Cornflake squares are a chewy, gooey marshmallow cereal bar with sliced almonds. They're one of my favorite treats ever, and your family will love them!
When it comes to Christmas baking, there are generally two categories of treats that I make.
- The new recipes. These are the ones I try either because I saw the recipe and just needed to try it, or because I've eaten it somewhere and loved it. These treats may or may not make the cut for next year.
- The tried and true recipes. These ones might have been around for the past couple of years, or they may have held strong for many years, passed down through the generations.
Cornflake Squares fall into the second Christmas baking category. Just like my favorite dinner buns, I have been eating cornflake squares for pretty much as long as I can remember.
They generally only get made at Christmas time, but I'm not really sure why. I really could eat these chewy, gooey treats anytime, anywhere.
They are - and have been for many, many years - my absolute favorite Christmas treat.
And in my family, there's certainly no shortage of treats to choose from. Many of them are much more exotic and complex than these.
I don't know where the recipe originally came from, but I do know that "winging" the recipe and trying to remember the correct ratios of butter/marshmallow/cereal does not work.
The recipe needs to be made as written to turn out so delicious. Believe me, I've tried and failed several times to adjust the recipe. In this case, more marshmallow does not equal better.
How to make Cornflake Squares:
The ingredient list to make cornflake squares is simple and short:
- sliced almonds
The process to make these is just as simple as for any marshmallow-based cereal bar.
Melt the butter in a large bowl. I usually do this in the microwave. Add marshmallows. Melt marshmallows - again, the microwave is your friend.
When the marshmallows are melted, stir them into the butter so they're completely mixed. At first, it will look like it won't mix, but it will. Keep stirring aggressively and the butter and marshmallow will come together and emulsify.
Stir in the vanilla. Don't forget this step. It's important.
Stir in the cereal and almonds. It's a good arm workout.
When it's completely mixed, spread it into a greased baking pan and press firmly. If you don't press the mixture in, the bars will likely fall apart.
Try not to pick at the clusters of marshmallowy cereal goodness while you're waiting. But if you do, make sure you do it evenly so no one notices.
When they're nice and firm, cut them up into squares. Keep them in an airtight container or bag.
They will keep in the freezer for several weeks. But if your family is anything like mine, these will be the first things to go on the Christmas goody tray.
Cornflake Squares Troubleshooting:
Why are cornflake squares so buttery?
Cornflake squares do have more butter in them than other cereal bars. In my opinion, this is what makes them so good.
If you notice that the butter and marshmallow is separated after you mix them together, keep stirring! It takes a little while and some vigorous stirring to get the marshmallow and butter to emulsify, but they will.
Why are my cornflake squares falling apart?
If your cornflake squares aren't sticking together well, it likely means that they weren't pressed into the pan firmly enough.
After you put the cornflake mixture into the pan, make sure you press it down firmly, but gentle enough that you don't crush the cereal too much.
Want more squares recipes?
Cornflake Squares Nutrition Notes:
Don't assume that all cornflakes are gluten-free. If you are making these for someone who follows a gluten-free diet, make sure you check the label of the cereal you buy to ensure that they are gluten-free.
Like most desserts, this recipe is high in fat, sugar, and calories. Eat in moderation.
- 1 cup (2 sticks) butter (Use Dairy Free butter alternative to make this recipe Dairy Free)
- 16 ounces mini marshmallows
- 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla
- 8 cups cornflakes (Use Gluten Free cornflakes to make this recipe Gluten Free)
- 10 ounces (200 grams) sliced almonds
- Grease a 9x13" baking dish, set aside.
- Melt butter in a large bowl on high heat in the microwave. Melt in 30 second increments, checking the butter and swirling the bowl after each 30 seconds. Depending on the starting temperature of your butter, it may only take 30 seconds.
- Stir the marshmallows into the melted butter to coat. Return the bowl to the microwave to melt the marshmallows, again in 30 second increments at high heat. Stir after each 30 seconds. When marshmallows are melted, stir well until butter is completely incorporated into the marshmallow (Note: At first it will look like there is too much butter, and it will appear separated from the marshmallow. Keep stirring vigorously and it will incorporate after30-60 seconds). Stir in vanilla.
- Fold cornflakes and almonds into the marshmallow mixture. Stir well until uniform. Transfer the mixture to the prepared baking dish. Press firmly into the dish, but not so firmly as to crush the cornflakes (this will be very sticky! Use the back of a large, oiled spoon or oil the palms of your hands). Let set at room temperature, about 2 hours. Once the mixture has set, cut into squares. Store in an airtight container or bag at room temperature or in the freezer.
Nutrition Disclaimer: I try my best to make sure the nutrition information I provide is accurate to provide you with the best information possible. However, due to ingredient discrepancies and other factors, the above nutrition information should be considered an estimation only.
Thalia @ butter and brioche
Definitely craving a couple of these cornflake squares to devour right now, they look great!
