This is an in-depth beginner’s guide to homemade French macarons. This post includes a kitchen-tested recipe, plus plenty of success tips, descriptions, overview of techniques, list of tools, and links to my favorite macaron resources and other recipes on the web.
Let me start today’s tutorial with the following:
- Is this the one and only way to make French macarons? No.
- Is this the most complete, perfect French macaron tutorial out there? No.
- Is this a great place for macaron beginners? Yes.
Like many home bakers, I was a French macaron beginner a few years ago. These beautiful little cookies had always been a baking bucket list recipe for me. I started baking them after tasting the world famous Ladurée bakery macarons—talk about perfection! We originally published a French macaron recipe on my website in 2015. My homemade macarons weren’t nearly as flawless as the professional ones, but they worked for me at the time! However, the results weren’t always consistent. With 6 additional years of practice, I found a few small but very helpful improvements. Today’s recipe includes those updates.
Macaroons Are Not Macarons
Macarons and macaroons are two completely different cookies. Macaroons have an extra O in the name and are coconut cookies. Macarons are delicate sandwich cookies. Here are my coconut macaroons. See the difference? Though they are both cookies made with egg whites, they are much different.
What Do These French Macarons Taste Like?
French macarons are delicate sandwich cookies with a crisp exterior. Each individual cookie is known as a macaron shell. The shells are made without any chemical leaveners and get all of their lift from properly beaten egg whites. If you follow the recipe carefully, the cookies have a unique nougat-like, chewy texture. They should not be hollow. You can flavor macarons many ways, but this recipe is for plain macarons. They taste like sweet almond– and they’re delicious! You can always have fun with different flavorful fillings such as vanilla buttercream, lemon buttercream, salted caramel, or chocolate ganache.
If there’s one thing to know before baking French macarons at home, it’s this: these cookies require precision, patience, and practice. I’m going to do my best to prepare any French macaron beginner. You can do this!
There are a few methods for making macarons including Italian, French, and Swiss. Swiss isn’t as common (I’ve never made them that way), but Italian macarons are pretty popular. The process is a little more involved than the French method, but the results are considered more reliable. If you’re looking for a recommendation, I really like these Italian macarons found on Chelsweets.
Today’s recipe uses the French method. You need 5 ingredients.
Overview of Ingredients in French Macarons
EGG WHITES: The bulk of French macaron batter is meringue made from properly beaten egg whites. For best and most consistent results, I strongly recommend using fresh egg whites instead of liquid egg whites from a carton. It’s imperative that NO egg yolks make it into the recipe. Like I taught you in our Swiss meringue buttercream recipe, any fat (yolk) in the egg whites will prevent them from reaching stiff peaks, a crucial step for the successful outcome in any French macaron recipe.
- Age The Egg Whites: It’s helpful to “age” the egg whites in the refrigerator for at least 24 hours prior to starting this recipe. Why? Egg whites that have been separated and set aside in advance have a chance to relax, which improves their elasticity during the whipping process. Elasticity is certainly beneficial when you’re trying to whip egg whites into a lofty volume. Some bakers skip this step, saying that it’s a waste of time but I’ll tell you this: most of my failed macaron batches did not include aged egg whites. I recommend taking the 5-10 minutes to separate your egg whites, cover, and refrigerate them 1 day in advance. It doesn’t hurt. Bring them to room temperature before you begin the recipe.
CREAM OF TARTAR: My old recipe doesn’t include this ingredient, but I started adding it after I began making successful batches of marshmallow meringue frosting and chocolate swirled meringue cookies. It just provides a little extra insurance. Let me explain– the acidity in cream of tartar helps the egg whites hold onto air and, like the sugar (explained next), helps prevent the egg whites from collapsing. If you’re making snickerdoodles or angel food cake, you already have this ingredient on hand. It’s sold with the spices.
SUPERFINE SUGAR: In 3 additions, beat superfine sugar into the egg whites + cream of tartar. Without sugar, the protein molecules in egg whites will collapse. What is superfine sugar? Well, it’s regular granulated sugar that’s ground much finer, but not quite as fine as confectioners’ sugar. It’s also known as caster sugar. Superfine sugar’s granules are the best size to provide optimal structure for French macarons. Granulated sugar is simply too coarse, while confectioners’ sugar dissolves too quickly in the egg whites.
- I have a hard time finding superfine sugar in my local grocery store, so I make my own by pulsing regular granulated sugar in a food processor or blender. It takes about 10 seconds—very easy.
