Introduction: Faux Nut-Free Macarons With Whipped Ganache

These cookies are nut-free, and while they don't taste like real macarons, they resemble them enough to get fooled. Recipe and dough making technique resembles sugar cookie recipe, but majority of regular flour is replaced by corn starch. Corn starch makes the cookies crumbly and soft, which is what I was aiming for with those fake macarons. They have a unique, melt-in-your-mouth texture, they are soft, crumby and can be flavoured however you want. Recipe can be adjusted by replacing regular flour with rice flour and thus making the cookies gluten-free.


120g butter
80g powdered sugar
2 eggs
240g corn starch
100g flour
1tsp baking powder
1tsp vanilla (or any other) essence

Step 1: Making the Dough

  • Cream butter and sugar together using an electric mixer or a wooden spoon.
  • Once the butter turns pale, add food dye and mix again.
  • Add one egg, mix, add another egg and mix again. Add vanilla essence. At this point your butter-egg mixture won’t look nice, it’s normal, don’t worry.
  • Dump sifted starch, flour and baking powder into the mix and stir with a spoon until it resembles crumbs.

Step 2: Dough Kneading

  • Transfer the dough onto a worksurface and knead until it comes together.
  • Shape it into a flat disk, cover with cling wrap and put in the fridge for 2-4 hours, until the dough hardens.

Step 3: Rolling and Cutting

  • Place the dough directly onto a baking paper, sprinkle flour onto the surface and roll out.
  • Aim at around 3-4mm. Best method to ensure uniform thickness is to use a guide of some sort. I’m using two, 4mm thick wood pieces which I placed on either side of the dough and I rolled the rolling pin over the wood to make sure the dough won’t get rolled too thin.
  • Once rolled out, use round cookie cutters dipped in flour to cut cookies. I made two sizes, 4cm and 2.5cm. Smaller one is better because it’s easier to eat and looks cuter.

  • Bake at 170°C (335 °F) for 12-15 min. Once baked, cool them down completely before decorating and filling.

Step 4: Baked Cookies

As you can see, once baked, original colour becomes a bit paler, so adjust your food colouring by making the raw dough more vibrant than you want them to be in the end.

Step 5: Decorating

There are many ways you can decorate, melted chocolate, coloured icing, brushed food dye (which is what I did).

Step 6: Filling

Once cooled and decorated, use a pastry bag to fill the cookies with ganache (or jam, chocolate etc) and assemble the cookies.

Step 7: Optional: Rose Ganache

This whipped ganache recipe will be enough to fill half the cookies.

You will need:
50+50ml double cream
50g chocolate

  • Heat 50ml double cream with your choice of flavouring. I used 3TBS of dried rose petals and 2 tsp rose water.
  • Let it cool down and infuse for a few hours.
  • Strain though a sieve, remove the petals and measure how much cream is left. You will need 50ml, so add additional cream.

Step 8: Optional: Pineapple Ganache

  • Chop 30g dry pineapple, pour hot water over to hydrate it and wait 30-60min.
  • Once hydrated, drain and dry on kitchen towels to remove as much moisture as possible. Add that to 50ml cream, heat it up and let it infuse for a few hours.

Step 9: Ganache

  • Once infused, heat the cream again and add 50g chopped, white chocolate.
  • Allow the heat to melt the chocolate, stir and cool in the fridge for min 4 hours (you can dye it at this point).
  • Last step is to whip 50ml of cold cream into stiff peaks.
  • Then whip the ganache until stiff and mix with whipped cream.
  • If it’s not stiff enough, add 1TBS soft butter (this might be the case when you add liquid flavourings such a s rose water).

Put the whipped ganache into a piping bag and get ready for filling.

Step 10: Finished

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