homemade fluffy marshmallows {corn syrup free}

homemade fluffy marshmallows {corn syrup free} | The Clever Carrot

It’s a messy job, but totally worth it.

Before I dive into the world of marshmallows, it’s interesting to note that most recipes contain corn syrup and/or raw egg whites (it makes them soft and fluffy). The problem is, I’m not a fan of corn syrup and most people freak out about raw eggs. So, what is one to do?

Use evaporated milk.

homemade fluffy marshmallows {corn syrup free} | The Clever Carrot

Yes, it’s true. I’m not exactly sure what kind of magical powers it might posses… All I know is that evaporated milk makes the fluffiest marshmallows ever, without having to add any of the above ingredients. It’s the best kept secret.

Here’s another tip- your cooking tools are just as important as your ingredients. If you’re short on any of them, the process is going to be a little bit tricky. You will need the following (in this order):

  • Patience
  • Clutter free workspace
  • Stand mixer
  • Cooking spray
  • Non-stick 8×8 or 9×13 pan
  • Parchment paper
  • Candy thermometer
  • Rubber spatula
  • Sifter
  • Powdered sugar & cornstarch
  • Sharp knife, pizza wheel or kitchen scissors

And now, kindly prepare yourself for a fleet of snowy white photos with comprehensive instructions at the end of the post (I had to lure you in somehow- this is a long one!) Sunglasses are optional.

homemade fluffy marshmallows {corn syrup free} | The Clever Carrothomemade fluffy marshmallows {corn syrup free} | The Clever Carrothomemade fluffy marshmallows {corn syrup free} | The Clever Carrothomemade fluffy marshmallows {corn syrup free} | The Clever Carrothomemade fluffy marshmallows {corn syrup free} | The Clever Carrothomemade fluffy marshmallows {corn syrup free} | The Clever Carrothomemade fluffy marshmallows {corn syrup free} | The Clever Carrot

All of that for homemade marshmallows?!

Yes! They taste way better than store-bought and you have control over the quality of ingredients. Of course they’re a bit messy, and yes your fingers will get sticky- but the truth is, they’re a lot of fun to make. Once you have this basic recipe down you can add different extracts and toppings to make them your own. Follow these tips and you will have beautiful, fluffy marshmallows.

Tips:

  • Space is your friend. If your kitchen lacks counter space, move this project to a clean kitchen table. Position your stand mixer near an outlet, and set up all cooking tools and ingredients before you begin.
  • Prepare your pan right away. Marshmallows set very quickly, so be sure to have your pan prepped and ready to go. All pans need to be generously coated in cooking spray and lined with parchment paper. I recommend using something non-stick, but glass or metal will do.
  • Do I really need a candy thermometer? Yes. In order for your marshmallows to set properly, the milk and sugar must be heated to approximately 250 F. Regular thermometers only go up to 220 F. Don’t chance it.
  • Get to know your rubber spatula. This is the one and only tool that will get the fluff out of the bowl. Keep in mind, because marshmallows are very sticky you will not be able to scrape every last bit out of the bowl. You will not have a perfectly smooth finish to the top as well. This is all OK.
  • Powdered sugar & cornstarch… why both? Even though powdered sugar has a small amount of corn starch in it, additional cornstarch acts as a moisture barrier preventing the marshmallows from becoming sticky. Make sure to sift your mixture before coating the marshmallows (you don’t want any clumps!).