FINE ALMOND FLOUR: Almond flour is the ONLY flour that works in this French macaron recipe, however if you have an almond allergy, you could try these nut free macarons by Stella Parks. (I have not personally tried them.) Make sure you use almond flour, not almond meal. Almond flour is much finer and made from blanched, skinless almonds. Almond meal is coarser and contains almond skin.
- You can make your own almond flour, but be very careful because almonds can quickly release their oils, clump up, and turn into almond butter. It might be easier to just pick up a bag of fine almond flour. It’s very common in mostly all grocery stores these days—I use and love Bob’s Red Mill brand.
CONFECTIONERS’ SUGAR: Confectioners’ sugar adds bulk and sweetness to macaron batter. In this new recipe, I use equal parts confectioners’ sugar and almond flour to produce sturdy, more reliably successful macarons.
GEL FOOD COLORING (optional): Tinting macaron batter is completely optional. If you don’t tint it, the macarons will be a natural beige color. (And you can have fun with a colorful filling.) Avoid using liquid food coloring because it will change the consistency of your macaron batter. Instead, use 1-2 drops of gel food coloring.
- In the pictured macarons, I made 3 separate batches and used dusty rose, aqua, and fuchsia.
- Powder food coloring should be fine, but I haven’t tested it. Use a very small amount.
This list contains affiliate links to the products we personally use and love.
- Glass or Metal Bowls: Plastic bowls are porous and can hold onto grease and residue, which will prevent your egg whites from whipping properly. Set yourself up for success by using glass bowls or metal bowls in this recipe.
- Egg Separator: Not crucial, but certainly helpful. Here is the egg separator I really like.
- Food Scale: The recipe below is written in grams, so a food scale is imperative. Anytime I make macarons using cup measurements, they fail. You can certainly find French macaron recipes online given in cup measurements, but for true accuracy (and so you don’t waste your time, effort, ingredients, or money), I strongly recommend using a food scale. Here is the one I own and love.
- Electric Mixer: An electric mixer is helpful for whipping the egg whites into stiff peaks. You can use a handheld or stand mixer (whisk attachment). I do not recommend whipping egg whites by hand. It requires a lot of arm muscle and at least 30+ minutes of mixing.
- Fine Mesh Sieve: To obtain a shiny and smooth macaron shell, you must run the almond flour and confectioners’ sugar through a fine mesh sieve. You can use a hand crank sifter if you have one, but I prefer using a mesh one.
- Piping Tip & Bag: You need a piping bag and tip to pipe the batter. You can use a disposable piping bag or reusable piping bag. (I use and love this reusable piping bag.) For the piping tip, use a round tip such as Wilton 12, Wilton 1A, or even Ateco 806. I use the same piping tip to pipe the filling, too.
- Baking Sheet & Liner: I own, love, and swear by these half sheet pans for baking all my cookies: Calphalon rimmed baking sheets and USA Pan half sheet pan. See more of my recommended baking pans on my Favorite Baking Pans page. It’s important to line your pan. You can use a silicone baking mat, parchment paper, or even a fancy macaron-specific silicone baking mat. I usually use sheets of parchment paper.
Step-By-Step Photos: How to Make French Macarons
Do your prep work. This includes (1) making superfine sugar with a food processor if you can’t find it at the store. I always make my own—see recipe note. Prep work also includes (2) wiping down the bowl you’ll whip the egg whites in with vinegar or lemon juice. Grease or fat prevents your meringue from setting up. And finally, (3) age your egg whites as described above and in the printable recipe below.
Making superfine sugar:
Zero out your scale, weigh your egg whites, cover, and refrigerate them for 24 hours. Bring to room temperature before using.
Now it’s time to start the macaron batter.
Add cream of tartar to your aged room temperature egg whites (below left) and beat until very soft peaks form. This takes a few minutes of beating. At first the egg white and cream of tartar mixture will be foamy, then the bubbles will begin to tighten and the beaters will leave tracks (below right) as the egg whites build volume:
Now add your superfine sugar in 3 additions and beat until stiff glossy peaks form (below photos). What are stiff peaks? After several minutes of mixing in all the sugar, the egg whites will form stiff glossy peaks. This means the whites have stiff, smooth, and sharp points in the bowl or on the lifted whisk attachment/beaters. Stiff peaks do not droop down. You can literally turn the bowl upside down and the egg whites will not move or spill out. (You can watch me do that in the video tutorial.)
