Homemade Marshmallows- YUM


We don’t do high fructose corn syrup or anything artificial. So, marshmallows have been out! I couldn’t believe when I read the package and it said there is blue coloring in them. THEY ARE WHITE for crying out loud!

I found a few recipes and modified them… as almost all recipes call for corn syrup. And they are quite tasty.Β  You can make a corn syrup replacement to use in all your cooking (this is very inexpensive) or you can use Agave Nectar or Brown Rice Syrup to replace the corn syrup.Β  The marshmallows pictured here were made with Agave.

Step 1- make corn syrup replacement (or skip this step and use Agave Nectar… YUMMY).

2 c. organic cane sugar

3/4 c. filtered water

1/4 tsp. cream of tarter

Dash of kosher salt

  • Combine ingredients in heavy saucepan, bring to a low boil over medium heat, stirring constantly. Reduce heat, cover and allow to simmer for about 3 minutes, scrape down sides of pan to incorporate all sugar.
  • Remove lid and allow to simmer until reaches soft ball stage (about 235 degrees F).
  • Cool, store in airtight container at room temp.
  • Makes 2 C.

Now for the marshmallows-

3 T. of unflavored Gelatin (or sub Agar Agar Powder, most recommendations I’m finding state equal amounts, though I’ve found one that says 1 tsp per cup of liquid). You can find non animal derived jel like Lieber’s and Just Desserts at Kosher and Natural Markets, I’ve found these to be runnier when set, so use more or add additional thickner, such as tapioca starch/flour.

1 c. chilled filtered water

1.5 c. organic cane sugar

1 c. corn syrup replacement (cane sugar recipe above or agave nectar)

1/4 tsp. kosher salt

1 tsp. real vanilla extract

1/4 c. powder sugar (or process cane sugar until fine and powdery, add a bit of starch to achieve same consistency)

1/4 c. corn starch/tapioca flour/potato starch/arrowroot powder

  • Chill your metal mixing bowl and whisk attachment(s).
  • Place chilled bowl on base of stand mixer and attach whisk.
  • Start by putting gelatin (or replacement) into bowl.
  • Add 1/2 c. chilled water
  • In medium saucepan combine remaining water, cane sugar, corn syrup and salt. Cover and cook for about 3 minutes. Uncover and continue to cook until mixture reaches about 235-240 degrees F (soft ball stage). Once temperature is reached remove from heat.
  • Now, turn your stand mixer on low. Slowly add hot mixture to gelatin. When all syrup is added, put mixer on high. Continue to whip until mixture becomes thick and temp cools. Add the vanilla and whip for about a minute longer.
  • This mixture will whip for 10-15 minutes. So, prepare your pans while it is mixing.
  • Spray a 13 x 9 inch rectangular pan with non-stick cooking spray. Combine powder sugar and corn (tapioca or potatoe if corn is out) starch in a small bowl. Sprinkle mixture in pan, cover pan and shake to fully coat.
  • Now you can add the mixture to the pan. It is difficult to spread. Use a rubber spatula coated with non stick spray. Once spread out in the pan, sprinkle the top with more of the sugar/cornstarch mixture, cover w/ foil and allow to set up over night. Cut into 1 inch pieces and store in zip top bag at room temp.

Check this link for subbing Agar-Agar for Gelatin.

About PolkaDotMommy

Wife to a teacher extraordinaire... Mama to Five littles... Conservative Catholic Christian with a Strong Environmentalist Mentality... Respecting Life... Living for our Savior... Learning to trust God in all things.
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53 Responses to Homemade Marshmallows- YUM

  1. Tamara says:

    I’m going to try these…hopefully today and see how they turn out! I was looking to buy natural marshmallows, but I think I can make this recipe—thanks!

  2. You can also use traditional corn syrup or rice syrup in this recipe… it takes a little experimentation to see what flavor and texture combination your family likes. We don’t use corn syrup in our house… so we are always on the search for alternatives. Using plenty of powder is key! Good Luck!

  3. Tamara says:

    I used unrefined cane sugar…it seemed to take a long time to boil down, but it all fluffed up SUPER nice by the end of the whipping. They are set in a pan and ready for tomorrow. I think they will be great!

  4. RickyKohler says:

    Could you use Agave Nectar instead of the corn syrup? It might be a bit more expensive, but it works great in place of other simple syrups.

  5. I would definitely think Agave Nectar might work well… we have used rice syrup and been successful. I have Agave at home, but we haven’t tried it in the marshmallows yet. If you do, let me know how it works out!

