What is it about kids and summer, and sticky hands and wet bathing suits and itchy bug bites, and long days and lazy hours of board games and jigsaw puzzles, and car trips and ice cream drips…that leave you wanting more

Why does it seem that all of this free joy comes to a screeching halt when the bell rings on the first day of school? 

Is there any way we can carry over the starry nights, the smell of the crackling campfire and a few of the tasty treats from summer into fall?

Why not? Living in the Phoenix area means we are more likely to have backyard fires in the dead of winter when it’s 59 degrees outside, as opposed to the summer when it’s still at least 90 at night. 

To me, being an Arizona girl, s’mores represent fun, family gatherings, chilly nights and fall more so than summer. 

S’mores are a classic American childhood treat. The earliest printed recipe for a s’more was found in a 1927 Girl Scouts handbook called Tramping and Trailing with the Girl Scouts. 

Go Girl Scouts! 

You may be thinking, “Do we really need a recipe for s’mores? Graham cracker, toasted marshmallow, milk chocolate bar, done.” 

Classically, s’mores also require a campfire and a skewer. However, indulging in s’mores doesn’t always have to mean bonfire. The following are three fun kid-friendly twists on the classic s’more (and they can be fire free if, for you, s’more does not equal flames and a long, pokey stick.)

Whichever recipe you choose, and whether you use an open flame or the oven, grab your kids and get some sticky, gooey, chocolaty goodness going. They love s’more and so do you!

Author’s note: According to the 17-year-old in the house, the best s’more ever made was the day we ran out of chocolate bars and had to sub in a peanut butter cup. Amazing!

 

S’MORE CUPCAKES

  • 1 cup graham crackers, crushed
  • 1/4 cup melted butter or margarine
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • pinch of salt 
  • 1 box chocolate cake mix (prepared according to package directionswater, oil and eggs required for your cake mix)
  • 2 cups marshmallow fluff
  • 2 containers classic creamy home-style chocolate frosting
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar
  • mini marshmallows, mini chocolate chips and pieces of graham cracker, for garnish

Preheat oven to 350 F. Place 24 paper liners in muffin pan(s).

In a small bowl, blend graham cracker crumbs, butter, sugar and salt. Place 1 tablespoon of graham mixture in each paper liner. Press with bottom of the cup to form a crust.

Bake 5 minutes or until golden.

In a large bowl, combine cake mix with water, oil and eggs. Beat with an electric mixer at medium speed for 2 minutes. 

Spoon batter on top of graham cracker crust. Bake 14 to 18 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.Cool cupcakes on a wire rack for 5 minutes. Remove from pans and cool completely.

Using a melon baller, scoop out the center of cooled cupcakes. Place marshmallow fluff into a piping bag and pipe fluff into cupcakes. Or use 2 teaspoons to fill each cupcake with fluff mixture.

Whip frosting with powdered sugar until smooth and completely combined. Spread or pipe frosting on each cupcake and garnish.

 

S’MORE CONES

  • ice cream cones (waffle cones or sugar comes seem to work best) 
  • aluminum foil 
  • favorite s’mores toppings: peanut butter, mini marshmallows, chocolate chips, etc. You can even use sliced strawberries, sliced bananas, nutella, etc. 

Spread the inside of each cone with peanut butter or nutella, if you wish. Fill the cone with your favorite toppings (we used chocolate chips and mini marshmallows) and wrap each cone with foil. 

Oven directions: Bake at 350 F for 5-7 minutes. 

Grill directions: Place aluminum-wrapped cones on a heated grill for 5-10 minutes, turning occasionally. 

Campfire directions: Heat the foil-wrapped cones over a campfire for about 3-5 minutes, or until the chocolate and marshmallows have melted.

Carefully unwrap and enjoy!

 

S’MORE BARS

  • 1/4 cup butter or margarine
  • 1 10-ounce bag regular marshmallows
  • 1 13-ounce box Golden Graham cereal, or 8 cups
  • 2 cups chocolate chips, refrigerated
  • 2 cups mini marshmallows

In a large saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add marshmallows and keep stirring until the marshmallows are completely melted, forming a marshmallow sauce. Remove from heat. 

Add cereal and stir until well coated. We crushed about 2 cups of the cereal to give it more texture and had some smaller pieces.

Stir in 1 cup of mini marshmallows and 1 cup of chocolate chips.

Spread mixture in greased 9-by-13-inch baking pan using back of buttered spatula, or cooking-sprayed fingers to press down evenly. Sprinkle 1 cup of mini marshmallows and 1 cup of chocolate chips on top.

Let cool completely and cut into squares. 

In case these recipes aren’t enough to satisfy your s’more craving, or you’re out and about in Arcadia and don’t have time to go home and cook, here is a contemporary and classic s’more option for you!

 

S'MORE OPTIONS

Beckett’s Table (Contemporary)

Two crispy pieces of bacon, covered in rich chocolate, served with freshly torched homemade marshmallows, caramel-drizzled graham crackers, and a scoop of peanut butter cream. Pretty sure they are award-winning.

Frank and Albert’s at Arizona Biltmore (Classic)

Treat yourself to a homey and traditional –yet indulgent – dessert, or share the Biltmore Tradition between friends: graham crackers, Hershey’s chocolate bars and roasted marshmallows, tableside…Who can resist that?