The intricate secrets of macaron-making are slowly being unveiled and becoming more easily accessible to the general public.
As you may know, choosing a great quality almond flour is one of them. It can literally make or break your cookies!
So, what are the best almond flours for macarons? We recommend choosing a product made with blanched almonds. It also helps to choose a super-fine or pre-sifted flour to make prep a lot easier. Other than that, there are some specific characteristics you can consider when comparing products to see if it meets your needs.
Today, we’ll dive deep into making the perfect macarons using the best almond flour available today.
We’ll look at a buyer’s guide that will help you choose a product from our list or any other you find in stores. We’ve also reviewed some of the most popular options currently on the market!
What Are Macarons?
A macaron, also called a French macaron, is a delicious cookie sandwich with a rich and creamy buttercream filling.
Macarons are made using almond flour and sugar. The sugar is usually incorporated as you make the meringue for your macarons.
Now, unlike most cookies, these are quite fancy. And many bakers and pastry chefs have very specific requirements for what this cookie has to look like.
First of all, a macaron must have a 2:1 ratio of cookie to filling. The filling is what adds the most flavor with every bite. But, the cookie naturally adds a light, airy, and slightly chewy texture.
Next, the macaron cookie base (often called shells) should also have a smooth, flat top. They also have a slightly domed shape that gives the shells some height.
However, these are by no means tall cookies on their own. They usually are about half an inch in height (at the most).
And finally, a dreaded feature that so many people struggle to get perfect is the edge. This edge (referred to as “feet”) should have a ruffled appearance. It should have big gaps and it should spill out underneath the dome.
Overall, a macaron is very neat. Its shape should align perfectly.
Why Are Macarons So Popular?
There are numerous reasons these French cookies are so incredibly popular — and pricey!
First off, they are absolutely delicious! The cookie itself doesn’t have a ton of flavor, but because it’s made using almond flour, it has a sweet and nutty overall taste.
The filling is what adds the most flavor to the cookies. You can choose literally any filling flavor that you’d like! That’s another reason macarons are so well-loved. They are very easy to pair with specific color themes and flavor pairings!
And a big part of that is the almond flour, which is exactly why we are discussing some options today!
Macarons Vs Macaroons
Just to clarify very quickly, macarons and macaroons are not the same things. They have many differences, but the biggest are the main ingredients used to make them and their overall shape. We know, the names are quite misleading!
Then, macaroons are also more like dollops of cookies. They don’t have a filling and they aren’t stacked to make a “cookie sandwich.”
Macaroons are much easier to make and often more affordable. The recipes are simpler, and they are less delicate in comparison to macarons.
Now, does this make them better? By no means! When it comes down to the flavor of these two cookies, you like what you like.
When it comes to making them yourself, macarons are definitely more challenging, and taking that on is up to you.
Choosing The Best Almond Flour For Macarons
Luckily, there aren’t hundreds of options or brands to choose from when it comes to different kinds of almond flour — but not all flours are equal in quality!
When it comes to almond flour, there are mainly two options: blanched and un-blanched.
After choosing between these two options (based on preference), you can then have a look at some other qualities that might make the flour better suited to your personal needs, such as choosing organic almond flour or sifted almond flour.
These factors by no means make better macarons, but they do have some properties that can either make your life easier or suits your lifestyle better!
Blanched Vs Un-Blanched
Most people argue that you have to buy blanched ground almond flour when preparing to make macarons — we agree somewhat with this statement.
Blanched almond flour is made without the skins on the almonds. The only thing this really does is give you better-looking, more traditional macarons.
However, you can use also ground almonds with their skins on (un-blanched). The flour with has tiny brown specks in it (the skin) that will show up in your cookie, but they won’t change its flavor much and won’t alter the texture either.
If you’ve ever attempted macarons, you’ll know that there is a lot of sifting involved. With almond flour, it’s to ensure that the final product you use is completely free of big almond pieces that could ruin the texture.
For that reason, many manufacturers pre-sift their almond flour. It’s a benefit because you don’t have to do it as much!
We definitely recommend still doing it at least once with your almond flour. But even once takes less time than three sifting sessions!
And finally, you can also have a look at some other features that may appeal to your needs.
There can include being made from organic almonds, being made in a peanut-free factory, coming in bulk sizes, or being more affordable.
