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Creme Brulee Macarons

Crème Brûlée Macarons

Chewy and delicate vanilla bean macarons filled with vanilla bean pastry cream and silky German buttercream topped with sugar and caramelized.
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Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Resting Time 30 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine French
Servings 24 macarons


Vanilla Bean Macaron Shells

  • 90 grams large egg whites, about 3 egg whites
  • 60 grams superfine, caster or granulated sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon cream of tartar
  • teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 150 grams confectioner's sugar
  • 120 grams finely ground almond flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla bean paste

Pastry Cream

  • cup whole milk
  • 2 tablespoons + 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
  • teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla bean paste

German Buttercream

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/3 cup confectioner's sugar
  • pinch of fine sea salt
  • 1/2 of the prepared pastry cream


Pastry Cream

  • In a medium saucepan over medium-low heat, combine the milk, salt and sugar and bring to a simmer.
  • Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk the egg yolks, about 30 seconds. Whisk in the cornstarch until thickened, for about a minute.
  • When the milk mixture is simmering, remove the saucepan from the heat. Carefully and slowly, whisk the milk into the egg mixture.
  • Pour the egg/milk mixture back into the saucepan and place over medium heat, whisking continuously until the pastry cream thickens and slow bubbles pop on the surface.
  • Strain the mixture through a fine mesh sieve into a clean bowl to remove any curdled bits, and to smooth out the cream.
  • Whisk in the butter and vanilla bean paste.
  • Cover the surface of the pastry cream with plastic wrap so that a skin doesn't form. Allow the pastry cream to cool to room temperature.

Macaron Shells

  • Place the egg whites into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment. Let sit at room temperature for 30 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, in medium size bowl, sift together the superfine sugar, cream of tartar and salt. Discard any large pieces of sugar left. Set bowl aside.
  • In a separate large bowl, sift together the confectioner's sugar and almond flour. Discard any large pieces of almond remaining. Set the bowl aside.
  • Line half baking sheets with parchment paper. Place templates under the parchment, if using.
  • Beat the egg whites on medium speed until foamy, about 8 minutes.
  • Beat in the granulated sugar, cream of tartar and salt mixture.
  • Whip the egg white mixture until stiff peaks form. The meringue will stand up straight when the whisk is removed. The egg white mixture will be thick and glossy.
  • Remove the bowl from the stand mixer. Remove the bowl from the stand mixer and folding in the almond flour mixture. The egg whites will deflate a bit and that is ok. The batter is ready when it "ribbons", which means it falls off the batter in a stream. You should be able to make a "8" with the batter falling off the spatula. This means the batter is ready. You're looking for about 50-75 folds. Check for the ribboning after every 15-20 seconds.
  • Fill a piping bag fitted with a round tip (Wilton 1A or 2A) and pipe 1 1/2" rounds on the parchment paper.
  • Firmly tap the pans on the counter 2-3 times to remove air bubbles. Let the macarons sit until just slightly tacky, but no batter comes off on your fingers, about 30-60 minutes.
  • Meanwhile preheat the oven to 300F. Bake the macarons for 20 minutes. Cool completely.

German Buttercream

  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the butter and confectioner's sugar on high for 5 minutes, or until light and fluffy.
  • Decrease the speed to medium-low and beat in half of the prepared and cooled pastry cream, 1 tablespoon at a time.
  • Increase the speed to medium high and beat for 3 minutes, or until light and fluffy.
  • Spoon the German buttercream into a piping bag fitted with a round piping tip( I used a Wilton 2A).
  • Flip half of the macaron shells over, flat side up. Pipe a ring of buttercream around the perimeter of flipped shells.
  • Spoon 1/2 teaspoon of pastry cream into the center of the buttercream ring.
  • Place the remaining macaron shells on top of the cookies with filling and squeeze gently, until the filling just reaches the edges.
  • Brush the tops of the macarons with very little water. You just need a tiny bit to get the sugar to stick.
  • Chill the macarons for 2-3 hours to firm up the buttercream before torching the tops.
  • Sprinkle 1/4 teaspoon of sugar on top of the macarons.
  • Use a kitchen torch to caramelize the sugar on top.
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