Marshmallow Root Marshmallows (paleo, dairy-free, gluten-free)

Did you know originally marshmallows came from a plant?

Marshmallow (or marsh mallow or Althaea officinalis) is actually a herb! The scientific name of this plant comes form the Greek word "altho" which means to cure. Marshmallow is an amazing demulcent and soothes mucus membranes or any sort of irritated tissues. Rosemary Gladstar in her book Herbal Recipes for Vibrant Health states "Our pioneer parents cooked the root with honey or sugar, formed into soft balls and gave it to their children to suck on to sooth a sore throat." Yes, marshmallows were originally a remedy! Not a super sticky, sugar overdose like they are today.

In this post, we will combine the herb marshmallow with it's modern candy counterpart!

However Marshmallow Root Marshmallows are nothing like what you'll find in the store. They are soft and slightly sticky. Still very sweet but definitely more of a gentle treat and not something you can stick in a marshmallow gun. 

We are using local honey and great quality beef gelatin. I'm using dried marshmallow root from Mountain Rose Herbs. Here is a list of the best places to buy herbs

This recipe is actually almost a decade old and was posted on my old blog! But new to this blog and I'm excited to share it today with you! It's improved a smidge and I hope you love it.

Marshmallow Root Marshmallows Recipe


2 TB marshmallow root

1 1/2 cups water

1 cup honey

2 1/2 TB gelatin

Pinch salt

1/2 tsp vanilla extract (optional)

Little bit oil to oil pan


Hand mixer (will take longer with stand mixer)

8x8" pan

parchment paper

Sauce Pot


Candy Thermometer

Coating (recipe below)


1. Boil then simmer marshmallow root and water for 7 minutes. Remove from heat and Refridgerate until cool (at least a couple hours, could be done night before).

2. Strain marshmallow root decoction (should be about 1 cup of liquid). 

3. Pour 1/2 cup of the marshmallow root decoction into a large bowl and sprinkle gelatin over the top. Set aside.

3. Measure 1/2 cup marshmallow root decoction in a sauce pot on stove with honey, vanilla extract (optional), and pinch of salt. Put pot on medium heat. The mixture will boil. Let it boil for 7 minutes or until candy thermometer reaches 240 degrees. Remove from heat.

4. Meanwhile, line your 8x8" pan with parchment paper and gently oil it (this will make for easier release). 

5. Turn hand mixer on low and pour the hot marshmallow/honey mixture over the gelatin. Mix gently until incorporated then turn up the settings on the hand mixer until completely high and whip for another 5-8 minutes or until soft peaks form and the mixture turns white* and will hold shape (if using stand mixer, it may take longer).

*Note: If using dark honey, your marsh mallows might be darker.

6. Pour into lined pan. Scraping sides of bowl with a spatula like this handy diora spatula. Let sit for at least two hours.

7. Once it has set, with a knife dipped in hot water, slice the marshmallows (the sides will be sticky for a little bit!).


1/3 cup Finely shredded Coconut

1/2 t marshmallow root powder

1. Toast over medium heat until coconut is slightly brown and fragrant.

2. Sprinkle the bottom of the marshmallows before you pour the mixture in. Then sprinkle the top afterwards.

If you want another marshmallow root recipe, check out my Soothing Hot Carob Cocoa! A hot chocolate that I drink to help me feel better!

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And last but not least, I'm not a doctor. I'm not licensed to diagnose or prescribe. This is for educational purposes only. This information has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Use information at your discretion, taking into account medical history. Always research! 

Precautions posted from Mountain Rose Herbs website about using Marshmallow Root: "Marshmallow root is completely non-toxic, but its mucilage can interfere with the absorption of other medicines if taken at the same time. The asparagine in the root can cause a mild odor in the urine, but has no other physiological effect."


  1. Do you have experience with Agar Agar?
    I have used it a few times in place of gelatin.
    I was wondering if you knew of a way to replace the gelatin in your recipe? Such as Agar Agar or Pectin?
    Thank you!!!! Our family would definitely like to try this recipe out ❤️

    1. Great question! I am interested as well. We may have to experiment!


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