These Coffee Macarons are filled with an espresso buttercream and are the perfect after dinner treat! If you love a rich coffee flavor, these are the macarons for you. Learn to make these delicious and beautiful coffee art macarons which are easier than they look!
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These coffee macarons are as pretty as they are tasty! They’re made by splitting the batter in two, one (larger) portion of the batter will be for the brown macaron shells, and the other (smaller) portion for the white “coffee art” design. Read below for more information and tips, and get the full step-by-step recipe and instructions in the recipe card.
Coffee Macaron Recipe
- Almond Flour – Use blanched, finely ground almond flour so that your macaron shells don’t look speckled or bumpy. Blanched almond flour means that the skin has been removed from the almonds so there are no brown bits.
- Powdered Sugar – Sift together with the almond flour because almond flour is moist and won’t sift well on its own.
- Egg Whites – Make sure your egg whites are at room temperature. (TIP: to bring them to room temperature quickly, put eggs in a bowl with very hot water and let them sit for around 5 minutes)
- Powdered Egg Whites – If you have trouble getting a strong meringue (which is necessary for stiff peaks), adding powdered egg whites to the granulated sugar will help.
- Granulated Sugar
- Vanilla Extract – Adds a nice flavor to the macaron shells.
- Brown Gel Food Coloring – I added 2 drops of brown gel food coloring.
How Do You Decorate the Tops of Macarons
For these coffee macarons, I used a batter piped within batter method. I first piped the actual brown macaron shell and, before it started to dry, I piped the white design.
You can see below on the bottom shell how I piped several white dots around the outer edge and one dot in the center. I then took a scribe (or toothpick) and starting on any one of the outer dots, I dragged it through the center of each dot to make the heart design, which you can see on the macaron shell at the top.
I suggest only piping 2 or 3 brown shells at a time, then piping the white design, because if the brown batter starts to dry before you add the white batter, the scribe may lift the batter as you’re pulling it.
If the batter starts drying even a bit before using the scribe, it may not sink back in and your macarons will not look smooth once baked.
I used espresso powder for this filling which gives the buttercream a rich coffee taste. You only need a little bit since it’s so strong.
- Salted Butter – I always use salted butter for my buttercream, but you can also use unsalted if you’d like. Just make sure to add a pinch of salt so that it balances the sweetness of the powdered sugar.
- Powdered Sugar – No need to sift unless it’s very clumpy. I don’t usually sift my powdered sugar for my buttercream.
- Espresso Powder – I added the espresso powder to the heavy cream before adding it to the mixer so that it dissolved a little bit and brought out a richer coffee flavor.
- Heavy Whipping Cream
How Long Do Macarons Stay Fresh?
Macarons can stay fresh in the refrigerator for several days if stored properly. Once you bake and fill them, store them in an airtight container and place in the refrigerator for up to a week.
Tips for Making Macarons
- Be sure to weigh all your ingredients in grams for accuracy. Macarons need exact measurements and cups and spoons aren’t accurate.
- Always sift almond flour and powdered sugar so your batter isn’t lumpy. Sifting once is fine. You also want to sift them together because almond flour has a lot of moisture and doesn’t sift well on its own.
- Be sure to use an oven thermometer. Oven displays aren’t always accurate and macarons need exact baking times to avoid under or over-baking.
- Let your macarons dry before baking so they don’t crack in the oven. If you touch the tops of the shell and the batter sticks to your finger, they’re not ready to be baked yet.
More decorated macarons to try
- Kitchen scale
- Stand mixer
- Two spatulas
- Small bowl (for separating the batter)
- One 12 inch pastry bag
- Two 8 inch pastry bags
- Round piping tip (Wilton 12)
- Two silicone baking mats
- Two half sheet pans
- Oven thermometer
- Scribe (or toothpick)
- 90 grams powdered sugar
- 80 grams almond flour
- 70 grams egg whites
- 70 grams granulated sugar
- 2 grams egg white powder (optional)
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- 2 drops brown gel food coloring
- ¼ cup salted butter (½ stick)
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1 tsp cream
- ½ tsp espresso powder
Prepare dry ingredients
- Sift powdered sugar and almond flour using a whisk to break down any clumps. Set aside.
