You’ve all seen those beautiful macaron towers. You know the ones, with perfect ombre macs in beautiful colors. You’ve probably thought that there’s NO WAY that you can make those. But I’m here to tell you that YOU CAN! I’m going to teach you how to make beautiful ombre macarons using two different methods.
How to Make Ombre Macarons
There are two different methods for making ombre macarons. You can either make four separate batches of macarons and color them individually or split a batch into smaller quantities and add the food coloring after you’ve made it. Confused? That’s okay! I’ll show you how!
WIth both methods, you’ll start by making my perfect French Macaron Recipe.
Separate Batches for Each Color
If you’re a newbie, this might be a good method for you. You can make 4 separate batches of macarons for each color. You’ll prepare each batch just like normal, and add color to each batch individually. I like to add my food coloring during the last minute and a half of whipping the eggs. If you don’t have a Kitchenaid addiction like me and just have one mixer, it might take a while to make all of the batches.
Check out my Instagram highlight called Ombre How-to for an in-depth tutorial.
Split a Batch
Splitting a batch can be tricky, but can be a good option when you don’t want to make separate batches of macarons. When splitting a batch, I prepare each batch like normal but beat the eggs a bit stiffer than usual. Once I combine my dry ingredients with my egg whites and get ready to start the macaronage stage, I will separate my batter into different bowls depending on how many colors I want to make.
Once I have my batter separated into different bowls, I’ll add my color to one corner of the bowl. I will then mix my color in a small section of the bowl until it is fully incorporated. After that, I’ll do the macaronage step and the batter will be colored throughout. It is very easy to over-macaronage your batter if you mix it into the whole bowl, so I like to incorporate the color into a small portion of my batter before I mix it into the whole thing!
If you’re like, “Barb, I have no idea what you’re talking about,” go watch my Instagram highlight called Splitting a Batch!
How Much Color Do I Add for Ombre Macarons?
I’m going to give you my revolutionary formula for ombre macs: Just double it! It’s that easy.
Start off with a certain number of drops in your first batch, then double it for your second, then double that for your third, then double that for your fourth.
There is one caveat though. If you start with just 1 drop of color, you might need to add 5 drops of color to your next batch to see a difference in color. After that you’ll double it. So here are a few example formulas.
Start with 1 drop
- 1 drop
- 3 drops
- 6 drops
- 12 drops
Start with more than 1 drop
- 2 drops
- 5 drops
- 10 drops
- 20 drops
Make Beautifully Colored Macarons
You’re on your way to making beautifully colored macarons! The only thing you’re missing now is color! Shop my picks at my Amazon Storefront. Some of my favorite brands are Chefmaster and Americolor.
I’m so excited for you to get baking! I’d love to see what you create, so tag me on Instagram with your creations!
SweetMacShop Macaron Shells
- baker's half sheet pans: high quality baking sheets with rimmed edges
- KitchenAid stand mixer
- parchment paper or silpat baking mats (with macaron template)
- oven thermometer
- piping bag
- Wilton Tip #12
- food scale that will measure in grams or ounces
- scribe (a sharp, pointed tool), or a toothpick
- digital minute timer
- 160 grams egg whites room temperature
- 88 grams granulated sugar
- 256 grams powdered sugar
- 200 grams almond flour
- 1 tsp. clear vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 285 for steel pans, or 300 for aluminum pans. Preheat for at least 10 minutes.
- Measure out your granulated sugar in a small bowl; set aside.
- Measure powdered sugar, almond flour together, then use a sifter to combine. This will make them smooth and lump-free. Set aside.
- Place your bowl on the surface of your food scale. Hit the "tare" button to zero out the weight of the bowl. Now measure the room temperature egg whites into the bowl of your KitchenAid stand mixer.
- Add the clear vanilla extract.
- Place bowl on mixer stand (this recipe is for the KitchenAid mixer), and attach the wire whisk beater. Set timer for one minute. Turn mixer to Speed 4, and slowly add sugar to egg whites, shaking it in a little at a time during that first minute.
- When timer goes off, set mixer to Speed 6, and set timer for 2 minutes.
- When timer goes off, set mixer to Speed 8, and set timer for 1 and 1/2 minutes (90 seconds). Coloring may be added just before this last mixing. Egg whites should look silky, yet stiff enough to hold the peak.
- Now we'll make the macronage: blend in dry ingredients, by moving a flexible spatula around the bowl, then cutting down through the middle, making sure to scrape the bottom for the flour and incorporate it into the meringue. You know you are done when the batter rolls off the spatula in a continuous ribbon. Batter will be thick…but can flow like a ribbon.
- BAKER'S NOTE: I have several videos of making macronage in my Instagram Highlights.
- Insert Wilton #12 tip into the small opening of your piping bag. Scoop the macronage into the bag, filling only half-way full, leaving room to twist the top closed in order to keep the batter from spilling out the top. Pipe the macrons by applying pressure until the batter flows out and just reaches the inner rim of the marked circle on your mat. Immediately release pressure and swirl tip to incorporate point back into the center of the cookie. See my tips on Instagram Highlights.
- NOTE: if you will be using parchment paper — search for online — then download a template of circles and place underneath your parchment paper. You'll remove this before baking.
- Once the full pan is piped, gently (or aggressively–no judgement here) bang the pan down onto the counter to release air bubbles. I usually place a towel on the counter before banging the pan. Use your scribe or toothpick to pop any large bubbles, in order to create smooth shells.
- PREP FOR BAKING, METHOD ONE: Place your parchment paper or silpat mat on the bottom of an upside-down baker's half sheet. Pipe your circles. Let rest about 5 minutes, bang (see above) then place them to bake in a pre-heated oven.
- PREP FOR BAKING, METHOD TWO: Place your parchment paper or silpat mat on the inside of a baker's half sheet (like normal). Pipe your circles. Let rest until your finger can glide across the top of the mac without stickiness, often up to 30 minutes. Bang (see above), then place them to bake in a pre-heated oven.
- Bake for 20 minutes.
- Once out of the oven, DO NOT — I repeat — do not remove from pan until they are completely cooled.
- This recipe yields 36-42 completed cookies (about 72-84 shells).