Easy Marshmallow Fluff Frosting

Mary and Brenda Maher

By Brenda & Mary

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The glossy sheen and pillowy texture of this marshmallow fluff frosting always brings me right back to childhood. I remember my mom would always make her special cake for my birthday every year. To this day, I still ask for that cake because it just doesn’t feel right without that sweet marshmallow topping.

Marshmallow Frosting recipe

But enough about my fond memories. It’s time to make some of your own. Whether you’re a frosting aficionado or a baking newbie, this marshmallow fluff frosting recipe is sure to impress.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

There are so many reasons you’ll adore this marshmallow fluff frosting recipe:

Marshmallow Frosting
  • Simple: It’s a simple recipe with everyday ingredients you likely have on hand. No fancy add-ins are required.
  • No butter: This recipe skips the unsalted butter you might find in other places. The reason is I want to make it a lighter option while still delivering that creamy, fluffy texture we all crave in a frosting.
  • Versatile: Whether you’re topping cupcakes, like lemon cupcakes or strawberry cupcakes, creating a filling for cookies, or looking for a substitute for marshmallow fluff, this frosting is your go-to. It’s like a Swiss Army knife in your baking toolkit.
  • Not too sweet: Often, frostings can be overwhelmingly sugary, but not this one. It strikes a perfect balance, offering sweetness that complements, not overpowers.

How to Make Marshmallow Fluff Frosting

Let’s talk about the simple ingredients you’ll need to make this frosting for 16 cups. I always have to make a large batch for my bakery, so feel free to dial it down to tailor it to your needs.

Marshmallow Frosting Ingredient
Marshmallow Fluff Frosting Ingredient
  • Granulated sugar (1 ½ cups): This sweet backbone is here for both the structure and taste. I prefer it over powdered sugar.
  • Light corn syrup (1 ⅓ cups): Don’t confuse it with the high-fructose variant. You’ll need corn syrup to prevent sugar recrystallization and help the frosting hold its own shape longer.
  • Egg whites (8): Room-temperature eggs work best. Use fresh large egg whites, not cartoned. I’ve had mixed results with pre-whipped whites, as they may not whip up firm enough. And don’t toss those yolks. Save them for a custard or ice cream.
  • Cream of tartar (1 teaspoon): This is my secret to keeping the final result stable and firm. You can skip it if you want (it’ll still taste great). But I don’t recommend it because the frosting may take a bit longer to whip up and be slightly less stable without it.
  • Table salt (¼ teaspoon): Just a pinch is enough to balance the sweetness.
  • Vanilla extract (3 teaspoons): This brings the flavor home. Its classic, aromatic flavor will complement the marshmallowy goodness and give you the best taste.

In addition to common equipment like an electric mixer, get a double boiler and an instant-read thermometer. They will help get your ingredients heated to the right temperature.

A culinary torch is optional. If you’re feeling adventurous, use it to give your fluffy frosting an extra special touch. And make sure to have a couple of mixing bowls on hand: one for your egg whites and another for mixing dry ingredients if needed.

Now, let’s whip up some heavenly marshmallow cake frosting:

Marshmallow Frosting step 1 2 3

Step 1: Place your mixing bowl (I swear by my stand mixer bowl for this) over a saucepan with a bit of simmering water. Make sure the bowl doesn’t touch the water, as we’re going for gentle heat here. The bowl should be spotless and grease-free for the best results.

Step 2: In the bowl doubling as your double boiler top, whisk together the sugar, salt, cream of tartar, egg whites, and corn syrup until they’re well mixed.

Step 3: Fill your saucepan with 1-2 inches of water and bring it to a simmer over medium-low heat.

Marshmallow Frosting Step 4 5

Step 4: Place the bowl over the simmering water. Whisk until the egg white mixture has reached at least 160°F and the sugar has been dissolved completely. If you’re not sure, do the finger test: if it’s smooth, not gritty when you rub it between your fingers, you’re golden. Watch out, though—it’s still hot stuff.

Step 5: Once you’ve hit the sweet spot with the temperature, yank that bowl off the heat and get it onto your stand mixer, fitted with the whisk attachment. Now beat the egg white mixture for 5-10 minutes until you have glossy, billowy, stiff peaks. Start with medium speed and increase steadily.

Step 6: Finally, gently stir in the vanilla extract until it’s just combined. You’ll know you’re done when the vanilla is fully incorporated and the homemade frosting looks irresistibly smooth.

