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To the outdoor enthusiasts, summer sensationalists, and culinary adventurists that can’t wait to sink their teeth into another ooey-gooey mass of s’mores during the next bonfire, get ready to gobble up this article!
The classic trio of chocolate, marshmallow, and graham cracker is a cherished combination amongst many summer-lovin’ folks.
It will forever remain a top choice, and we will worship its impeccable simplicity until the chill of autumn stifles the final embers of the bonfire flames!
While the classic version holds the No. 1 place in our hearts, we can have some fun elsewhere! We can’t help but think outside the graham cracker square with some unexpected new ways to serve this sweet treat.
To start, you can certainly make your own homemade marshmallows and graham crackers to amplify the traditional variety, but we can be even more playful with the serving ideas as well.
Yes, we’re talking about fun and flavorful versions of s’mores here, that are all just as easy to assemble as the original.
So, all you fearless foodies out there, grab your campfire fork and gather ‘round!
Here’s a quick look at 10 s’mores makeovers that are sure to leave your adventurous family and friends lining up for more.
Top 10 Easy S’mores Makeovers for the Summer
1. Birthday Cake
It doesn’t have to be your birthday to enjoy the sugary-sweet flavors of a birthday cake!
Bang Candy Company Rainbow Chocolate Bark, available from Mouth
Start by replacing the typical milk chocolate bar with a white chocolate bar, or choose a swirly-twirly rainbow version, like Bang Candy Company’s Rainbow Chocolate Bark, available from Mouth.
And there are some really fun options for marshmallows, other than plain! To start, you can tint your homemade marshmallow with a bright food coloring and mix in some sprinkles.
Wondermade Birthday Cake Marshmallows, available from Mouth
If you’d rather stick with a store-bought option, you’ll feel so festive adorning your graham crackers with these Wondermade Birthday Cake Marshmallows, also available from Mouth.
For a fun spread, literally the icing on the cake, slather one of the crackers with a generous dollop of our homemade vanilla buttercream frosting.
No need to light any birthday candles here – the bonfire has all of the flames you could ever wish for!
Next up, let’s not forget sinfully sweet caramel in our s’mores makeover madness!
A touch of caramel flavor will add some depth and excitement that’s not found in the original, and there are a couple of unexpected ways to incorporate this ingredient in your favorite campfire dessert.
A generous tablespoon of a thick homemade sauce spread on the graham base is enough to transport the classic to a caramelized paradise.
Just be warned that you’ll create an even messier and stickier dessert with this delish addition – have wet napkins or towels at the ready!
But let’s not only think of what we can update in the filling… we’re eyeing up the cookie, as well.
And what’s one of the best kinds of caramel cookie out there? A stroopwafel!
Rip Van Wafels Dutch Caramel and Vanilla Stroopwafels, set of 12, available on Amazon
This small Dutch treat is a round cookie sandwich made with two layers of incredibly thin, crisp waffles and a caramel filling. The ideal size for a handheld s’more, these provide a playful replacement for the graham crackers.
Purchase Rip Van Wafels Dutch Caramel and Vanilla Stroopwafels on Amazon now. And for those of you not consuming wheat products, this brand also makes a gluten-free version.
3. Chocolate-Covered Strawberry
Lucky for us, the summer season provides a near-constant supply of ripe, juicy strawberries.
If you adore chocolate-covered strawberries, you’ll have an easy time making this version of s’mores when the strawberry bushes are basking in the bright sunlight.
If you aren’t growing your own – and you can find instructions to do just that on our sister site, Gardener’s Path – go to one of your local farmers markets to find the best produce. You might also live near a farm where you can pick your own strawberries!
When you have your fresh stash at the ready, all you need to do is thinly slice one or two strawberries and place them on top of your chocolate square before finishing it off with a toasty marshmallow. Or replace the chocolate square with a generous spoonful of warm ganache!
4. Cinnamon Sugar
Do you long for the taste of cinnamon and sugar toast, but with an even sweeter twist?
You’ll be obsessed with making our recipe for cinnamon s’mores all summer long!
