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This homemade meringue tastes like marshmallow creme! It comes together quickly and easily with 4 basic ingredients. Made without all the preservatives and high fructose corn syrup of the store-bought version, this extra creamy and sweet topping/frosting will quickly become your new favorite.

homemade marshmallow creme

Have you ever had a fluffernutter sandwich? Eaten marshmallows straight out of the bag? Roast campfire s’mores just to eat the gooey toasted marshmallow? Enjoyed marshmallow fluff right out of the jar? If any of these describe you, continue on.

PS: A fluffernutter sandwich is peanut butter and marshmallow creme on bread. Don’t knock it ’til you try it, trust me.


This is Meringue, But Tastes Like Homemade Fluff

Today we’re making homemade fluff aka marshmallow creme. I’ve actually taught you how to make it several times before:

It’s basically Swiss Meringue Buttercream, just without the butter. But don’t let the word “meringue” frighten you. This is an astonishingly simple mixture that you can use as a frosting, filling, or topping on MANY different confections. You only need 4 ingredients, a stovetop, and a mixer. It’s similar to traditional “7 minute frosting”, but doesn’t contain corn syrup or water.

marshmallow creme frosting on chocolate cupcakes

What Does Marshmallow Creme Taste Like?

Marshmallow creme is everything we love about marshmallows, but in semi-liquified form. It’s extra creamy, soft, and sweet and pairs wonderfully with a variety of flavors like chocolate, peanut butter, banana, pumpkin, spice, lemon, etc. When toasted, it tastes like a marshmallow roasted over a campfire!

Unlike store-bought marshmallow fluff, this makes an excellent frosting because it can be piped. (Store-bought isn’t stable enough.) It doesn’t hold any intricate shapes, but pipes beautifully with a large round tip like Ateco 808, pictured above on chocolate cupcakes and below on S’mores Brownie Cupcakes.

smores brownie cupcakes with toasted marshmallow creme frosting
smores brownie cupcakes with toasted marshmallow creme frosting

Just 4 Ingredients

Here’s what you need to make homemade marshmallow creme. Though the written recipe is below, I want to walk through these ingredients so you understand the importance of each.

  1. Egg Whites: Egg whites and sugar form the structure. For best success, I recommend using fresh eggs instead of carton egg whites. (Using an egg separator is really handy!) Here are all my recipes using leftover egg yolks. Success tip: Eggs separate much easier when they’re cold.
  2. Granulated Sugar: Use regular granulated sugar, not confectioners’ sugar.
  3. Cream of Tartar: If you’ve made our French macarons, you’ll remember that cream of tartar stabilizes the egg whites and helps the mixture hold its stiff peaks. It does the same job here– certainly an imperative ingredient. Sometimes lemon juice can be used as a substitute, but I don’t recommend it here. For best results, you need cream of tartar.
  4. Vanilla Extract: Pure vanilla extract adds wonderful flavor.

How to Make Homemade Marshmallow Creme & Video Tutorial

While it certainly looks fancy, homemade marshmallow creme couldn’t be easier to make. This is a simple 4 ingredient mixture cooked on the stovetop, then beaten into stiff peaks.

Begin by whisking the egg whites, sugar, and cream of tartar together in a double boiler or heat-proof bowl over a small pot of simmering water. Continue whisking until the sugar has dissolved and the mixture has thinned out. Remove from heat, add vanilla extract, then use your mixer and whip on high speed until stiff glossy peaks form. Whipping is where the magic happens. It’s fun to watch the mixture transform from a thin liquid to voluminous fluff– literally a big puffy cloud.

marshmallow meringue mixture

Marshmallow creme topping

You can toast homemade fluff using a kitchen torch (affiliate link– this is the torch I own and love) like I do in my no-bake s’mores cake, bourbon sweet potato pie, baked brownie Alaska, s’mores brownie cupcakes, and s’mores chocolate mousse.

toasted marshmallow cream

Uses for Homemade Marshmallow Fluff

It’s excellent as a filling for cupcakes, but I find it squishes easily between layers of cake. I don’t recommend using it as a filling for cake, but you could certainly use it to frost the outside of a cake.

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marshmallow creme frosting on chocolate cupcakes

Homemade Marshmallow Creme (Frosting)

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 5 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 4 cups 1x
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Made without all the preservatives and high fructose corn syrup of the store-bought version, this extra creamy and sweet homemade marshmallow creme will quickly become your new favorite. So many uses!