Marshmallow Frosting complete

Tips on Making The Best Marshmallow fluff Frosting

  1. As delightful as this marshmallow fluff frosting is on its own, giving it a light toast transforms it into something extraordinary. I’ve found that a simple kitchen torch does the trick beautifully. It adds a toasty, caramelized layer that’s just irresistible.
  2. If your frosting isn’t forming stiff peaks, it could be due to grease or water in your bowl or maybe a stray egg yolk snuck in. In such cases, starting over is your best bet. But sometimes, all it needs is a bit more whipping time.
  3. Go ahead and use that fluffy marshmallow fluff frosting right away. If you’re not quite ready, cover it tight and let it hang out at room temperature. This frosting will hold up fine at room temperature for one or two days. But if it’s been sitting for a while, it might need a quick re-whip to bring back that fluffy texture.

If you plan to keep it longer, pop it in the fridge, or the frosting will start to break down. Give it some time to soften up at room temperature before using it again.

In any case, your container should have an airtight seal. Even a small amount of air exposure can cause the frosting to deflate quickly.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Corn Syrup Necessary for This Homemade Frosting Recipe?

Corn syrup is pretty important here. Its job is to stop sugars from recrystallizing and help the frosting hold its shape and texture, especially when chilled. But, if you’re really against it, there are alternatives.

What Can I Use Instead of Corn Syrup in the Frosting?

If you’re not a fan of corn syrup, try using honey or golden syrup. They work similarly to prevent sugar crystals and give that smooth texture. Keep in mind that the flavor might change a bit with these substitutes.

Can I Flavor My Marshmallow Fluff Frosting with Something Other Than Vanilla?

Absolutely. Feel free to get creative with flavors. Try almond extract, lemon zest, or even peppermint for a twist. Add a bit at a time and taste as you go – you don’t want to overpower it.

Can I Use Homemade Marshmallows for This Frosting?

Homemade melted marshmallows are delicious, but they won’t work the same for this frosting. This recipe needs the fluffiness and texture that only comes from making the frosting from scratch with egg whites and sugar.

What Cakes or Cupcakes Pair Well with Marshmallow Fluff Frosting?

Marshmallow icing is super versatile and pairs wonderfully with a variety of flavors. It’s a dream on chocolate cupcakes or strawberry shortcake cupcakes and absolutely divine on lemon or berry-flavored cakes. Its light and fluffy texture complements bolder flavors beautifully.

Now, happy baking, everyone. Can’t wait to hear how your marshmallow fluff frosting adventures turn out!

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Marshmallow Frosting recipe

Marshmallow Fluff Frosting

This fluffy, pillow-soft marshmallow frosting is glossy white perfection for cakes and cupcakes.
4 from 3 votes
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Course: Frosting
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 16
Calories: 165kcal
Author: Brenda Maher

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ cups granulated sugar
  • 1 ⅓ cups light corn syrup
  • 8 large egg whites
  • 1 tsp cream of tartar
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 3 tsp vanilla extract

Instructions

  • Set up a double boiler with a saucepan and a mixing bowl that doesn’t touch the water.
  • Whisk together sugar, corn syrup, egg whites, cream of tartar, and salt in the mixing bowl.
  • Heat water in the saucepan to a simmer, then place the bowl over it.
  • Whisk constantly until the mixture reaches 160°F and is smooth when rubbed between fingers.
  • Transfer the bowl to a stand mixer with a whisk attachment. Beat on high temperature for 5-10 minutes until stiff peaks form.
  • Gently stir in the vanilla extract.

Notes

  • Toast the frosting with a culinary torch for a caramelized finish.
  • To achieve stiff peaks, the bowl and whisk should be free from grease or water.
  • Use immediately or store at room temperature tightly covered. Re-whip if it’s been sitting for several hours.
  • Store in an airtight container in the fridge if not used within two days. Allow to soften at room temperature before re-whipping and using.

Nutrition

Calories: 165kcal | Carbohydrates: 42g | Protein: 2.5g | Fat: 1g | Sodium: 80mg | Potassium: 55mg | Sugar: 40g | Calcium: 7mg
Did you make this recipe?Mention @cakegirls or tag #cakegirls!

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Mary and Brenda Maher

Mary & Brenda Maher

Mary & Brenda Maher, are the founders of Cake Girls, a Chicago-based online baking shop specializing in cake supplies, party decor, and DIY cake tutorials. They are known for their elaborate and artistic cake creations, which have been featured on the Food Network Challenge and in a reality show, Amazing Wedding Cakes.

1 thought on “Easy Marshmallow Fluff Frosting”

  1. Love, love, love your work! I am definitely going to try this recipe for a s’mores inspired cupcake! I was wondering if you can substitute pasteurized egg whites? I know you won’t get the same stiff peaks as fresh egg whites, but was just curious if you have tried.

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