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Madeleines

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These French Madeleines taste just like those enjoyed in Paris. Light and spongy, with a fresh burst of citrus, Madeleine cookies are special treats!

I learned how to make French Madeleine in a cooking class by the famed pastry chef Dominique Ansel. Today I’m sharing the techniques for making these iconic cookies at home.

The fragrant batter comes together quickly. After refrigeration, the mixture is piped into a Madeleine pan, then briefly baked until golden blonde. With a light dusting of powdered sugar, enjoy the French cakes while piping hot!

PIN MADELEINES NOW TO MAKE THEM LATER!

French Madeleine Cookies in a dark bowl sitting on a deep blue napkin.

ORIGIN OF MADELEINES

Wondering about the origin of Madeline cookies? In the 18th century they came from the Lorraine region of northeastern France. These small sponge cakes were favored by the French royal family, and were regularly served to the court in Versailles. It might be said, the French liked to have their cake and eat it too!

Madeleines sprinkled with powdered sugar on a dark moody background.

MADELEINE COOKIE INGREDIENTS

With this easy recipe you can now enjoy these delightful treats from France straight from your oven at home! I highly recommend making a double batch of this delicious cookie batter.

A Madeleine pan, along with prepared batter in a pastry bag, makes a wonderful gift for family and friends. It’s a quick fun way to brighten someone’s day!

These are the ingredients you’ll need for authentic Madeleine cookies:

  • Unsalted butter
  • Dark brown sugar
  • Honey
  • All-purpose flour
  • Granulated sugar
  • Baking powder
  • Kosher salt
  • Large eggs
  • Pure vanilla extract
  • Lemon zest
  • Orange zest
  • Nonstick cooking spray for pan
  • Powdered sugar (confectioners’ sugar) for sprinkling

BEST DESSERT RECIPES

Do you like easy recipes like these delicious Madeleine cookies? Then you’ll really enjoy making and serving these crowd-pleasing desserts!


Ingredients for Madeline recipe laid out on a maple board.

MADELEINE RECIPE

It takes just 10 minutes to assemble the delicious cookie batter! But before you begin, make sure the eggs are at room temperature.

  • STEP 1: Add a stick of butter, brown sugar and honey to a small pot over low heat.
  • STEP 2: As the butter melts, whisk to fully incorporate the ingredients. Immediately remove pan from heat so the ingredients do not burn!
  • STEP 3: In a medium-large mixing bowl, add flour, granulated sugar, baking powder and salt.
  • STEP 4: Briefly whisk the dry ingredients to combine.
How to Madeleines shown in a step-by-step, 4-image collage.

FRENCH MADELEINE

While baking, keep in mind that the top side of these shell-shaped cookies should not be flat! The centers should be puffed up with a high hump like they have a large pearl inside.

Continue following this easy recipe for traditional French cookies.

  • STEP 1: One by one, add room-temperature eggs to the bowl. (Cold eggs will cool down the batter, affecting the melted butter.) Whisk well after each addition until the batter is smooth, thick and gooey.
  • STEP 2: Add the warm melted-butter mixture to the bowl. Add the vanilla. Slowly whisk until fully incorporated. The Madeleine batter will now be the consistency of cake batter.
  • STEP 3: Grate the rinds of half a lemon and half an orange. Add the zests to the bowl. Briefly whisk to mix them in.
  • STEP 4: Transfer batter to an 18-inch piping bag. Twist and fold down the top of the bag. Refrigerate for 12 to 24 hours.

BAKING TIP: Refrigerating the batter overnight will give the baking powder time to rest. This technique is very important when making Madeleine cookies. It helps their centers puff up and rise while baking, giving them a traditional humpback appearance.

4-images showing how to make tiny sponge cakes from scratch.

PIPING AND BAKING MADELEINES

PREHEAT OVEN: 375°F for conventional, or 350°F for convection.