***And last but not least- because evaporated milk is a tan color, your mixture will initially be brown. Do not fret! After 10-15 minutes of mixing on high speed your marshmallows will become a soft, creamy white color. I was skeptical at first but it’s true.

homemade fluffy marshmallows {corn syrup free} | The Clever Carrothomemade fluffy marshmallows {corn syrup free} | The Clever Carrot

homemade fluffy marshmallows {corn syrup free}
 
Author:
Ingredients
Ingredients:
  • cooking spray
  • ½ c. water + ¼ c.
  • 3 tablespoons (3 packets) unflavored powdered gelatin
  • 2 c. sugar
  • ½ c. evaporated milk
  • 1 vanilla bean or 1 tbsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 1½ c. powdered sugar
  • ½ c. cornstarch
Cooking tools:
  • clutter free workspace
  • stand mixer
  • non-stick 8x8 or 9x13 pan*
  • parchment paper
  • candy thermometer*
  • rubber spatula
  • sifter
  • sharp knife, pizza wheel or kitchen scissors
*I recommend using a non-stick pan, but glass or metal will do. For thick marshmallows, use an 8x8 pan. For thinner marshmallows, use a 9x13 pan.
*In order for your marshmallows to set properly, the milk and sugar must be heated to approximately 250 F. Regular thermometers only go up to 220 F.
Instructions
  1. Generously coat the bottom and sides of your pan with cooking spray.
  2. Cut the parchment paper to fit the inside of your pan. You should have about 2 inches of overhang on each side. These will be your 'handles' for easy removal.
  3. Pour ½ cup water into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Add the gelatin and allow to soften, about 10 minutes.
  4. In a large saucepan, combine the sugar, evaporated milk, and ¼ cup water. Whisk over low heat until the sugar has dissolved.
  5. Bring the mixture to a gentle boil. Immediately reduce to a simmer, without stirring, until a candy thermometer registers 247- 250 F, about 10-15 minutes.
  6. Add the hot syrup to the gelatin mixture and beat on low speed until incorporated.*See important note below.
  7. If using a vanilla bean, slice it in half lengthwise with a pairing knife. Scrape out the seeds using the blade of the knife. Add the seeds (or vanilla extract) to the bowl.
  8. Increase the speed to high and beat until thick, fluffy, and tripled in volume, about 10-15 minutes. Your marshmallows will be a glossy, creamy white color.
  9. Using a rubber spatula, quickly scrape out the mixture into the prepared pan. Lightly coat your spatula with cooking spray and smooth out the surface. Marshmallows set very quickly, so you will need to work fast. Do not worry about getting every last bit of marshmallow out of the bowl or making the top perfectly smooth!
  10. Allow the mixture to set, uncovered (not refrigerated) for at least 8 hours- overnight.
  11. After the marshmallows have set, combine the powdered sugar and cornstarch in a large bowl. Whisk thoroughly.
  12. Spoon some of the mixture into a sifter, and sift over the top of the marshmallows and a cutting board.
  13. Using the parchment handles, remove the marshmallows from the pan and place onto your board.
  14. Dust a large chef's knife, pizza wheel, or kitchen scissors with the powdered sugar/cornstarch mixture so that they do not stick to the marshmallows.
  15. Cut the marshmallows into 1-inch squares.
  16. Toss the marshmallows into the mixture to prevent sticking.
  17. Store in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.
Notes
* Because evaporated milk is a tan color, your mixture will initially be brown. Do not fret- after 10-15 minutes of mixing on high speed, your marshmallows will become a soft, creamy white color.

light brioche hamburger buns

light brioche hamburger buns | theclevercarrot.com

Now that it’s officially BBQ season, I thought it would be fun to make homemade hamburger buns.

We like our burgers on brioche-style rolls and this recipe looked like a good starting place.

Before I begin, I will tell you that this brioche is lighter than the traditional kind that I’m used to (hence the title). It’s still fluffy and moist, but not quite as eggy and rich. Even the color is a bit lighter. We thought that it was the perfect vessel for a juicy burger and would be great for sandwiches too!

In my opinion, nothing beats an all natural hamburger bun- can you believe how much junk there is in the store-bought variety?

light brioche hamburger buns |  theclevercarrot.com

1.) Make the dough & let it rise: Mix your dough together using a stand mixer. It will be very sticky and have a shaggy appearance. Place a damp kitchen towel directly over the bowl and allow it to rest until it has doubled in size. Depending on how warm your kitchen is, this will take about 1-3 hours (mine took 1 1/2 hrs @ 70 degrees F.)

