These vegan macaron shells are delicious and gluten free!
One of my best friends has been raving about aquafaba – aka chickpea water. It has the ability to whip up just like egg whites, and can be used instead of eggs in recipes that require a meringue. So of course we had to try it out in macarons. These were some of the best I’ve made and tasted identical to regular macarons made with egg whites. I’d def recommend if you are vegan or don’t have eggs!
After they were done baking we filled them with a delicious and simple chocolate ganache. Just melt some dark chocolate in a double broiler, add some cream, butter and sea salt to taste. If you want to make the entire recipe vegan omit the cream and butter and use coconut milk instead.
The only difference between using egg whites and aquafaba is that the aquafaba needs to be cooked at a lower temp. The recipe I originally used said to bake at 200 degrees for 30 minutes – but FYI that is way too low! We bumped up the oven to 250 and it was perfection.
♥ Drain the chickpeas, but keep the water. Place the chickpea water in a pan and reduce to about 1/3 cup. Cool.
♥ Throw 1 cup of almond flour and 1/2 cup powdered sugar and blend together.
♥ Put cooled chickpea water into a KitchenAid mixer with the whip attachment and start whipping. When some bubbles form, add a pinch of cream of tartar. This will help the chickpea water whip.
♥ Add 1/2 cup regular sugar to the meringue gradually. This will make the meringue smooth and glossy. The meringue is ready when you can take a bit with a spatula, flick it, and the meringue stays on the spatula.
♥ Fold the almond flour/powdered sugar mixture into the meringue 1/3 at a time. Add 1/4 teaspoon almond extract and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract (or whatever flavorings you want! Get creative)
♥ If you want to color your macaron shells, this is where you’d do it. Don’t use liquid – only gel.
♥ Put the macaron batter into a piping bag fitted with a large, round tip and pipe the macarons onto a baking sheet with either parchment paper or a silpat.
♥ Let your macarons rest! They will form a “skin” and this is essential to good macarons. The time to let them rest really depends on the weather. I would start with half an hour and check every half hour after. If you can lightly touch the surface and you finger is dry, then a proper skin has formed. The shell will feel slightly tacky.
♥ Bake shells for 15-20 minutes at 250 degrees. The cookie will be finished when you can lightly touch down on the top and it does not collapse against the feet that have formed.
♥ Let shells cool and prepare your filling. Fill shells using either a piping bag, or just a regular knife! Macarons are better after resting a day after being filled to re-hydrate.
Macarons are one of those really tricky recipes that will definitely take you a couple tries to get right. Don’t give up, because a successful bake will pay off in spades. Enjoy!