Cinnamon S’mores – Get the Recipe Now
A few simple updates to the classic recipe are all you need – buy store-bought cinnamon graham crackers from the store, and just sprinkle a little ground cinnamon on top of the chocolate.
Everyone will be comforted by the warming spice of cinnamon combined with melted chocolate and marshmallow.
Our recipe is intentionally designed to be made indoors with your oven’s broiler, to be enjoyed throughout the chilly winter months or on a rainy day.
But don’t let us stop you from staying outside when the weather is nice! You can easily make this version as you would with any bonfire s’mores.
Want a jolt of java with your s’mores for the adults? Love that deep, bitter edge of coffee flavor?
Make way for chocolate-covered espresso beans!
We like to mash a few into small pieces and sprinkle them on our graham crackers instead of the typical square of milk chocolate.
The flavor is so well-balanced combined with the sugary marshmallow, and they also provide an extra layer of crunchy texture.
Dewey’s Bakery Brownie Crisp Cookies, available on Amazon
While they’re not too common in stores anymore, try to hunt down chocolate-flavored graham crackers for this pairing for the ultimate chocolate and coffee combo. And send some to us!
In the meantime, these Brownie Crisp Cookies from Dewey’s Bakery will do just the trick! They’re available now on Amazon.
6. Jelly, Jam, Preserves
Are you passionate about jarring your own jellies, jams, or preserves? Or maybe you have some half-used jellies sitting in your fridge, nearly forgotten?
Bring them all out during your next bonfire!
Spiced Blueberry Jam – Get the Recipe Now
A little goes a long way – just a small spoonful of your favorite variety provides concentrated fruity flavors to this summertime chocolatey dessert.
If you’re currently searching for recipe inspiration, we have so many homemade options for you to try.
At your leisure, peruse our collection of sauces and spreads to find something sweet.
If you’re interested in our current obsessions among those on this list, we can’t get enough of our spiced blueberry jam recipe, and we think our fresh fig jam would also be the perfect seasonal accompaniment to a classic summertime treat.
Looking for a batch of s’mores with some pucker power?
A smear of homemade coconut sugar lemon curd on one of the crackers would be delightful, and so sunny and summery!
White chocolate also pairs wonderfully with lemon, providing a light and lovely version of this treat with an acidic boost that we think many in the group might really enjoy.
Markham and Fitz Lemon and Poppyseed Chocolate Bar, available from Mouth
You can buy a plain white chocolate bar, or choose something more unique with extra lemony flavor, like this Markham and Fitz Lemon and Poppyseed Chocolate Bar, available from Mouth.
8. Mint Chocolate
Prefer the fresh taste of mint?
Why not whip up a batch of homemade candy cane marshmallows?
We melt down peppermint candies to make the base for the marshmallows for a refreshing minty flavor. And the kids will love seeing the swirls and twirls of red food coloring throughout the marshmallows!
You can assemble them with chocolate graham crackers or wafer cookies and dark chocolate.
Or better yet, pair them with our recipe for peppermint bark, or try Bang Candy Company’s Sparkle Peppermint Bark that’s available from Mouth!
Bang Candy Company Sparkle Peppermint Bark, available from Mouth
It will taste like Christmas in July… just without the cold and chilly blizzards.
What a relief that is!
9. Nut Butter
Do you love the taste of peanut butter and chocolate? What about hazelnuts and chocolate?
This idea is for all you crazy nuts out there!
Use your favorite variety of nut butter as a spreadable component on the graham cracker.
What’s nice about this type of condiment is that the consistency is usually thick enough to not make a huge and sticky mess – unlike caramel sauce or jam. (Sorry!)
We have an amazing recipe for a homemade Nutella spread, made with a delicate balance of toasted hazelnuts, cocoa powder, maple syrup, vanilla, and a pinch of salt.
Big Spoon Roasters Chocolate Sea Salt Almond Butter, available from Mouth
But there are so many delicious store-bought options if you don’t have the time or the means to make your own from scratch, such as this chocolate sea salt almond butter from Big Spoon Roasters. You can buy it now on Mouth.
Following a vegan diet need not exclude you or your guests from enjoying this summertime treat.
