Looking for a tried and tested vegan macaron recipe? You've come to the right place! Macarons are a little slice of heaven in every bite but they can be tricky to make vegan...until now! These delicate and colorful French delicacies have been given a compassionate twist, without compromising on taste or texture. Grab your aprons, friends, it's time to mac-a-roam through macaron magic!
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Get ready to unlock the secrets to macaron mastery as we spill the beans (or should we say almond meal?) on foolproof techniques and tips that will have you creating picture-perfect macarons in no time. From achieving the perfect delicate shell to whipping up luscious vegan buttercream fillings that will leave you craving more, we’ve got you covered.
So, grab your mixer and prepare to conquer the macaron mountain with confidence and finesse. Get ready to impress your friends and family with your very own batch of homemade vegan macaron magic!
Get ready to fall head over heels for this incredible vegan macaron recipe! We’ve crafted a plant-based delight that will have you swooning with each bite. Here’s why this recipe is a game-changer:
Cruelty-Free Confectionery: Indulge in the joy of macarons without compromising your compassionate lifestyle. This recipe is 100% vegan, made without any animal products, so you can enjoy the guilt-free indulgence.
Faster Than Ever: We’ve put in the hours of experimentation, and guess what? We discovered that reducing aquafaba is an unnecessary step! That’s right, we’ve simplified the process without sacrificing the iconic texture and flavor of these delicate treats. Get ready to whip up a batch in less time without any fuss.
Perfectly Poppable: These macarons have all the characteristics you love—crisp outer shells with a slight chew, sandwiching luscious fillings that will make your taste buds dance with delight. Prepare to experience that magical moment when you take a bite and are transported to paradise.
Endless Flavor Possibilities: Our recipe lays the foundation for macaron mastery, allowing you to unleash your creativity. Experiment with a rainbow of vibrant colors and an array of tantalizing flavors. From classic options like chocolate and raspberry to unique combinations like lavender and lemon, the sky’s the limit!
Impressively Imprecise: Don’t fret about achieving absolute uniformity in your macarons. We embrace imperfection here! Each misshapen macaron will be a testament to your homemade love and charm. Embrace the quirks, and remember that beauty comes in all shapes and sizes.
Get ready to embark on a macaron-making adventure that will leave you with a batch of divine, vegan treats that rival any traditional macaron. This recipe is your golden ticket to macaron magic, so grab your ingredients, unleash your inner baking superstar, and let’s whip up some scrumptious vegan macarons together!
It may come as a surprise, considering how fancy macarons are, but they really don’t require that many ingredients! We’ve added a few extra ingredients to create the perfect balance of flavor and texture but to make the base of these vegan macarons you only need a handful of items. Here are the star players:
Aquafaba – It sounds exotic but it’s simple the liquid from a can of chickpeas. This miraculous ingredient, also known as chickpea brine, acts as a vegan egg substitute. It provides the necessary structure and stability for the macaron shells, ensuring that they achieve that iconic crisp exterior and delicate chewy interior. Don’t worry, the taste won’t be affected, and you won’t even know there are chickpeas hiding in these sweet treats!
Cream of tartar – This simple powder is a game-changer when it comes to achieving perfect macaron shells. Cream of tartar helps to stabilize the aquafaba and aids in creating those coveted stiff peaks that will make your macarons shine.
Salt – A pinch of salt may seem insignificant, but it actually enhances the overall flavor profile of these vegan macarons. It balances the sweetness and adds a subtle depth that keeps you coming back for more.
Vegan gel food coloring – Want to add a splash of color to your macaron shells? Vegan gel food coloring is your secret weapon! This is optional so feel free to skip it if you prefer a more au naturel look.
Vanilla extract – For those seeking an extra touch of aroma and flavor, a little vanilla extract can do the trick. It adds a subtle hint of vanilla that complements a wide range of fillings. Feel free to experiment with other extracts like almond or lemon if you’re feeling adventurous!
Caster sugar – Also known as extra fine granulated sugar, this fine-grained sugar is the perfect companion for achieving the smooth and glossy macaron shells you’ve been dreaming of. If you can’t find caster sugar, don’t worry! You can easily make your own by processing granulated sugar in a blender or food processor until it becomes finer.
Almond flour – A crucial component in creating the signature texture of macaron shells, almond flour provides a delicate nuttiness that perfectly balances the sweetness. Look for blanched almond flour for a smoother appearance, and make sure it’s finely ground to ensure a flawless texture.
