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My hope is to inspire you to be fearless in the kitchen, to try new things, to take the time to make things the homemade way and most importantly, to have fun doing it!

Vanilla Bean Marshmallows Cooking View

Do you even realize how easy it is to make homemade marshmallows?  Just about as easy as marshmallow creme, actually.  Really darn easy.  I was intimidated for a long time at just the thought of homemade marshmallows, I was honestly afraid to even read the recipe.  They seem pretty fancy, right?  But as with so many things, it’s really much easier than whatever you might imagine.

Let me break it down for you.  You soften gelatin in water.  Meanwhile, make a sugar syrup and cook it to the appropriate temperature.  The syrup is whipped with the gelatin mixture to fluffy white clouds, and then the mixture is spread into a pan.  That’s it.   Easy, right?  Told ya’.  Oh and the taste?  Let’s just remember that all through my childhood I wasn’t such a fan of marshmallows (except for the weirdly awesome crunchy marshmallows in Lucky Charms – I did love those.)  It’s taken me a while to come around but I’m fully converted.  These are great to make at the holidays as gifts to accompany hot chocolate mix, but in the summer it’s all about the best s’mores you ever had.  Have a s’more or two and then save the rest for a fabulous summer dessert coming at you Friday.

Vanilla Bean Marshmallows
Yield: about 8-9 dozen marshmallows

Ingredients

  • 1 cup cold water, divided
  • 2½ tbsp. (3 packets) unflavored gelatin
  • 1½ cups (12 oz.) granulated sugar
  • 1 cup light corn syrup
  • 1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise (optional)
  • ¼ tsp. kosher salt
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup confectioners’ sugar
  • ¼ cup cornstarch
Cooking View

Directions

  • Place ½ cup of the water in the bowl of a stand mixer.  Sprinkle the gelatin over the surface to soften.  Meanwhile, in a small saucepan with a candy thermometer attached combine the remaining ½ cup water, sugar, corn syrup, seeds scraped from the vanilla bean, and salt.  Cook over medium heat until the mixture reaches 240˚ F.  When this temperature is reached, immediately remove the pan from the heat.

  • With the whisk attachment on the mixer moving at low speed, slowly add the syrup to the bowl with the gelatin in a drizzle down the side of the bowl.  Once all of the syrup has been added, increase the speed to high and whip until the mixture is very thick and lukewarm, about 12-15 minutes.  Blend in the vanilla during the final minute of mixing.

  • Combine the confectioners’ sugar and cornstarch in a bowl and whisk to blend.  Lightly grease a 9 x 13-inch baking pan.  Coat the bottom and sides of the pan well with a dusting of the sugar-cornstarch mixture, reserving the rest.  Once the marshmallow mixture is finished whipping, use a lightly greased spatula to spread it into an even layer in the prepared pan.  Sprinkle a layer of the sugar mixture over the top to coat lightly.  Let stand uncovered at least 4 hours or up to overnight.

  • Remove the marshmallow slab to a cutting board.  Cut into desired shape with a pizza cutter or cookie cutter (dip in the sugar mixture as needed to prevent sticking.)  Add the marshmallows to a container with the remaining sugar mixture and toss to coat and prevent them from sticking together.

  • I know this seems like a looot of marshmallows, but trust me…just make the full batch.  They keep for a long time stored in an airtight container, and you never know when you might have a s’more or hot cocoa emergency.

Source

  • http://www.j3nn.net/ j3nn

    It sounds easy, and they look delicious, like little sweet clouds, but I don’t know if I’m brave enough yet. :)

  • Liz

    These look great, Annie! Do you have any tips for keeping vanilla bean seeds from clumping? For me, the seeds tend to clump when I scrape them, and then I have trouble getting them unclumped to disperse in whichever recipe. Thanks for any tips!

  • annieseats

    I find that just stirring or whisking usually does the trick. Especially with the high speed whisking in this recipe, I wouldn’t worry about it being a problem. Enjoy!

  • Allison Coe

    I actually just made marshmallows this weekend for the first time. I let them dry all day and then coated them with the sugar, patted off the excess, and placed them into a tupperware container. The next day all of the sugar was “gone” and they were sticky again. Any ideas why this happened? They still taste really good, but they are kind of annoying to work with when they are so sticky. I could coat them again, but I worry they might become too sweet. Suggestions?

  • http://www.coffeeandcannolis.com/ Angie @ Coffee and Cannolis

    Beautiful photos, of course. I have a question about roasting them though – do they roast as well as store-bought, or do they tend to melt a little more, making them runnier? That’s my concern about them (even though your s’mores picture looks delicious!!)

  • Jill

    Oh my goodness. Yes, please!!

  • http://www.channelingcontessa.com/ Sarah

    S’mores are undoubtedly my favorite food, and homemade marshmallows are the best idea. I’ve tried making some before, and the texture was great, but the flavor wasn’t there. Vanilla beans will fix this, I’m sure!

  • Liz N

    Thanks for sharing this! Any chance we’ll see the salted caramel recipe marshmallows soon? I have vanilla paste at home so I think it would make a nice substitution for the actual vanilla bean. I love seeing the vanilla specks! YUM!

