.
haha- thats totally how I roast marshmallows too :) I’m actually giving homemade marshmallows a go soon. Ah! These look amazing. You are the bar queen, I’ll say it again!
LOL..I do love making bars…so much easier than cookies :)
These look wonderful!
I was never a big fan of the s’mores as a kid – now marshmallow and the graham cracker, that was perfect. I guess it was the chocolate that didn’t really strike my fancy. I loved toasting the marshmallows over a fire though so they were nice and ooey gooey. I’m thinking peanut butter in lieu of the chocolate might be a perfect treat. I’m kind of hungry now LOL
Glad I made you hungry :)
Wow!! These look amazing!
Love the pop of a blue background with these. I make smores most summers, and made some this past summer too. I sandwiched an extra jumbo marshmallow between two chocolate slabs and dug into its gooey goodness. I lost campfire memories from my lake house growing up!
I really liked the blue, too. Thanks for noticing!
I was totally impatient as a kid too! I would burn the heck out of the marshmallow and declare it was still totally delicious. I’m pretty sure it tasted like charred marshmallow, since that’s what it was, lol. I haven’t had a s’more in years. Mostly because in order to have one I’d have to make my own gluten-free, xanthan-gum free “graham” crackers. And having to make the ingredients to then make another recipe is just enough effort to make me not jump right into it. ;)
Yeah that sounds like just a weeee bit of work for you :)
Because marshmallows make everything better…
You could try the picframe app, there is the option to buy extras which allows you to add text (its not expensive)
Those s’mores look delicious!
Thanks for that…going to look into it now!
I usually make s’mores every fall at an annual party we go to around Halloween. There is always a gigantic bonfire so marshmallow flambé is an option and generally happens at least a few times during the night ( by both the kids and drunken adults)! Your recipe looks heavenly because that top layer looks like fudge!
Your party sounds great and yes that top layer became very thick and fudge like. I love it :)
SHUT UP!!!!!! These look SO good! I love smores, but I bet I would love these even more. Every single glorious layer…..Averie, I just ate dinner and I NEED these for dessert asap. I imagine the texture would be dense and delicious, which is my favorite.
Glad you enjoy the layers and I know you like your PB and chocolate like I do…I think you’d love these!
This looks awesome, I LOVE s’mores! Last time I had them was back in the fall when my hubby and I made them on a camping trip! Btw I LOVE your new picture, you look adorable! :)
Thanks, Lauren, for all the compliments!
Ooh yeah! So much goodness in one package. These would be great with crispy brown rice and Dandies marshmallows. :)
I updated the post to reflect all the vegan/GF tweaks one can make…thanks for the reminder!