- Line sheet pans with silicone mats.
- Insert the piping tip into the 12 inch pastry bag for the brown batter. The 8 inch pastry bag you will use for the white batter does not need a piping tip.
Make the meringue
- Whisk the egg whites on medium speed (speed 4) until you start to see small bubbles and the egg whites start looking opaque (this can take as little as 15 seconds sometimes).
- Slowly add 3 tbsp of granulated sugar, 1 tbsp at a time.
- Whisk until you start to see tracks in the meringue.
- Increase speed to 6 and continue slowly adding the remainder of the granulated sugar, 1 tbsp at a time, until you’ve added all the sugar.
- Once you have soft peaks, stop the mixer, scrape the sides of the bowl and add the vanilla.
- Whisk for another 5 minutes or until stiff peaks.
- Add 1/3 of the dry ingredients into the meringue and fold the batter until you can't see any of the dry ingredients.
- When folding the batter, slide the spatula under the batter, lift it in a U motion, go over the top of the batter, and slide it under again. This way you make sure to get the batter at the bottom of the bowl.
- Once fully combined, add in another 1/3 of the dry ingredients and repeat the process of folding.
- Add in the last 1/3 of the dry ingredients and fold until fully combined.
- Once all of the powdered sugar/almond flour mixture has been added, fold just until all the ingredients are combined and then stop mixing.
- Transfer 1 tbsp of the batter to a small bowl and set aside. This will be the batter you will pipe into the shell which will make the little hearts for the coffee art.
- Take the batter in the mixing bowl and add 2 drops of brown gel food coloring and continue folding just until the color is fully mixed in.
- Now you need to deflate some of the air in the batter by taking the spatula and smearing the batter on the sides of the bowl two or three times, and then folding once or twice.
- Continue this process of smearing some of the batter on the side of the bowl and folding once or twice until the batter starts to run off the spatula in ribbons.
- You can test the consistency by lifting the spatula and letting the batter run down. If it falls in ribbons and sinks into itself within 30 seconds, it's ready.
- Transfer the brown batter to the 12 inch pasty bag with the piping tip and set aside. Don't cut the opening at the tip yet.
- Now take the white batter in the small bowl and repeat the process above of folding and deflating, being very careful not to over mix the batter.
- Once the batter is ready, transfer to an 8 inch pastry bag.
- Cut a ½ inch opening at the tip of the bag with the brown batter and cut a ¼ inch opening at the tip of the bag with the white batter.
Pipe the shells
- Holding the pastry bag with the brown batter at a 90° angle, pipe the macarons into ¾ inch circles about 1 inch apart. Pipe just three shells at a time, and then using the pastry bag with the white batter, place small dots on the outside of the shell in a circle, and one dot in the center. (You want to pipe just a few shells at a time, because the batter will start to dry and the white dots will not be so easy to pipe)
- After you've piped the white dots, take the scribe (or toothpick) and run the tip down the center of each dot in a circle around the outer edge of the macaron shell. Place the tip of the scribe on top of the middle dot, and make a straight line. It will look like a little heart.
- Tap the tray against the counter about 8 times to release any air bubbles.
- Let the macarons rest until they form a skin and are no longer sticky.
- While the macarons are resting, preheat the oven to 310°F.
- Bake the macarons for 14-16 minutes.
- Macarons are ready when they no longer shift if you touch the tops.
- Using the stand mixer, whisk the butter until creamy.
- Add half of the powdered sugar and whisk on slow until fully mixed in. Add the rest of the powdered sugar and continue mixing on slow until the sugar is fully mixed in and increase speed to medium.
- Add the espresso powder to the heavy cream so it dissolves a bit and then add to the buttercream and continue to mix until creamy and smooth.
Assemble the macarons
- Fill an 8 inch pastry bag with the buttercream and cut a ½ inch opening at the tip of the bag.
- Pipe the buttercream on half of the macaron shells and top with the other half.
- Refrigerate the filled macarons for at least 24 hours before eating.
- When ready to eat, remove from the refrigerator and allow macarons to come to room temperature at least 20-30 minutes before eating.