  • http://anniescitykitchen.com/ Anniescitykitchen

    Ok, you’ve convinced me. I will attempt to make marshmallows!

    I’d really love to make super thick marshmallows and yours look thick and fluffy. If I tried setting the marshmallows in a 9×9 pan so they’re thicker, do you think they’d be ok? Is that just overkill?

  • deborahpucci

    Sound yummy!

  • Jane

    Love that this recipe doesn’t include raw egg whites, as some recipes for marshmellows do. Thanks!

  • TheMrsatSuccessAlongtheWeigh

    I’ve felt the same…I’ve been intimidated. This seems like it’s doable and since I’m dying for some s’mores, no time like the present!

  • http://mominthemuddle.com/ muddledmom

    I made marshmallows for the first time this year. It was much easier than I thought. I felt I had really achieved something in the kitchen. I even went an extra step and covered them in candy coating. Annie, you’re right. They’re worth it. And I love what you did by cutting them out in cute shapes. I’ll have to try the vanilla bean, now that I’m not scared of homemade marshmallows anymore.

  • annieseats

    Yeah, I think that would work just fine. You might have a crazy tall marshmallow if you made the full batch in a 9 x 9 pan though. Maybe you could try 3/4 batch instead.

  • annieseats

    Oh, I should have mentioned – I think they roast waaay better than store bought. They don’t really catch on fire as easily but toast beautifully and are perfectly melty inside. Love them!

  • annieseats

    I’m not sure. Maybe just an issue with that particular recipe. I wouldn’t worry about them being too sweet though since they are basically just puffed sugar.

  • http://menuaquarela.wordpress.com/ ginaiampolsky

    I never made marshmallow, but I like to eat. These look delicious. I loved this idea.Thanks

  • http://twitter.com/AsAVerb As A Verb

    I’m not a very big marshmallow fan but you had me at vanilla bean. Not to mention the s’more!

  • http://indigoscones.blogspot.com/ Ellen @ Indigo Scones

    Marshmallows and I go way back! I’ve wanted to try making my own for so long, now I think I finally will! Are you already thinking of a thousand flavor variations? I hope so :)

  • http://lifeandkitchen.com/ Lindsay

    I would be REALLY into you making homemade vegetarian marshmallows. Add that to your to-do list, please! :)

  • http://cookingbride.com/ Lisa

    Oh my gosh, that s’mores picture looks SO GOOD! I have yet to make s’mores this summer. It’s time!

  • http://penniesonaplatter.com/ Nikki

    These are beautiful, Annie! Can’t wait to make them for Christmas packages this year! :)

  • http://warmvanillasugar.com/ Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar

    You rock my world! So creative!

  • http://atthepatisserie.wordpress.com/ Ann P.

    So pretty! Perfect shape to top a mug of cocoa. And I love how perfectly you roasted the marshmallow for the s’more! Beautiful :)

  • The Hungry Housewife

    Ohhhhh yes. Homemade marshmallows are the best!!! I can’t stand the ones in the bag!

  • kate C.

    I agree with you that they’re easy… but only if you have a stand mixer! :) As I am one of those who still has a hand mixer, these would pretty much kill my arms!

    Maybe someday…

  • annieseats

    Hopefully soon!

  • http://www.shinethislight.com/ michelle @ this little light

    Why do I read you when I’m hungry, Annie?! Oh, those look sooooooo good!

  • Ashley @ Wishes and Dishes

    Homemade marshmallows really taste so much etter!! I will have to try these!

  • Angela, Herself

    Annie, not sure if you have ever heard of the Versatile Blogger Award, but I nominated your blog for it. My post on it is here…. http://angelaherself.blogspot.com/2012/07/exuding-versatility-versatile-blogger.html

    Love your blog, you always post such great recipes.

  • http://stepbystepinthekitchen.blogspot.com/ Kathleen Richardson

    I keep reading about homemade marshmallows and how easy they are to make and how tasty. I like our recipe so I guess it’s time to make them myself. Lovely photos. Off to Pinterest I go!

    Keep writing…

  • Tara

    I also fail to own a stand mixer. Let us unite! Haha ;-P

  • http://www.foodrecipeshq.com/ Daniela

    Thanks for sharing this recipe. I’ll try as it is not very much time consuming as I thought…

  • http://noblepig.com/ Cathy @ Noble Pig

    I think you’ve finally convinced me to do it…these are beautiful!!

  • yanina

    WHAT DO I DO WITH MY LEFTOVER MARSHMALLOWS? where is the friday post you promised?!!

  • annieseats

    Is it Friday yet?

  • Mahvish

    hehe it is Friday here in australia though… i sometimes forget too that its not Friday at your end yet :)

  • Kirsten Hasdal

    Mine are just cooling now… Thanks for the fantastic recipe! They will be a great addition to our tailgating tomorrow (if they make it until smore time). Now that I’ve made them and seen how easy it is, any suggestions for flavoring them? I’m thinking peppermint for Christmas… :) Would I just sub the peppermint in place of vanilla? Thanks again!