Ingredients

Scale
  • 4 large egg whites
  • 1 cup (200ggranulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. Place egg whites, sugar, and cream of tartar in a heatproof bowl. Set bowl over a saucepan filled with two inches of simmering water. Do not let it touch the water. (You can use a double boiler if you have one.)
  2. Whisk constantly until sugar is dissolved and mixture has thinned out, about 4 minutes. The mixture will be thick and tacky at first, then thin out and appear frothy on top. To test that it’s ready, you can use your finger or an instant read thermometer. Lightly and quickly dip your finger (it’s very hot, be careful) and rub the mixture between your thumb and finger. You shouldn’t feel any sugar granules. If using a thermometer, the temperature should read 160°F (71°C).
  3. Remove from heat. (No need to let it cool down before continuing.) Add the vanilla extract, then using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat on high speed until stiff glossy peaks form, about 5 minutes.
  4. Meringue can be spread, piped, or swirled onto cakes, cupcakes, and other confections. Serve immediately OR torch it with a kitchen torch for a delicious toasted marshmallow topping. (Do not place in the oven under the broiler– it will melt.)
  5. Cover and store leftovers for up to 2 days in the refrigerator. Baked goods topped with this marshmallow meringue can be left at room temperature for up to 6-8 hours. After that, it’s best to refrigerate or else the topping will begin to wilt. For best taste, texture, and appearance, I do not recommend freezing this.

Notes

  1. Smaller or larger batch: Recipe may easily be halved, 1.5x, or doubled. Less volume will cook quicker on the stove and beat into stiff peaks quicker. More volume will take a little longer in both steps.
  2. Eggs: For best success, I recommend using fresh eggs instead of carton egg whites. Here are all my recipes using leftover egg yolks. Success tip: Eggs separate much easier when they’re cold.

Keywords: homemade marshmallow cream, homemade fluff

Reader Questions and Reviews

  1. Dear Sally, this recipe was so amazing. I’d never tried making anything like it. I made it this morning to top off the super moist chocolate cupcakes recipe of yours for my daughter’s birthday party. Then we sprinkled graham cracker crumbs on them for a S’mores like cupcake. No kitchen torch here, but still awesome. They were a hit! Thank you so much for this recipe.

  2. I tried this from your S’Mores Mousse recipe using Sucanat and my Vitamix, but ended up cooking the eggs trying to wait the 5 minutes since I don’t have a whisk attachment.

    If I don’t have a whisk attachment, will this still work with a regular hand mixer? If I use a Vitamix instead, do you know what speed and how will I know when to stop?

    1. Hi! You can’t whip things like meringue in a vitamix because the whipping adds air while a vitamix is mostly high speed stirring. My Grandmother used a hand mixer and if that’s good enough for her…

  3. Hey Sally, just made this earlier today! So yumm!! I came across your website a few months ago and I am addicted!

    I am still a newbie to baking and I find your website great! So much good information! Thank you!

      1. Hi Jess, it’s quite loose but could still work as a filling for cookie sandwiches. (Just will be a tad messy.)

  4. Has anyone tried using this homemade marshmallow creme to make rice crispy treats? If so, how did they turn out and/or what adjustments might I need to make to use this in a recipe that calls for marshmallow creme for rice crispy treats?

    1. Hi Angela, Unfortunately you cannot use this in place of marshmallows. It doesn’t set up the same way that marshmallows do.

  5. Hi Sally! I’m having cooking club with my granddaughters today and we are making Meringue cookies. I see that the ingredients are identical to this frosting. Can I make your Marshmallow Creme and then pipe the leftovers and bake at 220 to make them into the meringue cookies?
    I enjoy your work!
    GrandmaSue

    1. Hi Sue, thank you so much! While I haven’t specifically tested and baked this meringue “frosting” as meringue cookies, the ingredients are indeed identical but with varying amounts. It should absolutely work. You can follow my baking instructions for these chocolate swirled meringue cookies.

  6. I am a kid and I’m into baking, so I want to make this! Thanks, Mrs. Sally!

  7. Hi, can you use this for the marshmallow creme that’s added to homemade fudge?

    1. Hi Diane, yes! You can use this wherever you would use marshmallow fluff.

  8. Can you make the cream one day ahead of time and store it in an air tight container in the fridge over night? Then, ice the cake the following day?

