Why Marshmallows Benefit From Any Alcohol, According To An Expert

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Why would you want to make your own marshmallows when store-bought marshmallows are cheap and easy to find? Well, one of the main reasons might be that if you DIY these squishy confections, you can flavor them any way you like. Baker Jessie Sheehan, who hosts a baking podcast called "She's My Cherry Pie," wrote a cookbook called "Snackable Bakes: 100 Easy-Peasy Recipes for Exceptionally Scrumptious Sweets and Treats," and has a website called JessieSheehanBakes, likes to flavor her homemade marshmallows with alcohol.

As Sheehan tells Mashed, "I like to add bourbon or rum because those are the boozy flavors I love," although she adds that she finds the concept of using sherry to be "intriguing." In her opinion, just about any alcohol would work, which may be good news if the idea of red wine, tequila, or Everclear marshmallows appeal. Sheehan cautions, though, "Don't go overboard with the booze." Too much alcohol might cause the gelatin not to gel to a sufficient degree that will allow your marshmallows to set.

You can also flavor marshmallows with non-alcoholic liquids

Who knows, maybe boozy marshmallows could be the next party fad like Jell-O shots. If you prefer non-alcoholic beverages, though, you can always opt for one of these as a flavoring agent, instead. A small amount of spirit isn't really doing anything for marshmallows apart from changing their taste and, as per Jessie Sheehan's warning above, too much alcohol can actually ruin the texture.

If you want your homemade marshmallows to taste of coffee, tea, or hot chocolate, you can simply substitute these liquids (cooled, of course) for the water in the recipe, but you're going to want to make them extra-strong — for example, if you're making tea, use four bags per cup instead of just one. You can also use fruit juice to flavor marshmallows, but you'll first need to boil the liquid until it's reduced by 50% or more to concentrate the taste. Even though Sheehan calls marshmallows "a deliciously neutral blank canvas," it takes an assertive flavor to cut through all of the sugar and this means that liquids other than alcohol might need a little help to strengthen their impact.