These delicious rice crispy treats are made with Medjool dates and peanut butter, and contain no marshmallows or refined sugar at all! A yummy gluten free and vegan snack.
I don’t think I know of anyone who doesn’t like rice crispy treats. Chewy, sticky, crunchy and crispy! But also, full of all kinds of things that aren’t great for kids. Marshmallows are basically made of high fructose corn syrup!
Luckily, you can still have rice crispy treats without that bad stuff! These bars are held together with dates instead. So delicious! And you don’t have to feel bad about eating them. They’re basically a healthy snack instead of a dessert. And my kids LOVE them!
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What Can You Use Instead of Marshmallows in Rice Krispie Treats?
You can substitute peanut or almond butter for marshmallows in rice krispie treats. Mix your favorite nut butter with honey or maple syrup for a nice sticky base to hold your treats together. Adding dried fruit such as dates to the mix makes them even more firm and adds more fiber to this snack!
Are Rice Crispy Treats With Dates Gluten Free?
As long as the rice krispie cereal you use is labeled gluten-free, your treats will be great for a gluten-free diet!
Are Rice Crispy Treats With Dates Vegan?
Yes! This recipe is 100% vegan.
Are Dates Really Good For You?
Dates are a very healthy snack and can be eaten every day. They are nutritious, high in fiber and antioxidants, and can boost the immune system, reduce inflammation, and improve hormone regulation.
Apparently, dates have been proven to help induce natural labor! I am 4 days overdue as I’m typing up this recipe, so I can’t testify to this BUT there have been studies done so maybe I need to go eat a few more date bars!
If you’re a fan of date flavor, you have to try my Chunky Date and Pecan Granola!
Healthy Rice Crispy Treats Recipe With Dates:
- Medjool Dates – a source of phytonutrients, plant compounds that many have health benefits. They can boost the immune system, reduce inflammation, and improve hormone regulation. Dates are great for giving you more energy as well!
- Peanut Butter – a great source of protein, peanut butter holds these rice crispy bars together without having to use marshmallows. Creamy peanut butter is what I use, but crunchy would probably work well too since it gets processed in the blender.
- Maple Syrup – one of the yummiest sweeteners in my opinion, maple syrup is also high in antioxidants, zinc, magnesium, calcium and potassium. Plus its lower in calories than honey! Honey can be substituted if that’s what you have on hand.
- Vanilla Extract – I like to use my homemade vanilla extract, but store-bought works just as well.
- Salt – for flavor.
- Rice Crispy Cereal – any kind of rice krispie cereal or puffed rice cereal works for this recipe.
- Blender or Food Processor
- Large Bowl
- 9 x 13 Pan
How To Make This Healthy Rice Crispy Treats Recipe With Dates:
First, soak the dates in enough water to cover them completely. Letting them sit in water for an hour will make them much easier to blend and put less strain on your food processor or blender.
After the dates have soaked, squeeze them gently with your hands to get as much water out as possible.
Add the soaked and squeezed dates, peanut butter, maple syrup, salt and vanilla to a blender or food processor and blend until they form a paste. You might need to pause the blender every 30 seconds or so to push the dates down into the blades. (make sure the machine is OFF when you do this!)
Remove the date paste from the blender and spoon it into a microwave safe bowl. Microwave on medium for one minute or until the paste is softer but not runny.
Stir in the rice krispie cereal completely and press this mixture into a 9 x 13 pan.
Refrigerate for 30-60 minutes before cutting into bars.
Don’t Add Water – it might be tempting to add water to the date mixture to make it blend easier, but adding water will make your bars soggy.
Squeeze Those Dates – make sure to actually squeeze the excess water out of the dates after they soak. Don’t just strain the water out or your bars will not hold together well.
To Store – store these date bars in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. They can be kept at room temperature, but are better kept in the fridge.
Substitutions – honey can be used in place of maple syrup in this recipe.
Variations – for thicker bars, use an 8 x 8 pan instead.
More Healthy Snack Recipes:
If you liked this recipe, I think you’ll really enjoy these other healthy snack recipes on the blog!
- Chewy Chocolate Chip Granola Balls
- Healthy Berry Jello
- Creamy Greek Yogurt Peanut Butter Dip
- Homemade Greek Yogurt
- Chunky Date Granola
I hope you love this recipe for rice crispy treats with dates! If you make it, I’d love for you to come back and leave a comment and rating so that I know how you like these bars!
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