    1. Yes, you can cover and store it for up to 2 days in the refrigerator.

  9. Hi Sally! I tried making this and my meringue won’t form stiff peaks. It’s basically a liquid marshmallow. Do you know what may be causing this? Thanks!

    1. Hi Amanda! Keep on whipping it. If you cooked the egg whites/sugar/cream of tartar long enough, the mixture will reach stiff peaks eventually. Is it particularly humid where you live?

    2. Also, make sure there is not any fat or oil residue in your bowl and no part of the yolk.

  10. Hi Sally,
    I haven’t tried this recipe yet but I would like to ask a question. Isn’t this just meringue? How is it marshmallow cream? Does it last similarly like the fluff one buys in the jar?

    1. Yes, this is meringue (I call it meringue frosting– great on cakes and cupcakes!) and it tastes like marshmallow creme you can buy from the store– but fresh, of course. Homemade marshmallows are made from mostly the same ingredients (plus some gelatin).

      1. You might want to label it more clearly as meringue just because there are people that won’t read this far and know that it isn’t actually marshmallow. Not everyone can read a recipe and know what it turn out like. Some are new bakers and are looking for certain terminology. I was looking for a comment like the one above because I was going to ask the same thing, but didn’t want to if others had asked.

  11. Hi! I love your recipes. I’m wanting to make peep macarons for Easter and was wondering if you think this frosting would work well in that? I’m not sure if it would be too soft.

    1. Hi Rebekah, this should work well as filling for macarons. It will be softer than traditional frosting and may squeeze out the side a bit, but should be delicious nonetheless!

  12. Hi! I am so excited to try this dairy free frosting alternative on my cupcakes! I was wondering if I could add some gel coloring to dye the frosting without it loosing its stiffness?
    Thanks!

      1. Hi sally,
        You are always my go to for recipes. Can you use this marshmallow frosting for frosting your chocolate sugar cookies?

      2. Hi Linda, absolutely! Just store the cookies in one layer so that the frosting doesn’t spread to the other cookies. Hope you enjoy it!

  13. I read that you do not recommend freezing this, but could it be added to the top of an ice cream cake before serving?

  14. So what had happened was…. I did try broiling it and it did not melt… it burst into flames after only 60 seconds. I then had to remake this recipe and only had brown sugar available and it came out awesome! I also magically peeled that layer off my s’mores bars and saved the whole dessert! So brown sugar works, and broiling for maybe 20 seconds with close eyes on it can work or you can just listen to Sally and don’t do that at all!

    1. Hi Katrina! It depends on how high you pipe the meringue, but you should be able to cover about 2 dozen cupcakes. You can halve it for fewer cupcakes if desired.

  15. Delicious and easy to make! Your recipes are so easy to follow and always turn out great. Thanks so much for creating and sharing this recipe!

  16. Hi, If I use this to fill cupcakes, how much in advance should I fill them before serving? And how should the filled cupcakes stored? Thanks!

    1. Hi HV, you could fill the cupcakes up to two days before serving and store in the refrigerator. However, if you can fill them closer to the time of serving, the closer the better!

  17. I made a half batch to go with Sally’s s’mores bars. I accidentally added the vanilla extract before cooking and it cooked up fine, no grittiness, but it still took like 45 minutes to whip up into a usable consistency. No yolk made it in and I’d just washed the bowl and everything with Dawn; I wonder if it’s because I added the vanilla too early, or if the half batch was too small to make good contact with my stand mixer’s whisk attachment. It was thick and spreadable, but still didn’t really form stiff peaks, and it also tasted a bit tangy in a way that I didn’t like. Fortunately, that seems to have gone away after the fluff was baked in the bars. It didn’t disappear into the bars and it tastes great in them, which is really all I was hoping for.

  18. Hi Sally!
    I would like to make this to use as frosting for an angel food cake. My friend’s birthday is coming up and she says it’s her favorite cake. Is one batch enough to frost a cake?

    1. Hi Marnie, this recipe yields 4 cups of frosting, so that should be enough, but you can easily 1.5x or double the recipe if desired. See recipe Notes for more details!

  19. Well I just made it and wow!! It’s beautiful! I will be frosting an angel cake tomorrow night. Your angel cake recipe by the way. It was definitely enough. Thanks Sally for another great recipe!

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