How to make homemade marshmallow fondant, a delicious marshmallow fondant recipe as an alternative to traditional fondant. Scroll to the end for a printable recipe and video how-tos.
how to make marshmallow fondant
Marshmallow fondant is a fantastic alternative to traditional fondant. While I’ve always proclaimed the virtues of store-bought fondant (it’s ready made and easy to use), I’m not fond of the taste. So finally…. I tried my hand at this homemade marshmallow fondant recipe. I’ll likely never give up store-bought, but I’ll admit, marshmallow fondant is easy to make, easy to use, and did taste better. I still find fondant too sweet for my taste, but I can’t begrudge the stuff. It is made of sugar and marshmallows after all. (This recipe was originally posted March 2010 and updated May 2019.)
fondant vs. buttercream frosting
In my years of blogging about cookie decorating and other fun food craft, and interacting with other bakers and cookie decorators and cake decorators, it’s clear that in taste tests, buttercream frosting usually wins over fondant. I’m not sure it’s even the taste, necessarily, but the texture that I prefer. (For a great buttercream frosting recipe, click here.) However, for the decorating potential, fondant just can’t be beat. The smooth, perfect surface, the moldability, the versatility, it really is essential. For the best of both worlds, I often decorate cakes and cupcakes with buttercream frosting and add fondant toppers in small amounts, for example, as I did with these rainbow cupcake toppers.
Another fondant alternative is frosting clay, which is essentially buttercream frosting with extra confectioner’s sugar until it’s the consistency of fondant. However, while frosting clay is great for little decorations, it has too much grease to work for rolling out and covering treats.
how to make easy marshmallow fondant:
you will need:
2 cups mini marshmallows (4 ounces)
2 to 3 tablespoons water
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 pound confectioner’s sugar (about 3 1/2 cups)
pinch of salt (optional)
Crisco or vegetable shortening
what to do:
Grease a microwave safe bowl with Crisco. Pour the marshmallows in the bowl. Pour 2 tablespoons of water and the vanilla extract over the marshmallows. Heat in microwave for 30 seconds. Stir well, using the residual heat to fully melt the marshmallows. If needed, microwave for an additional 15 seconds. Stir until the mixture is fully melted, smooth, and runny.
Grease the bowl of a standing mixer and grease the flat beater with Crisco. (If you don’t have a standing mixer, a large bowl and electric hand mixer will work too.) Add the confectioner’s sugar to the bowl. With the mixer on low, pour the marshmallow mixture into the confectioner’s sugar and blend very well. If the mixture is very dry, add an additional tablespoon of water. If desired, add a pinch of salt (this helps cut the sweetness). Continue mixing until a dough forms.
If you added too much water, add additional confectioner’s sugar, 1/4 cup at a time, until desired consistency is reached.
Knead briefly on a surface dusted with confectioner’s sugar. Wrap in plastic wrap and let set for an hour or overnight.
Store marshmallow fondant wrapped in plastic wrap and in a sealed container for four months.
how to color fondant
Simply take about an egg size wad of fondant, add a few drops of coloring (start with one or two and add more as desired), and knead very well. A warning if you have an event to attend where non-stained hands are important: Your hands will get stained. You can use the concentrated pastes from the craft store, though I prefer Americolor soft gel pastes food coloring. The colors I used here are: Electric Green, Sky Blue, Orange, and Electric Pink.
TIP: The fondant should be pliable and easy to handle. If it gets too sticky, let it rest at room temperature for 15 minutes or so, and dust your hands with confectioner’s sugar.
how long will fondant last?
Store marshmallow fondant wrapped in plastic wrap and in a sealed container. Keep in a dark place (such as a pantry) for up to four months.
will marshmallow fondant dry hard?
Marshmallow fondant, similar to store-bought fondant, will stiffen if left at room temperature enough to add decorations or to even write on with food coloring pens. However, it will not dry solidly, as does gum paste. For large sculpted decorations, it’s best to use gum paste. Marshmallow fondant is great for covering cakes, cookies, and cupcakes, and for molding small 3D decorations.
Help! My fondant is too sticky!
Humidity can be the culprit, so make sure your work space is cool and run a dehumidifier, if needed. You may also let the fondant sit at room temperature for 15 to 30 minutes to stiffen, and dust your hands and work space with confectioner’s sugar or corn starch.
Help! My fondant is too hard!
If you left your fondant out too long and it is too hard and no longer pliable, place the fondant in a bowl and microwave for 5 to 10 seconds only. Add additional 5 second intervals if needed.
- 2 cups mini marshmallows (4 ounces)
- 2 to 3 tablespoons water
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 pound confectioner's sugar (about 3 1/2 cups)
- pinch of salt (optional)
- Crisco or vegetable shortening
- Grease a microwave safe bowl with Crisco.
- Pour the marshmallows in the bowl. Pour 2 tablespoons of water and the vanilla extract over the marshmallows. Microwave for 30 seconds. Stir the mixture until it's very smooth and runny, using the residual heat to fully melt the marshmallows. If needed, microwave for another 15 seconds.
- Grease the bowl and flat beater of a standing mixer. (If you don't have a standing mixer, a large bowl and electric hand mixer will work.) Add the confectioner's sugar to the bowl. Turn the mixer on low and pour marshmallow mixture into the sugar
- Blend until a dough forms. If the mixture is very dry, add another tablespoon of water.
- If the mixture is too wet, add confectioner's sugar, 1/4 cup at a time, until desired consistency.
- Knead briefly on a surface dusted with confectioner's sugar. Wrap in plastic and let sit about half an hour to overnight.
- Color, mold, roll out!
what can I make with marshmallow fondant?
Here are a few ideas:
- gerbera daisy cookie pops
- bug cupcake and cake toppers
- weather-themed cupcakes
- watercolor flower cookies
- vegetable garden cookies
- camera cookies