Fluffiest Marshmallow Frosting
Marshmallow frosting (also called meringue frosting) is easy to make, super fluffy, and perfect for cakes and cupcakes! You can spread or pipe it and, best of all, you can toast this frosting just like you would a marshmallow roasted over a campfire.
This frosting is a favorite of mine that I’ve been making for years. It’s a great alternative to buttercream or cream cheese frosting.
Ingredients and Equipment
You only need three ingredients to make this recipe:
- Egg whites (Tip: You can freeze the egg yolks left over after separating your eggs!)
- Vanilla extract
You definitely will want an electric mixer (ideally a stand mixer) to make this recipe. I mix the frosting in my stand mixer for almost 20 minutes. Do not attempt to do this by hand.
A candy thermometer [paid link] is vital to make sure the frosting is safe to eat. The egg whites need to be heated to 100 F. The best way to make sure that’s happened is by using a candy thermometer.
If you’re going to toast your frosting, get a culinary torch [paid link]. The recipe looks amazing when toasted!
How It’s Made
Heat the egg whites and the sugar in a double boiler, whisking constantly, until your candy thermometer shows that the mixture is at 100 F. A double boiler is made by setting a heat-safe bowl (like the metal bowl from a stand mixer) over a pot of boiling water.
This step serves two purposes:
- It helps the sugar dissolve into the egg whites.
- It heats the egg whites to a safe-to-eat temperature without the egg whites getting cooked as they would on direct heat.
Tip: During this step, make sure there are no egg yolks mixed in with the egg whites and that the bowl is completely dry. Yolks or a wet bowl can keep the frosting from whipping up properly.
Next, whisk! Once the egg whites and sugar are combined, it’s time to let your stand mixer do all of the work. Whisk on medium speed for ten minutes, then increase to high speed and whisk until you have stiff, glossy peaks – another five to ten minutes.
You’ll know that the frosting is ready when the meringue holds a peak on its own without falling over.
Expert Tips and FAQs
It’s best the day that it is made. If it sits out too long, it will start to separate.
If you’ve torched it, you can leave it in the refrigerator for a few days; it should hold its shape really well.
Use a culinary torch on medium heat. Start with the torch a few inches away from the frosting and move closer as needed.
If you want a really fast and easy alternative, simply buy a bag of mini marshmallows and use something sticky like honey, corn syrup, or frosting to “glue” the marshmallows to the top of your dessert. Then, brown with a culinary torch. This method is SO EASY!
This is how I frost my sweet potato muffins, shown here.
Try making aquafaba vegan meringue. It’s crazy to think about, but it has a marshmallow-like consistency even though it’s made from the liquid in a can of chickpeas.
- Coffee cupcakes
- Lemon meringue cupcakes
- S’mores cupcakes
- Tres leches cake (and cupcakes)
- Sweet potato muffins
- Candy thermometer
- Stand mixer
- 7 large egg whites
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- Combine the ingredients in the metal mixing bowl of your stand mixer and set over a pot filled with boiling water on a range, creating a double boiler.
- Whisk by hand for a few minutes until the mixture reaches 110 F on a candy thermometer.
- Place the bowl on a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Whisk on medium speed for 10 minutes.
- Increase to high speed and whisk until stiff glossy peaks form, about 5 to 10 minutes more.
- Pipe or spread frosting onto desserts.
- Using a culinary torch, toast the frosting.
- Store in the refrigerator until ready to eat – up to 3 days.
- Make sure the inside of the bowl is totally dry.
- Make sure there are no egg yolks mixed in with the egg whites.
- Keep on whisking – don’t stop early.
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