There are plenty of vegan-friendly alternatives to make and buy that don’t include any ingredients derived from animals.
Dandies Vegan Marshmallows, pack of 2, available on Amazon
While traditional marshmallow recipes utilize gelatin as one of the main components, you can readily purchase vegan marshmallows. Dandies makes fluffy and delicious vegan vanilla marshmallows, which are available to buy in different package quantities on Amazon.
And there are many brands of chocolate that are vegan – look closely at the label on the packaging to ensure there are no animal-based ingredients.
Endangered Species Chocolate, set of 6, available on Amazon
Endangered Species Chocolate has an entire line of vegan and gluten-free options. Have fun with their assorted variety pack, available now on Amazon.
As for the graham crackers, you’ll also have an equal level of success finding a vegan option! Kinnikinnick S’moreables makes classic graham crackers that are vegan, and they are also free of gluten. Purchase a few boxes now on Amazon.
Kinnikinnick S’moreables, available on Amazon
You can also forgo the typical graham cracker and make our vegan shortbread cookies! They will make a crisp and beautiful base for your preferred fillings.
Tasty Twists on a Classic
Try something new on camping trips and at holiday barbecues this season, and make your own unique flavor combinations based on the above suggestions.
Let your favorite flavors be your guide, or be inspired by a unique ingredient you came across at the grocery store.
There are so many delicious things that you can create beyond the standard version that you learned to make at camp when you were a kid. So go forth, enjoy the summer, and feast on delicious treats!
Which flavorful riff on this tasty campfire classic will you choose? Don’t forget to share your favorites with us in the comments below.
If you’ve eaten the very last s’more, and are craving other kinds of fun chocolate recipes, we know you’ll enjoy making the following finger food delights for your next crowd-pleasing dessert:
- Chocolate Crunchies with Cranberries and Pecans
- Homemade Chocolate Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches
- Healthier Banana Coconut Dark Chocolate Chunk Buckwheat Cookies
Photos by Meghan Yager and Fanny Slater, © Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details. Product photos via Mouth and Amazon. Uncredited photos via Shutterstock. Originally published on November 14, 2014. Last updated on June 7, 2023.
About Nikki Cervone
Nikki Cervone is an ACS Certified Cheese Professional and cheesemonger living in Pittsburgh. Nikki holds an AAS in baking/pastry from Westmoreland County Community College, a BA in Communications from Duquesne University, and an MLA in Gastronomy from Boston University. When she's not nibbling on her favorite cheeses or testing a batch of cupcakes, Nikki enjoys a healthy dose of yoga, wine, hiking, singing in the shower, and chocolate. Lots of chocolate.
45 thoughts on “Top 10 Easy S’mores Makeovers for Fun Summer Bonfires”
These were some of the best ideas of smores that I have ever come by. We do the same old same old smores every year at our trailer and this year we were trying to find some things to spice it up a little but but couldn’t think of much, so I will definitely be bringing this list with us next year and letting the kids have fun 🙂
Anyone with a sweet tooth would enjoy all of these creations! Thanks for sharing this 🙂
My favorite flavor would probably be caramel, I find that it goes well with the gooey-ness of the marshmallow very well!
Such beautiful photos, you’re making me crave a camping trip despite this frigid autumn air…
These are really creative ideas for s’mores! I’ve never thought about pairing them with fruits–I’ve always been a traditionalist (one big, half-eaten charred marshmallow on hershey’s milk chocolate between two stale graham crackers…mmm, memories 😉 ) but I’m definitely a fan of these twists!
These are neat ideas! I’m determined to try to find Caramello chocolate bars now so I can attempt the caramel s’mores recipe. In the past, I’ve made s’mores with Nutella. If you’re curious, the Nutella is spread onto both graham crackers, then the roasted marshmallow is put in between the two crackers. While this doesn’t sound like an ingenious idea, it’s very delicious and very simple to make. I also noted that you took the toasted coconut marshmallow recipe from the Barefoot Contessa and I nearly flipped. I love Ina Garten, so ‘ll have to try that recipe, too. 🙂 Nice work!