  • STEP 1: Select a mini Madeleine pan or a traditional Madeleine pan. Evenly coat the cavities of the non-stick pan with cooking spray. Hold the can about 4-inches above the mold while spraying.
  • STEP 2: With scissors, cut 1/2 inch straight across the tip of the piping bag. The actual opening will end up being about 1/8 inch.
  • STEP 3: Holding the decorating bag at 90 degrees, and applying firm even pressure, pipe the batter into each depression of the pan. Fill each cavity 3/4 full. Cookies will spread and rise while baking.
  • STEP 4: If using a mini Madeleine pan, bake 4 1/2 to 6 1/2 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through baking. The cookies are done when they puff up in the center and are golden blonde. A cake tester inserted in the centers should come out clean. When using a traditional Madeleine pan, bake 12 to 14 minutes or until done. Remove from oven. Unmold immediately!

RECIPE YIELD: 75 mini Madeleines, or 16 standard-size cookies.
Four step-by-step recipe images for French Madeleines.

HOW TO GARNISH FRENCH BUTTER CAKES

As soon as the mini sponge cakes are removed from the pan, transfer them to a small serving bowl. Lightly sprinkle with powdered sugar.

Fragrant and enchanting, Madeleines are best enjoyed immediately, while still warm and releasing tiny puffs of heat. They’re absolutely amazing!

Small French cakes in a black serving bowl with a metal wand of powdered sugar.

EXPERT TIPS

  • NO COOKING SPRAY? NO PROBLEM. Brush the cavities of the pan with warm melted butter.
  • TIP FOR EVEN BAKING: Adjust oven rack to the center position. Place a rimmed baking tray upside down on the oven rack. This will lift the molded pan up from the baking rack, providing an evenly-heated surface to bake on. Place the Madeleine pan on top of the tray.
  • BAKING TIME ADJUSTMENT: If baking mini Madeleines at 350°F takes longer than 4 1/2 to 6 1/2 minutes, raise the oven temp to 375°F for the next batch.
  • HOW TO SPRINKLE POWDERED SUGAR: To sprinkle powdered sugar lightly and evenly, use a baker’s dusting wand or a small fine-mesh strainer.
  • HOW LONG WILL MADELEINE BATTER LAST? The refrigerated cookie batter will stay fresh in the fridge for up to 3 days. This allows enough time to bake several small batches of fluffy cookies. Madeleines are meant to be enjoyed straight out of the oven. Once the cookies cool they’ll become dense. Only bake the quantity that will be eaten immediately.
French Madeleine Cookies in a round serving dish with honey and powdered sugar in the background.

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Freshly baked Madeleines in a small black serving dish on a maple wood board.

FRENCH MADELEINE > RATE THIS RECIPE! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

This French pastry recipe delivers expert results. These beautiful Madeleines will transport your tastebuds to Paris! If you love this recipe, give it a 5-star rating in the comments.

Little butter cakes with a jar of honey and powdered sugar on a dark tabletop.
Gold Line: Sprinkles of Inspiration | confettiandbliss.com
Print
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French Madeleine Cookies in a black serving bowl with a metal wand of powdered sugar.

Madeleines


  • Author: Denay DeGuzman
  • Prep Time: 15
  • Cook Time: 15
  • Total Time: 30 Minutes
  • Yield: 75 Mini Madelines 1x

Description

Iconic French Madeline are easy to make at home! Experience a quick trip to Paris while standing in your kitchen holding a tray of freshly-baked Madeleines. There’s nothing as joyful as biting into these beautiful cookies sprinkled with powdered sugar!


Scale

Ingredients

  • 1 stick (8 tbsp) high-quality unsalted butter (84% butterfat)
  • 1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons organic honey
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 lemon – grated zest only
  • 1/2 orange – grated zest only
  • Nonstick cooking spray for Madeleine pan
  • Powdered sugar (confectioners’ sugar) for sprinkling

Instructions

DAY 1 – PREPARE BATTER

IMPORTANT: It takes only 10 minutes to assemble the delicious cookie batter! But before you begin, make sure the eggs are at room temperature. Cold eggs will cool down the batter, affecting the melted butter.

