Super fluffy and flavorful homemade marshmallows. These are great for hot chocolate, s’mores, or just general snacking!
Once upon a time, marshmallows were made from the sweetened extract of the mash mallow plant.
In modern times, gelatin has replaced the mallow plant.
The marshmallows we know today are created from a mixture of gelatin, corn syrup, sugar, and flavorings.
Yes, it’s much easier to simply buy a bag of marshmallows at the store. However, nothing compares the flavor and fluffiness of homemade marshmallows!
Plus, making these sweet treats from scratch is not as complicated as you’d think!
These are quite possibly the most flavorful marshmallows I’ve ever had.
The secret to the complex sweet flavors is honey!
Honey is a key ingredient that gives these marshmallows a punch of flavor that is fresh yet earthy.
That being said, be sure to use high quality honey. Use a honey that you would happily eat off the spoon on its own.
If you’ve ever made meringue, you’re halfway to making marshmallows!
Think of marshmallows as meringue stabilized with gelatin.
HONEY: Honey adds depth of flavor. There are hundreds of types of honey available, ranging from light and mild to dark and pungent.
Pick a sweet, floral honey that tastes great on its own. I recommend the following common honey varieties: alfalfa, clover, and orange blossom.
CORN SYRUP: Corn syrup is produced from the breakdown of cornstarch. Light corn syrup and dark corn syrup are two most commonly available types for home use.
Light corn syrup is best for marshmallows.
Don’t use the dark version. Dark corn syrup has the addition of molasses and caramel coloring. It will affect the final flavor and color of the marshmallows.
How to Use Powdered Gelatin
Gelatin gives mousses, whipped cream, and other soft mixtures extra body and hold.
It is available in powder form or sheet leaf form. Knox unflavored gelatin powder is likely the one you will find at your local supermarket or grocery store.
- Combine liquid and gelatin powder.
- Bloom. (Allow gelatin to absorb liquids.)
- Gently melt bloomed gelatin.
The melted liquid gelatin is added to the remaining ingredients. The gelatin will solidify as it cools.
Tools and Equipment Needed
- Candy Thermometer
- 8-inch square baking pan
- Stand Mixer fitted with Whisk Attachment
Cooking sugar requires patience. This process cannot be rushed.
A candy thermometer (or any kind of kitchen thermometer) is the most important tool when making homemade marshmallows.
Sugar Cooking Stages
During this process, the sugar syrup is heated to gradually cook out the water and bring the sugar to the desired consistency.
The names of the different sugar cooking stages refers to the way the sugar syrup responds when dunked in cold water. The name also indicates the stage of sugar crystallization.
|Thread||sugar syrups spins a soft 2-inch long thread when dropped and removed from water||215-230°F (102-110°C)|
|Soft Ball||sugar syrup forms a soft, pliable ball that flattens by itself||240°F (116°C)|
|Firm Ball||sugar syrup forms a firm, pliable ball||245°F (118°C)|
|Hard Ball||sugar syrup forms a rigid, hard ball||250-260°F (121-127°C)|
|Soft Crack||sugar syrup separates into rigid but pliable threads||265-270°F (129-132°C)|
|Hard Crack||sugar syrup forms hard, brittle threads||295-310°F (146-154°C)|
Stages of Whipping Marshmallows
- Whip on low speed until mixture forms bubbles, about 30 seconds.
- Gradually increase to high speed. More bubbles will form and the mixture will start to pale in color.
- The bubbles will start to disappear. Mixture will start to turn creamy white.
- Whip mixture to medium peaks. At this point, the mixture will be bright white in color, fluffy, and slightly warm to the touch.
Medium peaks hold their shape. The tips of the peaks curl slightly when lifted up. It’s the stage between soft peaks and stiff peaks.
The mixture will be very sticky! Work quickly and use a mini offset spatula to help scrape off the marshmallow mixture from the whisk attachment.
How to Quick Set Marshmallows
Most recipes will tell you to let the marshmallow sit at room temperature for a few hours (or overnight) like my matcha marshmallows.
This recipe is different! Spread the marshmallows in your greased container of choice. Then, pop in the freezer for about 30 minutes.
The marshmallows will be ready to enjoy in half an hour! That’s it!
Use a well greased knife to slice the marshmallows into your desired portions. Alternatively, you may also use greased scissors.
Use a neutral flavored oil such as avocado oil or grape seed oil to grease the knife/scissors.
Toss the cut marshmallows in powdered sugar and enjoy!
- ¾ cup cold water, divided
- 1 cup granulated sugar (200 g)
- ¼ cup honey (85 g)
- ¼ cup light corn syrup (80 g)
- 4 ½ teaspoons (2 packets) unflavored powdered gelatin ( 15 g)
- 1 ½ teaspoons pure vanilla extract *
- 1 cup unsifted confectioners' sugar (115 g)
- neutral flavored oil, for brushing
- Cut out two 8×16-inch parchment paper rectangles. Brush neutral flavored oil all over 8-inch square baking pan. Line baking pan with the two parchment rectangles crossing over each other. Use small binder clips to hold parchment overhang over each side of baking pan. Brush oil all over parchment paper. Set aside.
- In a small heavy bottomed sauce pot, add ¼ cup water, sugar, honey, and corn syrup. Stir to combine. Set over high heat and bring to a boil. Attach candy thermometer to sauce pot. Once mixture is boiling, do not stir or agitate mixture. Cook mixture to soft ball stage, 240°F.
- Pour hot liquid to the bowl of a stand mixer. Let sit undistributed for 6-8 minutes, until liquid has cool to 200-210°F.
- Meanwhile, sprinkle gelatin over remaining ½ cup water. Stir together. Let gelatin bloom*, about 3-5 minutes. Microwave bloomed gelatin for 15 second intervals at half power until melted. (Takes about 30 seconds). Stir in vanilla.
- Add vanilla-gelatin liquid to cooled sugar mixture. Attach bowl to stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment.
- Whip on low speed until mixture forms bubbles, about 30 seconds. Gradually increase speed to high speed. Whip mixture to medium peaks*, about 6-8 minutes. The mixture should be creamy white in color, fluffy in texture, and slightly warm to the touch. Mixture will be quite sticky and tacky.
- Transfer to prepared baking pan. Spread mixture in an even layer using a mini offset spatula. Mixture will be quite sticky. Chill in the freezer uncovered for 30 minutes.
- Dust sifted powdered sugar all over surface of chilled marshmallow. Remove marshmallow from the pan by unclipping binder clips and lifting from the parchment paper overhang.
- Peel off the parchment paper from the sides of the marshmallow. Dust exposed marshmallow with powdered sugar. Peel off the parchment bottom. Dust with powdered sugar.
- Use an oil-greased knife or oil-greased scissors to cut the marshmallow into desired size. Coat the exposed surfaces of marshmallows as you cut. Enjoy immediately, or store in an airtight container for later use.
- Honey: choose a honey that tastes good on its own. The marshmallow take a lot of flavor from the honey.
- Corn syrup: use LIGHT corn syrup with or without vanilla flavor.
- Gelatin: this recipe uses unflavored powdered gelatin. Find this ingredient in the baking aisle alongside Jell-o and pudding products.
- Neutral flavored oils include grape seed oil, avocado oil, rice bran oil, vegetable oil