Used as a fluffy and sweet topping for hot chocolate and the binder for crisped rice treats, marshmallows have been delighting sweet hankerings around the world since the 1800s. To add both flavor and spots of color into a boring, standard cake mix, you can mix in marshmallows before baking. This adds an unusual texture and whimsical look to a cake, and can perk up a themed birthday party or spruce up a weekly baked treat.
Use miniature marshmallows, as they suit being baked better than the larger ones in the cake. Larger marshmallows will expand as they are baked and leave large holes in the batter as they return to a regular size. For simple, plain flavor, use plain white marshmallows. To add color as well as some fruity tastes, use colored miniature marshmallows. Decide how many marshmallows you wish to add to the cake; 1 cup for a 15-ounce cake mix works well.
Mixing and Baking
Prepare the batter according to the instructions on the package. Whisk in the measured marshmallows into the prepared batter. Prepare the baking dish by lightly greasing it with oil or butter. Pour in the prepared batter and bake according to package directions; the marshmallows do not affect the baking time or baking temperature of the cake. Check whether the cake is done by inserting a toothpick into the center, removing the cake from the oven when it comes out clean.
Cakes containing marshmallows are best served warm, as the marshmallows expand when warmed and fall flat when when cooled. This does not affect the taste of the overall batter, but creates a better presentation. Serve with ice cream, allowing the ice cream to melt into the warm cake.
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Add an extra egg, chocolate chips, and 1/4 cup butter to a chocolate cake mix and then add marshmallows to create marshmallow cake mix brownies. Or mix marshmallows into any cake mix and pour the batter into individual cupcake liners to make cupcakes; frost and decorate with sprinkles when cooled. Add both mini marshmallows and chocolate chips to a cherry cake mix and serve the finished cake warm; the marshmallows and chocolate chips will both act as a tasty counterpoint to the cherry.
Based in Kingston, Canada, Samantha Lowe has been writing for publication since 2006. She has written articles for the "Mars' Hill" newspaper and copy for various design projects. Her design and copy for the "Mars' Hill" won the Associated Collegiate Press Pacemaker award in 2008. Lowe holds an Honors BA from Trinity Western University, and a MSc in Occupational Therapy from Queen's University where she is currently doing her PhD.