Upgrade Store-Bought Ice Cream With A Few Roasted Marshmallows

Biting into a roasted marshmallow is an unparalleled experience. Toasted to caramelized perfection with the slightest bit of charring, its crispy exterior gives way to a sweet and fluffy center, making each bite a memorable one. Given the sheer pleasure of the experience, you can't blame us for wanting to impart some of this delicious whimsy into a less fanciful ingredient like store-bought ice cream. 

Store-bought ice cream makes a great base to easily experiment with flavor without the hassle of crafting the icy treat entirely from scratch, meaning you can include all sorts of additions. Yet, of the many ingredients that can transform store-bought ice cream, roasted marshmallows (big or small) just make sense. Unlike regular marshmallows, roasted marshmallows are softer and unlike marshmallow fluff, they boast more complexity. 

Any guidelines on flavor? While the choice is yours when it comes to picking a suitable ice cream, we suggest sticking to store-bought basics like vanilla or chocolate. One-flavor wonders like coffee, butterscotch, or pistachio can also pair quite well with roasted marshmallows. Otherwise, for maximum richness, go with loaded ice cream varieties like butter pecan or cookies and cream.

How to elevate ice cream with roasted marshmallows

There are countless ways to serve up ice cream and roasted marshmallows. Our favorite method, however, is by letting a pint soften and then swirling in a couple of marshmallows straight from the oven — because sometimes toasting over an open flame isn't feasible. Then, pop the ice cream back into the freezer to firm up before serving. Alternatively, roasted marshmallows can also take a more secondary role, served layered into an ice cream sandwich made with warm cookies, or drenched in coffee as a unique take on an affogato. 

As for what else you can include in (or with) the revamped ice cream, consider which flavors will be most complimentary. For example, you could draw inspiration from ice creams featuring marshmallows like Rocky Road, and work in toasted peanuts. Walnuts or hazelnuts can also work. To add extra texture, feel free to mix in chocolate chunks, bits of coffee cake, or crumbled cookies like gingerbread or graham crackers. You could even double down on the toasty goodness and top the ice cream with roasted banana chunks or a sprinkle of warm spices like cinnamon. Lastly, swirl or drizzle chocolate syrup or caramel sauce as an irresistibly decadent final touch.

Regardless of the flavor combinations you dream up and how you use roasted marshmallows to jazz up ice cream, you'll create a dessert that you can be proud of, even if you are using a store-bought pint.