Vegan butter – This is the only extra ingredient you need for the buttercream filling since you’ll already have the other ingredients on hand for the macaron shells. Feel free to skip this and use a store-bought vegan frosting if you’d like!
How To Make These Vegan Macarons
Making vegan macarons, or any macaron for that matter, is a labor of love—but trust us, it’s worth the effort! I recommend reading through all of these steps ahead of time to be prepared before starting.
Step 1 – Prepare in Advance: Place the can(s) of chickpeas in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours beforehand. This will ensure that the aquafaba is chilled and ready for use. The amount of aquafaba in the can varies by brand so having 2-3 on hand is a good rule of thumb.
Step 2 – Line and Trace: Line 2 large baking trays with parchment paper. Trim the parchment paper to lay flat inside the baking tray—this step is crucial for even baking. Using a pencil or a pre-made template, trace circles 1½ inches in diameter spaced 1 inch apart on each sheet of parchment paper. Flip the sheets over to prevent pencil marks from transferring to the macarons. Fit a large piping bag with a round piping tip (No. 12).
Step 3 – Whisk and Wipe: Use a little vinegar on a clean towel to wipe down a large glass or metal mixing bowl and the whisk you’ll be using. This will remove any grease and ensure they are squeaky clean. Plus, vinegar helps stabilize aquafaba!
Step 4 – Prepare the Batter: In the clean mixing bowl, add 100g of aquafaba, cream of tartar, and salt. Use an electric whisk or stand mixer to incorporate these ingredients on low speed, gradually increasing to high speed until the mixture becomes foamy and forms soft peaks (about 3-4 minutes).
Step 5 -Sweeten and Flavorize: Slowly add the caster sugar while whisking on medium speed. Increase to high speed and whisk for another 3-4 minutes until stiff peaks form. The whisk should start to leave a trail in the meringue as it stiffens, this is when it’s close to stiff. Add vanilla extract and 3-4 drops of color (if desired) and whisk for an additional 30-60 seconds to incorporate. Set aside.
Step 6 – Sift and Fold: Sift the powdered sugar and almond flour into a large bowl. Whisk to combine, then sift again to ensure there are no lumps. Use the back of a spoon to push the last bits through the sieve, discarding any hard lumps. About 7-8 grams of discarded lumps is perfectly fine.
Step 7 – Combine and Macaronage: Add the almond flour mixture to the aquafaba meringue one third at a time. Gently fold in using a rubber spatula, making circular motions along the inside edge of the bowl and then folding over the center. Repeat until all the almond flour mixture is incorporated. The batter should loosen up and become more fluid. Be careful not to over-mix; stop as soon as you can lift some of the batter on a spatula and drip it off in a continuous ribbon to form a figure 8. If the eight is visible in the batter for about 10 seconds before sinking back in, it’s ready. The batter should be slightly thicker than cake batter.
Step 8 – Pipe the Macaron Shells: Secure the piping bag (fitted with a No. 12 tip) in a tall glass to keep it steady by folding the top of the piping bag over the edges of the glass. Transfer the mixture to the bag, then twist the top of the bag to enclose it.
Lift up the four corners of the parchment paper and pipe a small dot of batter onto the baking tray. Smooth out the paper to lay flat to help hold the parchment paper in place. Then, holding the piping bag upright, pipe 1½ inch circles directly into the center of each traced circle on the parchment paper. It’s okay if they’re not perfectly uniform.
Tap the baking tray onto the counter a few times, rotate it and tap again to release any air bubbles and smooth out the peaks. At this point, you can use a toothpick to pop any bubbles that rose to the surface and help the tops to smooth out more.
Step 9 – Let the Shells Set: Allow the piped shells to sit at room temperature for 60-90 minutes, or until a skin forms on top. In humid environments, aim for closer to 90 minutes. To help with the setting process, place the trays on a cold stovetop with the vent hood on. The shells are ready when you can gently drag a finger over the top without it sticking.
Step 10 – Bake: Preheat the oven to 250°F. Bake one tray at a time on the lower rack (unless both trays can fit side-by-side on the same rack) for 20-25 minutes, rotating the tray at the 7-minute mark to ensure even baking. The macaron shells are done when they have risen slightly, formed “feet” (the puffed bottoms), and can be easily lifted off the parchment paper. Allow the vegan macaron shells to cool on the baking tray for 15 minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack to cool completely before filling.