I’ve always been fascinated by s’mores and how you make them as a non American. I will definitely be telling my friends that there are other ways to make s’mores more contemporary and as a chocoholic, there will be triple decker ones with chocolate in each layer.
I think the mint chocolate one will go down well and also the coffee flavored one, but an sure I can discover other combinations, chocolate based of course. Maybe some orange chocolate?
The caramel s’more shown here is mouth watering. Why do you have to do that to us? It looks so tasty. I’m stuck to a low carb diet for the rest of my life for my own survival, but that doesn’t mean I wouldn’t jump at the chance to try one of those every so often. Thanks for sharing this article.
Now I can’t wait for summer time again! These recipes sound so delicious, especially the cherry s’mores and the toasted coconut s’mores. I have tried to get creative with s’mores before, but they never worked out too well. I have tried using different kinds of candy bars like Mr. good bars and peanut butter cups. They were alright, but these look so much better.
As a seasoned camper, I can tell you from experience that the thinner chocolate bars work better. The marshmallow should be hot enough to soften the chocolate, but not melt it. That’s the key to a perfect smores. The last thing you want is a chocolate soup sandwich dripping everywhere.
I think there is always room to be adventurous with food and s’mores is no exception! It just gives me an excuse to make s’mores more often. The ones on my ‘must try’ list are the toasted marshmallow, caramel and coffee. I get so excited when I find more ways to combine my favorite foods.
Kindly do tell this is not just restricted to camping trips alone?…because am thinking of doing something in the kitchen in this regard…spice things up a little bit…caramel, coffee, chocolate, peanut butter…the thoughts in my head…a light bulb just got on 😉
Yummy and more yummy, this post has me craving chocolate or just smores so bad now. I think a mint combo one would be really good. I am a big fan of chocolate minty things.
I can;t believe you have so many varieties of marshmallow! Here in the UK, we just have the regular pink and white variety and mini-mallows for hot chocolate drinks. I’m really intrigued by strawberry marshmallows – do they actually taste anything like the real thing?
These look and sound so delicious! My daughter has never had a s’more before, so I am super excited to try some for her! Okay, maybe more for me. But she can be my excuse LOL.
Thanks for sharing!
This page just made me so hungry. I never really knew that there were other ways to make s’mores that looked and tasted so good. I tried the mint chocolate variation and it was very delicious. My friends also loved it when I made it for them over the weekend.
As a fan of traditional s’mores, this article opened up my eyes to more possibilities! I will be going on a camping trip in the near future, so I will make sure to bring some cherries! The caramel variation had my mouth drooling. To be honest, I am about to head to the grocery store to buy some chocolate and marshmallows.
I LOVE this! My favourite thing is taking existing staples & altering them according to taste. My favourite one you suggested? Cherries. I’d love to use cherries in a can. I think the syrup would accompany the texture of the smore.
For years we would bring an eclectic mix of chocolates with our ‘s’mores kit’ when we went camping or to a friend’s cabin. I would bring really dark high cacao chocolate & the kids would bring Snickers, Rolos, & Almond Joys. It gave the s’mores a really interesting twist. Then a friend of mine turned me on to gourmet marshmallows which I’ll be utilizing this summer.
Wow, I don’t even really like s’mores very much and these look good even to me. I wouldn’t have thought about adding so many different items and flavors. I’d considered trying flavored marshmallows, but this post goes all out. My daughter will love this. She loves s’mores and most of these flavors and additions will appeal to her.
This is definitely a great idea for dressing up a common campfire treat. Nicely done.
I love switching out ingredients, and these are some fantastic ideas. I especially love the coconut, mint chocolate, and caramel varieties. I’m not locked into using graham crackers, so I might use the chocolate graham crackers, or simply swap them out for solid chocolate cookies, such as the ones I use for semi-homemade ice cream sandwiches. If I used chocolate cookies, I would definitely consider going with the cherry or strawberry filling. I have a feeling this is going to be a sweet Summer, thanks for the suggestions.
