Pistachio Macarons

Leslie and I went through a serious macaron obsession in the early 2010’s (is that what you call that decade?).  I mean – a SERIOUS obsession.  I’ve had them from just about everywhere in LA, several places in New York, and even hot off a plane from Ladurée in Paris.  I took a couple of classes to learn how to make them, since these are not for the weary at heart.  They are a lot of work!

Fortunately, Leslie shared my fondness and my wedding gift to her and Tri was a couples cooking class to learn how to make these as well.  She invited me over to help give these a whirl at her house, and I have to say – it was a lot easier making these with a partner than by myself.  We made these about 3.5 years ago, so this post is a wee bit overdue.

Pistachio Macarons
Pistachio Macarons

Here is the recipe Leslie found as adapted from All Recipes!  Because there is so little room for error in the chemistry of macarons, you should definitely use a kitchen scale to measure out your ingredients.  Weights are included in the ingredient list below:


Macaron Cookie

  • 1 1/4 cups (220g) powdered sugar
  • 1 1/4 cups (125g) almond meal
  • 100g egg whites
  • 1/4 cup (60g) caster sugar
  • 20 drops green food coloring (optional)
  • 30g unsalted blanched pistachios, ground

Pistachio Ganache

  • 40g caster sugar
  • 40g unsalted blanched pistachios, ground
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 100ml heavy whipping cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 20g butter, softened
  • 5 drops black food coloring (optional)

NOTE: You can grind the pistachios in a food processor, but just pulse a few times until you get the desired consistency.  Don’t overdo it or you’ll end up with pistachio “butter”.


  1. MACARONS: Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. Prepare a baking tray with parchment paper or a Silpat.
  2. In a bowl, mix together the pistachios and almond meal then sift in the powdered sugar.
  3. Whisk the egg whites until stiff then add one tablespoon of sugar. Continue to whisk then add the remaining sugar while whisking on high speed.  I recommend using a stand mixer, as long as the whisk attachment and bowl are completely clean and dry.

    Stiff Peaks!
    Stiff Peaks!
  4. Carefully stir the almond mixture into the egg white and gently fold with a spatula.  This is where having a partner really came in handy! Add the green food coloring (optional).

    Gently Fold!
    Gently Fold!
  5. Put the mixture into a pastry bag with a round nozzle. Pipe 2″ mounds onto the prepared baking tray ensuring there is about 1.5″ of space between each.

    Quickly Pipe 2" Mounds
    Quickly Pipe 2″ Mounds
  6. Tap the tray on a table or a work surface to remove any air bubbles and set the macarons aside for 30 minutes, which will allow a crust to form on the macarons. Leslie ground some extra pistachios to sprinkle on top of some of the macarons as an embellishment before we let them sit.  Bake in the preheated oven for 14 minutes.

    Panache Before the Ganache
    Panache Before the Ganache
  7. To see if your macarons are ready press lightly on top.  If they are still soft and moving, then they are not cooked through yet.
  8. PISTACHIO GANACHE: Mix the sugar with the pistachios.
  9. Heat the cream in a saucepan over medium heat then add the pistachios and vanilla. Bring to the boil then add the eggs and cook keeping a 185 degrees F, if you have a candy thermometer.  If you don’t, just keep a close eye on it so you don’t end up with scrambled eggs.
  10. Remove from heat, stir in the softened butter and food coloring then refrigerate.

    Ganache - After
    Ganache – After
  11. ASSEMBLY: Peel the parchment paper off of the cookie (instead of the other way around). Take one macaron and spread the pistachio ganache on the flat part with a butter knife then “twist on” a second macaron on the ganache.  Think of it as the opposite of twisting apart an Oreo.  Repeat until no macarons are left.

    Peel Parchment Off of Cookie
    Peel Parchment Off of Cookie
  12. If you somehow manage not to eat all of them immediately after, you can refrigerate these in an airtight container for up to three days.  Just let them come to room temp again before you indulge.

We were so proud of ourselves for the way these turned out.  Delish!!!

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