Step 11- Make the Buttercream Filling: Measure out the vegan butter and place it in a mixing bowl. Let the butter reach room temperature by leaving it on the counter. If you’re short on time, you can place it near the oven, but keep a close eye on it to prevent melting.
Once the butter has softened, use a hand mixer or transfer it to the bowl of a stand mixer. Whip the butter for a couple of minutes until it becomes creamy and smooth. Gradually add the powdered sugar, half a cup at a time, and mix well after each addition until a frosting-like consistency forms. Incorporate the vanilla extract and vegan food coloring (if desired), and continue whipping until the filling becomes silky and well blended.
Step 12 – Fill the Macaron Shells: Find matching pairs of macaron shells that are similar in shape and size. Use a No. 12 piping tip and a piping bag to pipe the buttercream filling onto the flat side of one cookie from each pair. Gently place its pair on top to create a sandwich. Press down lightly to ensure the filling spreads to the edges. Repeat with the remaining shells.
Your vegan macarons are now ready to be devoured! Serve them at room temperature for the perfect balance of texture and flavor. These delightful treats make a beautiful addition to any gathering or as a special indulgence just for yourself.
Creating perfect vegan macarons can be a thrilling and rewarding experience. Here are some expert tips and troubleshooting suggestions to ensure your macarons turn out sublime:
Measure Accurately: Precision is key when it comes to macarons. Use a digital kitchen scale to measure your ingredients by weight for the most accurate results. This will help you achieve the ideal balance of ingredients and ensure consistency in your macaron shells.
Chill the Aquafaba: Before starting the recipe, refrigerate the can(s) of chickpeas for at least 2 hours. Chilled aquafaba whips up better and yields more stable meringue, resulting in better macaron shells.
Clean and Grease-Free: Make sure all your equipment, including mixing bowls, whisk, and piping bag and tip, are completely clean and free of any grease or residue. Wipe them down with a little vinegar to ensure they are squeaky clean. This step helps stabilize the aquafaba and ensures optimal meringue formation as even a little grease can lead to disaster.
Master the Macronage: The macronage step is crucial for achieving the right consistency in your batter. Be gentle when folding the almond flour mixture into the aquafaba meringue. Under-mixing can lead to lumpy batter, while over-mixing can result in flat macarons with no feet. The batter should be a little thicker than cake batter and flow off your spatula in a figure 8 shape that slowly sinks back into the batter after about 10 seconds. The figure 8 should still be visible but the edges should soften after 10 seconds.
Let Them Rest: Allowing the piped macaron shells to rest at room temperature for 60-90 minutes is essential. This resting period allows the shells to develop a thin, smooth skin on top, which helps them rise properly and form those coveted feet during baking.
Mind the Temperature: Pay attention to the temperature of your oven. A slightly lower temperature, around 250°F, is ideal for baking vegan macarons. Additionally, make sure your oven is properly calibrated for accurate temperature control. An oven thermometer is recommended for accuracy.
Cracked Tops: If your macarons develop cracks on top, it could be due to overmixing the batter or insufficient resting time. Be cautious not to overmix, and make sure to let the shells rest until they develop a smooth, dry surface before baking. Too high of an oven temperature can also result in cracked tops so having an oven thermometer is handy in case your oven runs hot.
Flat Macarons with No Feet: If your macarons turn out flat without any feet, it may be a result of overmixing the batter, inadequate resting time, or an oven temperature that is too high. Be gentle during the macronage step, allow sufficient resting time, and adjust your oven temperature accordingly.
Sticky Macarons: If the macaron shells stick to the parchment paper or are too soft and sticky, it could be an indication of underbaking. Extend the baking time slightly and check for the desired texture and lift-off ease.
Remember, practice makes perfect! Don’t be discouraged if your first batch isn’t flawless. Experiment, learn from your experiences, and have fun along the way. With these expert tips and troubleshooting suggestions, you’ll be well on your way to creating delectable vegan macarons that will impress everyone lucky enough to taste them.
Proper storage is crucial to maintain the freshness and crispy texture of the vegan macarons. Here are my recommendations to keep your macarons at their best:
Room temperature: Store macaron shells that haven’t been filled yet in an airtight container at room temperature for up for 5 days.
Refrigeration: If you’ve filled your macarons, it’s best to store them in the refrigerator to preserve freshness. Before serving, let them sit at room temperature for 10 minutes.
