Macarons are light-as-a-feather French confections that can be assembled pulling from a mix-and-match palette of sweet fillings and bases. Our recipe for this sophisticated French treat offers variations for vanilla bean, chocolate, peanut, coconut, raspberry and pistachio macarons.
- Yield: Makes 35 macarons
Source: Martha Stewart Living, January 2009
For the Macarons
- 1 cup confectioners' sugar
- 3/4 cup almond flour
- 2 large egg whites, room temperature
- Pinch of cream of tartar
- 1/4 cup superfine sugar
Suggested Fillings for Macarons
- Chocolate: Chocolate Ganache
- Coconut: 1 cup Ombre Swiss Meringue Buttercream, mixed with 1/3 cup angel-flake coconut.
- Peanut: Chocolate Ganache, or store-bought dulce de leche, jam, or peanut butter.
- Pistachio: 1 cup Ombre Swiss Meringue Buttercream, mixed with 1/3 cup finely chopped pistachios.
- Raspberry: 3/4 cup seedless raspberry jam
- Vanilla Bean: 1 cup Pineapple Buttercream, 1 cup Ombre Swiss Meringue Buttercream, or 3/4 cup storebought jam or preserves
Pulse confectioners' sugar and almond flour in a food processor until combined. Sift mixture 2 times.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Whisk whites with a mixer on medium speed until foamy. Add cream of tartar, and whisk until soft peaks form. Reduce speed to low, then add superfine sugar. Increase speed to high, and whisk until stiff peaks form, about 8 minutes. Sift flour mixture over whites, and fold until mixture is smooth and shiny.
Transfer batter to a pastry bag fitted with a 1/2-inch plain round tip, and pipe 3/4-inch rounds 1 inch apart on parchment-lined baking sheets, dragging pastry tip to the side of rounds rather than forming peaks. Tap bottom of each sheet on work surface to release trapped air. Let stand at room temperature for 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees. Bake 1 sheet at a time, rotating halfway through, until macarons are crisp and firm, about 10 minutes. After each batch, increase oven temperature to 375 degrees, heat for 5 minutes, then reduce to 325 degrees.
Let macarons cool on sheets for 2 to 3 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack. (If macarons stick, spray water underneath parchment on hot sheet. The steam will help release macarons.)
Sandwich 2 same-size macarons with 1 teaspoon filling. Serve immediately.
Coconut: Substitute 2 tablespoons desiccated unsweetened coconut for 2 tablespoons of the almond flour, and add 1/2 teaspoon rum; sprinkle with additional coconut before baking.
Peanut: Substitute an equal amount finely ground unsalted peanuts (peanut flour) for the almond flour.
Pistachio: Substitute 1/2 cup finely ground unsalted pistachios (pistachio flour) for 1/2 cup of the almond flour, and add 2 to 3 drops forest-green gel-paste food coloring.
Raspberry: Add 1 tablespoon fresh raspberry puree, strained, plus 3 to 4 drops dusty-rose gel-paste food coloring.
Vanilla Bean: Add 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract or seeds from 1/2 vanilla bean, split and scraped, pod reserved for another use. For filling you can use our Pineapple Buttercream from the Pineapple Dacquoise.