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Marshmallows are considered a staple for hot cocoa, camping trips, desserts, and Thanksgiving classics. They might be your longtime favorite, but they don’t do you any favors even though they are fat-free. The reason is the amount of sugar they contain.
A typical marshmallow includes four grams of added sugar, but you must admit that no one ends with just one marshmallow, right? So, a cup of mini marshmallows to top hot chocolate or a dessert recipe contains 29 grams of sugar. This means 10 times the recommended daily amount of sugar, and 400 empty calories.
Health Risks of Excess Sugar
Excess sugar raises your overall calorie content, which can easily result in unhealthy weight gain and eventually, obesity. In addition, foods like marshmallows which contain a lot of sugar, are usually low in nutrition. If your diet contains a large amount of these foods, it will have less room for fruits, veggies, and whole grains.
Even worse, excess sugar has been directly associated with serious health problems, such as:
Recipe for Healthy Marshmallows
We present you a recipe for fluffy homemade marshmallows, sweetened with honey. They have the same flavor as the store-bought ones but don’t contain the white poison called sugar. You can also make them in cocoa or coconut version (explained below), based on your preferences. Once you see the recipe and try the first healthy homemade marshmallows, you won’t think of buying them ever again.
Gelatin – 1 ½ tablespoonHoney – ½ a cupColdwater – ½ a cupVanilla extract – ½ a teaspoonSalt – 1/8 teaspoon
In a lightly greased loaf pan, place baking paper so that it covers the pan and hangs over the sides one way. Grease the baking paper as well. Take a medium-sized bowl, pour ¼ cup of water and sprinkle the gelatin over it. Let it soften naturally. Then, take a small pot and place the other ¼ cup of water, and the listed amount of honey and salt.
Heat on medium heat until the mixture reaches 240 degrees (use a candy thermometer for this). Although it should take 7 to 8 minutes, you might have a hard time getting this exact temperature since it is a very small amount of liquid. Another way to test the temperature is to dribble a little of the solution into a container with ice-cold water. If it’s in the candy stage of making tiny soft balls when cooled in the water and taken out, it has reached the required temperature. Remove from heat the moment it’s at the needed temperature.
Pour the hot liquid into the gelatin mixture a drizzle down the side of the bowl, while constantly mixing with a hand mixer on low. Once you mix all well, add the vanilla and mix with a hand mixer on high. Beat until you get a thick and fluffy mixture (it should take 12-15 minutes). Pour the mixture into the prepared pan with a baking sheet, and let it dry for 4-12 hours, without covering the pan. Once it dries, cut it into squares and your healthy homemade marshmallows are ready!
Cocoa Version. Just roll the finished marshmallow squares in cocoa powder.
Coconut Version. Toast half a cup of coconut unsweetened flakes, and sprinkle half of them on the bottom of the pan. Pour in the marshmallow mixture, and then sprinkle the rest of the flakes.
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