Recipe: chocolate Philadelphia macarons


Not since the photo shoot for my book in October had I made any macarons and I thought it was about time.  Usually when I make macarons I give the ground almonds an extra grind in the food processor and sieve the icing sugar several times.

Not so today, these were deliberately rustic and I expected pointy bits. Not just plain chocolate shells but made with a fifty fifty split of almonds and ground hazelnuts and a touch of Kenco Millicano coffee powder for a subtle mocha flavour.

I am sending these macarons to Choclette who is hosting this month’s We Should Cocoa with the theme “cheese”.

I have been cooking with Philly lately anyway (in my next post!) but leapt on the new Cadbury’s Chocolate Philadelphia when it came out. Since it keeps for two months (before opening) I stocked up on 4 tubs whilst it was on half price. As it’s good enough to eat on its own with a spoon this probably wasn’t a good idea.  It makes an ideal spread to sandwich macaron shells together and it’s lower in fat than a ganache made with double cream.


Recipe: Chocolate Philadephia Macarons

for the shells
25g ground almonds
25g ground hazelnuts
2 egg whites
110g icing sugar
40g granulated sugar
10g cocoa powder
2g good quality coffee powder such as Kenco Millicano

for the filling
100g Cadbury’s Chocolate Philadelphia

You will need
Piping bags
2 baking sheets

1. Sieve the nuts, cocoa, coffee and icing sugar into a medium sized bowl pushing any larger bits of nut through the holes as best you can.
2. In a large mixing bowl, whisk the egg whites to a foam using an electric mixer then add the caster sugar gradually and continue beating until you have a meringue that stands in soft peaks.
3. Tip the sugar and nut mix on top. Using a silicon spatula, sweep around the bowl in a circle and then cut sideways strokes with the thin blade of the spatula through the centre backwards and forwards ten times. Repeat sweeping around the edge of the bowl and doing your ten strokes five times so that you’ve done fifty strokes. Your batter should be roughly ready by this point, you are looking for a flowing lava effect. If it is too stiff continue sweeping around the edge of the bowl and doing another ten strokes until you are happy with the flow.
4. Fix parchment paper to your baking sheet with a blob of meringue batter in each corner. Fill piping bags with the batter, I use disposable ones with around 1.5cm width snipped of the end.
5. Pipe discs in a circular movement around the size of a two pound coin. Allow a similar distance between the piped circles incase they spread. Pick the tray up with both hands and rap on the table firmly to make the circles settle.
6. Preheat the oven to 150c. Leave the piped circles near a radiator for 15-20 minutes to dry out (winter only). In summer, leave for 30 minutes. The surface of the circles should dry out so that they are no longer sticky to the touch. The feet develop as the surface has toughened before the centre has cooked, the pressure that builds up under heating forces the top of the macaron to rise, then you should get feet.
7. Bake for around 8 minutes depending on size. You’ll need to experiment with which oven shelf and temperatures 10c higher or lower as everyone’s oven is different. But start out with middle shelf and 150c.
8. Hopefully, if you’ve cooked them enough but not too much, you’ll have that happy medium of a surface that peels beautifully off the baking parchment but a meringue which remains soft and gooey like a truffle inside. If you are having trouble removing them from the paper, some drops of water sprinkled under the parchment whilst still warm will help steam the macarons off. But I find that they come off best when completely cool and don’t need this. So don’t be impatient!
10. When the shells are cool spread the Chocolate Philadelphia on the flat side of a shell and sandwich with another, squeezing gently. Allow to set for a couple of hours. I find the texture softer when they’ve been filled and kept in a tin overnight. They keep in an airtight tin for a week. If you can resist them.

With thanks to Kenco Millicano for the sample coffee.


  1. says

    I love the idea of a rustic macaron. It takes the pressure off getting them perfect. I also love the fact that you have added hazelnuts as well as almonds. I bet they tasted amazing. Did you manage to grind the hazelnuts to a powder or did you buy them ground? Whenever I have done it in my magimix I have not been able to get them very fine and it is a bit clumpy due the the natural oil released when grinding. Does it matter how smooth you get them?

    • Sarah, Maison Cupcake says

      I actually bought the ground hazelnuts from Waitrose’s kosher section either around Jewish New Year or Hannukah time.

      I thought they were only available seasonally but they’re showing on the Waitrose website for 99p at moment.

      You’re quite right that grinding nuts from scratch in the Magimix is unsatisfactory. Also, different nuts release different amounts of oil which is why you should always retain 50% ratio of ground almonds in macaron recipes using other nuts. If grinding them yourself they need to be smooth-ish but as you can see, the rustic look can work as well. The macarons in Ottolenghi’s first book are rustic style as are the ones in Eric Lanlard’s Homebake book (if I recall correctly for the latter).

  2. says

    Perfectly smooth macaroons are overated, I prefer the rustic look a la Nigella.

    Good use of choccy philly though, I bought some and had it on toast then it just died in the fridge, should of got baking with it!

    • Sarah, Maison Cupcake says

      Thanks – they’re a pain in the bum to photograph though! They kept wobbling around like weebels.

  3. says

    I’ve never made macarons, because I am a very rustic cook, but these look perfect for my first attempt. And I’m also madly in love the chocolate philly, so I’ll be putting on my pinny and making these tomorrow. Thanks for such an inspiring recipe, and I’m looking forward to your book, I have it on order. Jude x

  4. says

    I am so in need of some of these and feel very bad for not having got around to buying any chocolate Philly yet. I also have not yet made macarons, but if I were to I would use this recipe as I think the idea of adding hazelnuts is very good indeed! No idea how you manage to take such good pics in the light we have been having recently! xx

    • Sarah, Maison Cupcake says

      Oh Laura if you only knew the acrobatics I did in my bay window with the ironing board to get what I thought were very mediocre pics!!

  5. says

    You are on a roll – though I am reading your posts in reverse order :-) From rhubarb, to banofee, to these little wonders. I have had one experimental attempt at macaroons, which wasn’t entirely a disaster so I am encouraged to try again. Love the coffee touch and the chocolate philly :-)

    • Sarah, Maison Cupcake says

      Ah well, possibly my serial disaster with macarons predates your blog activity – I had about six disastrous attempts before getting any feet and still hit and miss now!

  6. says

    Love these! I also have 4 tubs of the chocolate Philly in my fridge drawers – stocked up while they were on sale ages ago and I had to double check the other day to make sure they were still good. I might try these out on Sunday!

  7. says

    Sarah these look gorgeous. I think I prefer a slightly rustic look to polished perfection, although to be honest, yours look pretty perfect to me. Love the idea of using hazelnuts – gosh I bet these tasted divine. I haven’t managed to get my hands on any of this choccy philly yet, but unsurprisingly there are a fair few WSC entries using it this month! Thanks for sharing these with WSC – I so want one (or perhaps two) now.