Now you can add your optional gel food coloring. It’s important to add gel food coloring to the egg whites directly, instead of the finished macaron batter. (Finished macaron batter more easily deflates.) Fold the coloring in very slowly. You can also beat in the food coloring with your mixer on a low speed.
Set your stiff egg whites aside.
Sift the almond flour and confectioners’ sugar together in a large bowl. The bigger the bowl, the more room you have for the macaron batter, and the easier it will be to manage. Use a spoon to help work any larger pieces through the sieve. You don’t want to discard a lot of that because then you won’t have enough dry ingredients in the batter.
Sifting guarantees a nice light texture.
In 3 separate additions, begin slowly folding in the beaten egg whites in a circular motion. I always eyeball the amount. (Tip: The amount of egg whites you add at a time doesn’t have to be perfect because what you’re really looking for is the consistency of batter after the 3rd addition, known as macaronage and explained below.)
After only 1 addition, the batter will be very thick and dry:
The batter will begin to loosen up after you add the 2nd and 3rd addition:
After that 3rd addition of egg whites, you’re at the macaronage stage. You need to keep folding and deflating air until you reach the perfect consistency.
What is Macaronage?
Macaronage is the process of working macaron batter into a shiny and flowy consistency that easily pipes into smooth macaron shells. You may have heard this term before and rightfully so—it’s a crucial step in this macaron recipe. During this stage, you want to be sure not to overmix or undermix the batter. Undermixed and thick batter can produce lumpy or hollow macarons. Overmixed and thin batter can produce cracked macarons or macarons without feet.
Balanced macaron batter after achieving that perfect macaronage is best understood through visuals. Use my video above as a guide starting at the 3:10 minute mark. The photo below should be helpful as well. Drop the macaron batter off of your spatula in the form of a figure 8. The batter will stream off of your spatula like honey and the figure 8 should take no more than 10 seconds to sink back into itself. If it takes less, your batter was overmixed and is too thin. If it takes longer, continue slowly folding the batter to deflate more air.
It’s best to go very slow so you don’t accidentally overmix.
Spoon the macaron batter into your piping bag fitted with your piping tip.
How to Fill a Piping Bag with Macaron Batter
It can be pretty difficult to fill a piping bag with macaron batter since the batter is so drippy. My trick is to use a big cup and you can watch me do this in the video above. Fit the piping bag with a piping tip, then place it in a large cup, folding the top of the piping bag around the rim of the cup. Spoon batter inside, then lift the piping bag out of the cup and twist the end to seal in the batter.
Pipe the batter in 1.5 inch or 2 inch circles at a 90 degree angle on the lined baking sheet. To guarantee your macarons are all the same size (helpful for sandwiching), it helps to have a template or drawn circles on your parchment. You can find free templates online—do a quick “macaron template” internet search—or purchase a macaron-specific silicone baking mat. I usually just trace something about 1.5 inches in diameter (like a medicine bottle cap or small round cookie cutter) with a pen on parchment paper then flip the parchment over. You can see the traced circle through the parchment, which makes an easy template for uniform circles.
Or just eyeball it! I promise no one will be offended by uneven macaron circles.
Bang your pan on the counter a couple times to pop any air bubbles. (You can see plenty of air bubbles before I popped them in the photo above.) Use a toothpick to pop any smaller air bubbles. Why is this necessary? Air bubbles will create cracks in your macaron shells. Pop any that you see.
Dry The Shells
There’s one more crucial step before you bake the shells. Let the piped circles sit out until they are dry and no longer tacky on top, usually 30-60 minutes. This time allows the top to firm up and form a skin, which helps the macarons rise UP and form their trademark ruffly “feet.” Your macarons will over-spread and will not have their signature feet if you skip this step.
Do not let them sit out for longer than they need to because they could begin to deflate.
It’s hard to tell in the photo, but these circles are no longer tacky on top and are ready to bake:
Bake at 325°F (163°C) for 13 minutes. All ovens are different and the actual temperature inside your oven may not match what the display reads. I highly recommend an oven thermometer.
Macarons Are Done Baking When…
As the macaron shells bake, they should form feet. To test for doneness, lightly touch the top of a macaron with a spoon or your finger (careful, it’s hot). If the macaron seems wobbly, it’s not done and needs another 1-2 minutes. If it seems set, it’s done. Basically, bake until the macarons don’t move around when touched.
Let the shells cool on the baking sheet for 15 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack to continue cooling. The macaron shells may stick to the parchment paper/baking sheet if you try to remove them too early. If this is happening, let them cool on the baking sheet a little longer before removing.