The peanut butter s’mores sound the best to me as a lover of Reese’s Peanut Butter cups. I enjoy experimenting with various combinations, but I haven’t quite gone through the lengths of experimentation as you have. I’ll definitely take this knowledge with me the next time I go camping, thank you! 🙂
Oh, man! My mouth is definitely watering after reading these. It’s taking every muscle to avoid going online shopping or the store to sink my teeth into these goodies sooner!
I’ve actually never had s’mores! It’s not a ‘thing’ around where I live, mostly because marshmallows in general aren’t a big deal around here. But the though of all those cookies, marshmallows and all that chocolate with maybe some caramel – somebody stop me! There was recently an ‘American week’ event at one of the supermarket chains, and I seriously regret not getting a bag of marshmallows for a sleepover I went to. At least we had pizza…
I never thought about coffee flavored marshmallow treats. The last time I made anything like this was when I went to summer camp as a kid. I already have a sweet tooth and this article is giving me so many ideas. Rolos? Yes please.
Oh no, i remember these. Reminds me of girl scouts and camping. We would make them out side by the fire at night.I guess because of the marshmallows and toasting them. I like them brown and my friend always like them black.
You’ve got so many different combos here for this. The last one looks like it would be my favorite. What I am wondering is do they make healthy marshmallows? I never thought to make your own and they even have vegan recipes. I had just always thought of this as junk food.
I would probably use a dark chocolate or carob. Trader Joe’s has really healthy chocolate. She said a “Rolo”, Oh no low. I have not had that in an eon. I’ve given up these kind of things. It costs a little more money to buy healthier chocolates but there is less guilt. Too many chemicals for me.
I love these ideas! They take the classic camp-fire food and turn it up into something new and different. My favorite idea is the mint chocolate one; I’m a huge fan of it and would bet anything it tastes great on a s’more. There’s enough ideas here to keep everyone happy no matter what their tastes in sweets are, and anyone who thinks you can’t teach an old food new tricks (that was a terrible comparison, I’m so sorry) will be proven wrong when they see all the neat ideas layed out here. I don’t go out much, but next time I have a fire going I’m certainly going to give a few of these a shot. Thanks for sharing!
Darn, I LOVE s’mores. They remind me of childhood summers, sitting around the campfire with my pappy and my six brothers. We used to have so much fun. Makes me want to bring my own kids camping- once I try make some smores of course.
I think they’d love the peanut butter s’mores. I would be more partial to the cinammon, myself.
I am not going to lie, all of these variations sound delicious. That toasted coconut version sounds the best, though. I need to try it ASAP. And since I’m a huge fan of cinnamon and chocolate together, that’s another must-try. Thanks for all of the ideas!
The mint one makes my mouth water…YUM. I’m thinking a lazy way would be Andes mints! They melt so fast that it would be ooey gooey and so messy and delicious. The coconut also makes me drool, though. Maybe I’ll just run to the store really fast. Thanks for the post and the weight I’m going to gain!
My sweet tooth is tingling!!!!!! Ugh, I find the caramel idea to be the best. I think it would fit perfectly with the whole texture and feel. The oddest to me would probably be the strawberry. It just seems out of place, but I love strawberries and would love to see how it is altogether. I like all these ideas however and look forward to trying the upgraded versions lol.
All of these look so yummy! I love smores. Does anyone else like their marshmallow burnt or is that just me? As far as the mint ones, I was thinking you could use an Andes chocolate mint? I think that would be delicious! Also I’ve never even thought about putting lemon with chocolate. Is that a popular combination?
Those photos ignite such a great memory of my first “real” s’more experience! I can just smell it. So melty and up close and personal – with a little bit of charred marshmallow. The addition of caramel interests me the most… I definitely gotta try that. I have never been camping (YET), however I did enjoy a backyard-campfire-marshmallow-session. We went totally traditional, but I did want to add something different but I was told my first time must be plain! My family would usually just toast marshmallows atop some chocolate and graham crackers in the toaster oven… I was impressed when I was 5. The flavor of real smokiness was missing, indeed. The funny thing about s’mores is I don’t even like marshmallows!
