Homemade marshmallows and hot chocolate

Hello I ♥ Naptime Friends!

My name is Stephanie Lynn from Under the Table and Dreaming and I am so excited to be apart of Jamielyn’s Crazy Crafter Lineup!

I adore the holidays and I love to give gifts…to everyone. I thought I would share a gift today that could easily be put together in a crunch and given to those on your list that you simply want to show a little appreciation. It doesn’t take much to put together, but it is sure to bring a little smile to those who may not be expecting anything at all.

Nothing is more comforting after a long day in the snow then soothing hot chocolate {and yummy marshmallows}; it’s a wintertime staple sure to please. If you are in a snow bound area, like myself, this is the perfect little gift to drop off to any neighbors on your ‘list’. I love to wait until the snowflakes start to fall and hand these out when my friends are outside hard at work, shoveling the aftermath.

Both the hot chocolate mix and the marshmallows can be homemade to perfection with just a couple key ingredients you may already have at home. They are great to make in large batches; meaning you can easily put several gifts together in one single take. {if convenience is your thing – you can even purchase pre-packaged store bought items and put them in the jars – I won’t tell, I promise – However, this homemade version is just as simple as can be}

{Hot Chocolate}

Ingredients:

3 1/2 Cups of Sugar

2 1/4 Cups of Cocoa

1 Tablespoon of Table Salt

In a large bowl combine all ingredients; Whisk together well.

Funnel into an air tight container – How is that for quick and simple!

For individual hot chocolate servings:

Fill a microwavable mug with one cup of whole milk. Microwave on high for 30 seconds and stir. If needed, microwave at additional 15 second intervals, until desired temperature is reached. Add 2 tablespoons of cocoa mix, stir to dissolve, and top with homemade marshmallows.

For a larger batch of hot chocolate:

Warm the milk in a saucepan over medium-low heat; taking care not to let the milk boil as it warms. Stir in 2 tablespoons of mix for each cup of milk. Top with homemade marshmallows.

*The printable directions for the gift basket are below*{Marshmallows}

Ingredients:

2 1/2 Tablespoons of Unflavored Gelatin {approximately 3 1/2 envelopes}

1/2 Cup of Cold Water

1 1/2 Cups of Sugar

1 Cup of Light Corn Syrup

1/4 Teaspoon Salt

1/2 Cup Water

2 Tablespoons of Pure Vanilla Extract

Confectioners’ Sugar {10X Powdered Sugar}

Makes 40+ Large Marshmallows

Combine unflavored gelatin and 1/2 cup cold water into the mixing bowl of a stand mixer, let sit for 30 minutes. {This can also be prepared without a stand mixer – Just place ingredients into a large bowl and use an electric hand mixer}.

In a small saucepan, combine granulated sugar, corn syrup, salt and the additional 1/2 cup of water. Place over low heat, stirring constantly until the sugar has dissolved.

Increase the heat to high and boil mixture, without stirring, until it reaches 244°on a candy thermometer. {Approximately 12 minutes} Immediately remove pan from heat.

With a stand or hand-held mixer on low speed, slowly pour the syrup mixture into the gelatin.

Increase the speed to high and beat until the mixture is very thick, white and nearly tripled in volume. {Approximately 15 minutes} Add the vanilla and beat to incorporate.

Spray a glass baking pan with a light coat of non-stick baking spray and dust with confectioners’ sugar. {my pan measured 13 X 9 X 2 1/2 inches} Pour marshmallow mixture into pan and sift a good layer of confectioners’ sugar on top. Wet your hands and gently press on mixture, making sure it is even in the pan and somewhat smooth. Sift another generous coating of powdered sugar on top and place in fridge {uncovered} for at least 3 hours up to 24 hours, until firm.

Dust a large cutting board with confectioners’ sugar. Run a butter knife around the edges of the pan and invert. You may need to use your fingertips to gently pull the marshmallow out.

With a serrated knife, trim off the rounded edges and begin to cut into squares. It helps to dust the knife before each cut with confectioners’’ sugar. If the knife becomes sticky wash, dry and complete steps above. A clean dry knife helps keep the cuts precise and the marshmallows square. Toss the cut marshmallows with additional confectioners’ sugar to fully coat; This will prevent them from sticking together. The marshmallows will keep for several weeks in an airtight container.

{Putting it All Together}

I repurposed glass spaghetti jars to hold the three ingredients for the gift basket. The labels were removed from the jars and they were thoroughly cleaned, sanitized and completely dried.

The tops of the lids {only} were sprayed with satin nickel spray paint covering any lettering or designs leaving a nice finished look.

All three jars were nestled in a wooden lath basket however, any woven basket or even gift bag will do. The jars contain the Hot Chocolate Mix, Handmade Marshmallows and Pepperidge Farm Creme Filled Pirouette Rolled Wafers {to use as stirring sticks}.

I made some labels for the tops of each jar as well as a ‘direction’ card for the hot chocolate. You can find the printable here. The images were simply printed on white cardstock and glued to the lids with a tiny bit of glue.

A big red bow was attached – as nothing dresses a present better than a big red bow.

A quick and simple gift that is sure to warm the heart of those you care about!

Thanks so much Jamielyn for inviting me and letting me share this easy Christmas Gift with your readers. Happy Monday Everyone ~ Enjoy!

Wow homemade hot chocolate and marshmallows… that looks amazing! I can’t wait to try this! Thanks so much Stephanie for sharing such a yummy gift! I LOVE the jars and basket… it all turned out so cute! Make sure to go check out Stephanie’s blog where you’ll find tons of other great posts!

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Jamielyn Nye

Lifestyle expert, Pinterest tastemaker and blogger at iheartnaptime.com. Jamielyn aspires to reach women, get their creative juices flowing, and to genuinely inspire. When she’s not creating, Jamielyn loves to chase her two little monkeys and snuggle up on the couch with her man.