  6. Pingback: Giddy-Up?!?!?! « Looks Good in Polka Dots

  7. Cody says:


    I tried this recipe with Lieber’s unflavored jel, but it didn’t work. It just stayed liquidy.

    Now, admittedly, I don’t have an electric mixer, so me and roommates took turns stirring like a mixer. Is this the problem or is it the Lieber’s? I’ve got more and am going to try it with a real mixer this weekend if someone thinks it was the poor mixing rather than the Lieber’s jel…

  8. Stacy says:

    I’ve been whipping for 20 minutes – it is still liquid! I used Agar Agar flakes. Going to try letting it cool more and then whip again.

  9. tami says:

    thanks so much for the recipe! My daughter is allergic to corn so marshmallows and therefore Smores have been out for her. I always have agave on hand so I’m going to make these ASAP for her.

  10. Mari says:

    Oh my gosh! My entire family is currently licking some type of spoon or beater that has homemade marshmallow goo on it. My son has a line of marshmallow striped across his cheek.

    My 6 year-old has Celiac Disease. On top of that, my wife and I have determined that dairy, soy, and corn all have horrible consequences on his body.

    I, being a lover of all things sweet, and being that my wife just cured our chiminea, feel that K (our K) should not be denied the wonder that is roasting marshmallows.

    These are awesome!! They are currently setting up in our kitchen.

    I opted for the agave (having heard of it so much on Karina’s Kitchen). Delicious! Also, since our little one can’t have corn, I threw some sugar in our wiped-out coffee grinder and voila! had powdered sugar. I added potato starch to the sugar for covering the pan.

    Many steps (and yes, expensive) but truly worth it. We will definitely make these marshmallows again.

    Thank you.

  11. Merari says:

    Just found your site – wonderful! I’m trying to eliminate all artifical colors & flavors from our diets as well. Question – have you ever tried these marshmallows to make fondant? BTW – LOVE your Recommended Book list (Fred Hartley really impacted my life back in college). Thanks for sharing.

  12. I’ve never made fondant of any kind! Let me know how it turns out if you give it a go!

  13. Kev says:

    I followed the recipe using Brown Rice Syrup, but it just stayed at a liquid consistency even when I whipped it for 30 minutes…I have them cooling in the container, so I will check them tomorrow. Hopefully they came out okay…I’d hate to have marshmallow rocks. 😦

    Any suggestions?

  14. Do you know of a good substitute for corn starch? My daughter is allergic to wheat, corn and dairy. Thanks!

  15. Lisa says:

    Thank you for this. My mom always made homemade marshmallows and now that I have food allergies I was missing them. I’m going to make these this week! These will be great also when I go camping.

    For the man who’s child has an allergy to corn and other things I found some powdered sugar that has tapioca powder instead of corn starch. I bought it since I also have a corn allergy.

  16. soundimagedjs says:

    I am excited I found this. πŸ™‚ I have a little girl in our Primary class who is allergic to corn, dairy and wheat so I want to make treats for them all but don’t want leave her out. I was going to make rice krispie treats, I see it is at a liquid stage should I make them then or let them set and then remelt them? I would love your input. πŸ™‚

  17. Lisa says:

    soundimagedjs don’t do the rice crispy treats unless you get the rice crispy’s that have no corn in them. Rice Crispies have corn syrup. If you find the racecrispies without the corn syrup then you can make them and I would let the marshmallows harden first then remelt them. I did it the other way first and the rice crispies went soft.

  18. Trang says:

    can you use these to make rice crispy treats?

  19. I’m thrilled to see all the discussion going on here! The suggestion to sub agar was based on information I found online, but I haven’t used agar myself. I’ve recently picked up some unflavored, Just Desserts brand jel and am pondering how that will work in the marshmallows… I’ve found that the flavored jels end up a bit runny, so I use less liquid than it calls for.

    I’ve had good luck with agave, brown rice syrup and making a corn syrup replacement with sugar and water. Wondering if a liquidized date gel would work… (soaking dates in water, then processing into a gel consistency). So many things to experiment with.

    For the rice crispy treats, we’ve made them using the fluff prior to setting… this just requires letting the treats sit to harden overnight as you would that marshmallows… however, it seems to work better to make the marshmallows then melt them down in the traditional method. Be sure to get a gluten free crisp rice cereal!

  20. @ Sarah Bradford… tapioca flour/starch or arrowroot powder are both good subs for cornstarch.

  21. Thanks for the recipe! We also steer clear of anything artificial or processed. You sound exactly like me when I rant about how rediculous it is for white marshmallows to have BLUE food coloring, but I’m not surprised. I know it just makes them more “white”. Thanks for the alternative!!

