How to Make Campfire S'mores

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The heat from a toasted marshmallow softens chocolate but doesn't completely melt it.
The heat from a toasted marshmallow softens chocolate but doesn't completely melt it. (Image: KarenUpNorth/iStock/Getty Images)

Start to Finish: 5 to 10 minutes Servings: 4 Difficulty Level: Beginner

From the origin of s'mores in 1927 to the present day, the sweet, gooey dessert has reigned as the ultimate campfire food. With just three basic ingredients -- graham crackers, chocolate and marshmallows -- s'mores are easy for children to make and simple to adjust for more adult palates.

Ingredients

  • 4 whole graham crackers
  • 2 milk chocolate bars
  • 4 large marshmallows

Directions

Break all the graham crackers in half to make eight squares. Lay four squares on a flat surface. Snap the chocolate bars in half, resulting in four squares. Put half a chocolate bar on a graham cracker.

Toast marshmallows over the campfire. Use a metal toasting fork or a straightened wire clothes hanger at least 30-inches long, with one marshmallow per toasting implement. Wait until your fire has produced glowing coals, and hold the marshmallows over the coals for a caramelized, crunchy, golden exterior. Rotate frequently for even roasting. If you prefer a charred exterior, hold the marshmallow over the flames. Blow it out as soon as it catches on fire. The time it takes to toast marshmallows depends on the strength of the fire and coals, and the level of doneness you desire. The closer your hold the marshmallow to the heat source, the faster it will toast.

Keep the cooked marshmallow on the toasting fork and rest it on top of the chocolate square. Place a graham cracker on top, and, applying just enough pressure to keep it all together, slowly pull the toasting fork out of the marshmallow. This prevents the burnt or sticky fingers that usually result in removing the marshmallows with your hands.

Tips

Spearing your marshmallow on a toasting fork with two tines provides more stability and less of chance that your marshmallow will slip off into the fire.

Milk chocolate is the traditional s'mores ingredient, but dark chocolate or white chocolate work just as well. Try chocolate bars with added ingredients, such as nuts or fruits, to subtly change the flavor profile.

Create your own twist to s'mores by adding ingredients. Spread crackers with peanut butter and jam or a hazelnut-chocolate spread under the chocolate layer. Add slices of banana or strawberries for fruity s'mores. Just make sure the hot marshmallow is placed directly on the chocolate so it melts. Chocolate graham crackers or cookies are tasty alternatives to the regular crackers.

Warnings

Create a wire hanger toasting stick by untwisting the wire at the top and straightening the hanger, leaving the hook as-is to use as a handle, but make absolutely sure it is pure, clean metal. Do not use hangers with rust on them and check for a plastic coating, as dangerous chemicals are released by burning plastic.

Don't use a dry wood branch to toast marshmallows. Most campgrounds don't allow the cutting of green branches from trees, and dried wood burns too easily.

Keep a bucket of water nearby for basic campfire safety and to douse any marshmallows with stubborn flames that are hard to blow out.

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