Have you tried to make deep red macarons to only end up with some shade of pink? We understand your pain. Deep red macarons are hard to come by. How many drops it too many? Well, in our pursuit to make deep red macarons we put the top four color lines to the test in our latest quest for the perfect deep red. And is a red, a red, a red? What different companies offer which variance? All great questions, and we are here to answer these for you.
First, start with our shell recipe (below).
Once you have your egg whites at room temp and your ingredients measured out you are ready to go. But is the next step to blindly choose the color line of your preference, add a million drops and be done?
No. Let’s break it down for you.
Baker’s Note: we had planned to do four different colors, but ran out of one, so today…only three are here to compare.
First up was Americolor. Americolor is a very well known brand and ranks close to the top in color matching. Some reasons why this brand is so popular are the variety of colors, easy-to-peel opening for the tops, low aftertaste and pure beautiful color that won’t fade when baking.
We grabbed a super-sized bottle of Red Red and off we went. We started with 20 drops, then 40, than 50 and we added 10 more drops getting us to the 60 drop count in no time flat. We knew even if it wasn’t the deepest red, that it would darken a few shades while waiting to bake (this is the maturation process that a lot of brands talk about).
The macarons turned out gorgeous, as we knew they would. Beautiful feet, sturdy tops, full shells. So let’s get on to the next color.
Chefmaster. Chefmaster is another color line that dotes on the fact that they have zero fade in their colors (full disclosure: Barb is a color ambassador for Chefmaster). We used the color Red Red. You might be surprised to learn that today, in the deep red category, they did not win top champ. Though we love their color, the easy-to-use bottles, no aftertaste, and also their shades (much like Americolor) today the red, though, took way more drops than we initially thought. We started with 20 drops, then 40, 60, 80! and then 12 more to make it 92 drops. We knew the maturing process would happen but wanted to make sure the color was brought all the way out of the pink world before maturation. Now we will say the feet on the macarons were best.
So let’s revisit the score.
Americolor: 60 drops
Chefmaster: 92 drops
Next up: Wilton Color Right. Wilton Color Right was the first color line we ever experimented with, like first ever. It was the only thing that was available when we started making macarons, so we always fall back on these primary, secondary and tertiary colors. They don’t offer a lot of fluff when it comes to colors, but their tried-and-true basics pack a punch. Today we used their red. When we first started using these colors, we would add 20 drops and then walk away dissapointed that we never could achieve the perfect red. But now we know that, by adding more drops — if done properly (adding it during the last minute-minute in a half beating)– it will bring success. So today we started with the usual 20 but then kept going: 30, 40, 50. We added five more: 55 was the total. So Wilton Color Right required the fewest product to achieve the reddest results.
We also tried Red Rose in the The Sugar Art line, but we didn’t have enough left in the pot for their suggested amount of drops relative to the amount of macronage we had, but we were impressed that the light pink that we ended with did mature into a really dark beautiful pink. That being said we promise at another time to give this color another go… after we order more, obviously…and will update this post.
Macs from top to bottom: Red Red from Americolor
Red from Chefmaster
Red Rose from Sugar Art
Red from Wilton Color Right
So here’s the final tally:
Wilton Color Right: 55
Ding Ding Ding we have a winner!!! We award it to the Wilton Color Right, for strong vibrant color with the least amount of drops.
Want to try? Here is our shell recipe. Give it a go, and tell us what you think.