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Higher Protein Holiday Rice Crispy Treats

A Higher Protein, Low GI, & Less-Processed Rice Crispy Treat for the Holidays!

Keeping a family eating healthy during the holidays is a tall order, especially if you are not only trying to keep meals nutritionally balanced for your kids—but also striving to limit all the overly processed sweets that prevail this time of year.

This season, try this High Protein Holiday Rice Crispy Treat recipe: A yummy, scratch-made option with Cahokia’s Naturally Higher Protein Rice to ensure your kids are getting balanced macronutrients with every delicious bite.

Cahokia’s rice naturally has 53% more protein than conventional rice and the lowest glycemic index of any rice on the market, so you can feel good about giving your little ones this healthy treat.

If you are also trying to limit processed foods in your household, taking the extra step to make your own “crispy” rice from scratch is a great way to limit excess sugar, preservatives, and chemicals that are traditionally found in most puffed rice cereals. It may take a little extra time, but that can also mean extra fun with the family during this wonderful time of year!

See below for ingredients and instructions for this healthy holiday dessert.


  • 1 1/2 cups Cahokia High Protein White Rice
  • Coconut oil (or frying oil of your choice)
  • 10oz mini marshmallows
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup dark chocolate, melted (optional)
  • 5 candy canes, crushed (optional)


Step 1: Cooking & Baking the Rice

Preheat oven to 250°F. Cook Cahokia High Protein White Rice according to package instructions. Once cooked through, transfer rice to parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Bake the rice for about 2-2 1/2 hours or until all the moisture has evaporated and the rice is dry to the touch. Remove and let rice cool and dry completely.

Step 2: Frying the Rice

Pour frying oil into a large saucepan to cover the entire base; heat over medium-high heat until the temperature reaches 425°F. Add a few grains of the cooked and dried rice to test—if the oil is hot enough it will start to puff and “pop” almost instantly. (Be careful if baking with your children, as the oil will be very hot and can spatter when the rice drops in!)

Working in batches of 1/2 cup of rice at a time, carefully add the dried rice to the oil and fry for several seconds or until “popped”. Using a small metal wire sieve, carefully transfer each batch of rice to paper towel-lined baking sheet. Let cool completely before continuing to next steps.

Step 3: Making the Crispy Treats

  1. Grease a 8×8” or 9×9" square pan, set aside.
  2. Melt butter in a large sauce pot over low heat.
  3. Once butter is mostly melted, add the mini marshmallows and stir until smooth (about 3-6 minutes).
  4. Once the mixture is smooth, remove the pan from heat. Add vanilla extract and stir to combine.
  5. Add your cooled crispy rice and sea salt to the large pot mix until all is combined. (If desired, add more vanilla extract to taste).
  6. Quickly pour the rice crispy treat mixture into the prepared pan.
  7. Use a greased spatula or greased hands to gently press the rice crispy treat mixture into the pan until the top is level.
  8. Optional holiday toppings: drizzle melted dark chocolate on top and then immediately sprinkle crushed candy canes on top. Gently press toppings into rice with the back of a spatula.
  9. Allow the rice crispy treats to sit at room temperature until cooled, or better yet place in freezer for 10-15 minutes.
  10. Cut into 9 or 16 squares and serve!


Store leftovers in an airtight container or ziplock bag at room temperature.

To freeze, let the rice crispy treats cool completely, then put them in an airtight container or ziplock bag in the freezer for up to 1 month. Set them out at room temperature for 1 hour before serving.