If you enjoy the crunchy marshmallows from cereal, then dehydrated marshmallows are the perfect treat to make. With a few hours and simple ingredients, you can have crispy marshmallows as a topping for years!
To make dehydrated marshmallows, cut the marshmallows into equally sized pieces and roll them in a shallow dish with powdered sugar. Next, dehydrate them in an oven, food dehydrator, or air fryer until completely dry. Alternatively, freeze-dry them in a freeze dryer for a crispier texture. Finally, store the dehydrated marshmallows in an airtight container with oxygen absorber packets.
Preparing to Dehydrate Marshmallows
Supplies You Need
You can dehydrate any marshmallow for the recipe you want to use. White, fluffy marshmallows are a classic choice, and rainbow marshmallows add a pop of color.
If you want to dehydrate cut marshmallows, powdered sugar prevents them from sticking from each other and the tray. A few tablespoons of sugar will be enough to coat a few dozen marshmallows.
There are many ways to dry marshmallows, and the most convenient way is to use a food dehydrator. However, you can also use an oven or air fryer if you have them in the kitchen.
How to Make Dried Marshmallows
Tips for Making Dehydrated Marshmallows
Tip #1: Ensure your marshmallows have a similar size to dry evenly. Large marshmallows take longer to dehydrate, so cut them into smaller pieces for faster drying.
Tip #2: Keep some space between marshmallows on a tray for better airflow and faster drying. Placing them on their flat end will also prevent them from rolling around.
Tip #3: Cut the marshmallows in half and check if they are dry and crispy. If not, you need to dehydrate them for longer.
1. Coat the Marshmallows
If your marshmallows vary in size, cut them until they are about the same size. You can even sprinkle your scissors or knife with powdered sugar to prevent sticking.
Next, roll the marshmallows into a shallow dish with powdered sugar until completely covered. Alternatively, shake the marshmallows in a Ziploc bag filled with powdered sugar until well coated.
2. Dehydrate the Marshmallows
Using an Oven
- Evenly spread the marshmallows in a baking tray lined with parchment paper, ensuring no marshmallow overlaps another.
- Load the baking tray in an oven at the lowest setting with a slightly open door. Most ovens have a minimum heat setting of 170 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Check the marshmallows’ dryness every 20 minutes. It may take up to 2 hours for the marshmallows to dry completely.
Using a Food Dehydrator
- Place the marshmallows on the drying racks and leave enough space for the marshmallows to expand.
- Dehydrate the marshmallows at 125 degrees Fahrenheit for 2-12 hours or until it is completely dry. Small marshmallows will dry faster than larger ones.
- Check the marshmallows’ dryness after 4 hours and every few hours until completely dry. Then, remove them from the dehydrator and let them cool to room temperature.
Using an Air Fryer
- Spread the marshmallows in a single layer on the air fryer basket.
- Heat the air fryer to 160 degrees Fahrenheit and dry the marshmallows for 45-60 minutes. You may need to increase the processing time if drying many marshmallows.
- Check the marshmallows’ dryness and let them process in 15-minute increments until completely dry.
3. Store the Dehydrated Marshmallows
When storing dehydrated marshmallows, limit contact with moisture and air as much as possible. Place them in airtight containers with oxygen absorber packets for the longest shelf life. Alternatively, use sturdy Ziploc bags with all the air removed with a vacuum sealer. Finally, leave the stored marshmallows in a cool and dark area.
How to Make Freeze Dried Marshmallows
You can freeze-dry your marshmallows if you want them to last for years. Freeze-drying extends shelf life by reducing pressure and adding heat to frozen food, removing all the water.
To make freeze-dried marshmallows, follow these simple steps:
- Fill your trays with marshmallows, leaving enough space for them to expand.
- Load the trays into a freeze dryer.
- Press the start button and follow the instructions to activate the freeze dryer. You should freeze the marshmallows for 9 hours and dry them for 7 hours.
- Check the marshmallows’ dryness. If required, you can process them for even longer.
How to Make Dehydrated Marshmallow Powder
If you want more versatility using marshmallows, make dehydrated marshmallow powder. It only takes a few minutes and lets you use it in new recipes.
