Strawberries are one of those fruits that I can eat year round. So, I decided to whip up this strawberry macaron recipe. It's a vanilla macaron cookie filled with buttercream with real strawberries and a strawberry jam filling! Super tasty cookies bursting with strawberry flavor - you can't go wrong.
I love a good strawberry recipe, especially when you get a batch of strawberries that are super sweet and juicy. At the top of the month, we went strawberry picking and I HAD to make some macarons with my leftover strawberries.
If you've been following my blog for a little bit, you'll know that I struggled with making macarons for a little while. However, I'm SO happy to report that macarons, specifically the french macaron method, is my new favorite thing to make. I've simplified the process with a few tips for fool-proof macarons that are simple to make and so much fun.
So far, I've made these salted caramel macarons, not to be confused with macaroons, that are just SO good. I've got a lot more up my sleeve too, so stay tuned.
Until then, let's talk about these strawberry macs. I used fresh strawberries for the butter cream filling and strawberry jam in the middle of each cookie. You can use freeze dried strawberry powder in the macarons too, however, I simply didn't have any on hand.
The beauty of making french macarons is that you only need a few ingredients. Of note, the ingredients in this recipe are measured in grams, so you'll need a kitchen scale.
Egg Whites: are the basis of the macaron and give them their base structure. For best results, age your eggs by leaving them out for 24 hours prior to separating the egg from the yolk.
Sugar: sugar goes with the egg whites to form the meringue prior to adding the almond flour and powdered sugar in the macaronage stage.
Cream of Tartar: this helps to stabilize the meringue to help achieve stiff peaks. If you do not have any cream of tartar, you can use 1 tsp of vinegar or lemon juice.
the strawberry filling
I used a combination of strawberry buttercream and strawberry preserves. The buttercream consists of strawberries, room temperature butter, and powdered sugar.
The center of the macaron has a strawberry preserves, but you can also use jam.
Also, of note, to add color to the macarons, I used pink gel food coloring. You can use freeze dried strawberry powder for this as well, but I didn't have any so I improvised.
How to make Strawberry Macarons
Before you get started, I recommend measuring out your ingredients to ensure a smooth process!
Blend and Sift
First, add almond flour and powdered sugar to a food processor and blend for about 20-30 seconds.
Then sift the mixture into a large mixing bowl. This step is critical getting the macarons shell nice and smooth. (*If any bits of the mixture remain in the sifter, sift again just to ensure that there are not chunks of almond flour.)
Make the meringue
Add egg whites to the bowl of a stand mixer with the whisk attachment. Begin whisking the egg whites on medium speed until foamy and then add cream of tartar and slowly begin adding sugar.
Add vanilla extract and food coloring and then add half of the almond flour and powdered sugar mixture into the meringue and begin folding it together with a flat spatula. Then add the remainder of the dry ingredients and continue mixing together, also known as macaronage.
Mix together until the consistency of the batter is that of "flowing lava". When lifting your spatula, you should be able to form long ribbons of batter that can draw a "figure 8" without breaking. This is how you know it's time to stop mixing and you're ready to move to the next step.
Pipe each shell into 1 inch cookie and then tap the baking sheet to ensure that all of the air leaves the macaron shells and any larger particles fall to the bottom. If any air bubbles come to the surface, pop them gently with a toothpick.
Let the macarons "dry" for about one hour, until a skin forms. You will know that the skin is formed when if you touch the cookies gently, none of the batter sticks to your fingers.
Bake the macarons at 300 degrees F for 14-15 minutes. You will know that they are done when you can touch them and they do not move. Allow them to cool completely on the baking sheet (at least 40 minutes undisturbed).
Make the strawberry filling
Ok, the hard part is over. We can relax a little bit. Simply add rom temperature butter to the bowl of a stand mixer with the whisk attachment or to a large bowl using a hand mixer. Beat until fluffy and add 3-4 strawberries and powdered sugar.
Scrap down the sides of the bowl as needed and continue to beat together. Add to a piping bag and pipe the filling around the perimeter of the macaron and fill the center with strawberry preserves.
I've heard of people making macarons with pistachio flour, hazelnut flour, coconut flour, and even all purpose flour - however, I have not tried any of these methods. Can it be done, technically yes, but I do not have instructions on how this is done.
