Add a pop of color to your snack table with these colorful Marshmallow Popcorn Balls! We’ll use fruit gelatin and marshmallows to coat popcorn, creating fruity flavored popcorn balls that kids and adults alike will love.
Now this is a seriously FUN recipe! Marshmallow Popcorn Balls with Jell-O are a fruity twist on a classic popcorn ball.
Both my kids and my husband went wild for these. The colors are vibrant. They’re big on fruit flavor. They’re sweet and crunchy and sticky. What’s not to love?!
Traditional popcorn balls use corn syrup, which binds the popcorn together and makes them sweet. For this recipe, we’ll use mini marshmallows instead. The marshmallows act like glue to keep the popcorn balls together, and the fruit-flavored gelatin adds both the color and the flavor.
I love how customizable these are. You can make them for holidays, for football/basketball watching events, for graduations, for birthdays—whatever colors you need, you can find a fruity flavored gelatin for it.
And best of all, this marshmallow popcorn ball recipe is easy! It’s just like making Rice Krispie treats, and it’s a fun project for kids to get involved with the rolling. In my opinion, it would be best for slightly older kids, as the marshmallow mixture is still a little warm from cooking.
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From left to right, I used: strawberry gelatin, orange gelatin, lime gelatin, blue raspberry gelatin
Tips for making marshmallow popcorn balls
- You’ll need to work relatively quickly to form the popcorn into balls after it is coated with the marshmallow mixture. You don’t need to rush but don’t go answering the phone while making these, either!
- Grease your hands to prevent the marshmallow mixture from sticking to your hands. You can either use a little butter or oil, or spray them lightly with cooking spray (I used cooking spray).
- One recipe makes 10–15 popcorn balls, depending on how big you roll them. You can split the marshmallow mixture in half if you want multiple colors from one batch.
- You can either pop your own popcorn or purchase pre-popped popcorn. I like the Valley Pop brand because the popcorn is a little smaller, so it’s easier to roll into balls. Skinny Pop is good, too. Salted or unsalted is just fine.
- A bag of mini marshmallows gets melted with some butter to create a sticky-sweet coating that holds the popcorn together into balls.
- Fruit-flavored gelatin (Jell-O brand or store brand) add both color and fruit flavor to the popcorn balls.
How to make marshmallow popcorn balls with Jell-O
Melt the butter in a large saucepan or pot over medium heat. Add the marshmallows, and continue cooking, stirring frequently, until the marshmallows are just melted.
Take the pan off the heat, and whisk in one small box (3 oz, or 4 servings) of fruit-flavored gelatin. I used strawberry here.
Pour the mixture over 12 cups of popped popcorn. Fold the mixture gently with a spatula to coat the popcorn.
Since the mixture will be quite sticky, you’ll need to grease your hands to form the popcorn into balls.
I sprayed one hand with cooking spray, then rubbed my hands together to coat them both. You could also use a little softened butter or vegetable oil.
Roll the popcorn mixture into balls roughly 3 inches in diameter. You’ll need to work fairly quickly as the marshmallow mixture will harden.
Place the balls on a silicone mat, parchment paper, or wax paper to cool completely.
Can I make marshmallow popcorn balls ahead of time?
Marshmallow Popcorn Balls are best enjoyed the same day that they are made.
Store any leftovers in a tightly covered dish. They will likely be ok the next day, but after that they become mushy/chewy.
You can use any fruit-flavored gelatin that you like for this recipe! Here are a few ideas for holidays and celebrations:
- Strawberry and lime gelatin for Christmas popcorn balls
- Orange and black cherry gelatin for Halloween popcorn balls
- Strawberry or cherry gelatin for Valentine’s Day popcorn balls
- Strawberry and blue raspberry gelatin for 4th of July popcorn balls
- Your school’s colors for graduations, sporting events, etc.
- Your team’s colors for sports watching parties
You can also make white popcorn balls by leaving out the fruit-flavored gelatin and making plain popcorn balls. They will still be sweet, but not fruit flavored.
As another option, you can roll the just-rolled popcorn balls in sprinkles for an even more festive treat!
How to split this recipe for multiple colors
Want to make one recipe with two colors of popcorn balls? Here’s how:
After the marshmallows melt, divide the mixture between two large bowls. Stir one half of a package (¼ cup) gelatin powder into one bowl, and another half package of a different color into the other bowl.
Stir each to combine, then add 6 cups of popcorn to the first bowl, then 6 cups of popcorn to the second bowl. Stir to combine, then form into balls.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes. Use one (10 oz) bag of large marshmallows. They will take longer to melt.
Use either unsalted or lightly salted popcorn. The popcorn should not be butter-flavored. Brands such as Valley Pop or plain Skinny Pop work well.
You can also use microwave popcorn (plain or lightly salted) or kernels that you pop yourself.
Melt the butter in a microwave-safe dish, then add the marshmallows. Microwave in 20 second intervals, stirring in between, until the marshmallows are melted.
I don’t recommend freezing popcorn balls. They will get mushy as they sit in the freezer and then defrost.
Yes! Replace the mini marshmallows with 10 ounces of marshmallow creme (a.k.a. marshmallow fluff). That’s roughly 1.5 (7-ounce) containers.
More treats made with marshmallows
Have you tried this recipe? Please leave a ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ rating and/or comment below!
Marshmallow Popcorn Balls
- 12 cups plain popcorn
- ¼ cup butter
- 1 (10 oz) package mini marshmallows
- 1 (3 oz) package fruit-flavored gelatin (such as Jell-O; use your favorite flavor)
- Cooking spray or more butter (for greasing your hands)
- Place a piece of parchment paper or wax paper on a work surface.
- Place the popcorn in a large bowl.
- Melt butter in a large saucepan. Add marshmallows and stir until melted. Stir in the fruit-flavored jello.
- Pour over the popcorn and stir to coat.
- Spray your hands with cooking spray or coat with a thin layer of butter or oil. Carefully roll the popcorn into balls (the mixture will still be warm). Place on the parchment paper or wax paper.
- Let cool and enjoy!