This homemade peppermint marshmallow recipe is the perfect addition to your Christmas cup of cocoa. They are made without corn syrup so healthier than your store-bought marshmallows. Crushed up candy canes give them their peppermint flavor along with a fun added crunch.
I haven’t bought a bag of marshmallows in over a year and I feel like I’ve deprived my kids of an important part of their childhood! Getting sticky, gooey toasted marshmallows all over your fingers and chin is an experience every kid should have.
High fructose corn syrup is just one of those ingredients I really try to avoid though and its the main ingredient in store-bought marshmallows. So I decided to try making them myself instead. Turns out its not that hard and the results are AMAZING! Definitely worth the extra effort and cost (because marshmallows are pretty much the cheapest food you can buy, you’re not going to cut costs making them yourself)
Serve this homemade peppermint marshmallow recipe with homemade cocoa mix for a special Winter treat!
Leave out the refined sugars altogether with this healthy honey marshmallow recipe
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what you need to make peppermint marshmallows:
- granulated sugar – regular white cane sugar. If you’d rather make marshmallows without any refined sugars, you’ll love my honey marshmallows recipe!
- light agave syrup – is runnier than honey and has a very mild flavor. Agave syrup is a good choice for lighter desserts since it doesn’t have an overwhelming flavor.
- gelatin powder – grass-fed gelatin powder gives the marshmallows that chewy, springy texture that makes a marshmallow, a marshmallow! This is the same gelatin I use to make This is the same gelatin I use to make homemade jello.
- kosher salt – kosher salt is what I prefer to use, but table salt will work as well. You just need to use a little less of it.
- vanilla – pure vanilla is best for this recipe. I used my homemade vanilla extract.
- oil – spray oil, butter or coconut oil for grease the spatula since marshmallow mixture is so sticky.
- powdered confectioners’ sugar – to dust the outsides of the marshmallows with. This keeps them from sticking together and adds a bit more sweetness. You can use an organic or all natural alternative to make the recipe a bit more healthy.
- cornstarch – cornstarch mixed with powdered sugar is the perfect powdery coating to go on the outside.
- candy canes – if you want to avoid high fructose corn syrup completely in this homemade peppermint marshmallow recipe, you can use more naturally sweetened candy canes like these.
- pot – a medium saucepan to boil the sugar mixture in.
- whisk – to whisk the sugar mixture as it boils.
- candy thermometer – using a candy thermometer is the most accurate way to make sure your marshmallow fluff turns out perfect every time.
- stand mixer or handheld beaters – I use my Kitchen aid mixer and whisk attachment.
- spatula – to scrape the marshmallow fluff out of the mixing bowl when it’s finished.
- 9 x 13 baking dish – it’s best to use a dish with straight sides so that the marshmallows turn out more evenly shaped.
- parchment paper – lining the baking dish with parchment paper makes it easy to lift the marshmallows out without as much mess.
FAQ About Homemade Peppermint Marshmallows
can you make marshmallows without corn syrup?
Corn syrup is the most common main ingredient in marshmallows ( both store-bought and homemade). But it’s easy to replace with healthier options. Agave syrup is my favorite substitute for corn syrup because it doesn’t have a strong overpowering flavor.
Are Homemade Marshmallows Better Than Store-Bought?
Store-bought marshmallows almost all contain high fructose corn syrup, an artificial sugar that can lead to health issues such as high blood pressure and obesity. Making marshmallows from scratch, you can substitute healthier sweeteners in its place.
Homemade marshmallows also contain gelatin which is good for healthy bones, skin and nails.
Homemade marshmallows are lighter and fluffier and much more flavorful than store-bought. They might cost more to make than to buy, but the results are worth it.
Next you should try making homemade strawberry marshmallows!
Is This peppermint Marshmallow Recipe Gluten Free?
This recipe is! Most homemade marshmallows are gluten free since the ingredients are basically, a sugary product and gelatin.