Freezing: For extended storage, you can freeze your vegan macarons. Let them mature for 24 hours in the refrigerator in and airtight container. Transfer the container to the freeze to keep for up to 3 months.
Thawing: Move the container back to the refrigerator to thaw for at least a few hours. This gradual thawing process will help maintain their texture. Once thawed, bring them to room temperature before serving.
Remember, macarons are at their peak within the first couple of days, so aim to consume them as fresh as possible. Whether you choose to store them at room temperature or in the refrigerator or freezer, proper storage will help preserve their deliciousness for as long as possible. So, savor each bite and enjoy your vegan macarons to the fullest!
One of the joys of making vegan macarons is the endless opportunity to experiment with different flavors and fillings. From classic combinations to creative twists, here are some delicious variations to elevate your vegan macaron game:
Chocolate: Add cocoa powder to the almond flour mixture for rich and indulgent chocolate macarons. You can also incorporate melted vegan chocolate into the batter for a double dose of chocolatey goodness.
Matcha: Infuse your macaron shells with vibrant matcha green tea powder for a unique and delightful flavor. Matcha pairs beautifully with vanilla or white chocolate fillings.
Fruity Delights: Incorporate fruit flavors directly into your macaron shells by adding fruit powder or finely ground freeze-dried fruits. Try raspberry, strawberry, lemon, or even mango for a burst of fruity goodness.
Coffee: For coffee lovers, add instant coffee granules or espresso powder to your macaron shells. Pair them with a mocha or coffee-flavored filling for an irresistible treat.
Remember, when incorporating additional flavors into your macaron shells, start with a small amount. Add the flavors gradually to achieve the desired intensity without compromising the macaron’s delicate balance.
Vegan Buttercream: The classic choice for macaron fillings, vegan buttercream offers endless possibilities. Experiment with flavors like vanilla, chocolate, salted caramel, or even fruit variations like strawberry or passionfruit.
Fruit Jams and Curds: Enhance the fruity essence by filling your macarons with your favorite vegan fruit jams. Strawberry, raspberry, lemon, and passionfruit curds work beautifully, adding a tangy and sweet touch.
Have double the fun with these baked double chocolate donuts. They’re rich and decadent and the perfect treat when you’re feeling crafty!
Author: Rachel Lessenden | World of Vegan
5 from 8 votes
This macaron recipe has been thoroughly tested and provides all the tips and tricks you need to make marvelous vegan macarons every time! These delicate French delights have undergone a compassionate transformation without compromising on taste or texture.
Electric whisk or stand mixer with a whisk attachment
Large glass or metal mixing bowl
2 Large rimmed baking trays
Mesh sieve or sifter
Large piping bag
No. 12 piping tip
Kitchen scale or Measuring Cups (See Notes Below)
For the macaron shells
100gaquafaba, liquid from a can of chickpeas (⅓ cup + 1 tablespoon)
¼teaspooncream of tartar
3dropsvegan gel food coloring, optional
¼teaspoonvanilla extract, optional
90gcaster sugar, or extra fine granulated sugar (⅓ cup + 2 tablespoons)
125galmond flour, (1 cup + 2 tablespoons)
125gpowdered sugar, (1 cup + 1 tablespoon)
For the buttercream filling
1 ½cupspowdered sugar
Vegan gel food coloring, optional
Place can(s) of chickpeas in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours beforehand.
Line 2 large baking trays with parchment paper. Trim the parchment paper to lay flat inside the baking tray (this is crucial). Trace circles 1½ inches in diameter spaced 1 inch apart on each sheet of parchment paper with a pencil (or use a pre-made template). Flip the sheets over to prevent the pencil marks from transferring to the vegan macarons. Fit a large piping bag with a round piping tip (No. 12).
Use a little vinegar on a clean towel to wipe down a large glass or metal mixing bowl and the whisk you'll be using. This helps remove any grease to ensure it's squeaky clean (plus vinegar helps to stabilize aquafaba as well).
Prepare the batter
Weight out 100g of aquafaba from your can of chickpeas (save leftover chickpeas for later, such as chickpea curry) into the clean mixing bowl. Add the cream of tartar and salt. Using an electric whisk or stand mixer, start on low speed to incorporate the cream of tartar and salt, then increase to high speed until the mixture becomes foamy and starts to form soft peaks; about 3-4 minutes.
