Salted Caramel Macarons are one of the most amazing macarons out there. The macaron itself is crunchy on the outer and gooey on the inside. And when you bite into it, you get that sweet caramel with a hint of salt that really accentuates the sweetness of the caramel. It’s a sweet little treat that is perfect for parties, gift giving and just plain indulgence.
It’s finally here – the recipe many of you have been waiting for. I was at a wedding this Summer and they asked me to make macarons. So I did, I made these Salted Caramel Macarons and I made Pistachio Matcha Macarons (recipe is coming). I got rave reviews about them, and many have asked for the recipes. I haven’t found the time and place for them yet, but now I think it is!
Other recipes people have been waiting for are these milk chocolate covered salted caramels, peppermint patties and peppermint cream cheese truffles. I love making small little treats like these. And anything with salted caramel is the bomb, so I’m sure you will love this 6 inch salted caramel chai cake too.
Salted Caramel Macarons with Homemade Caramel
As with my previous macarons, the Peppermint Mocha Macarons (perfect for the upcoming Holidays btw!), I used to use the macaron recipe of my favorite pastry chef, Pascal. He is a French pastry chef living in Norway, and macarons are his specialty.
However, I realized that 1. the recipe is quite big with 60 macarons, and 2. I struggled to make perfect macarons every time so I’ve tweaked the recipe a little. If you still want to make it as previously mentioned, I have not deleted the original, you can see it as a note in the recipe card – don’t worry!
Here are my tips to make the best macarons
- Old, room temperature egg whites – when everything is the same temperature, it’s easier to whip the perfect meringue.
- Fat free environment – same reason, easier to whip the best meringue. In fact, if you get fat into the bowl it will be impossible to whip stiff peaks!
- Gooey meringue that holds its shape – whip slowly until you get the perfect meringue that holds its shape when you hold it upside down
- Run it through a sieve – twice – macarons are delicate and the batter need to be as fine as possible
- Shiny, runny batter – once you mix meringue with almond mixture, and you form a rose out of the batter, it should sink in a few seconds
- Use a piping bag and keep the tip still while piping – preferably use a macaron mat or draw circles on parchment paper to make them uniform
- Drop the baking sheet a few times – releasing air bubbles, be gentle!
- Let them rest uncovered – will make a crust so they rise up and not outwards while baking
- Bake and cool
Here’s how the meringue should look when it’s done. More on the various steps are in the recipe below.
How to Make Salted Caramel Macarons
Begin with getting your egg whites to room temperature for at least a few hours but days is best. It should be 120 gr, approximately 3 egg whites, but I would suggest getting your scale up for this. Also, use a glass or metallic bowl, because the meringue cannot mix with fat, and there’s often a greasy layer on plastic bowls.
Next, mix almond flour and powdered sugar. Mix quickly in a food processor. Run it through a sieve – extremely important – and do that twice. Do not force the almond granules through the sieve, just lightly press with a spatula or spoon.
Whip the egg whites, little by little add the sugar, until you get a gooey meringue (about 10-15 minutes). Start whipping slow and then gradually work your way to high speed for the last half of the time. You should be able to turn the bowl upside down and the meringue is still in place, otherwise known as stiff peaks. I had no food coloring here because I think this creamy natural color works with the salted caramel macarons.
Shiny, Runny Salted Caramel Macarons Batter
Mix the egg white mixture with the flour mixture using a spatula. The batter should be runny and shiny, but not overly runny, slowly flowing off the spatula. If you make ribbons out of the batter, the ribbons should sink into the batter after 10 seconds. This is known as macaronage and is more thoroughly explained in my Peppermint Mocha Macarons Recipe.
Prepare a bag with a round tip. Add the batter. I would also recommend to draw equal circles on a parchment paper so that the macarons will be approximately equal in size. You could also get one of these instead. Turn the parchment paper upside down on a baking tray so that you won’t get ink on your macarons, pipe onto each circle. You should keep the tip still and just pipe in a still motion until it fits the circle.
Take the tray and carefully drop it onto the tabletop to release any air bubbles. You should do this a couple of times. Let the macarons rest for 30 min before baking. This will give them a film that will make a crunchy top and forces the macarons to rise up instead of out during baking and will give the macaron its ‘feet’.
Bake in the oven at 150C (302F) for 18 minutes. Let them cool completely on the plate. They should then be easily removed from the parchment paper.
How to Make Homemade Salted Caramel Macarons Filling
So this is the part people really are raving about. I don’t know, maybe people don’t make their own caramels, but why not – it’s so easy! This salted caramel is based on my delicious salted caramel sauce albeit much thicker.
Before You Begin
Begin with measuring all your ingredients. Take out a large saucepan. You want to monitor the color of the caramel, so it needs to be light bottomed. I also emphasis that this needs to be a much larger saucepan than you think you need.
Once you add the cream to the caramel it really bubbles and fizzes into this enormous volcanic eruption. Also, use a wooden spoon or a heat proof spatula. I once used a whisk and the caramel crystallized around the whisk.
It’s Action Time
Add sugar and water to the saucepan. Over medium high heat (on my stove it was 10 out of 14), stir the sugar until it dissolves. But stop stirring immediately when the sugar begins to bubble or the chances for crystallization increases dramatically.