For the french method of making macarons, I recommend using almond flour.
Can you freeze macarons?
Yes! Freezing is a great option for storing macarons. I recommend freezing just the shells because when they thaw, the filling will cause the shell to become soggy. Once cooled, store the shells in a freezer safe airtight container for up to 2 months.
For assembled macarons, it is best to store in the refrigerator, they'll last for up to 7 weeks.
How do you know when macarons are done baking?
When the macarons are set, no longer move when touched, and are not sticky to the touch, they are finished. 14-15 minutes at 300 degrees F is typically ideal.
Can I make macarons ahead of time?
Yes! I actually recommend making macarons about 1-2 days prior to serving/eating so that they have time to mature and set fully. Of course you can eat them immediately, but they're at their best about 24-48 hours after baking.
How long does it take for macarons to dry?
This can vary with the time of the year and the moisture/humidity in the air. It's taken anywhere from 40 minutes to 2 hours for my macarons to dry and form a skin. Be sure not to skip this step.
Wipe your whisk and mixing bowl with lemon juice (or vinegar) to remove any oils or grease. This will help your egg whites set up better.
Measure out all of your ingredients beforehand. I highly recommend doing this to make the process of making these french macarons a lot easier to assemble!
Use a kitchen scale to measure everything! This recipe is in grams.
If you do not have a silicone macaron baking sheet, you can use parchment paper instead. Draw equal size circles to pipe the macarons into and bake as normal!
Be patient with your macarons and have fun with them 🙂
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Strawberry macarons - buttercream with real strawberries and a strawberry jam filling! So good, you can't go wrong!
Prep Time: 1hr
Cook Time: 14mins
Resting time 1hr
Total Time: 2hrs14mins
Silicone Macaron Baking Mat
Stand Mixer with Whisk Attachment
120gsuperfine almond flour
240 gpowdered sugar
½tspcream of tartar
Strawberry Buttercream Filling
½cupunsalted butterroom temperature
Start by making the macarons. Pulse together almond flour and confectioners sugar in a food processor for about 20 seconds. Then sift 2-3 times, ensuring there are no clumps in the flour. (If there are any large granules that do not pass through the sifter, throw them away)
In a large bowl, add egg whites. Begin to beat the egg whites on medium speed until the egg whites become bubbly and are no longer translucent. Add cream or tartar and continue to beat. Once foamy, begin adding sugar very slowly. Increase the speed to high and continue adding sugar until it’s gone. Beat until stiff peaks form and meringue is white and glossy. (You should be able to turn the bowl up side down without the meringue moving)
Add the half of the confectioners sugar and almond flour mixture to the meringue and begin to mix in. Once incorporated, add the remaining amount of and begin folding the mixture, also known as macronage, until the batter is smooth and and has flowing ribbons in the batter. Batter should flow like lava. The batter is finished mixing once you can draw a figure 8 and the batter does not break.
Add batter to a piping bag with wilton 1A piping tip or a ziploc bag with about a ½ inch cut opening.
Line two cookie sheet with either parchment paper or macaron silpat. Pipe macarons onto each sheet into desired size (mine are about 1 inch in diameter)
Tap the pan onto a hard surface to pop any bubbles and get rid of any lingering gritty particles. If any of the bubbles do not pop, use a toothpick and gently pop them bubbles.
Let the macarons sit at room temperature for 40 minutes to an hour, until they are no longer shiny and form a skin. (When you touch the macarons, the batter should not stick to your finger. This process may take a bit longer if your home is more humid)
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees. Bake the macarons one sheet at a time for 14-15 minutes. Allow the macarons to cook completely prior to removing them from the cookie sheet.
While macarons are cooling, add butter to a stand mixer with the whisk attachment. Beat butter on medium speed for 1 minutes then begin adding the strawberries and powdered. Continue to mix until smooth and strawberries are completely mixed into the buttercream.
Very gently, lift the silpat or parchment paper from the cookie sheet and peel the macaron away. (They are very delicate and If you try to just pick it up off of the sheet, it will rip)
Match macarons with similar sized macarons to make a sandwich.
Pipe buttercream onto the perimeter of one macaron and then fill the center with about ½ tsp of strawberry jam. Place the other macaron on top. Garnish