I love marshmallow. In round form from a bag, as marshmallow fluff from a jar, dipped in chocolate, roasted over a fire, squeezed between graham crackers …. marshmallow is a favorite.
Before Josh & I met, I never considered how easy they were to make. It was a mid-summer evening and I was carefully crafting my shopping list in preparation for our annual family beach gathering. Marshmallows were at the top of my list, until Josh offered to make them instead. Whaaat? Homemade marshmallows? Why hadn’t I thought of it?
A hot sugar syrup, gelatin and a stand mixer is all you need. But the difference between a handmade marshmallow and a marshmallow from a bag is… everything. Softer and lighter, but the flavor is like everything you think a marshmallow should taste like and nothing that a manufactured marshmallow tastes like. Full of vanilla with just the right sweetness.
Once you make this basic recipe, you’ll see how easy it is to change up the flavor—you can add flavored extracts to create mint, coconut, lemon and beyond! Add juice for fruity flavors, or coat them in your favorite toppings (coconut? yum!)
We love to make our favorite treats ourselves, so we can control the quality of the ingredients. You’ll notice we’ve skipped using corn syrup in this recipe, but don’t worry—your marshmallows don’t mind.
Gelatin: 2 envelopes
Water: 1/4 cup + 2 Tbsp
Vanilla extract: 1 1/2 tsp
In Heavy Saucepan:
Sugar: 2 cups + 4 Tbsp
Water: 1/2 cup + 4 Tbsp
Salt: 1/4 tsp
equal parts rice flour and confectioners sugar
1. Line a 9” x 13” pan with parchment paper and coat the paper with vegetable oil.
2. Set up your stand mixer with the whisk attachment.
3. In your mixer bowl add: 1/4 cup + 2 Tbsp of water and 1 1/2 tsp of vanilla extract. Sprinkle 2 packets of gelatin on the top and let stand for at least 5 minutes so gelatin can bloom.
4. In a heavy bottomed saucepan add: 2 cups + 2 Tbsp of sugar, 1/4 tsp salt and 1/2 cup + 4 Tbsp of water. On medium heat, bring mixture to a boil with the lid on. Remove the lid once the mixture reaches boiling and cook without stirring until the temperature reaches the soft-ball stage, 234 degrees.
5. With mixer on medium speed, slowly pour hot syrup down the side of the bowl into the gelatin, water and vanilla mixture.
6. Once all of the syrup is added, turn the mixer on high (I turn the speed up to 9 on my KitchenAid)
7. Whip about 10 minutes, until the mixture is white, fluffy and stiff.
8. Pour the marshmallow, or drop by spoon full into the lined pan and let sit about an hour.
9. Mix equal parts rice flour and powdered sugar and sift over the marshmallows, generously covering all sides.
* For pan, peel marshmallow off the parchment paper and cover the bottom side with powdered sugar mixture. Slice with a pizza cuter into squares. Dip cut edges into mixture and shake off excess.
I’ve been told these marshmallows can keep for up to a week at room temperature in an air-tight container… but mine have never made it that long.
Why are we talking about marshmallow recipes? Because marshmallow > frosting.
We know people love a good buttercream frosting, but over-sweetened, pastel dyed buttercream topped cakes was exactly what we were trying to avoid. After testing dozens of recipes, we landed on a version of this marshmallow recipe to top our cakes with. Just the right balance of fluffy and sweet, double layered and dipped in chocolate. Trust me, handmade marshmallows in square form, squished between graham crackers, or on top of our cake … the bees knees!