Wonderfully delicate, melt-in-your-mouth pastries! Here's a reliable, small-batch French macaron recipe with both weight and volume measurements. Add a teaspoon of any flavor extract you like to the shells, and check this out for macaron filling ideas.
Or for a classic French buttercream, use the recipe from my first article on French macaron troubleshooting.
- 60 grams/2 ounces egg whites (from about two large eggs)
- 30 grams/3 tablespoons/1½ ounces granulated sugar
- 120 grams/4.5 ounces/1 cup + 1 tablespoon confectioner's sugar
- 78 grams/2.75 ounces/about ¾ cup almond flour
- pinch of salt
- few drops of lemon juice, white vinegar, or small pinch of cream of tartar, optional
- 1 teaspoon extract of choice, optional
- gel or powdered food coloring, optional*
- Line two baking pans with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
- If working with whole or slivered almonds: Grind almonds or almond flour with confectioner's sugar in a food processor for a couple of minutes. Stop the processor once or twice to redistribute the mixture.
- Place the egg whites and granulated sugar in a large bowl or bowl of a stand mixer with a whisk attachment. Whip on medium speed until foamy.
- Turn the speed up to medium-high (or high on a hand mixer). Beat the whites to a stiff meringue. The meringue will be shiny and create pointy peaks that curve over ever so slightly. The meringue will also stick to the bottom of the bowl if you flip it upside-down.
- Sift all the dry ingredients directly into the bowl with stiff meringue.
- Fold until the batter flows slowly and ribbons off the spatula. Mix slightly vigorous at first, then use classic folding strokes; scraping around the sides of the bowl, the up from underneath the mixture, and over through the top.
- Transfer to a piping bag (or large plastic bag) fitted with a small round tip.
- Pipe 1- to 2-inch rounds of batter onto a silicone baking mat or parchment paper. Hold the piping bag vertical, and about a quarter-inch above the pan.
- To help the tops of piped batter settle, very lightly tap underneath the pan.
- Optional: Let the piped macarons rest on the counter for 10-20 minutes.
- Bake at 300° F/150° C for 14-16 minutes, rotating the pan(s) once halfway through baking.
- Cool a few minutes before removing from baking mat or parchment.
- Fill and enjoy!
Adding Food Coloring to Macaron Shells
If you want to make the deeply-hued color macarons that line bakery cases, use gel food coloring, not liquid. The amount of liquid food coloring you need to get a deep color will ruin the nice, dry meringue you spent almost ten minutes making.
I also like commercial food color powders, like from Nature's Flavors. If you do choose a powder (I like them because many are plant-based), be sure it is designed for heat-exposure. Many of the plant-based powders available will brown in the oven.
Keywords: French macaron recipe, types of meringue