Marshmallows using the recipe and method below are perfection. You’ll create sweet, chewy, puffy confections worthy of being sold in a gourmet chocolate shop. But you’ll want to eat them all yourself.
What I want you to know about making marshmallows–and many other candies–is that cleanup is really easier, probably easier than many other desserts.
Put your tools, including the candy thermometer into the pan you used to boil the sugar, fill the pan with water so that everything is submerged, and put it on the stove on a low simmer for maybe 45 minutes. The warm water will dissolve the hardened sugar making cleanup quick and easy.
I’ve crossed homemade marshmallows off my culinary bucket list. I used a recipe from the queen of simple but fabulous, also known as Ina Garten.
What Are Marshmallows Made of?
Basically sugar and gelatin with a bit of extract for flavoring. Some recipes call for egg whites, this one does not.
If you’ve never made these gelatinous squares of sugar before, they are pretty simple although preparation is key to success. While that’s true of most recipes, it is absolutely essential when making marshmallows. There is no time to prepare a pan when you have five seconds from the time the marshmallow is whipped and when it starts to cool off so much that it gets stiff and unmanageable.
Marshmallow making equipment: This is what you’ll need for a successful batch.
- sturdy pot for boiling sugar
- candy thermometer (get one that you can clip to the pot and leave there)
- stand mixer (ideally, if not, then a sturdy hand mixer)
- nonstick spray
- parchment paper
- glass or ceramic 13 by 9 pan or similar
- kitchen shears or cookie cutter or bench scraper
- silicone spatula
- heatproof two-cup glass measuring cup (you’ll pour the hot sugar into this and then pour the sugar into the mixing bowl instead of trying to wield the hot saucepan over the mixing bowl)
- elbow length oven mitts (wear while pouring hot sugar into measuring cup and then into mixing bowl)
- cold water
- white sugar
- light corn syrup
- vanilla extract or other flavoring extract
- three packets of unflavored gelatin
- powdered sugar
- non-stick spray
- Advance preparation is vital with this recipe. I can’t stress that enough. If you’re hunting for a pan to use for your slab of marshmallow when it’s done mixing, you’re going to have issues. The marshmallow mixture starts to cool almost immediately once you turn off the mixer.
- You’re working with hot sugar. That requires your full attention to avoid getting burned/lighting the house on fire.
- Put your phone in the other room. Tie your hair back and put the small children and animals in another part of the house or outside.
- Also, when you’re mixing the hot sugar and gelatin together, make sure your mixer is on high. If it’s not on high, you won’t get enough air whipped into the mixture, which will result in a slightly flatter marshmallow. This is what happened with my batch. I was sure I had the machine on high but I was one click away from the highest speed. I didn’t realize this until I had five minutes left on the clock.
- Finally, don’t skip on the powdered sugar, which will help your mixture from sticking to the pan and to your cutting implement, whether that’s a kitchen shear, bench scraper or cookie cutter.
Have you made marshmallows before? How did they turn out? Do you have any tips to share? Tell us in the comments.