Homemade Peppermint Marshmallows – Make the holiday season extra special with this tasty treat! Liven up your hot chocolate or give as gifts!
So, we’re wrapping up November with a third recipe that I’ve never made before. I mentioned in my Flourless Chocolate Cake post that I still have several things on my baking bucket list, so it was really hard to pick this final recipe. In the end, I landed on these amazing Homemade Peppermint Marshmallows!
Why Homemade Peppermint Marshmallows? One, I wanted something seasonal, so peppermint totally fits the bill. Second, I’ve always been intrigued by homemade marshmallows. Are they actually easy to make at home, or are they more trouble than they’re worth? Do they really taste better than store-bought? So many questions!
Since I’d never made homemade marshmallows, I once again turned to my friend, the Internet, to get me started. Ina Garten’s video highlighting just how easy it is to make homemade marshmallows convinced me to use her recipe as a basis for these Homemade Peppermint Marshmallows. Besides, Barefoot rarely steers me wrong!
Barefoot’s recipe is for a standard vanilla marshmallow, but remember, we want seasonal! So, I switched up the flavoring a bit and went with peppermint. Again, gotta love adaptable recipes! So many flavor possibilities can be built upon this basic homemade marshmallow recipe!
Let’s answer my first question – are homemade marshmallows actually easy to make at home? The answer is yes! So, grab your candy thermometer and let’s make Homemade Peppermint Marshmallows!
This recipe is straightforward and basically consists of combining sugar syrup with gelatin and then whipping it. Easy, right? Be very careful when handling the sugar syrup, though! You’ll heat it to 240 degrees, which is also known as the “soft-ball” stage in candy making. Marshmallows are fun, so let’s not taint the experience with a nasty burn!
What does “soft-ball” mean? Ultimately, it’s a measurement of how much water is left in sugar syrup. If a small amount of sugar syrup is drizzled into a glass of cold water, it will come together to form a soft ball, but it flattens when removed from the water.
Pouring the sugar syrup down the side of the bowl into the gelatin will reduce the chance for hot sugar syrup to be kicked up by the whisk attachment while it’s blending it into the gelatin. Safety first!
Since this was my first time making homemade marshmallows, I thought it would be helpful to share some of my lessons learned to help you in case you’re a newbie, too. In Barefoot’s video, she would lead you to believe that all you have to do is sprinkle a bunch of powdered sugar in the bottom of the dish, and the marshmallow will basically plop right out of the dish when you’re ready to cut it. Of course! Why not?
Yeah. No. It didn’t quite happen that way for me. I had to run a small paring knife around the perimeter of the marshmallow to get it to release. Doing that kind of jacked up the edges, which I ended up cutting off. For that reason, I added a step for spraying the sides of the dish with nonstick cooking spray. I think you’ll have much better results.
Another tip – since the sides of the marshmallows are really sticky after you cut the pieces, I found it easier to dredge the marshmallows in powdered sugar rather than just dust them as Barefoot’s recipe says.
And to my second question from earlier – do homemade marshmallows taste better than homemade? The answer is yes! They are soft, fluffy, and full of flavor! Would I make them the next time I’m throwing together a batch of Patriotic Vanilla Rice Krispie Treats? Probably not.
But, I do love them for special occasions like the holidays. Homemade Peppermint Marshmallows are a great gift idea or just a way to make your holiday spread that much more special!
- 3 packages unflavored gelatin
- 1 cup cold water divided
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 1 cup light corn syrup
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon peppermint extract
- ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Powdered sugar for dusting
With a sieve, generously dust the bottom of a 9x13 glass or ceramic baking dish with powdered sugar. Spray the sides of the dish lightly with nonstick cooking spray.
Combine the gelatin and 1/2 cup of cold water in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and allow to sit while the syrup is being made.
Meanwhile, combine the sugar, corn syrup, salt, and remaining 1/2 cup water in a small saucepan. Attach a candy thermometer to the pan. Cook over medium heat until the sugar dissolves. Increase the heat to high and cook until the syrup reaches 240 degrees (soft ball stage). Remove from heat.
With the mixer on low speed, slowly pour the sugar syrup down the side of the mixing bowl into the dissolved gelatin. Put the mixer on high speed and whip until the mixture is very thick and fluffy and bowl is cool enough to touch, about 10-15 minutes. Add the peppermint and vanilla extracts and mix thoroughly.
Pour the marshmallow mixture into the prepared pan, smooth the top with a rubber spatula, and dust with additional powdered sugar. Allow to stand, uncovered, overnight until the marshmallow dries out.
Turn the marshmallows onto a cutting board and cut them in squares. Place additional powdered sugar in a small bowl, and dredge the squares to coat all sides.
Refrigerate marshmallows in an airtight container up to 1 week.
Recipe adapted from Ina Garten.