Scotcheroo Recipe

If you like Rice Krispie treats, then you’ll go head over heels for no-bake Scotcheroos, one of the most decadent peanut butter and chocolate dessert you’ll ever have. They’re ready in minutes and devoured in seconds.

Chocolate and peanut butter fanatics unite! My grandma’s No Bake Peanut Butter Bars might be better than store-bought peanut butter cups. My chocolate cupcakes with peanut butter frosting are also divine, and you can't go wrong with peanut butter Buckeyes from Ohio. See more sweets and treats here.

A side shot of scotcheroos on a black drying rack.
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It’s impossible to resist a sweet and salty Scotcheroo, a midwest staple at birthday parties, potlucks and picnics. More of a candy than a cookie, this recipe is perfect to whip up at the very last minute, when all of a sudden, you need a dessert.

Making peanut butter Scotcheroos for a troop of scouts? Click and slide the number next to “servings” on the recipe card below to adjust the ingredients to match how many you’re feeding—the recipe does the math for you, it’s that easy.

Scotcheroo Ingredients:

  • Crispy rice cereal. I prefer these made with cereal like Rice Krispies, but maybe you don’t! Some cooks make Scotcheroos with Cheerios, Special K cereal, Chex cereal, or cornflakes. It all depends on what cereal you prefer.
  • Corn syrup. Light corn syrup, such as Karo brand, is lightly vanilla flavored.
  • Sugar. Granulated white sugar is standard, but one reader swears by brown sugar for extra richness.
  • Creamy peanut butter. Store-bought is preferred here, making this recipe extra easy. And since 18 ounces is the standard size for peanut butter, you can use the whole jar. (18 ounces= 2 1/4 cups of peanut butter, if you buy it in bulk!)
  • Butterscotch chips. Optional in some circles, but required as far as I'm concerned!
  • Chocolate chips. Milk chocolate, or if you want to go darker, that’s delicious, too.

    If you like Rice Krispie treats, then you’ll go head over heels for no-bake Scotcheroos, one of the most decadent peanut butter and chocolate dessert you’ll ever have. They’re ready in minutes and devoured in seconds.

How to make Scotcheroos:

  1. First, grease a 9-inch by 13-inch baking pan.
  2. Then mix together the sugar and the corn syrup in a heavy-bottomed pan. Bring the mixture to a boil. As soon as that happens, remove from the heat and stir in the peanut butter.
    If you like Rice Krispie treats, then you’ll go head over heels for no-bake Scotcheroos, one of the most decadent peanut butter and chocolate dessert you’ll ever have. They’re ready in minutes and devoured in seconds.

  3. Gently fold in the cereal until it is evenly coated, then press the mixture into the prepared pan. Damp fingertips can help keep the mess to a minimum.
    If you like Rice Krispie treats, then you’ll go head over heels for no-bake Scotcheroos, one of the most decadent peanut butter and chocolate dessert you’ll ever have. They’re ready in minutes and devoured in seconds.

  4. In a medium-sized saucepan, melt the chocolate and butterscotch chips together. This can also be done in a microwave, by placing the chips in a glass bowl and heating for 30-second increments, stirring in between, until completely melted.
  5. Spread the melted chocolate butterscotch mixture over the cereal bars. This may be tricky, but an offset spatula can help make the top presentable. Finally, allow everything to cool completely before cutting into squares.
    If you like Rice Krispie treats, then you’ll go head over heels for no-bake Scotcheroos, one of the most decadent peanut butter and chocolate dessert you’ll ever have. They’re ready in minutes and devoured in seconds.

Great tips for making your best Scotcheroo yet:

Keep them soft. Ever taste a rock hard Scotcheroo? That’s easy to prevent! Don’t overcook the sugar and corn syrup; bring it to a boil, then remove the pot from the heat. Over boiling the sugar mixture makes the consistency more like candy.

For extra moist Scotcheroos, some readers like to add 1/2 stick of butter (2 ounces) to the pot along with the peanut butter to make it even more lovely and rich, and keep the consistency soft and gooey.

Add chopped nuts or toasted coconut to the chocolate while it’s still warm. Gently press down the toppings into the chocolate with your fingertips so they stay put once they’re cut.

What’s a good substitute for corn syrup?

If you need a Scotcheroo recipe without corn syrup, try these suggestions.

  • Make your own corn syrup using sugar. You can replace 1 cup of light corn syrup with 1 1/4 cups granulated sugar dissolved in 1/4 cup hot water or other liquid used in the recipe.
  • Brown rice syrup. Vegan and gluten-free, brown rice syrup is a natural sweetener that can work in this recipe. (Let me know how you like it!)
  • Glucose syrup, golden syrup, or confectioner’s syrup. Outside of the U.S., these may be more readily available to you.
If you like Rice Krispie treats, then you’ll go head over heels for no-bake Scotcheroos, one of the most decadent peanut butter and chocolate dessert you’ll ever have. They’re ready in minutes and devoured in seconds.