  • Kate

    Thank you, Annie! I failed 3 times at homemade marshmallows with different recipes, but as soon as I saw yours I knew it would be perfect. I’ve always loved marshmallows so I’ve just been munching on these all weekend. They are fabulous!

  • annieseats

    Oh good! Fourth time is a charm :)

  • sweetsugarbelle

    Marshmallows scare the shrapnel out of me!!! I really new to get over that, I’ve never had a homemade one. I’m super curious and of course it’s yet another way to use my cookie cutters!

  • Stannie

    Hi Annie, I am totally psyched about this recipe, but I’ve got two problems… I live in Belgium and we aren’t accustomed to using corn syrup, which means I can’t find it anywhere… Is it replaceable? And how important is it you work with a candy thermometer? I’m a student, so don’t own one, but I would love to try this recipe…

  • annieseats

    You’ll definitely want a candy thermometer for best results. Please see the FAQ page regarding substitutions. Good luck!

  • Alia Fisher

    I made these yesterday and they are wonderful. Thank you for sharing.

  • annieseats

    Yep, you can play around with other flavorings. I’ll be sharing more variations in the future.

  • Sebastien

    Hello,

    I read the instructions for the marshmallows but I’m a bit confused so I thought you could help me understand the steps.

    The first paragraph says to put the water and the gelatin together in the mixer bowl. Then, you put other ingredients in the saucepan.

    So, you have water and gelatin already in the bowl and water, sugar etc… in the saucepan.

    The second paragraph says “slowly add the syrup to the bowl with the gelatin in a drizzle down the side of the pan”

    If we’re adding the syrup from the saucepan to the bowl, how can we do this in a drizzle down the side of the pan? Do you see what I mean? Is it me who doesn’t read this right? Shouldn’t it say “Down the side of the bowl”?

    My understanding of that part is that you add the contents of the saucepan to the mixer bowl. Is that right? If not, could you please explain? I just want to make sure I get this before I start.

    Thanks for your help with this!

  • annieseats

    You are right, sorry about that. You drizzle the syrup into the mixer bowl with the gelatin. I have corrected that now. Thanks for catching it!

  • Carina

    Made these for our family’s Christmas Eve fondue party coming up! I may have sampled a few already and they are amazing! Thanks again Annie, for great instructions and beautiful photos! Merry Christmas!

  • Pipaw

    I doubt someone will ever read this answer as you posted this so long ago, but I had the same issue when I tried making homemade nougat. The point was that my sugar hadn’t reached the right temperature. Thanks for this awsome recipe!

  • Amy

    Just how long do they really last in an airtight container? Could you store them for a month or more?

  • annieseats

    They last a pretty long time. I don’t think they would really go bad, they just will eventually get stale. We have kept them in the pantry for over a month and still used them. I guess it sort of depends on what you will be using them for. Just plain, maybe not so great, but if they will be torched or baked into something, it’s probably fine if they start out a little stale.

  • Lauren

    I just finished my marshmallows, licked the wisk, and posted my show off picture on facebook!!
    I might have had too much fun making them. I was a little excited as my cooking sugar turned clear and as always, I love it when nothing beats up to a full mixing bowl.
    Thanks Annie for convincing me that it was this easy. Tomrrow I’m making your sugar cookies and royal icing.
    Happy Holidays!

  • Lizzie Beesley

    Finally got round to making these! Thank you SO MUCH for the recipe :) I’m from/in the UK, so corn syrup is expensive & not widely available. I used golden syrup (apparently the closest alternative) instead and it’s worked fine.

  • Bella Klaus

    Dear Annie! I have a problem! I tried this recipe yesterday and something went wrong but I don’t know what…
    First of all I used some vegan fruit glaze instead of gelatin but I’m not sure if that was the problem.
    When I removed the syrup mixture from the heat I beat it on very high speed for 15 minutes but after that it still looked the same, like this very thick and not cloudy mass, even after letting it stand over night didn’t change anything :/ help!

  • annieseats

    I’m guessing the vegan glaze was the issue.

  • Kat

    This recipe is fun, thank you! I just made it… I had brown sugar only so it has lovely caramel color and flavor. Not sure I can wait 4 hours though

  • http://sweetmeggiejs.weebly.com/ Meg

    So my friend is doing her PhD in England and came to visit last weekend with her British boyfriend. Naturally, we devised to expose him to as much America as possible. And what is more American than s’mores? Not much. I made these marshmallows and your homemade graham crackers, paired it with some Swiss chocolate and a kitchen torch (no fire pit). He was thoroughly impressed. And my friend was dying about how good the s’mores were. Raving. So much so that I had to send the extra marshmallows and graham crackers home with her. And her initial comment of “who makes their own marshmallows and graham crackers,” well, she took it back and replaced it with, “I’m so glad I know someone who makes their own marshmallows and graham crackers.”

  • annieseats

    Ha! I have definitely received similar side eye reactions, which are always revoked once homemade s’mores are consumed. So glad you all enjoyed them!