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Marshmallows: a flavour & colour sensations

Originally, marshmallows were made of the marsh-mallow plant. This marsh-mallow, Althaea officinalis, is a shrub-like crop that grows everywhere in Europe. The root of the marsh-mallow has a thick mucus layer, the texture of which is similar to pectin. The root itself contains between 10 – 15% of pectin. Pectin used to be the main thickening agent in marshmallows.

Natural coulour & flavour sensations

Sweets have been made of the Althaea Officinalis – also known as the marsh-mallow plant – since classical times. There is evidence to show that the ancient Egyptians and Romans made sweets from marshmallow root and honey. The commercial mainstream marshmallows are an American invention from the late 19th century. Instead of pectin, gelatine is now mainly used in marshmallows. Sugar and/or syrup and colourings and flavourings are added to the ingredients. The latter two enable a rainbow of flavour and colour sensations. From soft pastel tones to bright colours to natural hues, and matching flavours.

High-quality colourings

Concentrated, light stable extracts with a high colour intensity are used to make colours that stay stable during the production process and don’t faith away in clear packaging. These high-quality colourings will not affect the texture of the marshmallows. When it comes to flavour experience, by now consumers are familiar with well-known vanilla, they seek more variation in the type of vanilla or new flavour sensations in combination with vanilla. For example vanilla with cherry or prune, cloves or red wine.


Barbecued marshmallows also pair very well with cocktail flavours, such as our Pina Colada flavour (ref. TF015602N).

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If you would like more information about confectionery ingredients, please feel free to contact one of the Food Ingredients product managers.

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