  1. Add a stick of butter, brown sugar and honey to a small pot over low heat. As the butter melts, whisk to fully incorporate the ingredients. Immediately remove pan from heat so the ingredients do not burn!
  2. In a medium-large mixing bowl, add flour, granulated sugar, baking powder and salt. Briefly whisk the dry ingredients to combine. One by one, add room-temperature eggs to the bowl. Whisk well after each addition until the batter is smooth, thick and gooey. Add the warm melted-butter mixture to the bowl. Add the vanilla. Slowly whisk until fully incorporated. The Madeleine batter will now be the consistency of cake batter.
  3. Whisk in the orange zest and lemon zest.
  4. Transfer batter to an 18-inch piping bag. Twist and fold down the top of the bag. Refrigerate overnight, or for 12 to 24 hours so the baking powder has time to rest. This technique is very important when making Madeleine cookies. It helps their centers puff up and rise while baking, giving them a traditional humpback appearance.

DAY 2 – BAKE MADELEINES

IMPORTANT: While baking, keep in mind that the top side of these shell-shaped cookies should not be flat! The centers should be puffed up with a high hump like they have a large pearl inside.

  1. Select a mini Madeleine pan or a traditional Madeleine pan. Evenly coat the cavities of the non-stick pan with cooking spray.
  2. With scissors, cut 1/2 inch straight across the tip of the piping bag. The actual opening will end up being about 1/8 inch. Holding the decorating bag at 90 degrees, applying firm even pressure, pipe the batter into each depression of the pan lifting the tip straight up after each. Fill cavities 3/4 full.
  3. If using a mini Madeleine pan, bake 4 1/2 to 6 1/2 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through baking. The cookies are done when they puff up in the center and are golden blonde. A cake tester inserted in the centers should come out clean. When using a traditional Madeleine pan, bake 12 to 14 minutes or until done. Remove from oven. Unmold immediately!
  4. Sprinkle cookies with powdered sugar. They’re best enjoyed while hot!

YIELD: 75 mini Madeleines, or 16-18 standard-size Madeleines.


Notes

  • NO COOKING SPRAY? NO PROBLEM. Brush the cavities of the pan with warm melted butter.
  • TIP FOR EVEN BAKING: Adjust oven rack to the center position. Place a rimmed baking tray upside down on the oven rack. This will lift the molded pan up from the baking rack, providing an evenly-heated surface to bake on. Place the Madeleine pan on top of the tray.
  • BAKING TIME ADJUSTMENT: If baking mini Madeleines at 350°F takes longer than 4 1/2 to 6 1/2 minutes, raise the oven temp to 375°F for the next batch.
  • HOW TO SPRINKLE POWDERED SUGAR: To sprinkle powdered sugar lightly and evenly, use a baker’s dusting wand or a small fine-mesh strainer.
  • HOW LONG WILL MADELEINE BATTER LAST? The refrigerated cookie batter will stay fresh in the fridge for up to 3 days. This allows enough time to bake several small batches of fluffy cookies. Madeleines are meant to be enjoyed straight out of the oven. Once the cookies cool they’ll become dense. Only bake the quantity that will be eaten immediately.
  • Category: Desserts
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: French

Keywords: Madeleines, Madeleine Cookies, French Madeleine

Gold Line: Sprinkles of Inspiration | confettiandbliss.com

FRENCH MADELEINES > JOIN THE CONVERSATION

Have you had an opportunity to experience Madeleines from a French bakery? Would you like to make these tiny desserts at home? Share your thoughts about these iconic French cookies!

9 thoughts on “Madeleines”

  1. These were perfect!! The classic “madeleine hump, ” plus they were tender, sweet and delicious! Thanks for all the excellent tips, too.

    Reply
  2. These are utterly exquisite! Such delicate little treats and they’re not nearly as difficult to make as I thought they would be. Thanks for the fab recipe!

    Reply
  3. Denay,
    You really know how to explain these recipes to the layman.
    Keep em coming. 👍🙏

    Reply
  4. These madelines look amazing, I have always wondered how to make them! Thank you for sharing your delicious recipe.

    Reply

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