I have needed to post this recipe since my sister and I created it (it's modified from this recipe)... which I think was about a year ago when I was visiting her in CA. Since then I have made too many batches to count (9 batches for my nephew's wedding back in June, 9 batches for concessions at my daughter's school musical... plus all those single batches made to share... or to consume).
Finally, I'll post it, so I won't have to keep looking up the recipe and explaining my modifications to those who request it.
I know I call everything "the best," but these truly are. I'm serious.
BEST EVER BROWNED BUTTER RICE KRISPIES TREATS
10 cups crispy rice cereal
1 cup (2 cubes/sticks) real butter
2 (10oz) bags mini marshmallows + extra*** (optional, but yummy)
1 Tbs. vanilla
1/4 tsp. sea salt (other salt is fine, too, I just think sea salt has a bit stronger flavor)
Measure 10 cups of rice cereal and place in large bowl. (NOTE: I discovered that 1 cup of cereal = 1 oz., so that makes determining how much cereal you need easier, especially if you are making large quantities.)
***IF YOU ARE USING EXTRA MARSHMALLOWS IN YOUR RECIPE... put 3 cups of cereal in the bowl, then add 1/3 to 1/2 of your EXTRA (10oz) bag of marshmallows to the bowl, then add the remaining 6 cups of cereal on top. (The reason to put the marshmallows in the center of the rice cereal is so that they don't melt completely while you are mixing in the hot marshmallow mix... you want to see pieces of marshmallow in the finished rice krispies treat.)
Line a 9x13 baking pan with aluminum foil and spray with non-stick cooking spray.
Melt butter over medium heat in a large pot. Once the butter is melted, continue cooking it until it starts to foam and turn brown. Watch carefully, stirring occasionally, for this process to happen as you don't want to BURN the butter. Once the butter has turned brown, remove from heat and pour in 2 bags of marshmallows, stirring to coat with butter. Add vanilla and salt, then return to heat and stir constantly until marshmallows are melted. Don't keep this mixture over the heat any longer than needed, as the longer it "cooks," the less chewy and soft your finished treat will be.
Immediately pour mixture over the cereal (+ extra marshmallows, if adding) and stir thoroughly to combine. Dump mixture into prepared foil-lined baking dish and press/smooth into place (I use a large metal spoon coated with butter to make this process easy). Let treats cool to room temp uncovered. Once cool, remove from pan by lifting up on the edges of the foil, then cut into 12 squares (if you desire perfection - which I try occasionally - you can trim the curved edges off before cutting, then use a ruler to make your squares a consistent size). Wrap in saran or waxed paper.
Note: if you are not cutting them for a while, cover with saran once they are cooled.
Here's a few pics of the process:
Butter starting to foam...
...then starting to brown...
...and removed from the heat.
Marshmallows, vanilla, and salt added to the butter in the pan.
When I want to make them extra special I use this vanilla... other vanilla works great, too, though.
Back on the heat to melt (the little black specks in this mixture are from the vanilla bean paste... if you're using regular vanilla it won't have those).
See the bits of marshmallow? Slightly melted, but still intact ;-)
This is my favorite spoon to use when pressing the mixture into the pan and smoothing the top...
Coated with butter, of course.
This was the 9 batch day in preparation for my nephew's wedding luncheon. I didn't have (9) 9x13 pans, so after a batch had cooled a bit, I was able to remove it carefully from the pan to finish cooling and setting up.
Seriously, these are the best.