After cooling, the shells are ready to fill and sandwich together. I have plenty of filling suggestions in the recipe notes below. I usually halve my recipe for vanilla buttercream. You can spread the frosting on the underside of half of your macarons with a knife or you can use a piping bag/tip. Just use the same round tip you used for the macaron batter.
Troubleshooting French Macarons
- Hollow Macarons: It’s always so frustrating to bite into a macaron only to have it filled with… empty air. There are a few culprits leading to this disappointing outcome. If your macarons are hollow, the batter was likely undermixed or overmixed. Pay attention to the proper macaronage. Additionally, make sure you pop and air bubbles in the piped macaron batter as directed in the recipe. And finally, play around with your oven settings. The oven could be too hot or the macarons could be under-baked. All ovens are different and what some bakers find helpful is lowering the oven temperature down to 315°F (157°C) or 300°F (149°C) and extending the bake time by a few minutes.
- Macarons Have No Feet: Avoid over-beating the egg whites and over-mixing the macaron batter. Make sure you let your piped macaron batter dry/sit out before baking. It should no longer be tacky. See “Dry the Shells” above.
- Cracked on Top: If your macarons are cracked on top, they may have been over-baked, the batter may have been overmixed, air bubbles in the piped batter may not have been popped, and/or the egg whites may have been over-beaten.
- Runny Batter: Your macaron batter will be runny if you overmixed it, deflating more air than intended. Macarons baked with runny batter will over-spread, aren’t likely to develop feet, nor will they have the intended chewy texture. This is why the macaronage step is crucial. Fold the batter together slowly and perform the figure 8 test a few times until you have the correct consistency.
- Imperfect Piped Circles: Don’t get upset over this! My macaron batter is NEVER piped into perfect circles. You can even see in these photos that some are larger than others. Using a template helps, but so does practice.
5 Final Success Tips:
- Wipe down your egg white bowl and beaters/whisk attachment with vinegar or lemon juice to rid any grease or fat residue.
- Use large metal or glass mixing bowls.
- Bake macarons on a dry day. If it’s particularly humid, the piped batter will take awhile to dry and the shells may not develop feet.
- Pay attention to proper macaronage, explained and shown above.
- Do not make any ingredient substitutions or deviate from the instructions.
So, Are These Worth the Effort?
Yes. But, of course, we all have different taste buds and levels of patience. Once you understand the process, they’re perfectly doable. And it’s a lot of fun to play around with different fillings. Have fun and don’t stress out. Even the ugly ones can be delicious. Just load them up with a filling and no one will care! 😉
Further Reading and Fun Flavors:
- Cookies and Cream Macarons and Pistachio Macarons from House of Nash Eats
- Lemon Macarons from Indulge with Mimi
- Ultimate French Macaron Guide by Mike Bakes NYC (so helpful!)
- Chocolate Hazelnut Macarons by Sweet & Savory by Shinee
- Macaron Troubleshooting by Sweet & Savory by Shinee (incredibly comprehensive and helpful)
- The Art of Macaron Making on Bob’s Red Mill
- Sprinkle Macarons by Cloudy Kitchen
- Chocolate Macarons by Sugar Geek Show
- French Macarons Recipe Guide on Bigger Bolder Baking (includes a template)
See Your French Macarons!
Many readers tried this recipe as part of a baking challenge! Feel free to email or share your recipe photos with us on social media. 🙂Print
- Prep Time: 1 hour (plus aging egg whites)
- Cook Time: 13 minutes
- Total Time: 1 hour, 30 minutes
- Yield: about 40 shells; 20 sandwiched macarons
- Category: Dessert
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: French
Review this page, video, troubleshooting, and success tips and follow the recipe precisely for crisp, chewy, delicate French macaron cookies. Have fun with fillings! I provide some filling ideas in the recipe notes. We strongly recommend using gram measurements, but see recipe note if you do not have a kitchen scale.
- 100 g egg whites (usually between 3–4 large egg whites)
- 1/4 teaspoon (1g) cream of tartar
- 1/2 teaspoon extract such as vanilla, almond, coconut, etc (optional)
- 80g superfine sugar (aka caster sugar, see note)
- 1–2 drops gel food coloring (optional)
- 125g almond flour
- 125g confectioners’ sugar
- desired macaron filling (some options listed in notes)
- Wipe down a large glass or metal mixing bowl with lemon juice or vinegar. Add egg whites. Cover and refrigerate for 24 hours, then bring to room temperature.
