Homemade Mallo Cups

homemade mallo cups / a thousand threads
Over the past few years, mallo cups have come to be synonymous with road trips in our house.  Already, there’s something about road trips and junk food that’s a given — you just can’t be cooped up in a car (or plane) for hours at a time without a little sugar to keep you company– but these days there’s just one thing I crave as soon as I get in the car, and that’s a mallo cup.

It might have something to do with my obsession with marshmallows (and especially marshmallow fluff omg… don’t judge) but mallo cups are the best.  Gooey, marshmallow-ey but with an even better texture — I’m telling you, my love of these things is so great that it even knocks out my hatred of shredded coconut.

The power of the mallo cup is a serious thing.  So when I came upon a recipe for what looked like a homemade version, I ran right to the kitchen and made it the same day…

homemade mallo cups / a thousand threads
I have to admit that when I took a look at this recipe, I was a little intimidated, but once I got going on it I realized that these things are seriously not as hard as they look (really — I’m not just saying it, I promise).

Give them a try and you might be surprised too. It wouldn’t be nearly as true to the mallo cup I love (this one is exactly the same — but better, that melty creamy, high quality milk chocolate wins the day) but I’m thinking of trying my hand at a dark chocolate version next.

homemade mallo cups / a thousand threads
Homemade Mallo Cups
Adapted from Hand-Crafted Candy Bars

1 batch soft vanilla nougat, below
2 batches tempered milk chocolate, below
shredded coconut to garnish

1 // Place 24 paper or foil cupcake liners in cupcake or muffin pans.

2 // When preparing the nougat, add the coconut and set aside.

3 // Have the tempered chocolate at 90°F/34°C. Using a small paintbrush or pastry brush, paint the inside of the cupcake liners with a thick coating of chocolate. Allow the chocolate cupcake liners to set in the refrigerator for 5 to 10 minutes. Fill each about half full with the coconut-nougat mixture, leaving a margin of chocolate along the top edge so the final coat of chocolate will adhere to it and seal the cups. Return the cups to the refrigerator for another 5 minutes, then top each with the finishing layer of chocolate and refrigerate again for 5 minutes to set. Decorate or sprinkle with shredded coconut. Remove from the muffin pan, and serve the cups with or without the liners.

If needed, store in an airtight container, a zip-top plastic bag, or plastic wrap at room temperature for 2 days, in the refrigerator for 1 week, or freezer for 1 month.

homemade mallo cups / a thousand threads
Soft Vanilla Nougat

3 cups/355 g ice
3 egg whites
1 cup/200 g sugar
1/2 cup/120 ml corn syrup
1/4 cup/60 ml water
2 vanilla beans, scraped and seeded or 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup/95 g sweetened, shredded coconut

1 // Put the ice in a medium bowl and set aside.

2 // Put the egg whites in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and set aside.

3 // Stir together the sugar, corn syrup, and water in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat and continue to boil without stirring until the mixture reaches 235°F/114°C on a candy thermometer, about 6 minutes.

4 // Begin whipping the egg whites on low speed for about 1 minute, just until they are a little frothy. Continue cooking the sugar syrup until it reaches 245°F/118°C. (If your temperature goes higher, shock the syrup by setting the pan in the bowl of ice.) Pour a splash of the syrup into the egg whites, aiming for the space between the rim of the bowl and the whisk attachment. Continue whisking as you slowly add the rest of the hot sugar syrup. Increase the mixer speed to medium and whip until the nougat reaches a full, frothy foam, about 2 minutes.

5 // Add the vanilla seeds and salt to the nougat. Keep whipping until it forms stiff peaks, about 3 minutes more. Allow to cool in the bowl. Once it is at room temperature, it’s ready to use in candy-bar production.

If needed, store in an airtight container at room temperature for 3 days or in the freezer for 2 months. (If frozen, thaw an hour in the refrigerator before using.)

Tempered Milk Chocolate

3 cups/355 g ice
3 cups/465 g chopped high-quality milk chocolate

1 // Put the ice in a large bowl and set aside.

2 // Reserve a handful of the chopped chocolate, and melt the rest gently in a stainless-steel bowl set over simmering water until it reaches 115°F/45°C on a candy thermometer. Remove the bowl from the heat. Wipe the bottom of the bowl with a dry cloth to prevent water from splashing onto the work surface.

3 // Sprinkle the reserved chocolate into the melted chocolate and stir. Cool the chocolate by placing over the bowl of ice for a few seconds at a time, removing it, stirring until smooth, and repeating until the temperature drops to 82°F/31°C.

4 // Heat the chocolate again by placing the chocolate bowl back over the simmering water for 30 seconds to 1 minute at a time. Once its temperature rises to 89°F/34°C, the chocolate is ready to use.


  1. Posted May 16, 2013 at 9:40 am | Permalink

    These look so awesome! Yum!

  2. Mom
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 10:08 am | Permalink

    OMG Laicie. These are pretty cool. I’m very impressed ! Now bring me and dad a sample?…please (-:

  3. Posted May 16, 2013 at 10:22 am | Permalink

    Ohhhh these look dangerous! Thanks for sharing!

  4. Posted May 16, 2013 at 10:52 am | Permalink

    This.is.amazing. I can’t believe I’ve never heard of these before! Really, you had me at ‘nougat’ 😉

  5. Posted May 16, 2013 at 1:53 pm | Permalink

    Oh my word, these look incredible!

  6. Posted May 17, 2013 at 8:49 am | Permalink

    I’m all about sweet snacks on road trips! but the truth is, I could indulge with these for no good reason!

  7. Posted May 17, 2013 at 10:37 am | Permalink

    I wish we were neighbors so I could snack on all these tasty treats you make 🙂

  8. Posted May 17, 2013 at 9:03 pm | Permalink

    Oh… my… word, these look INCREDIBLE.

  9. Posted May 22, 2013 at 10:44 am | Permalink

    OMG these look deliciously fun. I have a party this weekend. Could I use mini cupcakes liners/mini cupcake pan, and make a load of these. What do you think

    • Laicie
      Posted May 22, 2013 at 11:27 am | Permalink

      Ooh they would be perfect!! And I love the idea for minis – the regular size was kind of huge! I think the trick will be to paint the chocolate pretty far up the sides so you can still fit a good amount of nougat… but I’m sure they’ll be amazing. You’ll have to let me know how it goes!

  10. Posted May 23, 2013 at 2:10 am | Permalink

    I love these! Mallo Cups are a nostalgic candy for me–I used to eat them as a child, but I don’t often find them in stores anymore. I’ll have to try my hand at making them!

    • Laicie
      Posted May 23, 2013 at 8:42 pm | Permalink

      You should!! This recipe is so perfectly tasty. (And we always seem to find them at gas stations… just in case you’re on the hunt!)

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