Soft, fluffy, buttery, with a hint of salt – these Butterscotch Marshmallows (or Buttered Rum Marshmallows for adults) are just so decadent and addictive.
Butterscotch marshmallows are great for gift-giving, or to enjoy with a mug of creamy hot chocolate!
These fancy pants Butterscotch Marshmallows are my absolute favorite! That’s saying something considering how much I like to make marshmallows. But these are buttery, sweet, fluffy and all around decadent. They also go by different names…
- Buttered rum marshmallows
- Butterbeer marshmallows
- And of course, butterscotch marshmallows
No matter what you call them though, these are a real treat!
These butterscotch marshmallows are different from the classic marshmallows that I first made, but the basic technique remains largely the same. So I do highly recommend reading that post for all the troubleshooting tips, if you’d like to know more about making homemade marshmallow.
You can make these marshmallows without rum – for regular butterscotch marshmallows, OR add rum or rum extract for awesome buttered rum marshmallows (or butterbeer marshmallows).
These marshmallows have actual butter in them, which is what makes them just so buttery and addictive. I also previously shared a butterscotch swirled marshmallow where I made a butterscotch syrup and swirled it through regular vanilla marshmallows for a lovely soft and chewy texture contrast, but this version is different in that it’s all fluffy and soft marshmallow with butterscotch flavor throughout. So make sure to read the post completely to understand the process of making these marshmallows.
The first step to making butterscotch marshmallows is the sugar syrup.
I use white sugar and brown sugar to make these butterscotch marshmallows. I used a mix because brown sugar alone has more moisture content that can affect the sugar syrup, plus the molassey flavor of brown sugar can be overwhelming in a soft marshmallow. I also used corn syrup because I wanted to make sure that the sugar didn’t crystallize. I only add 1/4 cup of corn syrup. If you’d like to, you can leave out the corn syrup (read my original homemade marshmallows post to learn how to make marshmallows without corn syrup), but I personally haven’t made these buttered rum marshmallows without corn syrup.
The sugar is dissolved in water (or water and rum for buttered rum marshmallows) while being heated over medium – medium high heat. Remember to swirl the pan to get the sugar to dissolve. Then once the sugar is dissolved, and the mix has come to a boil, place the lid over the saucepan and let the sugar syrup simmer over medium low heat for a couple of minutes. The condensation on the bottom of the lid will help wash away any undissolved sugar crystals on the side of the pan back into the syrup so they can fully dissolve.
Then when you take off the lid, clip the sugar thermometer and heat the sugar syrup over medium – medium high heat until it reaches 242 – 245°F. If you’re living in a humid environment, then I recommend heating the sugar up to 245°F.
Again, remember to swirl the pan gently so that you evenly distribute the heat throughout the syrup. Often times there can be hot spots on your saucepan or syrup, which can affect the marshmallow.
While the syrup is cooking, you can get everything else ready. HOWEVER, if this is your first time making marshmallows or you’re not 100% comfortable with the process, then I’d recommend you keeping a close eye on the sugar syrup to prevent it from overcooking.
Melting the butter
Place the unsalted butter in a microwave-proof bowl and melt for just a few seconds until just melted. You don’t want the butter to boil or separate into fat and water. I usually microwave it for 10-15 seconds (room temperature butter), until most of it is melted. Then I remove the bowl from the microwave, and stir it until all the butter has melted in the residual heat. Then set it aside to cool down. The butter shouldn’t be too hot when mixed in with the marshmallow. but it also needs to liquid so that it can mix easily.
While the sugar syrup is cooking, you can get the gelatin ready. Here you’ve got two options,
- Bloom the gelatin with water or (for non-alcoholic butterscotch marshmallows)
- Replace half of the water with rum (for buttered rum marshmallows)
While the gelatin is blooming, prepare all the utensils and pans that you’ll be using for the marshmallows.
Preparing pans and utensils for butterscotch marshmallows
Making marshmallows is easy. But it’s a sticky business. That’s why it’s important to coat all the utensils you use with a layer of butter. I’m using butter here because these are butterscotch marshmallows after all (or buttered rum marshmallows). But you can use shortening for this purpose too.
Coat an 8 x 8 inch pan or a 9 x 9 inch pan with butter. If you want smaller/thinner marshmallows, you can use a 9 x 13 inch pan as well.
Coat the spatulas and mixing spoons with a thin layer of butter too.
Once the sugar syrup has reached the right temperature, you’re ready to making butterscotch marshmallows!
Add some salt to the bloomed gelatin in the mixer bowl. Don’t forget the salt because it really balances out the sweetness. Not a lot, just a pinch. But if you like SALTED butterscotch marshmallows, then you can add a little more.
Then simply add the sugar syrup, while mixing the gelatin, and keep whisking to make the butterscotch marshmallow base fluffy. Then increase the speed, and keep whisking until you have a lovely fluffy marshmallow mix that has almost tripled in size.
After you whisk in the vanilla, rum extract or extra strength rum, it’s time to add the butter and work quickly! It’s also important to mix some of the marshmallow mix with the butter, BEFORE you add the butter to the rest of the marshmallow mix. This is because butter is mostly fat, and if you add it directly to the marshmallow mix, it’ll deflate a lot. Adding the marshmallow-butter mix into the rest of the marshmallow base will greatly minimize deflating.