- Line 3 large baking sheets with silicone baking mats or parchment paper. Set aside.
- Add cream of tartar and extract (if using) to egg whites. Using a handheld mixer or stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat together on medium speed until very soft peaks form. This takes a few minutes of beating. At first the egg white and cream of tartar mixture will be foamy, then the bubbles will begin to tighten and the beaters will leave tracks as the egg whites build volume. Once they begin leaving tracks, you likely have soft peaks. Stop beating. Add about 1/3 of the superfine sugar. Beat on medium-high speed for 5 seconds, then with the mixer continuing to run, add another 1/3 of the sugar. Beat for 5 seconds, then with the mixer continuing to run, add the remaining sugar. Beat on medium-high speed until stiff glossy peaks form. (This means the whites have stiff, smooth, and sharp points in the bowl or on the lifted whisk attachment/beaters. Stiff peaks do not droop down. You can turn the bowl upside down and the egg whites will not move or spill out.) Using a rubber spatula, slowly and gently fold the food coloring (if using) into the egg whites.
- Sift the almond flour and confectioners’ sugar together in a large glass or metal mixing bowl. Use a spoon to help work any larger pieces through the sieve. You don’t want to discard a lot of that because then you won’t have enough dry ingredients in the batter.
- Slowly fold the beaten egg whites into the almond flour mixture in 3 separate additions, folding until combined before adding the next addition. After you add all of the egg whites, pay very close attention to the consistency of your macaron batter. Continue folding the batter (which deflates air) until it thins out into the consistency of honey. What’s a more helpful cue is the figure 8 test. Drop the macaron batter off of your spatula in the form of a figure 8. The figure 8 should take no more than 10 seconds to sink back into itself. If it takes less, your batter was overmixed and is too thin. If it takes longer, continue slowly folding the batter to deflate more air, then perform the figure 8 test again. It’s best to go very slow so you don’t accidentally overmix.
- Spoon the macaron batter into a piping bag fitted with a medium round piping tip, such as Wilton 12, Wilton 1A, or even Ateco 806. The macaron batter is very drippy, so transferring to the piping bag can be messy.
- Holding the piping bag at a 90 degree angle over the baking sheet, pipe batter in 1.5 – 2 inch rounds about 1-2 inches apart on prepared baking sheets. I usually pipe little mounds—see video tutorial above. The piped macaron batter flattens out. Bang the pan a couple times on the counter to pop any air bubbles, then use a toothpick to pop any remaining air bubbles.
- Let the piped macarons sit out until they are dry and no longer tacky on top, usually 30-60 minutes. This time allows the top to firm up and form a skin, which helps the macarons rise UP and form their trademark ruffly “feet.” Do not let them sit out for longer than they need to because they could begin to deflate.
- Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 325°F (163°C).
- Bake for 13 minutes. As the macaron shells bake, they should form feet. To test for doneness, lightly touch the top of a macaron with a spoon or your finger (careful, it’s hot). If the macaron seems wobbly, it’s not done and needs another 1-2 minutes. If it seems set, it’s done. Basically, bake until the macarons don’t move around when touched.
- Let the shells cool on the baking sheet for 15 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack to continue cooling. The macaron shells may stick to the parchment paper/baking sheet if you try to remove them too early. If this is happening, let them cool on the baking sheet a little longer before removing.
- After cooling, the shells are ready to fill and sandwich together. I have plenty of filling suggestions in the recipe notes below. You can spread filling with a knife or pipe it using the same round tip you used for the macaron batter.
- You can eat right away or, as some professionals prefer, cover and refrigerate them 12-24 hours so the macarons and flavors can mature. Bring to room temperature before serving. (I usually just serve them right away!)
- Cover leftover macarons and refrigerate for up to 5 days.
- Freezing Instructions: Cooled macaron shells and finished assembled macarons can be frozen for up to 1 month. Thaw at room temperature before filling/serving.
- Special Tools (affiliate links): Electric Mixer (Handheld or Stand) | Glass Mixing Bowls or Metal Mixing Bowls | Egg Separator | Food Scale | Fine Mesh Sieve | Piping Bag (Disposable or Reusable) | Medium-Round Piping Tip (Wilton 12, Wilton 1A, or Ateco 806) | Baking Sheets | Silicone Baking Mat, Macaron-Specific Silicone Baking Mat, or Parchment Paper
- Ingredient Substitutions & Weights: I do not recommend any ingredient substitutions in this recipe. Using weights (and a food scale) is the best way to guarantee success. However if you do not own one, use the following approximate measurements: for the superfine sugar, use 1/3 cup. For the almond flour and confectioners’ sugar, you need about 1 cup + 1 teaspoon each.
