I was surprised to find Root Beer Concentrate at my local grocery store in the baking aisle (with the spices and extracts – insta-buy!) and marshmallows seemed just the thing to make with it. Swedish pearl sugar makes the best topping for the mallows because it gives them extra sweetness and a little sugar crunch. My taste-testers remarked that the mallows tasted “fizzy” although no carbonation was added. I think that sensation can be attributed to the airy texture of the marshmallow.
If you can’t find Root Beer concentrate at your local grocery store, then you can purchase it here. Just a little bit goes a long way! I can’t wait to use it in all kinds of treats, but I’m also planning to try my hand at making – what else? – root beer! According to the directions on the back, all you need is 1/2 tablespoon concentrate, sugar to taste, and 1 quart of sparkling water. I’m already planning to add aromatic muscavado sugar to a batch, and maybe some cherry syrup (I like Monin brand) for a cherry root beer cola.
I made some teeny-tiny root beer floats in tall shot glasses. I added just 1/2 tablespoon vanilla ice cream to each shot – they were so fun!
I wish I’d gotten more pictures of these lovely mallows, but they were gone too soon! They are so fun and delicious. One of my friends called these a “Willy Wonka” creation, and to me, there’s no better compliment.
Root Beer Float Marshmallows
- 4 1/2 teaspoons unflavored powdered gelatin
- 1/2 cup cold water
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup light corn syrup divided
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 to 1 tablespoon root beer concentrate such as Zatarain’s
- 1/2 tablespoon brown gel food color
- Swedish pearl sugar
- 1 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
- 1 cup cornstarch
- Lightly coat an 8×8-inch baking pan with cooking spray.
- Make the gelatin base: Whisk together the gelatin and cold water in a small bowl and allow it to stand for 5 minutes.
- Make the sugar syrup: Stir together the sugar, 1/4 cup corn syrup, water and salt in a medium saucepan over high heat. Boil, stirring occasionally, until the temperature reaches 240°F. Meanwhile, pour remaining 1/4 cup corn syrup into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Microwave gelatin on high until completely melted, about 30 seconds. Pour it into the mixer bowl Set the mixer speed to low and keep it running. When the syrup reaches 240°F, slowly pour it into the mixer bowl. Increase the speed to medium and beat for 5 minutes. Increase to medium-high and beat for 5 more minutes.
- Add the color and flavoring: Beat on the highest setting for 1 to 2 minutes more and beat in the root beer concentrate and brown gel food color. Pour the mixture into the prepared pan, using an offset spatula to smooth it into the corners. Cover the top of the mallow with Swedish pearl sugar. Let it set for 6 hours in a cool, dry place.
- Make the powder coating: Combine the confectioners’ sugar and cornstarch in a large bowl.
- Cut the mallows: Use a knife to loosen the marshmallow from the edges of the pan. Invert the slab onto a work surface, and then turn upright onto a powder-coating dusted work surface, so the pearl sugar is upright.Cut into 2 dozen pieces using a sharp knife. Dip the sticky edges of the marshmallows in more coating, brushing away the excess with fingers or a pastry brush.
- Store the marshmallows in an air-tight container.