  22. Pingback: The Best Homemade Marshmallows, Sugar and Corn Syrup Free! (GFCF) Plus, the Great Outdoors | β™₯ Z's Cup of Tea

  23. I think I love you. Really. We don’t eat corn syrup and my favourite treat growing up were homemade butter tarts which have buckets of corn syrup in them (it’s why their sooo good). I’ve also been wanting to make marshmallows because hot cocoa isn’t as good without them!

  24. Goodiepooh says:

    Ranting and raving about blue dye in marshmallows………….I am going to go you one that is worse! I was on prednisone for a tooth problem and broke out in hives, edematous face with peri-orbital edema and red blotches all over my body that were hives in the early stage. Prednisone is what they give you for allergic reactions, after talking with the triage nurse at the local hospital we decided unless there was a breathing issue to just sit tight and wait. (I am also a nurse,also). No, breathing issues, but after checking the medication out in a drug reference found it had blue dye in the little white pill! You have to read and examine everything you put into your mouth.

  25. Leah says:

    I just wanted to say that other then tapioca or arrowroot. Green bean starch works the best as a replacement for cornstarch as a thickener. It is harder to find though. I get mine at Asian markets. It will replace equal parts cornstarch in most recipes.

    Wholefoods brand powdered sugar is also corn free.

  26. hobby baker says:

    Your marshmallows are perfect. ☺ I love Eileen Talanian’s “marshmallow syrup” (corn free) recipes! My daughter is allergic to corn so I was ecstatic at finding the Marshmallows: Homemade Gourmet Treats book. I was assuming that is where your recipe comes from but I see yours is a smaller batch corn replacement. If you haven’t seen the book, you should check it out – pure genius. The strawberry are awesome, the cinnamon mocha are to die for and the honey lemon cardamom have just honey and sugar for sweetening. Like a lemon bar in marshmallow form. I posted that recipe recently myself. I have also found that Lyle’s Golden syrup (cane sugar derived) makes a great corn syrup replacement in all candy making. I would recommend tapioca and arrowroot for starches over potato because potato starch tends to swell and create a noticeable texture on the marshmallows depending on moisture content. Keep up the good work! Even things like candy corn are possible as homemade for those of us cursed with food allergies or avoiding nasty chemicals or GMOs.

  27. Misty says:

    I just came across your site looking for an all-natural marshmallow recipe that does not contain corn syrup. My son is very chemically sensitive and this evening we’re attending a campout at a friend’s house. I didn’t want him to miss out! I didn’t realize the marshmallows had to set up for so long, so I’m just praying it’s done in time for s’mores. πŸ˜‰

    I read your bio….it describes me almost to a “T”!! We just moved to Alaska and are very much enjoying the greater focus on sustainable living and recycling that goes on here. The recycling is just unbelievable, but it makes sense when you consider how expensive items are to ship here (and thus, buy new). You’ll see people in BMWs rolling up to the reuse area at the dump and rifling through the boxes of “trash.” It’s awesome.

    Thanks again for the recipe! It’s now setting up in my pan and looks fabulous!! Can’t wait to try them and come back to write a great review.

    (BTW, this is the first time I’ve ever used Knox gelatin…does it always smell like feet?? Thank God this called for vanilla, too!)

  28. I’ve never heard of the Homemade Gourmet Treats book… I’ll have to give it a look. I’ve been using this recipe for many years… self created to avoid corn syrup. Usually I use Agave instead of the sugar replacement liquid. I definitely prefer tapioca starch but have used others when that’s all I have at home. πŸ™‚

  29. Oui how I wish there were still a Whole Foods near me… we have Market of Choice here which is great but doesn’t carry some of my favorite products. However, I did just discover that Wholesome Sweetners makes a corn free powder sugar… its pretty pricey though!

  30. Hi Misty! I’m so glad you found the recipe! You may be able to speed up the setting process by placing the marshmallows into the fridge for a while. I’ve never tried as I usually make them the day before, however I think with gelatin they do set up quicker than with a replacement like agar agar.

    Cracks me up… I’ve never paid attention to the smell of gelatin… I guess probably because I’ve used it my whole life. We make “real jello” all the time around here with gelatin and fruit juice to avoid all the nasties in the store bought kind. I’ll definitely give it a whiff next time I open a packet.