Gluten-free Scotcheroos:

A few important things to note for Celiac or those with gluten intolerance:

  • Rice Krispies brand is not gluten-free; they contain malt, which is made from barley.
  • Some name brand butterscotch chips may also contain malt, so please read your labels carefully.

To make Scotcheroos gluten-free, find a gluten-free crisp rice cereal (or other type of cereal that you like) and follow the recipe. Easy!

Peanut-free Scotcheroos:

Looking for fun desserts for someone who can’t tolerate peanuts?

Try almond or cashew butter in place of peanut butter, but you may want to add a tiny bit more sugar to the recipe. Also, read your labels carefully—some nut butters are made in a facility that processes peanuts.

If you try an alternative nut butter, please leave a comment about how it went!

How to store Scotcheroo bars:

Store the bars at room temperature in an air-tight container or covered with plastic wrap. They should stay fresh for up to 5 days, if you have the will power to not eat every last one.

Can you freeze Scotcheroos?

These freeze like a dream! Once they’re completely cool, wrap up the whole pan in foil and freeze.

Or place the cut squares in a single layer in a freezer bag and seal well. They’ll keep for several weeks (unless someone finds them)!

Then, the hardest part: allow them to come to room temperature when you’re ready to serve them.

5 from 3 votes

Scotcheroo Recipe

If you like Rice Krispie treats, then you’ll go head over heels for no-bake Scotcheroos, one of the most decadent peanut butter and chocolate dessert you’ll ever have. They’re ready in minutes and devoured in seconds.If you like Rice Krispie treats, then you’ll go head over heels for no-bake Scotcheroos, one of the most decadent peanut butter and chocolate dessert you’ll ever have. They’re ready in minutes and devoured in seconds.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword butterscotch, chocolate
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Servings 32 bars
Calories 224kcal
  • 1 cup light corn syrup
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 18 ounces creamy peanut butter
  • 6 cups crispy rice cereal
  • 1 cup butterscotch chips
  • 1 cup milk chocolate chips
  • Coat a 9-inch by 13-inch pan with butter or nonstick spray.
  • Combine corn syrup and sugar in a large stock pot or Dutch oven and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and stir in peanut butter.
  • Add cereal to pot and stir until evenly coated. Press into prepared pan.
  • In medium sauce pan, combine butterscotch chips and chocolate chips and heat until melted and smooth. Spread evenly over cereal bars and cool completely. Cut into squares.

Nutrition

Calories: 224kcal

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  1. Sandy

    Very yummy! Would like to put away for Christmas. Would this freeze ok.5 stars

  2. RoseMary

    Can almond, or sunbathers be used. My grandson allergic to peanurs?

    1. meggan

      Hi RoseMary, yes I think so. The texture is the same! The only thing is you *might* need more sugar since peanut butter often has added sugar and almond butters, etcetera often do not. But, you will be able to taste the concoction at the end of Step 2 to see what you think. Scotcheroos in generally are pretty sweet so your pallet might not want more sugar (as you will see, you’re already adding 1 cup of sugar so whether you need more is totally up to you). Thanks!

  3. These sound really good. I love the butterscotch and peanut butter together. They are so easy to make.5 stars

  4. Debbie

    When you say 18 ounces of peanut butter, is that volume or weight? I’m thinking it’s 2 and 1/4 cups.

    1. meggan

      Hi Debbie, yes! 2 1/4 cups is right. 18 ounces is a standard size of peanut butter in a jar, so I just buy that and use the whole thing. But if you have a larger container, yes, 2 1/4 cups. It’s also a very forgiving recipe! Thanks.

  5. Cindy Thomas

    I have made these for years but I layer the chips. Melt the butterscotch chips and spread over the krispy bars and then melt the chocolate chips and spread over the butterscotch layer. Love them!

  6. Lori

    Can you substitute ANYTHING for the corn syrup? I try to avoid at least one thing….☺️

    1. meggan

      I wish I could tell you! I am not sure. I am sure there is SOMETHING that would work… marshmallows, maybe? They would be different but probably still good!

  7. Lori

    My family always used brown sugar rather than white sugar. The brown sugar will give it a little different flavor, I think a little richer. All recipes I’ve seen use white sugar.

    1. meggan

      Really?? I am going to go double check some of the church and school cookbooks I have on hand. Thanks for the info, I definitely want to check that out! Thanks again Lori!

  8. anayoshida

    what are the butterscotch chips. I think we don’t have them here. japan
    any substitute ?

    1. Lois Lyon

      I’ve had them with peanut butter frosting – very good!

    2. Greg

      We don’t use them, just chocolate chips are fine

  9. Can you ship them all to me in Mississippi?! The weather is cool now so they won’t melt on the way :)5 stars

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