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Homemade Holiday Marshmallows

This marshmallow recipe was my grandpa's favorite. At Christmastime, he would be busy making homemade marshmallows for his family and friends. —Diana Byron, New London, Ohio
  • Total Time
    Prep: 55 min. + standing
  • Makes
    about 9-1/2 dozen


  • 2 teaspoons butter
  • 3 envelopes unflavored gelatin
  • 1 cup cold water, divided
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon clear vanilla extract
  • Optional toppings: Melted chocolate, hot fudge and/or caramel ice cream topping
  • Optional garnishes: Baking cocoa, confectioners' sugar, crushed assorted candies, chopped nuts, colored sugars and/or sprinkles


  • Line a 13x9-in. pan with foil and grease the foil with butter; set aside.
  • In a large metal bowl, sprinkle gelatin over 1/2 cup water; set aside. In a large heavy saucepan, combine the sugar, corn syrup, salt and remaining water. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Cook, without stirring, until a candy thermometer reads 240° (soft-ball stage).
  • Remove from the heat and gradually add to gelatin. Beat on high speed until mixture is thick and the volume is doubled, about 15 minutes. Beat in vanilla. Spread into prepared pan. Cover and let stand at room temperature for 6 hours or overnight.
  • Using foil, lift marshmallows out of pan. With a knife or pizza cutter coated with cooking spray, cut into 1-in. squares. Dip or drizzle marshmallows with toppings if desired; coat with garnishes as desired. Store in an airtight container in a cool, dry place.

Marshmallow Recipe Tips

What can homemade marshmallows be used for?

Homemade marshmallows are one of many great food gift ideas—not only for the holiday season but for year-round giving. These marshmallows are delicious on their own but you can also drop them into a cup of homemade hot cocoa or turn them into s'mores.

How do you store homemade marshmallows?

To keep homemade marshmallows fresh, place them in an airtight cookie storage container, separating the layers with parchment or wax paper. Since marshmallows have a high sugar content, you don't want to refrigerate them. If you keep them in a cool, dry place, then they should last for about 3 to 4 weeks. You can also freeze them for up to 6 months.

How do I stop my marshmallows from getting sticky?

If you live in a humid area, you may find your marshmallows getting a little sticky after a few days. To prevent sticking, simply dust them with a little powdered sugar or cornstarch.

How do you rehydrate hard marshmallows?

While it's best to eat marshmallows while they're fresh, sometimes they do dry out a little. To revive them a bit, place a couple of slices of fresh bread in the same container as the marshmallows and seal it up. You can also try microwaving them for 5 to 10 seconds.

Can I melt these marshmallows for homemade Rice Krispies Treats?

While these marshmallows will melt if you heat them, we don't recommend using them for making Rice Krispies Treats.
Research contributed by James Schend, Taste of Home Deputy Editor, Culinary
Nutrition Facts
1 each: 22 calories, 0 fat (0 saturated fat), 0 cholesterol, 5mg sodium, 6g carbohydrate (4g sugars, 0 fiber), 0 protein.


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  • krysfielder
    Dec 15, 2017

    I love this recipe! It makes beautiful and delicious Christmas gifts. The only thing I do differently is using 1/2 tsp Vanilla and 1/2 tsp Almond extract.

  • Twodisneyfans
    Dec 10, 2016

    My family loves these - but we find it hard to not get our marshmallows to ride up the mixer and then we feel like we waste a lot because we can't get a bunch out of the bowl - too sticky and hard. And we never go 15 minutes of mixing - more like 5 minutes because the marshmallow rides up the beater so much and it white and fluffy.

  • xkarenb
    Nov 27, 2016

    These are good but the consistency or mouth feel is not like marshmallows. These are spongy and airy. I made this recipe 3 times and the first two times I followed it exactly as written and was disappointed.On the 3rd attempt, I only used 1/2 C Corn Syrup and the Marshmallows were FANTASTIC!!! The consistency/texture was similar to high quality homemade marshmallows (like those purchased at Gourmet Stores). The taste was incredible!!! I was not fond of the vanilla flavored ones; they were too bland so I used lemon oil and flavored them lemon. These were INCREDIBLE!!!The mixture with 1/2 C Corn Syrup makes LESS and is VERY sticky. Wet your spatula with water to assist in spreading in the pan. This also only made enough for an 8" x 8" pan. I rolled some of the cut marshmallows in confectioners' sugar, shaking off the excess, and the rest in sanding sugar. The ones with the confectionery sugar were much better than those coated in sanding sugar.

  • hchambers
    Dec 29, 2014

    These were fantastic! My son loves marshmallows so this was our Christmas project this year. They were super simple to make and my boys had a blast decorating them. Even the marshmallow haters in my family enjoyed these. We will definitely be doing this again.

  • lambasio
    Dec 17, 2014

    I hate marshmallows, but these are delicious! I made them to gift with homemade cocoa, and I can't stay out of them. They are moist and beautiful, and they are a very tasty addition to hot cocoa. Will definitely make again!

  • JannieG
    Dec 6, 2014

    I grew up with homemade marshmallows at Christmas. Mother always rolled them in powdered sugar or toasted coconut.

  • danielleylee
    Dec 22, 2013

    Super easy! Everyone loved them. I made a hot chocolate bar for a Christmas party and they paired well with the hot cocoa. They only thing with making any marshmallow is that they are extremely sticky. The best thing to do to try and pat them down is by using powdered sugar.

  • ssminn23
    Feb 15, 2013

    So easy and delicious. Great flavor and texture.

  • ssminn23
    Feb 14, 2013

    So easy and delicious. Great flavor and texture.

  • rehux8
    Jan 31, 2013

    No comment left