  31. Misty says:

    Just wanted to let you know they came out GREAT. And set up within an hour, no problem! We cut them pretty large and you should have seen the other kids crowding around my son, wanting to know where he got that “Ginormous marshmallow!” There was a teenage girl at the campout tonight, too, who cannot each corn syrup, so I got the pleasure of giving her a few and she got to roast them up with my son, too! Thank you!!!

  32. Yay! I’m so glad they worked out and that your little one got to enjoy the same treats everyone else was eating (this is always an issue in our family… we all want to be just like everyone else!). Even better when the other kids want what yours has! I hope you shared the recipe with the mom of the other corn free girl!

  33. Cara says:

    I am so excited to try this recipe! I have 3 celiac kids and one is also allergic to corn. I just found out kellogg’s now has gluten free rice krispies that also appear to be corn free on amazon.com and I ordered them. I can’t wait to make rice krispie treats and marshmallows for camping!

  34. Amanda says:

    Love this! Going to make them for our upcoming camping trip. SOooo what about the Graham Crackers………….now we need a real food recipe for them and we will be all set!!

  35. Mike says:

    What about dried marshmallow root? Shouldn’t that be an ingredient too?

  36. Amanda says:

    I am wondering if you could use Coconut Nectar in place of the Agave. I know this is a pretty new sweetener on the market, so some may not even know about. Just thought I would put it out there to see if there are any who have had experience with it?? I purchased it from Vitacost.com, it is candida safe and non glycemic!!

  37. Pingback: Gluten Free S’mores | Looks Good in Polka Dots

  38. I’ve never used dried marshmallow root… and it definitely isn’t necessary for flavor. πŸ™‚ Let me know if you give it a go.

  39. I would think coconut nectar would work just as well… I’d love to hear how yours turn out!

  40. Pingback: are there any marshmallows without dyes? - Organic Grocery Deals

  41. Emily says:

    I don’t have a candy thermometer, how can I gauge 230 degrees? I just made them and used a 9×13 pan and it seemed like far too big of a pan (like when you pour cake mix in and it doesn’t seem like enough until it bakes up). Is this normal or did I miss something?

  42. Making candy, is difficult (to say the least) without a candy thermometer. I don’t know of an accurate way to gauge the temp without one… I bought mine for about $5.00 at local everything store (food, homegoods, etc…).

    Marshmallows shouldn’t be thick… I use a jelly roll pan that is only about 1/2 inch deep… I’m not sure how they’d firm up if you did make them thicker (maybe in an 8×8 pan)…

    Let me know how things turn out!

  43. Making marshmallows again this year! I tried the rice syrup and found the flavor overpowering. I’m trying agave this year…and I’m making powdered sugar out of coconut sugar. It’s going to be very interesting and delicious! Thanks for the help!

  44. Can’t wait to hear how they turn out! My kids ask for them all the time… but I find myself too busy. πŸ™‚

  45. Reblogged this on Looks Good in Polka Dots and commented:

    This has been a top post since I wrote it, so I thought it was high time I re-share!

  46. Savanah says:

    Im corn free wheat free nut free I need recipies!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  47. Savanah says:

    I just found out no powder sugar so I can make fuge with this instead

  48. Tammy says:

    I am just wondering if you have any thoughts on how to make these chocolate…. I would love to try a chocolate marshmallow. I’m sure adding cocoa powder, but how much and would I need to adjust other ingredient amounts? And at what point would I add it in? Hmmmmm…….. Any suggestions for me???

  49. I would start with maybe 1/4 cup cacao powder (I like to use Dagoba) and reduce the powder sugar by 1/4 cup. . . I’ve never made them flavored, so this is just a guess. πŸ™‚ Good luck, let me know how they turn out!

  50. Alisa says:

    Your recipe was recommended to me by a friend and I am so glad!! My son cannot have the store bought ones because of the dyes in them. I used Lyle’s Golden Syrup instead of the Agave Nectar and it worked great. We were even able to roast them over the campfire to make smores. Thank you so much!!

  51. I’m glad to hear they were a great find for your family. I’ve never heard of Lyle’s Golden Syrup. . . I’ll have to look it up! My new thing is to make them with honey and use coconut palm sugar to make powder sugar. Yum!

  52. I’ve used Lyle’s too (you can find it in the “British” section of the supermarket or sometimes in the food aisles at Marshall’s, Ross or TJMaxx. It’s pure sugar cane syrup I believe. I have used rice syrup too. Love the idea of the cp sugar! Must try that in my new Vitamix.

  53. I don’t know of a store with a “British” section in our area. . . now I’m on a mission. πŸ™‚ Although, we are trying to avoid refined sugar so it may be something we’d skip anyway!

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