How To Store Homemade peppermint Marshmallows
Marshmallows are very sticky so they need a generous coating of powdered sugar and cornstarch on the outside to keep them from becoming a marshmallow mess. Homemade marshmallows should be stored in an airtight container with an extra scoop of powdered sugar/cornstarch mixture to help them stay fresh.
To make your marshmallows last extra long, just place them in a sealed gallon sized freezer bag and store in the freezer to pull out as you need them!
Why are my homemade marshmallows turning out sticky?
If your homemade marshmallows are too sticky after coating in powdered sugar, its probably because they were not whipped long enough.
If the marshmallows are tough, they were most likely whipped too long.
how do you crush candy canes for this recipe?
You need 12 candy canes for this recipe. Just unwrap each candy cane and place them in a gallon sized Ziploc bag. Seal the bag and smash the candy canes with a rolling pin.
Don’t smash them too much since chunkier pieces work best in this recipe.
How to make Homemade Peppermint Marshmallows
Prep – First line a 9 x 13 baking dish with parchment paper. Set aside.
Boil – In a medium pot, bring the sugar, agave syrup and 1/2 cup of the water to a boil over medium high heat. When the sugar mixture has boiled, reduce the heat to medium.
Cover the pot and continue to cook over medium heat fore 3 minutes until the sugar has completely dissolved and there are no signs of sugar granules left.
Continue To Heat – Using a candy thermometer, let the sugar syrup continue to cook until it has reached 242-245 degrees (firm ball stage)
Prepare Gelatin – While the mixture is heating, add the remaining 1/2 cup of room temperature water and gelatin to the bowl of a stand mixer. Stir to combine and let the gelatin “bloom.”
Add To Mixer – Once the sugar mixture has reached 242-245 degrees, remove it form the heat. With the mixer on low, pour the hot syrup into the bowl of the stand mixer, making sure to pour it down the side of the bowl so as not to scorch the gelatin mixture.
Beat – Turn the mixer to medium high speed and beat the mixture for 5 minutes.
Add the salt and vanilla extract and beat on high speed for another 5 minutes or until the mixture is glossy and white.
Add the Candy Canes – Quickly add in 1/2 cup of the crushed candy canes and let the mixer stir them in on low for a few seconds.
Pour Into Baking Dish – Using a rubber spatula that has been rubbed down with coconut or butter, quickly spread the strawberry marshmallow mixture into the prepared pan.
Sprinkle the remaining 1/4 cup of crushed candy canes evenly over the top of the marshmallow mixture.
Let Sit – Let sit uncovered for 6-8 hours or overnight.
Cut Into Squares – After the marshmallows have set, turn it onto a prep surface. Using a large knife that has been rubbed down with coconut oil or butter, cut marshmallows into 1.5 inch squares.
Coat With Sugar – In a small bowl, mix cornstarch and powdered sugar. Toss the marshmallows in the cornstarch mixture, making sure all sides get coated.
Tips for success
Don’t Under-Whip – Make sure the marshmallow mixture is whipped to the point of forming soft peaks. The mixture should hold its shape for at least a few seconds after the mixer is stopped.
Don’t Over-Whip – Whipping the marshmallow mixture past the glossy, soft peaks point will result in tough marshmallows.
To Serve – These marshmallows are delicious eaten by themselves, in your hot cocoa, or roasted over a bonfire. They can be used in place of store bought marshmallows in rice crispy treats too!
To Store – Homemade peppermint marshmallows are best eaten right away but will last up to two weeks.
To store longer, homemade marshmallows can be frozen in a sealed freezer bag.
Variations – These marshmallows can be made in an 8×8 baking dish for jumbo marshmallows.
More Homemade Holiday Recipes:
If you liked this recipe, I think you’ll really enjoy these other holiday treats on the blog!
- Homemade Cocoa Mix Recipe
- Fluffy Honey Whipped Cream
- Old Fashioned Spiced Cider Recipe
- Healthy Honey Marshmallows
- Rich Hot Cocoa Made With Chocolate Chips
I hope you love this homemade peppermint marshmallow recipe! If you make them, I’d love for you to come back and leave a comment and rating so that I know how you like them!
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