Tips for Making Marshmallow Powder
Tip #1: Make marshmallow powder in small quantities to prevent clumping when storing it.
Tip #2: Ensure the marshmallows are entirely dry before grinding them. Moisture will ruin the powder texture, so let the marshmallows dehydrate longer if needed.
Tip #3: If the grinder pot heats up, pause the machine and let the marshmallow powder cool. Otherwise, moisture may incorporate into the powder and ruin the texture.
1. Grind the Dried Marshmallows
First, add the dehydrated marshmallows to a mixer grinder. Next, activate the grinder for a few seconds, pause, and shake the grinder pot until all marshmallows turn to powder. Alternatively, use the pulse feature on the mixer grinder if available. Finally, let the marshmallow powder cool for 15 minutes.
2. Store the Marshmallow Powder
Marshmallows are mostly sugar, so they are likely to melt and clump together when temperatures are warm. So, it is best to store marshmallow powder in small batches.
To store marshmallow powder, pour the marshmallow powder into an airtight container to minimize contact with humid air. Place the container in a dark and cool corner of the pantry until ready for use.
How to Use Dried Marshmallows
Dehydrated marshmallows make a delicious topping on hot chocolate during winter. With their long shelf life, you can even include them in hot chocolate kits for everyone to enjoy!
Alternatively, sprinkle marshmallow powder into hot chocolate. The powder will melt almost instantly, giving your hot chocolate more marshmallow flavor.
When baking your next batch of cookies, substitute regular marshmallows with dehydrated marshmallows. They have a crispier texture and taste like Lucky Charms marshmallows!
If you want more decoration, dust the cookies in marshmallow powder. Flavored marshmallow powder, such as peppermint, adds a holiday flair to any baked goods.
Trail mix with nuts, seeds, and dried fruits can taste boring. So, add dehydrated marshmallows to the trail mix to satisfy your sweet tooth.
Consider making marshmallow powder if you are looking for new ways to use your dehydrated marshmallows. It takes just a few short minutes to make and introduces a whole new spectrum of using the marshmallows.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do Dehydrated Marshmallows Taste Like Lucky Charms?
Lucky Charms cereal uses dried marshmallows, so homemade dehydrated marshmallows taste similarly! Drying removes all water content, giving cereal marshmallows their crispy and crumbly texture. For an even crispier texture, use freeze-dried marshmallows.
Can You Dehydrate Mini Marshmallows?
You can dehydrate mini marshmallows in an oven, food dehydrator, or air fryer. It takes 2-4 hours for mini marshmallows to dry in a dehydrator compared to 3-5 hours for large marshmallows.
Spread the mini marshmallows on drying racks and leave enough space for them to expand. Next, place them in a food dehydrator at 125 degrees Fahrenheit for 2-4 hours or until completely dry. Finally, let the mini marshmallows cool to room temperature.
Can You Freeze Dry Marshmallows?
You can freeze-dry marshmallows to give them a crispy texture and a shelf life of many years. To make freeze-dried marshmallows, evenly spread marshmallows on trays. Next, load them into a freeze dryer. Finally, freeze them for 9 hours and dry them for 7 hours.
Do You Need to Defrost Freeze Dried Marshmallows?
You do not need to defrost freeze-dried marshmallows. Freeze-drying removes all water content, so there are no ice crystals to thaw. You can use them as-is after storing freeze-dried marshmallows in an airtight container with oxygen absorber packets.
How Long Do Marshmallows Last in the Freezer?
Unopened marshmallows last over six months past their best-by date in the freezer, while opened marshmallows in an airtight container last three months. However, after four months in the freezer, marshmallows are more likely to absorb moisture and turn sticky.
Dehydrating or freeze-drying marshmallows is convenient for extending its shelf life and adding a crispy texture to hot chocolate, cookies, and trail mix. You can even grind them into powder for a more creative recipe. Nevertheless, you will have dehydrated marshmallows for years to come with proper storage!
If you enjoyed making dehydrated marshmallows, try sugaring berries for an even sweeter topping!