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Homemade Easter Peeps with Naturally-Dyed Sugar Sprinkles

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Homemade Marshmallows with Naturally-Dyed Sugar Sprinkles

Homemade Marshmallows with Naturally-Dyed Sugar Sprinkles

Homemade Marshmallows with Naturally-Dyed Sugar Sprinkles

This year we took our Homemade Easter Peeps to a new level by making our own sugar sprinkles with natural dyes.  I used the same homemade marshmallow recipe and dusted the bunny cut-outs in homemade {naturally-dyed} sugar sprinkles.

As with the Rainbow Cake with Natural Dyes and other projects I have done using homemade, natural food colorings, the resulting pastel colors of the sugar sprinkles are a beautiful testament to the power and versatility of fruits and vegetables.

For the sugar sprinkles, all it takes is a couple of drops of liquid dye to color the sugar so the flavor of the natural dye goes pretty much unnoticed when paired with sugar.  You can use spinach juice, carrot juice, orange juice, berry juices (all giving slightly different pink-purple hues) or beet juice, to name a few options.

Homemade Marshmallows with Naturally-Dyed Sugar Sprinkles

*Sometimes when I do a project like making marshmallows from scratch I think I should make a lot to make it worth it.  However, this time I decided to cut the recipe in thirds.  There ended up being plenty of marshmallows for a spring/Easter treat without having an excessive amount of bunnies and sugar!

Homemade Easter Peeps with Naturally-Dyed Sugar Sprinkles
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Recipe type: Dessert
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 45 bunnies
 
This year we took our Homemade Easter Peeps to a new level by making our own sugar sprinkles with natural dyes.
Ingredients
Homemade Marshmallows
  • 3¼-ounce packs unflavored gelatin
  • 1 cup cool water, divided
  • 1½ cups sugar
  • 1 cup light corn syrup
  • ⅛ tsp salt
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract or other flavoring
Homemade Sugar Sprinkles with Natural Food Dyes
  • Sugar or super-fine sugar
  • Spinach juice
  • Carrot juice
  • Raspberry (or beet) juice
  • Blueberry juice
  • Blackberry juice
  • Lemon or orange rind (if you don't mind the citrus flavor)
Instructions
Homemade Marshmallows
  1. Combine the gelatin and ½ cup cool water in a mixing bowl fitted with the whisk attachment.
  2. In a large saucepan, combine the remaining ½ cup cool water, 1½ cups sugar, ⅛ tsp salt and 1 cup corn syrup.
  3. Cook the mixture over medium heat until the sugar dissolves, stirring constantly.
  4. Increase the heat to high and cook, without stirring, until the syrup reaches 240 degrees on a candy thermometer or, if you don't have a thermometer, for roughly 8 minutes.
  5. Remove the syrup from the heat.
  6. With mixer on low, pour the syrup into the softened gelatin and whisk to combine.
  7. Increase the speed to high and beat the mixture for 8-10 minutes until it is thick, fluffy and cool enough to handle with your fingers.
  8. Whip in the vanilla extract toward the end of the mixing time.
  9. Dump the marshmallow mix into a greased 9×13 pan or into greased silicone bunny molds.
  10. Sprinkle the top of the marshmallows with powdered sugar. *If covering your Peeps in sprinkles, don’t sprinkle powdered sugar over the top or the colored sprinkles won’t stick!
  11. Cover the pan with a greased sheet of plastic wrap and let the marshmallows rest for several hours or overnight.
  12. Cut the marshmallows with a greased knife or greased cookie cutters, (or gently remove them from the silicone molds) and roll them in sprinkles or other toppings as desired.
  13. Serving count depends on the size of the marshmallows.
  14. Store marshmallows in an air-tight container at room temperature. Depending on the natural dye you use they may not last as long as plain marshmallows unrefrigerated so you can experiment with refrigerating them in a sealed container.
Homemade Sugar Sprinkles with Natural Food Dyes
  1. Divide the sugar into small bowls.
  2. Dye each sugar, a drop at a time, using each of the natural food dyes.
  3. Mix the sugar well with a metal spoon to incorporate all of the juice/dye and get an even color.
  4. Add more color as desired, and continue stirring to create a smooth, even color in the sugar.
  5. As you work on the other sugar sprinkles, the sugar will harden and form a little bit of a crust which makes it act more like a store-bought sprinkle.
  6. Store extra sugar sprinkles in a sealed jar or container in the refrigerator.

 

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