For the last several years I have made homemade marshmallows during the holidays. Each and every time that I have arrived bearing said marshmallows I hear the same things.
“You can make marshmallows?”
“I had no idea, are they difficult?”
“You’ll have to share the recipe with me sometime.”
When I hear those various musings I always respond that yes, I can make marshmallows, no they aren’t terribly difficult and sure I’ll share my recipe.
It dawned on me after I had made close to 300 marshmallows for my oldest son’s school project, how simple they really are to make.
How to make easy homemade marshmallows
What you see before you is all that you will need to make marshmallows. Well, except powdered sugar and cornstarch, you’ll need that. BUT otherwise, it is all pictured. The trickiest ingredient to find, and I use the word tricky very very loosely is the unflavored gelatin. When I am shopping, I have always found it with the jello that is flavored, usually on the very top shelf or on the bottom shelf, but never mixed in with the flavored jello.
When I make marshmallows for Christmas, I typically flavor them with peppermint, if the marshmallows are destined to be run of the mill everyday marshmallows then I just stick to vanilla flavoring. However, the base, marshmallow creme if you will, works well with any flavor that you decide to use. So get creative and go for it!
The first step, after gathering all of the necessary ingredients, of course, is to let one cup of cold water and 6 packets of unflavored gelatin rest in the bowl of your mixer.
While that is happening, combine 2 cups of sugar, 1 cup of cold water and 2 cups of light corn syrup in a saucepan and heat on high for 3 minutes. When the 3 minutes is up, turn down the heat and allow the mixture to simmer for 7 minutes, watching the temperature with a candy thermometer, when the temperature reaches 240 remove from the heat.
Slowly pour the hot mixture down the side of the mixing bowl and start mixing the gelatin and the hot corn syrup together. I have to work my way up from a low speed to a higher speed as it thickens. Otherwise, you’ll have a messy sticky kitchen. The truth is you likely won’t be able to avoid some splatters.
So, here is the part where I am going to sound like your great grandmother when you ask her for her yeast roll recipe. I’ve never taken the time to figure out how long you should whip the marshmallow mixture. It really varies based on the day. So here is what I will say. You’ll know when you’ve gotten to the perfect marshmallow stage. It will resemble stiff peaks as if you were whipping egg whites and will more than doubled in the mixing bowl. It should look something this:
Once you reach this point, it’s time to transfer them to prepared baking pans. Through a lot of trial and error, I have discovered that glass pyrex works the best. Trust me on this one. You will want to take a stick of butter and coat the bottom of the pan, and then mix equal parts cornstarch and powdered sugar and coat the pan.
Look at the smooth marshmallow goodness in those pans. Before you let them hang out for a few hours or overnight, take some of the powdered sugar/cornstarch mixture and lightly smooth it over the top coating the entire pan. Then, walk away. Leave them alone for at least 4 hours and even if you want, overnight.
Once, you’ve let them sit it is time to cut them. You will want to have plenty of powdered sugar and cornstarch ready. Typically once I turn them out onto the surface for cutting I need to recoat the side that was in the pan. Then, I cut them into squares, a pizza cutter works best for this. Once I’ve cut them, then I dip them into powder sugar and cornstarch coating all of the sides.
Here comes the moment of truth. You can leave as is, and they are super delicious or take them a step further and dip them in chocolate. Honestly, that is the way that I like them best. I love to dip them in chocolate and then used crushed up candy canes to finish them up.
Let me know if you try them!
Easy Homemade Marshmallows
- 2 cups cold water (divided)
- 2 cups light corn syrup
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 6 packets unflavored gelatin
- 1 tsp vanilla (or flavor of choice)
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1 cup cornstarch
Combine gelatin and 1 cup of cold water into a mixing bowl. Set aside
In a saucepan, combine remaining cup of water, 2 cups sugar and 2 cups corn syrup.
Heat on high for 3 minutes. When the 3 minutes is up, turn down the heat and allow the mixture to simmer for 7 minutes, watching the temperature with a candy thermometer, when the temperature reaches 240 remove from the heat.
Slowly pour the hot mixture down the side of the mixing bowl and start mixing the gelatin and the hot corn syrup together on the lowest mixer setting slowly increasing the speed as it thickens
Mix until they form stiff peaks.
Transfer to prepared baking pans (glass works best), coat top with cornstarch and powdered sugar.
Let sit 4 hours or up to overnight
Turn out on to cutting surface and cut into squares of your desired size
Once cut, dip each side of the square into the cornstarch and powdered sugar.