I was so excited to make these... Didn't think the marshmallow sounded like enough so put more in to make it stickier. What a flop!!! Even with the extra marshmallow these are completely crumbling as you prey to pick it up!!!! So disappointed!!!!
I'm sorry these didn't work out for you! I'm not sure what would have gone wrong, except sometimes if you don't press them into the pan, they don't stick together.
Was hoping for a little more flavor/excitement. I even toasted the almonds for more umph. Decided to top with flake salt. That helped give them a little more pizzazz.
Hi could I still make this treat even if I dont have marshmallows?
Not unless you plan to make Homemade Marshmallow.
I actually went googling for this recipe because my mom couldn't remember it..(from 40 yrs ago)..and I wanted to make it for tomorrow.
I made it exactly as you said with the addition of 1 cup of slivered almonds because that's how she used to make them. Proportions of ingredients were perfect. This stuff is sticky beyond belief but won't hold together until compressed (as mentioned in the recipe) and at least slightly cooled.
I tamp my down into a buttered Dixie cone (3 thick with a lick of melted butter slathered every 3 or 4) to make little trees. My mom use to decorate with green/red candied cherries and those little silver candies that look like ball bearings, but I didn't have any.. and I don't like the cherries.. but they definitely look better decorated than my plain ones.. I don't know about taste better though.. thanks for the recipe Carissa
Cute idea to make them in Dixie cones! I'll have to try that some day!
I was so happy to find this recipe! I vaguely remember buying a pre-packaged corn flake treat (in the aisle with the Rice Krispie Treats) at our local convenience store during my childhood. It was my go to "treat" when my grandpa would take us fishing. He would let us go and pick out a snack and a drink, and this was what I always got... Until they stopped making them.
I've occasionally thought about them, but I've never taken the time to look for a recipe. When I did, most all of the recipes I found included peanut butter (which I knew wasn't right).
I did add a bit of coconut, because that was part of the bar that I remember. Corn Flakes, almonds, coconut. I also used 20 ounces of marshmallows... because I had two ten ounce bags, and I didn't want to leave 4 ounces leftover... Plus I figured that since I was adding a bit of coconut, it might help bind the extra.
Thanks so much for providing this recipe which (with my tiny modifications) reminds me so much of my childhood! 🙂
I'm so glad the recipe reminds you of childhood! I didn't realize cornflake squares were ever a packaged treat.
Not too be rude but this is not how you make corn flake tart from where I am from!
Perhaps they are two completely different recipes. After all, these are Corn Flake Squares, not corn flake tart.
These are incredibly tasty! I did add 2tsp of cinnamon...it was a perfect addition to this yummy treat. 🙂 Thank you for the recipe!
Ooh! I've never made them with cinnamon - Great idea!
Excellent! We used pecans in place of almonds, and it turned out great.
Love these! Made them twice now. Second time, added 2 tsp of Almond Extract in addition to Vanilla to full recipe and I liked them even better. I make them in single pot on the stove before pouring everything into final pan.
I'm so glad you love them as much as I do! I'll have to try adding almond extract someday too - Thanks for the idea!
Hi! Do you think I could make these with frosted flakes? What modifications would you suggest so as not to make them too sweet?
Yes, absolutely! Since all of the sugar in this recipe comes from the marshmallows, I don't think there's really much you could do to cut down on sweetness without compromising the texture and ensure they continue to stick together. I think they will taste just fine with frosted flakes 🙂
I added coconut to this recipe and liked this even more!
Delicious. Absolutely delicious. My husband was like a kid in a candy shop. I left out the almonds, as i'm not a fan of nuts with my corn flakes, but it turned out perfectly.
My family loves marshmallow Rice Krispy treats. I though I would try with corn flakes. The bars looked good in the pan. There was too much butter in this recipe for my family. My husband and 12 year old made the statement “It tastes like butter” and stop eating their bar after a couple of bites. I also agreed. They did like the crunch of this corn flake recipe. Unfortunately we didn’t like or eat the bars. I ended up throwing in the trash after a couple of days. I looked at other similar recipes and there was much less butter. The family asked me to make again but with less butter. I hope this helps anyone who doesn’t care for the overpowering butter taste
I was excited to try this recipe but it turned out really poorly for me. The ratio of butter to marshmallows seemed off so I added more marshmallows, but it still turned out too buttery. I ended up throwing it away.
Sorry, but I tried these as a cute Christmas idea for bars and they are just kind of slimy. I'm scrapping the pan.
Sorry they didn't work out for you 🙁
I had some leftover mini marshmallows to use up and ended up quartering the recipe. It was soo good! Going to make these again really soon. These are way better than rice krispies. Super easy to make. The hardest part was waiting for them to harden before eating 😋😋. I used Trader Joe's mini marshmallows which don't have corn syrup or gelatin and the recipe still worked great. Just definitely required some vigorous mixing.