One of my favorite childhood treats, we can now make these cornflake wreaths using gluten free cornflake cereal!
I love traditions, especially when it comes to Christmas. There’s always room to make new ones, but my whole family really enjoys the traditions we’ve made and continue to do every year. One of those is gathering at my mom and dad’s for Christmas breakfast. We love our breakfast full of my dad’s eggs and hashbrowns, my biscuits and sausage gravy, and my mom’s fruit skewers. Sometimes we’ll mix up a few of those with some new stuff to make new traditions. Like my overnight crockpot oatmeal. I make it for my daughter, who is vegan, but everyone loves it!
Our gift-opening tradition is the most beloved of all traditions in our family, though. Starting with the youngest person, we all go around the room and individually open presents until they’re all gone. My mom thinks she started this because she didn’t like how everyone in her house growing up would rip everything open at the same time. Not only was it over in a flash, they had no idea who got what and from whom!
Another tradition is making Christmas goodies, and I carried that throughout my whole life, especially with my kids when they were little. In fact, the last time my sisters were here together was when my daughter graduated from college, right before Christmas. So we got together and decorated sugar cookies at my mom and dad’s house and had a blast doing it, just like when we were growing up!
We didn’t get a chance at that time to make these wonderful cornflake wreaths, but we made them every year growing up because they were so easy and so tasty!
What are Cornflake Wreaths?
Cornflake wreaths are only the best Christmas treats ever, in my opinion. They’re kinda like a rice krispy treat but are made with cornflakes. The marshmallow mixture is tinted green so it looks like the leaves of a wreath, and little red candies are added as “berries”.
How to Make Gluten Free Cornflake Wreaths
When I first found out I had Celiac, I had no idea what gluten was in, but I darn sure didn’t expect it to be in everything! I thought for sure things like Rice Krispies and Cornflakes were still on the table because their names imply otherwise. Little did I know that nearly all cereals have something called barley malt, which is a sweetener that makes that tell tale “cereal” taste (and is full of gluten).
So how in the world was I gonna enjoy my favorite Christmas “cookies” again? If I couldn’t have cornflakes, what was I gonna use? I checked all the stores for a replacement. There were Chex, but how are Chex gonna look in a wreath shape? I didn’t think they’d work. Then I found these. They’re made by Nature’s Path, but they’re more kid friendly (go figure I’d like them, ha!). The same line makes Gorilla Munch, which to me most resembles my favorite cereal ever, Cap’n Crunch!
Melt butter and marshmallows over medium low heat in a large saucepan until combined and completely melted. Stir in green food coloring and cornflake cereal and gently fold until all the cornflakes are coated. Remove from the heat and, working quickly, take about 2 tablespoons of the mixture and roll it into a rope with greased hands. Bend the rope to let the two ends meet and press together. Add 3 red cinnamon candies to the top to resemble berries. And you are done!!! It’s that simple, guys.
Tips for Making Cornflake Wreaths
- Use a large saucepan. Even though it looks like you won’t need it, when you add the cornflakes you will!
- If possible, wear disposable gloves. The mixture doesn’t stick to the gloves and is easier to roll out. If you don’t have gloves, you can spray your hands with nonstick spray or rub them with some softened butter.
- To roll out the cornflake mixture, work on a nonstick surface if possible. I like putting them on my granite counter top after spraying it lightly with nonstick spray.
- If the mixture begins to harden before you’re done shaping your wreaths, put it back on the stove on low just to soften it up again.
- I can’t live without my bench scraper. I use it for almost everything in the kitchen and these treats are no exception. Use it to slide the cookies from the counter onto the baking sheets to finish drying and setting. It helps for if they do happen to stick.
Storing the Wreaths
These Christmas wreaths will last longer than a regular cookie, so making ahead is a great idea. Place them between layers of waxed paper in an airtight container and store for two weeks at room temperature.
Gluten Free Cornflake Wreaths
- ½ cup (1 stick or 113 g) butter
- 10 ounce package (283 g) mini marshmallows
- 5 cups (250 g) Nature's Path Amazon Flakes (or any other gluten free cornflakes of choice)
- red cinnamon candies
- green food coloring (about 1 tsp)
- Line two baking sheets with waxed or parchment paper and set aside.
- In a large saucepan over medium low heat, melt butter and marshmallows until smooth. Add green food coloring, about 1 tsp at a time, until desired color is achieved. Pour in cornflakes and gently fold in until cornflakes are coated in marshmallow mixture.
- Using disposable gloves (or greasing your hands with nonstick spray or butter), scoop a couple of tablespoons from the pan and shape it into a rope and then connect the rope into a wreath shape on your nonstick counter or surface (spray your surface if you need to with nonstick spray, or shape the wreaths right on your waxed or parchment paper-lined trays). Add 3 small cinnamon candies on each wreath. If the mixture thickens too much, put the saucepan back on low heat until it's easier to shape.
- Allow to set and firm up, about an hour. Wreaths will keep in a container at room temperature between sheets of waxed paper for one week.