Coconut Macaroons

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These homemade coconut macaroons are sweet, moist, and chewy on the inside with a delightfully crisp exterior. They’re made with simple ingredients and are naturally gluten free cookies.Coconut macaroons

Welcome to Day 5 of Sally’s Cookie Palooza!

When done right, coconut macaroons taste like the irresistible coconut center of an Almond Joy or Mounds bar. When done wrong, they’re dry, crispy, and falling apart. My coconut macaroons are none of the sort. They’re sweet, moist, and chewy on the inside with a delightfully crisp exterior. They’re also gluten free!

Coconut macaroons

Coconut macaroons dipped in dark chocolate

How to Make Coconut Macaroons

Coconut macaroons are very easy cookies.

  • No need to chill the cookie dough
  • 1 bowl recipe
  • Just 5 simple ingredients

You need 4 and 3/4 cups of sweetened shredded coconut, which is a little less than a standard 14-ounce package. Make sure you measure your coconut accurately. Any more than 4 and 3/4 cups will give you dry and flimsy coconut macaroons. The other ingredients you’ll need are egg whites, vanilla extract, and sugar.

Coconut macaroon cookie dough

Coconut Macaroon Success Tips!

  1. Pulse your shredded coconut in a food processor to really break it down. This helps create a tighter and more compact coconut macaroon.
  2. Use a mixer. Beat the ingredients together with a mixer before folding in the coconut. Beating the dough creates deliciously fluffy volume, something whisking by hand just won’t get you.
  3. Make sure there is no remnants of egg yolk whatsoever. Just egg whites.
  4. Avoid over-baking. Only a precise 20 minutes, or until golden brown. Over-baking will dry out your coconut macaroons.
  5. Use a cookie scoop for perfectly shaped cookies. This medium cookie scoop works wonderfully. You’ll want a heaping 1.5 Tablespoons of dough per cookie.

Coconut macaroons drizzled with dark chocolate and topped with an almond! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

Coconut macaroons

Macaroons can be dressed up in so many different ways. While they’re absolutely incredible plain, I love dipping the bottoms in melted dark chocolate. Other varieties:

  • Chocolate almond macaroons: Pictured above! Instructions in the recipe notes.
  • Sprinkle loaded macaroons: Carefully fold 1/2 cup sprinkles in the coconut macaroon dough.
  • White chocolate cranberry macaroons: Add 3/4 cup of dried cranberries into the dough when you add the shredded coconut. Melt 4 ounces of pure white chocolate and drizzle over cooled macaroons.

Coconut macaroons

If you’re looking for a moist and chewy coconut macaroon with a toasty exterior, you’ve come to the right place. When you’re feeling fancy, dress the simple recipe up with any of my suggested varieties in the recipe notes.

Coconut Macaroons

Ingredients:

  • 4 large egg whites, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 4 and 3/4 cups sweetened shredded coconut (a little less than one 14-ounce package)*
  • optional: two 4-ounce semi-sweet chocolate bars (226g), finely chopped

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 325°F (163°C)Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. (Always recommended for cookies.) Set aside.
  2. Make the macaroons: In a large bowl using a handheld or stand mixer with paddle or whisk attachment, beat the egg whites, sugar, vanilla extract, and almond extract together on medium-high speed until foamy and the sugar is mostly dissolved, at least 2 minutes. Fold in the coconut, making sure the coconut is evenly moistened.
  3. Using a large cookie scoop, scoop a heaping 1.5 Tablespoons of the mixture and place onto prepared baking sheet at least 2 inches apart.
  4. Bake until lightly golden brown around the edges and tops, about 20 minutes. Make sure to rotate the pan to ensure even baking.
  5. Allow to cool for 10 minutes on the baking sheets before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
  6. Dip in chocolate: Melt the chopped chocolate in a double boiler or (carefully!) use the microwave. For the microwave, place the chocolate in a medium heat-proof bowl. Melt in 15 second increments, stirring after each increment until completely melted and smooth. Dip each cooled coconut macaroon in the melted chocolate and place back onto the baking sheets. Allow chocolate to set in the refrigerator or at room temperature.
  7. Macaroons stay fresh covered at room temperature for up to 3 days or in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.

Make ahead tip: Macaroons, with or without chocolate, freeze well up to 2-3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator. You can prepare the coconut macaroon dough up to 3 days in advance-- cover tightly and refrigerate until ready to bake.

Recipe Notes:

  1. I recommend pulsing the coconut in the food processor a few times to cut it down and break it up. Finer pieces of coconut make a tighter, more compact coconut macaroon that will hold its shape. Measure 4 and 3/4 cups after it's been pulsed.
  2. Chocolate almond coconut macaroons: Pictured above! Follow recipe above. Melt an additional 2 ounces of chocolate. (10 ounces in total.) Dip the bottoms of the cooled macaroons in the chocolate, as directed in the recipe above, then drizzle remaining chocolate on top of each. Press 1 almond into the tops.
  3. Sprinkle loaded macaroons: After mixing in the coconut, carefully fold 1/2 cup sprinkles in the coconut macaroon dough. Proceed with recipe.
  4. White chocolate cranberry macaroons: Add 3/4 cup of dried cranberries into the dough when you add the coconut. Melt 4 ounces of pure white chocolate and drizzle over cooled macaroons.

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© Sally’s Baking Addiction. All images & content are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without prior permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please re-write the recipe in your own words, or link back to this post for the recipe. Some of the links above are affiliate links, which pay me a small commission for my referral at no extra cost to you! Thank you for supporting Sally’s Baking Addiction.