Slowly add the caster sugar, while whisking on medium speed. Increase speed to high and whisk for another 3-4 minutes until stiff peaks have formed. Add the vanilla extract and 3-4 drops of color if using. Whisk for another 30-60 seconds to incorporate. Set aside.
Sift the powdered sugar and almond flour into a large bowl. Whisk to combine then sift again to ensure there are no lumps. Use the back of a spoon to push the last bit at the end through the sieve but feel free to discard any hard lumps that are being difficult (about 7-8 grams of discard is fine).
Add the almond flour mixture one third at a time to the aquafaba meringue and gently fold in using a rubber spatula. Make a circular motion along the inside edge of the bowl and then fold over the center to incorporate. Repeat with the rest of the almond flour mixture.
Continue folding until the batter loosens up and becomes more fluid (this step is known as the macronage). Be extra careful not to over-mix. You're done as soon as you can lift some of the batter on a spatula and drip the mixture off in a continuous ribbon to form a figure 8. If the eight is visible in the batter for about 10 seconds before sinking back in, it's ready. It should be a little thicker than cake batter.
Pipe the macaron shells
Transfer the mixture to your prepared piping bag. Use a tall glass to place the piping bag into, tip down. Then fold the top of the piping bag over the edges of the glass to hold it in place. Once filled, twist the top of the bag to enclose, then lift up the four corners of the parchment paper and pipe a small dot of batter onto the baking tray. Smooth out the paper to lay flat (this will help hold the parchment paper in place).
Holding the piping bag upright, perpendicular to the baking tray, pipe 1½ inch circles directly into the center of your circles and squeeze until the circle is filled. It's okay if they're not perfect. Tap the baking tray onto the counter a few times, then rotate and tap a few more times to release any air bubbles (this also helps the small peak left by the piping tip to smooth out).
Allow the piped shells to sit at room temperature for 60-90 minutes to set up and form a “skin” on the top. If you’re in a humid place, wait closer to 90 minutes. I like to place mine on a cold stove top with the vent hood on to help. They’re ready when you can gently drag a finger over the top without it sticking.
Preheat the oven to 250°F. Bake one tray at a time on the lower rack (unless you can fit both trays side-by-side on the same rack) for 20-25 minutes (mine were perfect at 22 minutes), rotate at the 7-minute mark to ensure even baking. The macaron shells are done baking when they have risen slightly and formed "feet"—the puffed bottoms—and can be easily lifted off of the parchment paper. Allow the vegan macaron shells to cool on the baking tray for 15 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack to cool fully before filling.
Make the buttercream filling
Measure out the vegan butter and place it in a mixing bowl. Allow the butter to reach room temperature by leaving it on the counter. If you’re in a rush, you can place it near the oven, but be sure to closely monitor it to prevent melting.
Once the butter has softened, use a hand mixer or transfer it to the bowl of a stand mixer and whip the butter for a couple of minutes until it becomes creamy and smooth.
Next, gradually add the powdered sugar, half a cup at a time, and mix well after each addition until a frosting-like consistency forms. Incorporate the vanilla extract and vegan food color if using, and continue whipping until the frosting becomes silky and well blended.
Fill macaron shells
Find matching pairs of similar shape and size. Use a No. 12 tip and piping bag to pipe the buttercream filling onto the flat side of one cookie from each pair. Gently place its pair on top to create a sandwich. Serve the macarons at room temperature.
Important Measuring Note – Making macarons is a delicate process so for best outcomes, a digital kitchen scale is highly recommended. However, it can be done with measuring cups if needed. When using cups, never use the cup to scoop or pack down the contents. Instead, spoon the contents into the cup, then use a straight edge like the back of a butter knife to level it off.Serving – Traditionally macarons are filled and then stored overnight in the refrigerator to allow the buttercream to absorb into the shell. This vegan version is great served right away for crispier shells or stored in the refrigerator for the next day. If chilled, allow to set out at room temperature for 10 minutes before serving.Storage – Macaron shells can be stored in an airtight container on the countertop for up to 5 days. If filled, store the macarons in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week. To freeze, first mature macarons by placing them in the refrigerator in an airtight container for 24 hours then transfer the container to the freezer for up to 3 months. To thaw, place the container in the refrigerator or thaw at room temperature (do not open the container until thawed or you’ll have condensation).Any leftover vegan buttercream frosting can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-5 days. When ready to use, allow the frosting to warm up to room temperature.
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