- Egg Whites: For best and most consistent results, I strongly recommend using fresh egg whites instead of liquid egg whites from a carton.
- Extract/Flavoring: I keep these macarons plain. Without flavoring, they have a sweet almond flavor. However, if desired, feel free to add 1/2 teaspoon of your favorite extract such as almond, vanilla, coconut, lemon, etc.
- Make Your Own Superfine Sugar: Add 80g of regular granulated sugar to your food processor or blender. Pulse about 10-15x until granules are much finer, aka superfine sugar. Weigh 80g superfine sugar—should be about the same amount you started with.
- Optional Food Coloring: Tinting macaron batter is completely optional. If you don’t tint it, the macarons will be a natural beige color. Avoid using liquid food coloring because it will change the consistency of your macaron batter. Instead, use 1-2 drops of gel food coloring. (I used dusty rose, aqua, and fuchsia.) Powder food coloring should be fine, but I haven’t tested it. Only use a very small amount.
- Almond Flour: Make sure you use almond flour, not almond meal. It is usually labeled as “fine” almond flour. Almond flour is much finer than almond meal and made from blanched, skinless almonds. Almond meal is coarser and contains almond skin. You can make your own almond flour, but be very careful because almonds can quickly release their oils, clump up, and turn into almond butter. It might be easier to just pick up a bag of fine almond flour. It’s very common in mostly all grocery stores these days– I use and love Bob’s Red Mill brand.
- Macaron Filling Ideas: The pictured macarons are filled with vanilla buttercream (I prepared a half batch). Other ideas are a 1/2 batch of chocolate buttercream, lemon buttercream, chocolate peanut butter frosting, Nutella frosting, cream cheese frosting, champagne frosting, strawberry frosting, or a full batch of peanut butter frosting. Cooled and thickened chocolate ganache or cooled salted caramel are great, too!
Adapted from Les Petits Macarons and Mad About Macarons
Keywords: macarons, French macarons
Reader Comments & Reviews
I have a question about the frosting inside the macaroons. It’s to to sweet. I don’t know how to make it less sweet. The sweetness overtakes the whole thing.
Hi Maryann, instead of the traditional buttercream that is listed with this recipe, you could try using Swiss meringue buttercream or whipped frosting. Both are less sweet options.
I have made these a few times, now. They are tricky- but Sally makes it SO much easier! I have had so many complements on these macarons! If you love them – and you’ve never given them a try making them – this is the recipe/guide that you need!
Hi ,I tried this recipe, my macoron was flat and didn’t rise,please suggest what might have gone wrong.
Hi Shiny, if your macarons did not rise/did not develop feet, avoid over-beating the egg whites and over-mixing the macaron batter. Make sure you let your piped macaron batter dry/sit out before baking. It should no longer be tacky. See “troubleshooting” section for more tips. Thank you for giving these a try!
I consider myself an intermediate baker with a few advanced recipes under my belt.. I had tried macarons once before but they never developed feet (I know now that the batter was over mixed) and a few years later I was ready to try again, this time using Sally’s recipe (have you ever let me down? No) and I’m so happy to report that they turned out amazing! Ironically enough, my aged egg whites never reached stiff peaks so I just weighed out 100 grams, let them come to room temp and proceeded immediately and they turned out beautifully so I wouldn’t waste my time aging them again. I used root beer flavouring with vanilla ice cream frosting to make a root beer float macaron! My husbands favourite flavour. We loved them! I can’t wait to experiment with more flavours now that I’m confident I can master macarons thank you Sally! You’ve been a constant in our home for a decade now
These are delicious!! Only one out of the two trays turned out…. The second tray would not peel off the parchment and were hollow. Any advice?
Hi Gia, I’m sorry to hear that one of the trays didn’t turn out! Sometimes under-mixing the batter is to blame for hollow macarons, so that’s one possibility. Macaron shells may stick to the parchment paper/baking sheet if you try to remove them too early. If this is happening, let them cool on the baking sheet a little longer before removing–even if that means cooling for longer than 15 minutes. I hope this helps!
Thank you!! I will keep this in mind next time!
Can I use a brown Sugar instead?
Hi Eliana! You need superfine sugar (caster sugar) for this recipe. We don’t recommend brown sugar.
