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I’m blasting back to my past with this nostalgic recipe. My mom made these sweet treats every summer, as I’m sure tons of other moms did back in the day. I’m pretty certain it was one of those recipes printed on the back of a cereal box or featured in Better, Homes, and Gardens.
In true, big family fashion, we had a spare fridge in our garage. I can remember running, soaking wet from our above-ground Doughboy pool on the patio, straight to that freezer to grab one of these. It’s a vivid, delicious memory that still comes to mind every summer.
The grocery list consists of creamy peanut butter, Rice Krispies cereal, light corn syrup, and vanilla ice cream. You can actually use any flavor of ice cream you’d like, but Mom used vanilla so that’s what I’m going with.
Combine 1/2 cup peanut butter and 1/2 cup corn syrup in a large mixing bowl. It will stir up quite easily with a wooden spoon. Add 4 cups of the cereal and mix until well combined.
Line a 13″ x 9″ dish with heavy duty foil, overlapping by a couple of inches on either side. Spray the foil with non-stick cooking spray and transfer the cereal mixture to the dish, patting down into a nice, even layer. I like to spray my hands with a little non-stick cooking spray when I do this so the mixture doesn’t stick to my hands.
Spoon your slightly softened ice cream on to the cereal layer.
Spread it out as evenly as possible. Now pop the dish in the freezer while we whip up another batch of the cereal mixture for the top layer.
Pour out the second batch of cereal mixture over the ice cream.
Use your hands to pat down the top layer and the dish goes back to the freezer for at least 2 hours or more. You want it to be frozen solid before slicing into it.
When frozen solid, remove the dish from the freezer. You can lift the whole kit and kaboodle out of the dish by lifting the foil up and out of the pan.
Transfer the giant ice cream sandwich to a cutting board and use a sharp knife to cut it evenly into bars. You can cut them as big or small as you’d like. They will slice and hold their shape better if they are frozen solid. Mine are a bit melty cause I’m taking pictures for y’all, and taking pictures takes time.
My mom always wrapped them individually in wax paper and stored them in the freezer. Foil or plastic wrap will work as well.
A classic summer treat.
For some ideas for variations and add-ins, see the printable recipe below.
- 1 cup corn syrup divided
- 1 cup creamy peanut butter divided
- 8 cups Rice Krispies cereal divided
- 1-1/2 quarts vanilla ice cream
- Line a 13" x 9" dish with heavy duty foil, overlapping the sides by a couple of inches. Spray the foil with non-stick cooking spray and set aside.
- Combine 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter with 1/2 cup corn syrup in a large mixing bowl. Add 4 cups Rice Krispies and mix until well combined. Pour the cereal mixture into the foil-lined dish. Spray your hands with a little non-stick cooking spray and pat the mixture down evenly into the dish. Alternately, use a small piece of wax paper to pat the mixture down. Place the dish in the freezer for about 15 minutes, or until cereal mixture is firm.
- Mix together remaining 1/2 cup peanut butter, 1/2 cup corn syrup in a large bowl and remaining 4 cups Rice Krispies. Combine well and set aside.
- Remove ice cream from freezer and allow to soften at room temperature for about 5 minutes.
- Remove dish with cereal mixture from freezer and spread the softened vanilla ice cream evenly over the top. Pour out the 2nd layer of cereal mixture over the top and pat down on top of ice cream in same manner as before. Return dish to the freezer and freeze until firm, about 2 hours.
- Remove dish from freezer and use foil overhang to remove the contents from the dish. Place on a cutting board and use a sharp knife to cut into bars. Wrap bars individually in wax paper, plastic wrap, or foil and store in freezer.
Optional Add-ins:These bars are delicious in their most simple form but you can jazz them up by adding any of the following ingredients on top of the ice cream layer:
- crushed Oreos, chopped peanuts, toffee bits, chocolate chips, chopped candy bars (Butterfinger, Snickers, etc.), a drizzle of caramel or fudge ice cream topping