What better time of the year to celebrate spring than with these delightful sweet treats! French macarons have been on my culinary bucket list for as long as I can remember and I couldn’t think of a better way to usher in spring! With these bright pastel-like colors, these macarons are perfect for any upcoming spring party, special occasion, get together or simply entertaining a few friends.
With my first bite into a soft, chewy but slightly crispy and delicate macaron, I was hooked. They are oh so good. And because they are tiny, you can eat more of them. Recently, I received a boatload of glorious sugar from Dixie Crystals and, because of all the baking I do, remember, it’s like therapy for me. . I was overjoyed.
Because, for me, sweet treats are the best!
Now that I have the basics down, I can’t wait to experiment with different flavors like lemon, chocolate, almond, pistachio, raspberry and the list goes on! If you’re feeling intimidated by trying this recipe, please don’t be. It took me a while to gather up the courage to try these as well but now I’m kicking myself for not trying sooner. It just takes time, attention and detail.
And TIPS! I learned so many tips on what to do before trying these, I feel like this helped me tremendously. Follow the recipe card down below (and there’s a video link under the recipe card) and the tips I have outlined and please let me know how successful you are because if I can bake these macarons, you can too! I hope you enjoy and let’s all do some springtime baking together!
Springtime French Macarons
For the macarons:
- 3 egg whites at room temp
- ¼ cup white sugar
- 2 cups confectioners sugar
- 1 cup almond flour
- pinch of salt
- ¼ tsp cream of tartar
- an assortment of food coloring or food dye if desired
For the buttercream filling:
- 1/4 cup unsalted butter at room temp
- 3/4 cup powdered sugar
- 2-3 teaspoons of your favorite jam I used apple cranberry. This will give your buttercream a little flavor. Feel free to add more if desired.
Other suggested fillings:
- Your favorite strawberry or raspberry jam or preserves
- Marshmallow fluff
For the topping:
- finely shredded sweetened coconut
For the macarons:
- Preheat oven to 300F degrees.
- Sift your almond flour and confectioners sugar mixture. This will help to ensure you get really smooth tops to your macarons.
- Using your stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites until foamy and stiff peaks form, for about 8 minutes. Add the salt, cream of tartar and slowly pour in the white sugar as the mixer is running on low speed.
- Next, if using, add your food coloring. Food coloring fades a bit as it cooks, so make it a shade or two darker than you want them to be. I used about 2-3 drops.
- By hand, using a rubber spatula, gently fold the flour/sugar mixture into the colored egg white mixture. There is a very fine line with this step. You have to be careful not to under mix or over mix. Under mixing makes your macarons lumpy and cracked and over mixing can cause your macarons to be flat, without the feet; the mark of a well-made macaron. I just mixed about 10-12 times until the flour/sugar mixture was completely incorporated into the egg white mixture. You can also pull your spatula up and you kind of want your batter to look like lava.
- Transfer batter to a pastry bag or large, gallon-sized ziploc bag fitted with a circle tip. Pipe out 1 inch rounds on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. If adding any toppings, such as the coconut flakes, lightly sprinkle them on now. You don't want to use a topping that is too heavy. You only need to top half of the macarons since the other half will be the "bottoms."
- When finished, pick up and drop the baking pan so that it makes a loud bang, at least 2-3 times to release the air bubbles. This will prevent the tops of your macarons from cracking and also helps to develop the feet.
- VERY IMPORTANT: Let the macarons sit out for at least 20-30 minutes, or up to an hour. This will allow them to dry out a bit before hitting the hot oven. They should be "tacky" to the touch, but not stick to your fingertips. This is another important step to ensure your macarons develop feet.
- Bake for 20 minutes at 300 F. DO NOT UNDER BAKE, even if they look done. Leave them in there for 20 minutes. When finished, allow to cool for at least 5-10 minutes before trying to remove the macarons.
For the buttercream:
- Using your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter until pale and fluffy. Slowly add in the sugar and then add in the jam. Mix until fully incorporated, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.
To assemble macarons:
- Reverse cookie shells on their backs, and pipe a small mound of the buttercream (or you can use a pastry or butter knife), top with another macaron and very gently press together. Handle the macarons very carefully. I cracked a few really easily. They are fairly delicate and should be handled very carefully when applying the filling.
- If not eating right away, keep refrigerated.
I followed the VIDEO here.
THE TIPS: Sift your almond flour and confectioners’ sugar. Remember, this will help ensure you get the really smooth tops to your macarons. You can use a sifter or a fine mesh sieve.
Make sure your egg whites are at room temperature! The last shot is what my batter looked like.
I highly suggest you watch the video for this tip: under mixing versus over mixing and what happens when you don’t do it just right. After you’ve mixed successfully, pick up and drop (literally making a loud bang on your counter) your baking sheet a couple of times and let rest for at least 20 minutes BEFORE baking. Your goal: to get nice, smooth tops and the macaron “feet”! I used parchment paper but many people swear by the macaron silicone baking mats, which either have the circles on there as a template or actual grooves for each macaron. I would start by simply trying the parchment paper or a non-stick baking mat.
Right out of the oven! Look at those tops and feet!
Pipe in your filling and top with the other half. Work carefully with the macarons.
Today’s Sunday Supper is a very special one. We are celebrating springtime sweets and baking with Dixie Crystals Sugar. And Dixie Crystals has some pretty exciting news to share! They are hosting a brownie recipe contest!
The 1st Place winner will receive the following:
- $500 gift card
- Reimbursement for their full conference pass to the Food and Wine Conference in Orlando, FL.
- The dessert will be a featured dessert of the conference.
- The recipe also may be featured on both the Dixie Crystals and Imperial Sugar websites.
To learn more, to see what the 2nd and 3rd place prizes are and to find out how you can enter the contest, click here. Don’t miss your chance to enter this fabulous contest!
I can’t wait to share this fabulous line-up of Springtime sweet treats with you today from our Sunday Supper contributors featuring Dixie Crystals sugar! Take a look at each one below, pin for later and enjoy!
- Blueberry Buckle Coffee Cake by Neighborfood
- Butterscotch Chocolate Caramel Cookie Cups by The Messy Baker
- Chewy Lemon Sugar Cookies by Alida’s Kitchen
- Coconut Lime Meltaway Cookie Bars by Chocolate Moosey
- Flan in Moscato Wine Sauce by Family Foodie
- Fresh Strawberry Tartlets by That Skinny Chick Can Bake
- Gluten-Free Deep Dish Carrot Cakes for Two by Cupcakes & Kale Chips
- Hazelnut Chocolate Chip Bundt by In The Kitchen With KP
- Lemon Cornmeal Sandwich Cookies by girlichef
- Lemon Roulade by Hezzi-D’s Books and Cooks
- Lime Sugar Cookies by Magnolia Days
- Meyer Lemon Bars with Poppyseed Crust by Foxes Love Lemons
- Meyer Lemon Cheesecake Bars by The Girl In The Little Red Kitchen
- Mixed Berry Crumble by The Dinner-Mom
- No-Bake Banana Split Dessert Cups by The Weekend Gourmet
- Poached Pear Bread by Momma’s Meals
- Springtime French Macarons by Hip Foodie Mom
- Strawberry Cheesecake Bites by Supper For A Steal
- Strawberry Lemonade Cupcakes by The Foodie Army Wife
- Strawberry Rhubarb Upside Down Cake by Cindy’s Recipes and Writings
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Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Dixie Crystals. All opinions are my own.