This has been such a help! I come here often for cookies recipes. I don’t bake regularly, but sometimes I feel less guilty eating snacks I worked for. They this recipe and tips made me feel confident trying these for the first time. I have never been much of a blog reader but when I need a recipe, I know I can trust, I come here. Cookies came out great!
First time trying macarons and I followed this recipe to a T. Perfection. My Guinea pigs (aka kids) said they were better than the ones they had in Paris last fall. Thank you so much! Definitely recommend skipping fancy coloring and flavors at first just to focus on perfecting the method.
The Queen of Baking has done it again! I was always so scared to try making Macarons because they were so intimidating, but this recipe made it so, so easy. The instructions and pictures were perfect and so easy to follow, and I was able to use the figure eight method to get perfect macronage. I wasn’t sure how it would turn out, but imagine my delight as I watched my little macarons get their perfect little feet in the oven! They are the most beautiful things I have ever made and I don’t even want to eat them they’re so perfect. But I am eating them anyway because they are so delicious.
I let my eggs elasticate for a few hours in the fridge and I did skip the lemon juice step, but they still turned out just fine! I used almond extract for my flavoring and filled them with vanilla buttercream, and they’re extremely sweet so I may go for a less sweet filling next time. But boy oh boy are they delicious!
We’re so glad you had success with this recipe, Laura!
I really want to try making these sometime soon. In the meantime, I would invite you to visit my young friend’s Facebook page called Lauren’s Macs. She is truly gifted in designing beautiful and inventive macarons. And they are really very, very tasty!
How fun! I can’t wait to check it out. Thank you for letting me know about it, Kathy!
I have never made macarons, but Sally never disappoints so i can’t wait to try these. Are these gluten free?
Hi Amy, yes, macarons are a gluten-free recipe. Let us know how they go for you!
This was my first time making macarons. They weren’t perfect, because I made a few small mistakes, but I was surprised with how well they turned out!! They had to sit out for almost 2 hours to be no longer tacky, but that could have been due to my mistakes and misjudgments. I will return to this recipe next time I make macarons.
I’m an 11 year old baker and I made these.
I found them pretty easy, they just have a LOT of steps. Follow the recipe exactly!!!
I highly recommend this recipe! I was scared to try it, but I was very successful with it. It’s super detailed, so follow-it exactly! Read and reread, and you will be fine! I can’t wait to make my next batch!
First… I never bake or cook! Like ever! For some reason, I have been thinking about trying to make macarons from scratch. This recipe is absolutely perfect. I’m a complete beginner, but know how to follow recipe instructions. I also used your vanilla buttercream – I could have used a touch more salt – it’s so sweet.
These macarons are delicious and while they are all not perfectly round, they turned out pretty authentic.
My family was in awe of my new found skill set in the kitchen. I plan to make these again – soon! Thanks for such a great step-by-step recipe. Patience is the absolute key here. I separated the egg-whites Saturday morning and let them age for 24-hours. I took no shortcuts with this recipe and they turned out beautifully.
Thank you so much for giving this recipe a try, Carrie!
Sally, I’ve always wanted to try making these but I’m deathly allergic to almonds. Is there another flour I could substitute? I have oat flour in my pantry.
Hi Joanna, almond flour is really a necessary ingredient for macarons.
I love sites like this where you explain the science behind how it works! I would love to be a pastry chef but don’t have the time or money so places like this that explain why it works is amazing. Tried a cup measurement white flour macaron recipe and they turned out pretty good but on my way to get ingredients and a scale to try your recipe! Sounds like it will be SO much better!
Hi, I follow most of our recipes and they are great. I tried macarons first time and they looked perfect. The feet looked good, the shape turned out nice. But it stuck to the baking sheet. I googled and it advised to bake more as it must dry out. But in the process the macaron started burning slightly and the baking sheet was still stuck to macarons. Can you advice what should be done or where might I have gone wrong?
Hi Pavin! Are you using silicone baking mats or parchment paper to line your baking pans (see step 3)? You need a non-stick surface for these macarons.
My macarons never dried out on top. After an hour and 15 minutes I baked them because they seemed to be deflating. Obviously they had no feet and they also cracked and were hollow. Thought I was doing so well but guess not!! What do you think went wrong? Thanks…had fun regardless if outcome! Don’t want to rate the recipe since I’m sure this was “operator error”!
Hi Jan! Was it a particularly humid day by you? Humidity can make this process difficult.
Hello! I was hoping to make these for my sister’s bridal shower, but need a lot. How long would you say these stay fresh after you make them and also can they be put in the freezer?
