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
This post contains affiliate links, which means I make a small commission at no extra cost to you. Get my full disclosure here.
Can you make homemade marshmallows without corn syrup?
Yes! Honey, maple syrup or agave can be used in place of corn syrup in most recipes. The texture will be almost the same and the flavor will be much better.
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.
Is This Homemade 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 Crush Candy Canes For This Recipe:
You will need about 12 candy canes for this recipe. Just place unwrapped candy canes in a freezer bag. Squeeze all the air out, seal the bag and smash them through the bag using a meat mallet or rolling pin. Don’t smash them all the way to a fine powder. Small chunks are perfect for this recipe!
Homemade peppermint marshmallow recipe:
- Granulated Sugar – regular white sugar is the kind to use.
- 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 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.
- 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.
- Powdered 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.
How to make This Homemade Peppermint Marshmallow recipe
First line a 9 x 13 baking dish with parchment paper. Set aside.
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 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.
Using a candy thermometer, let the honey and water continue to cook until it has reached 242-245 degrees (firm ball stage) While the mixture is heating, add the remaining 1/2 cup of water and gelatin to the bowl of a stand mixer. Stir to combine and let the gelatin “bloom.”
Once the honey mixture has reached 242-245 degrees, remove it form the heat. With the mixer on low, pour the hot honey 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.
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.
Quickly add in 1/2 cup of the crushed candy canes and let the mixer stir them in on low for a few seconds.
Using a spatula that has been rubbed down with coconut or butter, quickly spread the peppermint marshmallow mixture into the prepared dish.
Sprinkle the remaining 1/4 cup of crushed candy canes evenly over the top of the marshmallow mixture.
Let sit uncovered for 6-8 hours or overnight.
After the marshmallow cream has set, turn it onto a prep surface. Using a large knife that has been rubbed down with coconut oil or butter, cut it into 1.5 inch squares.
Next toss the marshmallows in a small bowl of powdered sugar and cornstarch, making sure all sides get coated.
Put the marshmallows in a large bowl or canister to store.
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 Without Powdered Milk
- The Fluffiest Honey Whipped Cream
- Old Fashioned Spiced Cider Recipe
- Homemade Healthy Marshmallows
- Homemade Gingerbread Body Lotion
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!
There may be affiliate links in this post! By purchasing a product I recommend, I may receive a small compensation. However, I only recommend products I absolutely love and use myself. Thank you for supporting At Home on the Prairie, it helps keep this blog keep going.