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Tips for Roasting Marshmallows


Nothing completes a float trip like a gathering of family and friends roasting marshmallows together around a campfire. Kids and adults enjoy toasting their own marshmallows, whether it’s for s’mores or eating them alone, right off the stick. For safely and effectively roasted marshmallows, be sure to follow these basic tips.

First, choose your roasting stick. Many campers bring store-bought metal skewers from home, while others prefer to use sticks from trees. While metal skewers are more sanitary, sticks are an authentic, rustic alternative. However, for campers who are concerned about germs or have low immune systems metal skewers is the best choice. Tree sticks offer a slight flavor to marshmallows that you won’t get with metal skewers. If you prefer to use a stick, find a hardwood stick rather than an evergreen or resinous one. The last thing you want is sap seeping into your marshmallow.

Roasting Marshmallows and Making SmoresNext, make sure you choose a stick that’s long enough to keep you a safe distance from the campfire. This should be determined by the person roasting the marshmallow as some campers have a higher tolerance of fire than others. Small children and fire-leery people should have longer sticks or skewers. Adults and braver campers should be fine with medium length sticks that allow them to roast their marshmallows in closer proximity to the fire.

Once you’ve chosen your stick or skewer, you’re ready to load the marshmallow. The marshmallow should be loaded onto the stick or skewer far enough that it doesn’t fall into the fire once it gets hot. This means having a few inches of the stick or skewer exposed at the fire end beyond the marshmallow. Push the marshmallow too far back and it becomes more difficult to remove when it’s done roasting.

Roasting time varies with the individual. If you prefer your marshmallow burnt or blackened, stick the marshmallow near the hot coals at the bottom of the fire or directly into the flames. Once the marshmallow has caught fire, step away from the fire and others so that you can safely blow out the small flame without harming others. If you prefer a lightly brown roasted marshmallow, move your skewered marshmallow briskly over the flames, occasionally checking its progress. Avoid sticking the marshmallow directly into the flames if you only want a lightly browned result.

Once you’ve roasted your marshmallow to your liking, remove it from the fire and allow it to cool for 20-30 seconds. Holding the stick or skewer with one hand, grasp the marshmallow with your other hand and slowly pull the roasted marshmallow off the end of the roasting stick or skewer, pulling the inside of the marshmallow along with the toasted outside. If you’re making s’mores, another camper can remove the marshmallow for you by sandwiching two graham crackers around it, pulling the roasted marshmallow off the stick or skewer.

Roasting marshmallows around a campfire is a great way for family and friends to come together after a long day of rafting on the river. By following these tips you and your family and friends can have a safe and enjoyable experience roasting marshmallows while creating memories to last a lifetime.


Will Hanke is a float trip fanatic and an Amazon bestselling author. He owns Red Canoe Media, an Internet marketing agency south of St. Louis. When he's not geeking out, he's probably on the river in, yes, a red canoe.

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