Lemon Mascarpone Macarons are the ultimate macaron for lemon lovers: the puckery flavor of lemon is perfectly balanced by the rich and creamy mascarpone.
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Given that lemon is my absolute favorite flavor, I’d be hard-pressed to explain why it took me so long to share a lemon macaron recipe. Perhaps I took the flavor for granted! I’ve been tweaking and testing different versions for the past year or two, and I thought it was time to share the favorite I finally adopted.
The flavor in this Lemon Mascarpone Macaron is so lively, I should call it the ultimate macaron for lemon lovers: it has lemon zest in the shells, lemon juice and zest in the filling, and—my secret pro tip—a piece of lemon fruit jelly tucked in the center.
I used to fill these with a simple lemon buttercream, but using mascarpone cheese instead of butter really brings this treat to the next level: the slight zing of the cheese pairs so well with the citrus fruit, and the richness cuts through the acidity of lemon juice. This balance creates the perfect lemon bite: you first get a puckery lemon hit, which is then slightly tamed by the creamy filling.
If you can’t find mascarpone cheese, you could substitute cream cheese or even unsalted butter, if you want to make a classic lemon buttercream. To decorate the shells, I used thinly sliced almonds, which I placed on the shells before baking (use only one per shell to make sure the almonds won’t prevent the shells from rising), and a dusting of edible glitter, for an extra special touch.
First Time Making French Macarons?
If this is your first time making macarons, prep, read, and watch before you start: Macarons are finicky to make, but if you set aside enough time so that you won’t be rushed, you can do it. I have a variety of resources available for you:
And a full how-to video class—which I highly recommend watching before you make macarons for the first time. There’s nothing like watching someone making macarons to learn how to make them properly—that’s how I learned over 10 years ago, and that’s how thousands of my students did too!
I designed my Skillshare class both for novice bakers who want to learn new skills, and for experienced bakers who are seeking to master a new and impressive dessert. The class is divided into 15 short lessons that show you the essential equipment you need, the important steps to follow, the techniques to master, and the potential pitfalls to avoid. You can watch the videos on your own time, start practicing, share with other budding macaron makers, and ask me questions if you encounter difficulties along the way.
I myself learned how to make macaron by watching a friend making them for me repeatedly, and I believe a live (or video!) demonstration is the best way to learn how to make macarons because you can see exactly the techniques, textures, and results you should aim for.
Over 6,000 people have taken my Skillshare class so far and the class gets overwhelmingly positive reviews, most students stating the lessons exceeded their expectations. I’m confident that this video class will enable you to create perfect macarons.
Get FREE Access to my French Macaron Video Class for 14 days: Enroll Now!
For the lemon and mascarpone buttercream: In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large mixing bowl if using a hand mixer, cream the butter and mascarpone together. Add the sifted powdered sugar and mix at low speed to moisten the sugar, then increase the speed and beat until the sugar is well incorporated. Add the lemon zest and juice. Beat at high speed until the buttercream is light and fluffy. Transfer to a pastry bag fitted with a small round tip and refrigerate until ready to assemble the macarons.
For the macaron shells:
*Return the egg whites to room temperature at least an hour before making the macarons shells.*
In the bowl of a food processor, add the powdered sugar, almond flour, and lemon zest, and process until the mixture is thoroughly incorporated, 30 seconds to a minute. Sift the mixture through a fine-mesh strainer to make sure no lumps or bigger bits of almonds or zest are left.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, or in a large stainless steel mixing bowl if using a hand mixer, whisk the egg whites on medium/high speed until frothy. Add a tablespoon of the granulated sugar, continue whisking at medium-low speed, then add the remaining sugar slowly. Increase the speed medium-high and whisk until the egg whites are bright white and create stiff peaks. At low speed, mix in a few drops of yellow gel food coloring, to your liking.
Using a spatula, gently fold in the almond and sugar mixture into the meringue in 2 or 3 additions. Slide your spatula all the way to the bottom of the bowl and comes back up several times to make sure no pockets of dry ingredients remain.
Transfer the macaron batter in a pastry bag fitted with a ½-inch (1.25-cm) round tip. Pipe 1.5-inch (3.8-cm) rounds of batter, evenly spaced but still close to one another as they will not expand much.
Carefully slide the macaron templates off the baking sheets, if you used them. If desired, gently place a toasted sliced almond over each shell. Let the shells rest on the baking sheets for 20 to 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 275°F (135°C) with a rack in the middle position. Bake the macarons for 13 to 16 minutes, rotating the pan after 10 minutes.
Let the shells cool completely to room temperature before assembling them, about an hour.
To assemble the macarons: Pair same sized shells together and set side by side on a work surface. If desired, cut 28 small, flat pieces of lemon fruit jelly and keep close. Pipe some lemon and mascarpone buttercream over half of the shells, following the circumference of each shell to create a circle. Fill each circle with a piece of fruit jelly. Close the macarons, gently pressing the second shells over the filling. If desired, using a pastry brush, decorate the top of each macaron with gold edible glitter powder.
Store the assembled macarons in an airtight container and refrigerate for one night before indulging.
Always bring the macarons back to room temperature before serving.
Did you make this?
Tell me how you liked it! Leave a comment or take a picture and tag it with @foodnouveau on Instagram.
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