Best Almond Flours For Macarons
Below we have ranked our favorite almond flour products you can conveniently find online. They are all readily available and have many key features that could make them more appealing to some peoples’ needs.
|1||Blue Diamond Blanched Almond Flour, Sifted||Very affordable option that comes pre-sifted and with loads of certifications.|
|2||Nature’s Eats Blanched Almond Flour, 64 Ounces||A great, easy-to-find, affordable, and versatile option.|
|3||Bob’s Red Mill Super-Fine Almond Flour||Super-fine sifted almond flour made from high-quality ingredients; comes with some certifications.|
|4||Wellbee’s Blanched Almond Flour||Minimalist, super-fine ground almond flour at a very affordable price.|
|5||Anthony’s Blanched Premium California Almond Flour||Amazing almond flour that is gluten-free, vegan, and made from Californian almonds.|
|6||365 Whole Foods Market Almond Flour||Easy-to-find, gluten-free, and vegan almond flour option.|
|7||Barney Skin-Free Almond Flour||Made from Californian almonds and has a bunch of certifications, including being made in a peanut-free factory.|
1. Blue Diamond Blanched Almond Flour, Sifted
First up, we have Blue Diamond Finely Sifted Almond Flour, an almond flour you have most likely already seen in stores before.
Now, this product has been certified as being gluten-free, certified kosher, paleo, keto, and vegan-friendly.
You may be thinking, “Why wouldn’t it be? It’s made from only almonds.” But you’d be surprised how many manufacturers bulk up their products with junk!
Another thing we love about this option is that it comes pre-sifted. So, as we’ve mentioned, that means you won’t have to spend a ton of time doing it yourself!
This is an amazing option, and the main reason it’s at the top of our list is its lower price. There are some almond flours (that have nothing special to them) that are at ridiculous prices.
Sure, this isn’t a cheap ingredient, but it shouldn’t break your piggy bank!
2. Nature’s Eats Blanched Almond Flour, 64 Ounces
Now, to be completely honest, there isn’t anything particularly special or unique about this almond flour. It’s simply a great (and also quite affordable) option to make macarons with.
It is made from blanched almonds and has already been finely ground. We couldn’t find anywhere that it comes pre-sifted. But from personal experience, it didn’t need much sifting. So, we assume it is to some extent!
Furthermore, it does specifically state that the product has been made from premium California Almonds. So, that’s something to consider if you’re into “buying local.”
And finally, this product has a certified kosher label and has been made with non-GMO almonds. Again, it’s not a special product by any means. But, the reason millions of people love it is that it’s easy to use and affordable!
3. Bob’s Red Mill Super-Fine Almond Flour
We all know and love Bob’s Red Mill products. They are a little on the pricier side of things, but no one can deny their good quality!
This specific product of theirs is Super-Fine Almond Flour. You will see with different almond products that some, even though they shouldn’t be coarse or chunky, simply are. This option just… isn’t!
It’s made from high-quality, blanched almonds and has been sifted and worked into a uniform fine flour, perfect for reducing your prep time.
It has been certified to be gluten-free, grain-free, and paleo-friendly. And they sell their almond flour in many different sizes!
4. Wellbee’s Blanched Almond Flour
This is an amazing product. It may not have any modern or chic branding, but its contents certainly make up for it! But it is expensive, just like the Bob’s Red Mill option above.
This is another super-fine almond flour product. It will reduce your prep time and make delicious, silky smooth, and chewy macarons. It’s also a gluten-free flour and made from non-GMO almonds!
If you’re in a pinch and cannot find any of the above-mentioned flours, we can almost guarantee you’ll be able to easily find this one.
5. Anthony’s Blanched Premium California Almond Flour
Maybe we are a little biased toward this product because of the packaging, but it’s one of our go-to options.
So, why is it so low on our list? Because it was expensive. However, its price (in comparison to others) is pretty on-par. It’s simply because they sell it in bigger packages, so you have to pay more.
This flour is gluten-free certified, vegan, all-natural, and made from premium Californian almonds.
It is a great option that makes fantastic macarons. And, obviously, you can also use it for a variety of other baked goods.
6. 365 Whole Foods Market Almond Flour
This is another relatively affordable and very easy-to-find product (in comparison to other almond flour on the market).
Again, there isn’t anything particularly special about this almond flour. And they even have very little information on the packaging itself.
It is gluten-free and vegan, but that’s about all the information they provide (other than a recipe and the nutritional breakdown).
Nevertheless, sometimes you don’t need a fancy product. And this one is also sold in smaller quantities. So overall you don’t have to spend as much money at once.
7. Barney Skin-Free Almond Flour
Last but not least, while this is a fantastic option, it’s one of the most expensive ones.
It’s not because there is anything particularly special about this product — we suspect it’s mainly because they used clever marketing techniques that allow them to up the price.
For example, this flour is certified peanut-free, gluten-free, non-GMO, kosher, paleo, and vegan-friendly. Plus it’s made from Californian almonds!
Most almond flours are everything mentioned above. But, because the brand doesn’t get that certified stamp on the package, they can’t sell it at a higher price. Nevertheless, it is still a great blanched almond flour to use for macarons.