197 Comments

  1. I just tried this at home and it so good!! They’re not too sweet so its prefect for me and my family as we don’t have sweet tooth like other people. Thank you so so much for sharing!!

  2. I did use a very small thin spatula….but I found that leaving them to cool longer than the suggested 5 min. also helped. I then tried parchment paper and had more success getting them off that way as well. Otherwise, they turned out pretty nice. Oh, and I also found some a bit crumbly so instead of dipping them into chocolate I piped the chocolate on the top which helped hold them together.

  3. For all the coconut lovers, it doesn’t get any better! They are absolutely uhhhmazing!!! And with 1/2 cup sugar!?! Wowww!!! I made them smaller almost 1 Tbsp and reduced almost to 12 minutes.

  4. Hi Sally!

    These are my absolute favourite!! My partner has a love of chocolate macaroons and I have yet to find a good recipe for them, could I convert this recipe? If so, any thoughts on how I would do it?

    Thanks!!

    Heather

  5. I’ve noticed most macaroon recipes call for beaten egg whites. I made macaroons this week with whole eggs beaten with a fork, and they came out with chewy centers and slightly crispy edges. What does beating egg whites add to macaroons? TIA, Sally! You’re my baking basics guru!

    1. I just made these as well but I did not use egg whites only because the recipe I used was incorrect they said to use 4 white eggs so thT is what I used now my batter is runny that it is impossible to make into little round balls how did you get yours to round out

      I now have the batter in the fridge hoping it will firm up lol

  6. Hey Sally! Just curious for this and future recipes, my local co-op was selling organic cane sugar and extra fine granulated sugar. If I used either one of those in recipes for regular sugar, would that make a difference? 

  7. I am wondering if I can make the dough, portion it into balls and freeze them for baking later. Have you tried this with this recipe? TIA.

  8. These were my first attempt at coconut macaroons and they came out really good so thank you for the recipe 🙂
    The only problem I had was that they were a little bit runny and I was not able to form nicely shaped balls, they were more flat than I would like them to be.
    They are also a little bit too sweet for my taste – do you think replacing part of the sweetened coconut with just regular shredded unsweetened coconut would work? Unsweetened coconut is much more dry, so maybe steaming it for a little bit so it gets moist would help. What do you think?

    1. Hi Izabela! You can absolutely swap in some unsweetened coconut for the sweetened kind. Steaming it is a great idea, though I don’t think that would be necessary.

  9. What a hit!!! I planned to use chocolate.. BUT, these got such rave reviews they seriously don’t need a thing! Everyone says they taste like a coconut angel food cake. I made them for all my neighbors for the holidays and they’ll be staying in my recipe book!

    1. Hi Tanya, Use 3 tablespoons of liquid egg whites per egg white called for in a recipe. Just make sure it’s 100% whites (and not Eggbeaters or similar with added ingredients).

    1. Hi Marty, Use 3 tablespoons of liquid egg whites per egg white called for in a recipe. Just make sure it’s 100% whites (and not Eggbeaters or similar with added ingredients).

  10. Sally, can I dip these completely in dark chocolate? Do I add oil to the chocolate? Also, you first mentioned using a medium scoop but scrolling down to the recipe it says to use a large scoop. Which do I use?

    1. Hi Linda! Scoops vary in sizes between brands, but I usually use a MEDIUM scoop for these. Sorry about that confusion. You can fully dunk in chocolate. I recommend adding oil to the melted chocolate to thin it out.

  11. Hi Sally.. I’m wanting to make these macaroons, but I haven’t seen sweetened coconut.. Is there anyway I can get it done… I live in South Africa and have not seen it… please help..By the way they look yummy…Many thanks Charmaine

  12. I have a comment for Charmaine in South Africa and a question that kind of morphs into substitutions. Charmaine doesn’t necessarily need to use sweetened coconut. I have used unsweetened coconut before and the result is a less sweetened version. My sis-n-law did suggest adding light corn syrup to make a moister macaroon; not so crumbly, but she never said how much to add. What’s your take on the changes/additions?

  13. Sally,
    I made these chocolate macaroons this morning to complete my 10 dozen cookies that I need for this weekend. This is definitely a “keeper” recipe. Thank-you for sharing your knowledge of baking. I also ordered and received the baking sheets that you recommended. They are priceless.

  14. Sally .. I am from INDIA ….plenty of coconuts but not sweetened coconut .. can you help me to make sweetened coconut at home …. ❤️❤️❤️The recipe

  15. I told the kids the angels made these for Christmas. They told their friends that they got cookies from angels. I have added your recipe to the children’s Christmas memory book. A new tradition for our holiday season. A Heavenly Thank You!!

  16. If i cut out the almond extract is that ok? And I have semi sweet chocolate chips chop ans meltimg those shouldn’t be to much of a difference right?

    1. Hi Bethany! Chocolate chips don’t melt down properly to use as a drizzle or coating, but you can try adding oil to thin them out. You can leave out the almond extract if desired.

  17. Sally, I like your recipes for several reasons, a major one being that you (usually) provide weights not just volume. But for this one, you say how important it is to get the right amount of coconut, but instead of the weight it says “Measure 4 and 3/4 cups after it’s been pulsed.” And elsewhere it says “a little less than a standard 14-ounce package” How much is a little less??

    1. This is an older recipe, before I started adding the weights! If you pulse the entire 14oz bag and then measure out 4 3/4 cups you will still have some left – you won’t need the full bag.

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