My head is spinning with all of these different varieties. I have never heard of these flavors of marshmallows so I will definitely be trying them. I think I only seen the cinnamon in the store. But I would love to try the lemon and cherry kinds since I love lemons and I am curious to how fruit tastes with marshmallows.
The mint and peanut butter ones sound amazing. However, I’m not a huge fan of fruit and chocolate so I think I’ll pass on some of these recipes. However, the rest of them make me want to plan a camping trip for the sole purpose of making s’mores.
When I’m at home, I actually like throwing just a little bit of vanilla ice cream in the middle of it all. The mixture of warm and cold is breathtaking.
Oh my gosh some of these sound so amazing! Here in Australia we don’t have graham crackers and smores is one of those things I really miss. I wish it would get popular down here, because some of these recipes sound really really good! Especially the caramel and the strawberry ones, strawberry would be a nice cool twist on a hot summer night!
I believe I’ve died and gone to blissful s’more heaven. Never in my wildest dreams would I’ve imagined there would be so many decedent and deliciously sweet ways to make s’mores. I consider myself to be a food connoisseur who’s willing to try almost anything once. And taking all the variations into careful consideration, I would have to say, the peanut butter and caramel recipes have skyrocketed to the top of my list. Thank you for the wonderful and creative recipe ideas.
Wow, so many great ideas for smores! It’s tradition for my family to eat s’mores when we go camping, it’s just part of our fun, but I have never thought to deter from the original idea. The s’mores you have mentioned sound so delicious, I think we will have to try some on our next trip. I love the fact that the s’mores you mention are still not difficult to make. There are some that I bet you could mix together, or have a double sized layered s’more with one part caramel, and second part peanut butter. You have opened my eyes and now I have to try some new ideas!
This was a perfect read since we have a camping trip coming up and always take ingredients for s’mores! One of the tricks we have been using for quite some time is to vary greatly from the tied-and-true classic graham cracker. Many other flavors can be brought in by changing out the cookie – some of our favorites include the Girl Scout cookie classics Samoas, Tagalongs, and Thin Mints. With all of these options, a separate piece of chocolate is not necessary, so it’s one less thing to pack if you’re camping! If you like a more classic flavor but are packing light, go for Fudge Stripes and marshmallows!
And here I was, thinking the traditional dessert sandwich is the only variation and that I should stick with it for the rest of my life. I never knew you can add so many different twists and flavorings to s’mores! This almost makes me think that if you have a summer-time BBQ party, you can turn this gooey dessert idea into a bar; with different toppings and taste options for people to choose from so they can make their own non-traditional (or traditional if they are like me) s’mores. How fun would that be, right?
A S’more’s bar! That’s actually a great idea. I might try it out this Christmas with my brother’s kids, I think this would be a great activity for them. I would love making my own variation and posting it on Instagram.
So very delicious, I absolutely love s’mores! I didn’t even think that you could use other ingredients to make them. The caramel ones I can’t even begin to talk about they just sound too good. I don’t care what time of year it is, I’ll make s’mores!
I love s’mores! I didn’t even think you could make them with other ingredients. The caramel one sounds too good. I don’t care what time of year it is, I’ll make s’mores!
I didn’t even know they made chocolate covered macadamia nuts, I know what I’m looking for for the next few minutes, I wonder how cheap I could get them on Amazon. I’ve never been a fan of s’mores as most are made with Hershey bars (ugh), so I might give these gourmet variations a try, especially the caramel. And, on a semi-unrelated note, I’m dying to try this out with Nutella.
S’mores are my favorite! Having some this evening, actually.
There’s nothing better than s’mores as a dessert in the summertime! These recipes are a great way to combine nostalgia with my gourmet tastes. I’ve been wondering what to use the coconut marshmallows I’ve seen in the grocery store for, so I especially like this idea. Also, using Rolos to get a caramel version is genius!
Well this just makes me angry at myself for having thought of putting caramel on s’mores before. Why had I not thought of that? It would be so easy to do too, so thank you for bringing that to mind. I also really like the mint chocolate idea, and that would work to spice things up a little bit, which is always nice. Summer is almost gone, but maybe we can squeeze one more s’more cookout in there for the caramel’s sake. Thanks again for sharing.