A few days ago, I recapped the amazingness that was the 2012 St. Louis Food Blogger Bake Sale, but I failed to include one little detail … the recipe for the treats I made. Which leads me to a confession … I actually didn’t bake for the bake sale.
Between organizing the bake sale AND a 55 person dinner honoring Eric Schlosser for Slow Food St.Louis (a recap of which will be coming soon) PLUS working on some exciting adventures for The Chef and I (yes, an announcement about this will also be coming soon), I just didn’t have time to bake. So I did the next best thing … I made no bake treats!
Enter my “Chocolate Cranberry Crispies,” a quick, easy, and yummy treat that can be whipped in about 10 minutes the night before—or even the morning of—your next charity bake sale. Adapted from this recipe from Family Circle, these simple bars contain just five ingredients, one of which is the key to making these simple treats simply amazing … Askinosie Chocolate’s natural cocoa powder.
I have long been a supporter of small, local businesses, and Askinosie is definitely one of them. Located just a few hours from St. Louis in Springfield, Missouri, Askinosie is a small batch bean-to-bar chocolate manufacturer … and the only ones to make natural cocoa powder.
Askinosie’s natural, single-origin cocoa powder is made using the same beans they use to make their dark chocolate, which allows the true flavor of the beans to shine through … and it makes a rich, dark cocoa powder perfect for baking. If you haven’t had chocolate from a small batch producer before, you should seek some out … the difference in flavor and texture is truly wonderful!
Chocolate Cranberry Crispies
- 6 cups chocolate-flavored crisped rice cereal
- 1 cup dried cranberries, roughly chopped
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 tablespoon high-quality cocoa powder
- 1 10-ounce bag marshmallows
1. Coat a 13 x 9 inch baking pan with nonstick cooking spray.
2. In a large bowl, combine the cereal and cranberries; stir to ensure cranberries are evenly distributed.
3. In a large saucepan over medium-high heat, melt the butter. Add the cocoa powder and stir until evenly mixed. Add in the marshmallows a handful at a time; stir until slightly melted then add more marshallows, stirring until everything is completely melted, about 5 minutes.
4. Pour the marshmallow mixture over the cereal and cranberries; stir quickly to coat completely. Alternatively, spray your hands with nonstick cooking spray and use to mix the marshmallow mixture into the cereal and cranberries.
5. Spoon the mixture into the prepared baking pan. Using a spatula or your hands coated with nonstick cooking spray, press the mixture evenly into the pan.
6. Let cool, then cut into 3-inch rectangles. Makes 10 treats.
Packaging these treats is simple; just place each square in a cellophane bag and tie with a ribbon or twist tie! Enjoy!