Hi Alexandra, you can cover the completed macarons and refrigerate for up to 5 days. Or, cooled macaron shells and finished assembled macarons can be frozen for up to 1 month. Thaw at room temperature before filling/serving.
Have made these several times. Some great. Some failures lol. Question, if I wanted to flavor with dry flavor, not extract, like cocoa or freeze dried fruits etc, how would I go a lot that? Add with flour and reduce flour amount??
Hi Fawn, We do have a recipe for chocolate macarons that you can follow (feel free to use a different filling). Or we also linked a different recipe above under “Further Reading and Fun Flavors.” We haven’t tried incorporating freeze dried fruits into the shells, so we’re unsure how to incorporate it. It would take a bit of recipe testing to ensure the right amount. Let us know what you try!
I will try again. Half of them were smooth on top but small feet. Half puffed up with a crack across and very small feet.
Hi! I love this recipe it’s been super helpful as a first time macaroon chef. I am having some trouble getting my shells to fluff up and get a hard shell. I made one Bach and it was perfect with a little cracking at the shell the other two batches I have made just bubble and are flat and somewhat gooey. Do you have any ideas of what I could be doing wrong? I am super careful when mixing the egg white “wet” ingredients into the almond flour “dry” ingredients in three parts and doing the figure 8 test. Is there any other tips you could suggest to test to ensure the dough is not over or under mixed?
Hi Bella! Our best advice is to use the figure 8 test as described in the recipe – it’s really the best way to tell. Thank you for making our recipe!
This is my absolute favorite French macaron recipe. It inspired me to get a French macaron book to try different flavors shells and fillings. But the macarons did not turn out as well as this recipe. Can you post a few different flavored shells like chocolate? Thanks! ❤️
When do you add the extract? Do you have to take egg whites out exactly 24 hours?
Hi Connie, see beginning of step 3 — “Add cream of tartar and extract (if using) to egg whites.” For best results, we recommend following the 24 hours recommendation.
These are fabulous. My first time making macarons and the very detailed recipe was so helpful. Aging egg whites and pulsing granulated sugar? Pain in the neck but surely were vital steps. The shells came out great! I didn’t use any food coloring since I had my gel on order. If I want to make 2 different colors with this batch, can I add the food coloring in a later step after separating the batter?
Hi Jovi, so thrilled you enjoyed this recipe! For best results (so as to prevent over or under mixing), we recommend making separate batches for separate colors.
Thank you! One more thing-to add edible glitter dust on the outside of the macaron shell, would I have to do that before or after baking?
Hi Jovi, we’d recommend lightly sprinkling the glitter dust on top of the piped shells before you let them set/dry before baking.
This is the best recipe ever! I made them ahead of my sister in laws wedding to see if they would turn out before I committed to making them for the wedding! And they turned out perfectly both times!!! I made them A few times since and again over Christmas. One batch of almond flavored and another batch with red velvet emulsion both with cream cheese frosting. Delish!
HELLO!! I am trying out this recipe tomorrow and I was wondering if the egg whites must be refrigerated for 24 hours. I am on a bit of a time crunch and wanted to see if 12-15 hours would be enough for the macarons to come out great! Thank you so much for your amazing recipes
Hi Evelina, For the best results we do recommend letting them age for at least 24 hours.
I just made these yesterday for the first time. They’ve been on my baking bucket list for years and I finally got the courage and had the time (massive snow storm and travel ban!) so I decided to do it! They came out pretty great, if I do say so myself! I followed the recipe exactly except for baking time – I noticed they were getting a little brown around the 11 minute mark in my oven, so I took them out then. The taste? WOW! I was not expecting them to be as delicious as they are! I will definitely try these again when time permits. I had leftover buttercream in my fridge and froze the filled macarons. Thank you for the recipe and tutorial!
Hi Erin, we’re so glad you tried these and are thrilled that you loved them!
Forgot to leave a rating! Definitely take effort and time but still beginner friendly and easy to follow directions.
I’ve tried this recipe a few times and I love it! Sometimes they turn out perfect and other times I have trouble with the batter becoming thin enough for the figure eight. I am attempting again tomorrow but need to make a few batches. Do you recommend making them all separately or is it okay to triple the ingredients? Just asking since macaroons can be finicky sometimes! Thanks 🙂
Hi Nicole, it’s best to make separate batches for these macarons. Happy baking!
How many does this make?
I want to try to make some but am wondering how much almond flour to buy?
Hi Christie, this recipe should yield about 40 shells; 20 sandwiched macarons. Enjoy!