If you want to put a smile on someone's face, just mention naturally sweetened, nourishing chocolate marshmallows!
Why are marshmallows so universally loved? Perhaps it's the nostalgia. Both kids and adults instantly remember stacks of marshmallows in gooey, chocolate-y s'mores… or marshmallows slowly melting into a cup of hot chocolate.
I instantly think of my little Southern grandma who lived to be 101 years old! She made hot chocolate with marshmallows for me every morning when I would visit her house as a young girl in the early 80s. I still treasure those memories!
I'd like to treat my own children with similar memories, yet now I'm older and well-versed in the ways of traditional, from-scratch cooking. I don't want to serve conventional marshmallows to my family!
Have you seen the ingredients in storebought marshmallows? Corn syrup, modified corn starch, tetrasodium pyrophosphate (a whipping aid), artificial flavor, artificial color…
Our bodies simply don't recognize those ingredients. (For more marshmallow flavor options, check out these 25+ healthy homemade marshmallow recipes here!)
Homemade Chocolate Marshmallows Are Perfect For The Holidays
That's why I make my own homemade chocolate marshmallows — free of food dyes and artificial flavors, full of healthy ingredients!
When I asked my kiddos to describe the flavor of these chocolate marshmallows, they said things like, “hot chocolate” and “milk chocolate s'mores… without the graham crackers”. 🙂
Protein-rich grass-fed gelatin improves skin, aids digestive function, restores and builds muscle, supports joint health, and so much more. For a mildly sweet flavor, I also use (preferably local or raw) honey. Add in quality cacao powder, real vanilla extract, and a tiny bit of sea salt, and you have delicious Real Food marshmallows!
Add them to homemade hot chocolate or s'mores, snack on them as a fun holiday treat, or give them as gifts to loved ones and neighbors.
Naturally Sweetened & Nourishing Chocolate Marshmallows
For a naturally sweetened treat without corn syrup, make these Nourishing Chocolate Marshmallows! This easy recipe is full of gut-healing gelatin, too!
The Day Of...
Line an 8x8" (or larger 9x9") pan with 2 sheets of unbleached parchment paper going perpendicular to each other. This is so you can easily lift up the marshmallows when they are set.
If using, sprinkle 1 to 2 tablespoons of the optional dusting cacao powder over the parchment paper. Set aside pan.
Assemble stand mixer with mixing bowl and whisk attachment, or use a large mixing bowl with hand-held mixer.
Add 1/2 cup filtered water to mixing bowl. Sprinkle gelatin over the water.
While gelatin is blooming, combine remaining filtered water, honey, and sea salt in a medium-sized sauce pan with high edges.
Bring to a boil over medium high heat. If you have a candy thermometer, place it in the honey mixture.
Stir constantly to keep the mixture from bubbling and foaming over. Simmer until the temperature reaches 240 degrees Fahrenheit (about 8 to 9 minutes if you don't have a candy thermometer).
Remove honey mixture from heat. Add the vanilla extract.
Whisk sifted cocoa powder into the hot honey mixture until fully combined.
With the mixer on low, SLOWLY and carefully drizzle the hot honey-cacao mixture in a thin continuous stream down the side of the bowl. To give you an idea of how slowly you need to pour, this step should take you about 1 minute.
Beat on high for about 15 minutes -- until the mixture becomes thick and glossy with soft peaks. The marshmallow fluff will increase in volume.
Turn off the mixer and transfer the chocolate marshmallow fluff to the lined pan. Use a spatula to smooth the top.
Let the chocolate marshmallows set at room temperature for at least 8 hours or, ideally, overnight.
The Next Day...
When set, remove the marshmallows by lifting the parchment paper flaps. Place on a flat surface or large cutting board, with the marshmallows still on the parchment paper.
Carefully peel the parchment paper away from the sides of the marshmallows. It should release easily if you do it slowly.
If using, sprinkle the remaining optional dusting cacao powder over the marshmallows.
Use a large chef's knife to cut the marshmallows into desired size and shape. Dust knife with cacao powder if necessary. For cutting ideas, see below.
I like to cut the rustic edges off first and cut those strips into mini marshmallows, making about 30 to 40 mini marshmallows. I then divvy up the rest of the marshmallows into about (25) 1" cubes. Feel free to cut 3x3" or 4x4" cubes for a total of 9 to 12 big marshmallows.
Serve with hot chocolate, white hot chocolate, chai hot chocolate, or sweet beet hot chocolate. Or, use in s'mores! Simply gently toast them to a light golden brown under a broiler, but don't take your eyes off them or they'll melt.
Double Chocolate Option: After the marshmallow mixture is mixed and cooled into chocolate marshmallow fluff, gently fold in 1/4 to 1/3 cup chocolate chips (stevia-sweetened, allergy-friendly, fair-trade, whatever you prefer!). Then pour the double-chocolate marshmallow fluff into the prepared pan.
Are you going to make homemade marshmallows for the holidays?
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