These Salted Caramel French Macarons, inspired by pastry master Pierre Hermé, perfectly balance sweet and salty to create a truly memorable bite. This recipe includes a variety of resources to help you successfully make macarons, including a full French Macaron video masterclass!
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If we were to conduct a survey to find out what is the top-selling macaron flavor worldwide, I bet salted caramel macarons would be in a close race for first place, along with chocolate varieties. I know it is at the top of my list—in fact, the flavor that most certainly made me fall with love with macarons is probably Pierre Hermé’s Infiniment Caramel, his salted caramel French macaron creation. It’s the perfect balance of creamy and crisp, and of sweet and salty. A work of art in a bite, in my opinion.
I created this Salted Caramel French Macaron with Hermé—my macaron mentor—in mind. The salted caramel filling is adapted from his book, Pierre Hermé Macarons: The Ultimate Recipes from the Master Pâtissier, and I like to incorporate ground pecans in the shells to underline the nutty flavor of the filling. Let me tell you: these Salted Caramel Macarons are quite the addictive bite; in fact, this macaron flavor is one of the two I get requested the most often—neck and neck with my dark chocolate macarons.
If you love desserts that showcase a delicate balance of sweet and salty, this macaron’s for you. But really, I think this treat has the power of turning any skeptic into an unconditional macaron lover.
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 30-minute French Macaron Video Masterclass—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!
NEW: French Macaron Video Masterclass
Learn how to make perfect French macarons at home with my detailed video masterclass, now available to everyone for FREE and unlimited watching! This masterclass was previously hosted behind a paywall on an educational site where THOUSANDS of students rated it 5 STARS! It’s now available to all macaron lovers worldwide, for absolutely free ❤️
My detailed French Macaron Video Masterclass is divided into 14 handy lessons that will make you a macaron expert in no time. I designed my masterclass both for novice bakers who want to learn new skills, and for experienced bakers who are seeking to master a new and impressive dessert. Let me guide you throughthe 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’m confident that this video class will enable you to create perfect French macarons.Watch the class now!
If you enjoy my French Macaron Masterclass, make sure to “like” it on YouTube to allow other macaron lovers to discover it. Thank you and happy baking!
For the salted caramel filling: In a small saucepan, bring the heavy cream to a boil. Remove from the heat, cover, and set aside.
In a medium saucepan, add the sugar and water and melt the sugar completely over medium heat. Once the sugar is melted and smooth, increase the heat to high and boil the sugar, without stirring but gently swirling the pan occasionally, until the mixture is a nice golden caramel color. Remove from the heat. Gradually whisk in the butter, being very careful when adding it so the boiling sugar doesn't splash on your hands. Pour the heavy cream into the caramel mixture in a small stream, whisking continually.
Clip a candy thermometer to the side of the saucepan and return to medium-high heat. Boil until the mixture reaches 226°F (108°C). Pour into a shallow heatproof dish and let cool for 5 to 10 minutes. Cover with plastic wrap, pressing it directly onto the surface of the filling, and refrigerate until completely cold, at least 2 hours.Transfer the filling to a pastry bag fitted with a round tip and set aside 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 pecans, 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 nuts 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 brown gel food coloring, to your liking.
Add the almond and powdered sugar mixture to the egg whites and, using a spatula, gently fold in the dry ingredients: slide your spatula all the way to the bottom of the bowl and come back up to the top. Do this about 6 times to incorporate the dry ingredients, then keep folding for a total of about 14 strokes until no pockets of dry ingredients remain and the mixture drops from the side of the spatula in a slow, lazy ribbon. Start testing the ribbon stage early to avoid overfolding.
Transfer the macaron batter to a pastry bag fitted with a ½-inch (1.25-cm) round tip. Pipe 1 ½-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. Using a small fine-mesh strainer, lightly sprinkle gold shimmer dust over the shells. Let the shells rest on the baking sheets for 20 to 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 275°F (135°C) with a rack set to the middle position. Bake each sheet of macaron shells for 13 to 16 minutes, or until the shells are firm on their feet when you lightly tap on them with the tip of a finger.
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. Pipe some salted caramel filling over half of the shells. Close the macarons, gently pressing the second shells over the filling.
STORAGE: Store the assembled Salted Caramel French Macarons in an airtight container and refrigerate overnight before indulging.French macarons will keep, refrigerated, for up to 3 days. You can also freeze assembled macarons in an airtight container for up to 1 month.
SERVING: Always bring these Salted Caramel French Macarons back to room temperature before serving.
Did you make this?
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I’ve never made macarons before but it’s on my bucket list of things I have to master — I’m quite stubborn. And I can imagine how heavenly the taste is. Salty. Sweet. Nutty. The perfect combination. I’ll be checking out your list of instructions before I get started. Buon weekend, Marie
Loving your tiny sweets week! And salted caramel is always the macaron I choose when I’m trying them from new bakeries! These look lovely and I love the addition of the pecans!
You and I think alike: The salted caramel macaron is my benchmark too! Pecans work perfectly with the delicious filling. It’s a nice touch!