Let the sugar bubble until it reaches an amber color, the longer you wait the deeper the flavor. But don’t wait too long, or it will taste burnt. My sweet spot is when it smells nutty and slightly burnt. It will not taste burnt once you add in the rest of the ingredients, just a deep caramel flavor. For me it’s around 7 minutes, but it will depend a little on your stove.
Remove the saucepan from the heat. In a slow stream, while whisking, add in the heavy cream. Then add in the butter, one tablespoon at the time. Then add the vanilla, and finally the salt. I like to just add a little salt to keep it neutral, and then sprinkle the macarons with sea salt too.
Let the salted caramel cool in a jar or a bowl. It will thicken as it cools.
I cool the caramel until it’s almost cold, a little difficult to get out of the jar, but still kind of pliable. Add 1/2 tsp-1 tsp to the bottom side of one macaron, sprinkle with a little sea salt and quickly add the other macaron cookie and place them on a plate in the fridge.
Do this with all, and keep them in the fridge until ready to be eaten. Take the Salted Caramel Macarons out 5-10 minutes before eating (hah, I can never wait that long) to make them even more delicious and creamy.
Sorry this turned out so long! It really isn’t that difficult, you just need to keep a few things in mind. Follow the recipe and use my tips, and you will do fine. These Salted Caramel Macarons are so worth it!
Other Small Gift Giving Treats
- Peppermint Cream Cheese Filled Truffles
- Decadent Coffee Truffles
- Peppermint Dark Chocolates
- Dasher’s Creamy Eggnog
- Peppermint Mocha Macarons
- Easy Luscious Lemon Curd
Feedback is much appreciated, either in the comments or tag @thegingerwithspice on Instagram. Don’t forget to Pin it for later!
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Salted Caramel Macarons with Homemade Caramel
- 150 g almond flour*
- 150 g powdered sugar
- 120 g egg whites room temperature, approx. 3 large
- 75 g granulated sugar
Homemade Salted Caramel
- 1 cup sugar 200g
- 1/4 cup water 4 tbsp
- 7 tbsp heavy cream 100ml
- 3 tbsp butter 50g, cut into 1 tbsp sized, room temperature
- 1 tsp vanilla extract optional
- 3/4 tsp salt
- flaky sea salt optional
- Prepare: Begin with getting your egg whites to room temperature for a day**. Also, use a glass or metallic bowl, because the meringue cannot mix with fat, and there's often a greasy layer on plastic bowls.
- Dry ingredients: Next, mix almond flour and powdered sugar in a food processor for a few seconds, sift this into a new bowl.
- Make merignue: In a stand mixer or a hand mixer, whip the egg whites (in a glass or metallic bowl) until frothy, then gradually add the sugar 1 tbsp at the time, until you get a gooey meringue with stiff peaks that will not droop. No need for food coloring here!
- Macaronage: Fold the egg white mixture with the almond flour mixture using a spatula until it's smooth, shiny and flowing, known as macaronage. The batter should be runny and shiny, and flowing slowly off the spatula. Test the batter by making ribbons in the batter and the ribbons should sink into the batter after 10 seconds or so.
- Pipe it: Prepare a piping bag with a round tip. Add the batter. On parchment lined baking sheet, pipe macarons by keeping the tip still and just pipe in a still motion. I made circles on a parchment paper to keep as a reference underneath.
- Let them rest: Take the tray and carefully drop it onto the tabletop to release any air bubbles. You should do this a couple of times. Let the macarons rest for 30 minutes before baking. This will give them a film that will make a crunchy top and forces the macarons to rise up instead of out during baking and will give the macaron its 'feet'.
- Bake: Pre-heat oven to 300F (150C). Bake for about 18 minutes. Let cool completely on the baking sheet. They should be easily removed from the parchment paper.
Homemade Salted Caramel
- Preparations: Begin with measuring all your ingredients. Take out a light bottomed saucepan, much larger than you think you will need.
- Add sugar and water to the saucepan: Add sugar and water to the saucepan. Over medium high heat (on my stove it was 10 out of 14), stir the sugar with a wooden spoon until it dissolves. But stop stirring immediately when the sugar begins to bubble or the chances for crystallization increases dramatically.
- To amber color: Let the sugar bubble until it reaches an amber color and smells nutty. For me it's around 7 minutes, but it will depend a little on your stove.
- Add the other ingredients while constantly whisking: Remove the saucepan from the heat. In a slow stream, while whisking, add in the heavy cream. Then add in the butter, one tablespoon at the time. Constantly whisk, and add the next tbsp once it's melted. Then add the vanilla, and finally the salt.
- Cool: Let the salted caramel cool in a jar or bowl. It will thicken as it cools.
- Assemble and cool: Once the caramel has cooled for about 5-10 minutes, add 1/2 tsp-1 tsp to the bottom side of one macaron, sprinkle with a little flaky sea salt and quickly add the other macaron cookie and place them on a plate in the fridge. Do this with all, and keep them in the fridge until ready to be eaten.
- Eat: Take the Salted Caramel Macarons out 5-10 minutes before eating to make them even more delicious and creamy.