*Giving your dough enough time to rise is crucial in bread baking. In the past, I have rushed this step which caused my bread to be very dense. Rise times will vary, so be patient. Remember to watch your dough and not the clock!

light brioche hamburger buns |  theclevercarrot.com

2.) Punch down the dough & portion it out: Once your dough has risen, dump it out onto a lightly floured work surface. Gently flatten or ‘punch’ down the dough to get rid of any air bubbles. Using a bench scraper (or a chef’s knife) cut the dough into 8 equal portions. If you have a scale, weigh each portion so that they’re all the same size. Do this by weighing the entire ball of dough first and then divide by the number of rolls you want to make.

light brioche hamburger buns |  theclevercarrot.com

3.) Shape into balls: Gently flatten each piece of dough like a pancake. Pull up each side pinching it together in the center. Repeat until the ball is sealed. Flip the ball over (seam side down) and move to an un-floured part of your board (it’s easier to roll this way). Place your palm over the top and gently roll into a smooth ball. Transfer each ball onto a parchment lined baking sheet.

light brioche hamburger buns |  theclevercarrot.com

light brioche hamburger buns |  theclevercarrot.com

4.) Let the dough rise again: The dough will need to rise again, this time for a shorter period than the initial rise. The balls should look puffy and slightly risen, about 1- 1/2 hrs. When they’re ready, gently brush each one with egg wash. See how puffy they are?

*At this point, you could add sesame seeds to the top of your rolls if desired.

light brioche hamburger buns |  theclevercarrot.com

5.) Bake: Preheat your oven to 400 F. and place a shallow baking pan on the oven floor. Before the dough goes in, add about 1/2 cup of water to the pan (to create steam). This will help keep the bread nice and moist. Bake for about 15-20 minutes or until golden brown. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

light brioche hamburger buns |  theclevercarrot.com

light brioche hamburger buns |  theclevercarrot.com

light brioche hamburger buns
 
Author:
Serves: 8 buns
Ingredients
  • 1 c. warm water
  • 3 tablespoons warm milk
  • 2 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 2½ tablespoons sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3 cups bread flour
  • ⅓ cup all-purpose flour
  • 1½ teaspoons salt
  • 2½ tablespoons unsalted butter, softened.
  • sesame seeds (optional)
Instructions
  1. Whisk together the warm water, milk, yeast and sugar. Then, beat 1 egg.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, add the flours, salt and butter. Using the paddle attachment, mix the ingredients until the butter is the size of crumbs.
  3. Stir in yeast mixture and beaten egg. Run the mixer on medium-low (I used #3 on my Kitchen Aid) until a dough forms, about 5-8 minutes.
  4. Scrape down the sides of the bowl if necessary, and shape the dough into a ball. Cover bowl with a damp kitchen towel and let the dough rise until it has doubled is size, 1- 3 hours* See Note.
  5. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Using a floured dough scraper (or chef's knife), divide the dough into 8 equal pieces. If you have a scale, weigh each piece to guarantee that they're all the same size.
  6. To shape the dough into balls, gently flatten each piece like a pancake. Gather the ends and pinch the dough to seal in the center. Flip the dough over, cup the surface with your palm, and roll into a ball. Transfer to your baking sheet, placing them a few inches inches apart. Cover and rest for 1-2 hours, or until puffy and slightly risen.
  7. To make the egg wash, beat the remaining egg with a splash of water. When the buns are finished with the 2nd rise, gently brush each one with egg wash. At this point, you could add sesame seeds to the top of your rolls if desired.
  8. Preheat your oven to 400 F. and place a skillet or baking dish on the oven floor. Before the dough goes in, add about ½ cup of water to the pan (to create steam). This will help keep the bread nice and moist. Bake for about 15-20 minutes or until golden brown. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
Notes
*Giving your dough enough time to rise is crucial in bread baking. Rise times will vary, so be patient. Remember to watch your dough and not the clock!