- You can either fold the butter in to create buttery ripples in the marshmallow (minimum deflation) OR
- You can fold the butter in more uniformly to fully mix it in with the marshmallows (there’ll be a little more deflation this way).
Either choice is OK.
And then pour the marshmallow base into the prepared pan, and let it set overnight. Then they can be cut, dusted or dipped before being devoured!
You can coat these butterscotch marshmallows (butterbeer marshmallows) in chocolate as well (with added pop rocks for some extra popping magic – like the ones pictured here in the post). There’s really no wrong way to enjoy these buttered rum marshmallows – they are incredibly soft and fluffy, buttery with a hint of salt, and just so addictive. Great in hot chocolates, or to make s’mores!
Butterscotch marshmallows dipped in popping candy and melted chocolate!
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Butterscotch Marshmallows (Buttered Rum Marshmallows)
For the gelatin bloom
- 120 mL cup cold water ½ cup, for the gelatin (replace ¼ cup of water with 80 proof rum for a boozy marshmallow)
- 24 g powdered gelatin 8 tsp
- 200 g white sugar 1 cup
- 200 g dark brown sugar 1 cup
- 81 g corn syrup ¼ cup
- Generous pinch of salt
- 120 mL cup water ½ cup, for the syrup (replace ¼ cup of water with 80 proof rum for a boozy marshmallow)
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 3 tbsp 80 proof aged rum optional
- 5 tbsp unsalted butter just melted and lukewarm (do not over-melt)
MALLOW DUSTING POWDER
- 1 cup confectioner's sugar sifted
- 1/2 cup cornstarch (cornflour)
- Melted chocolate to dip marshmallows
- Place the cold water in your mixer bowl. Substitute ½ of the water with rum, if you're making buttered rum marshmallows. Sprinkle the gelatin evenly over the liquid and gently stir to mix.
- Let the gelatin bloom for at least 10 minutes, but you can leave it in there for longer, until you get the sugar syrup ready.
- Place both sugars, corn syrup, and water (and rum if using) in a saucepan. Stir gently until the sugar is moistened and mixed with the water.
- Heat over medium-high heat while swirling the pot occasionally to dissolve the sugar. Allow the sugar syrup to come to a boil, with all the sugar dissolved.
- Cover the saucepan with a lid and lower the heat to medium. Let the syrup cook for 2 minutes. Do not lift or remove the lid at this point. (The condensation that forms on the bottom of the lid will help wash away any undissolved sugar crystals on the sides of the saucepan back into the syrup).
- After 2 minutes, remove the lid and check to make sure there are no undissolved sugar crystals on the sides of the saucepan. If there is any, then cover the saucepan for a further minute to allow the condensation to wash down the sugar crystals into the syrup.
- Clip the sugar thermometer to the side of the saucepan, and set the temperature to between 242 - 245°F. Let the sugar syrup cook until it reaches this temperature - do not exceed 245°F. Make sure to swirl the saucepan to evenly distribute the heat. Then swirl the saucepan one last time, after the right temperature is reached as well (to make sure the sugar syrup is evenly hot throughout).
- If you don't have a sugar thermometer, please see this homemade marshmallows post for directions to check the correct stage of the sugar syrup.
- When the sugar syrup has reached the correct stage, remove from the heat and let it cool down a little, and the bubbles subside. Then, with the mixer running on medium - low speed, pour the sugar syrup into the gelatin, along the wall of the bowl (this is to prevent the gelatin from being scorched by the hot sugar syrup). Then increase the speed to medium - high.
- Whisk on medium - high for 3 to 5 minutes until the marshmallow base doubles in size and is starting to become fluffy and smooth. Mix for a further 3 to 5 minutes on high speed, allowing the marshmallow to volumize more (up to 3 times), and cool down to the touch. Stop mixing if the marshmallow base has already cooled down, as this will create hard to handle marshmallows. Make sure the base is fluffy, pale brown and up to 3 times the initial volume of the sugar syrup.
- Add the vanilla and rum in the final 2 minutes of whisking, so that they get incorporated well.
- While the marshmallow base is whisking, prepare the pan and utensils that you'll be using. Rub an 8 x 8 inch pan or a 9 x 9 inch pan with butter (or you can line this pan with parchment paper if you prefer). Brush all the utensils - spoon, spatulas with butter as well.
- Once the marshmallow base has tripled in size, remove the bowl from the mixer and take about 1 cup of the marshmallow mix and add it to the bowl with the melted lukewarm butter. Mix until the butter is well incorporated in the marshmallow mix.
- Evenly pour this butter and marshmallow mix back into the rest of the marshmallow base. Gently fold it into the marshmallow base to create ripples. OR you can fold it in further to completely mix it in with the marshmallow bases so that you don't end up with ripples/swirls.
- Scrape the marshmallow base into the prepared pan using a silicone spatula or flexible scraper. Spread the marshmallow evenly in the pan.
- Generously sieve mallow dusting powder over the marshmallow and let it set for at least 6 hours.
- Turn the set marshmallow out onto a work surface, dusted with dusting powder. Cut the marshmallows with an oiled knife or a pair of scissors into 25 pieces, or 16 pieces for larger marshmallows. Toss the marshmallow in the dusting powder and store in an air-tight container.
MALLOW DUSTING POWDER
- Mix the confectioner's sugar and cornstarch together until well combined. Set aside until needed.
- Dip the cut marshmallows in chocolate, and place them on a parchment paper-lined pan and allow the chocolate to set.