homemade ghost marshmallows for halloween

Fluffy, Homemade Ghost Marshmallows with Just Five Ingredients

So Easy It's Scary!

Long before I attended culinary school, I attempted to make homemade marshmallows. Unsurprisingly, my first go was a sticky mess — my marshmallows fell flat. Flash forward a few years later to actually being in culinary school at ICE: when it came time to make marshmallows in class, I had flashbacks of my previous marshmallow miss and was nervous that the lesson would result in a frustrating mess.

In class at ICE, the process ended up being frustration-free. Sticky? Yes. And even a little messy. However, the end product turned out better than I could have imagined. The marshmallows were fluffy, delicious and light. I learned the proper way to make marshmallows, as well as how to use the ingredients involved.

The recipe we used in class was excellent, and I rely on it every time I want to make marshmallows. You might be surprised to learn that the recipe contains only five ingredients, but when everything is combined and the whipping begins, sweet magic happens.

homemade ghost marshmallows for halloween
photos: Lauren Jessen

The best part about homemade marshmallows? You can make them any flavor and shape! You can make classic marshmallows or add extract flavors such as vanilla, coffee or peppermint. Then, once the marshmallows have solidified, you can use cookie cutters to form them into any shape you desire. These marshmallows are inspired by the 1984 film "Ghostbusters."

 When the large Marshmallow Man threatens the city near the end of the movie, the Ghostbusters are shocked because they never thought a marshmallow would destroy them. They even talk about how they used to roast marshmallows at camp. I couldn’t resist making a smaller version of that frightful Marshmallow Man. These Ghost Marshmallows are a perfect addition to any Halloween party.

Eat them solo or add them to a hot cup of cocoa for a sweet and spooky twist.

Ghost Marshmallows


  • 85 grams cold water (1)
  • 18 grams gelatin powder
  • 265 grams granulated sugar
  • 100 grams corn syrup (1)
  • 100 grams water (2)
  • 90 grams corn syrup (2)
  • Dextrose, as needed for dusting


  1. Place the first measurement of water in the bowl of a stand mixer. Sprinkle the gelatin over the water and allow it to bloom and soften for 5-6 minutes.
  2. In a saucepan, combine the sugar, corn syrup (1) and water (2), and heat to 230°F.
  3. Meanwhile, add the corn syrup (2) to the bloomed gelatin.
  4. Pour the cooked sugar mixture into the stand mixer bowl and whisk at a medium speed until the mixture has become thick and lightened. The mixture will look like marshmallow cream after 10-15 minutes of whipping.
  5. While the mixture is whipping, prepare a sheet tray for the marshmallow mixture: spray a quarter sheet pan with nonstick cooking spray and dust with dextrose.
  6. Once the marshmallow mixture is thick and lightened, transfer it to the prepared pan. Wet your hands with water and smooth the surface, patting the mixture down until it evenly covers the sheet pan.
  7. Leave the sheet tray and mixture uncovered and let it set for one hour at room temperature.
  8. After an hour (or you can leave it overnight), remove the marshmallow slab from the pan and flip it onto a dextrose-covered cutting board.
  9. Cut the marshmallow slab into squares, or use a cookie cutter (generously coated with nonstick cooking spray to prevent sticking) to cut the marshmallow slab into your desired shape. (I used a ghost-shaped cookie cutter for this recipe.) Toss the shaped marshmallow in additional dextrose.
  10. To make eyes and a mouth for the ghosts, use a toothpick to add small drops of chocolate syrup to create the face.

Ready to master marshmallows and much more? Learn more about ICE’s career training programs.