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Irresistible Pink Cotton Candy Macarons

Indulge in these irresistible pink cotton candy macarons with a delectable sweet filling. These macarons are crispy on the outside with chewy centers and are perfect for showers, weddings, and other parties.

Easy Macaron Recipe

I have been making French macarons for a few years. But even after making hundreds, I still hold my breath, hoping they will rise into the perfect shape with “feet” (the ruffled edge next to the inside filling) and not turn into hard, inedible cookies. This recipe has taken a difficult task and made it much more foolproof. The hardest part of this recipe is deciding what color I want to make the macarons!

Cotton Candy Macarons

Finding the Right Recipe

Macarons are not as difficult to make as you might think. With a few helpful tips and a good recipe, you can learn to make beautiful and perfect macarons every time. Before macarons became popular, there were only a few recipes with good instructions. Now that they are a staple in bakeries and on social media, recipes are easier to find, but not all are easy to make. This recipe is from Laduree, a French bakery that is a master macaron maker. I find it to be the easiest macaron recipe I have used.

Cotton Candy Macarons

Baking Mats for Cotton Candy Macarons

When I first learned to make macarons, I used an indented silicon mat made especially for macarons because I didn’t have the skill to freehand pipe them into even circles. I have gained this skill from making macarons for a few years, but I still rely on these mats occasionally. However, now I use a flat silicone baking mat or parchment paper.

Here are some details on these three different options for baking macarons.

Option 1: Use a silicone mat with macaron indentations or cavities if you are a beginner learning to pipe consistently shaped circles. This type of mat has small spaced cavities that you fill with batter so they are all uniform in size. Do not fill the cavities overflowing to prevent the batter from running over the rims and distorting the macaron shapes. It is better to underfill them and use a toothpick to spread the batter until you gain experience filling them. The cavities in these mats are all the same size, so you have to buy additional mats to make other sizes of macarons. These mats are made in heart shapes and a few other shapes. 

Cotton Candy Macarons
Baking mats with shaped cavities for macaron making.

Optional 2: Use white parchment paper on a baking sheet. To help guide the size of the macarons, draw circles around a 1 1/2-inch round cup or another object on the parchment paper, making sure to space out the circles for the macrons to spread.  Place the parchment paper onto the baking sheet with the drawing side facing down against the baking sheet. You will be able to see the circles through the paper. When piping freehand, you must hold the piping bag perpendicular (straight up and down) to the paper so the cookie shells come out round. Holding the piping bag at an angle as you pipe the batter will make the shells uneven.

Cotton Candy Macarons
White parchment paper. Draw circles on the backside of the paper to use as guides for sizing macarons.

Optional 3: Use a Silpat-type nonstick baking mat with or without printed circles. This is my favorite way to bake macarons, but only after I built skill in piping macarons. For a mat with no printed circles, you have to leave enough space between macarons so that they have some room to spread when they bake. Position the piping bag perpendicular to the baking mat to make perfectly round macarons. For example, do not hold the bag at an angle when piping to prevent the macarons from being misshapen. Not all of my macarons are the same size when I use this type of baking mat, so after they bake, I match similar-sized shells together and fill them with buttercream, and no one notices the different sizes. 

Cotton Candy Macarons
Silicone baking mat for macarons or other baking. Silpat is the brand name of this mat. However, there are many different manufacturers.
    Cotton Candy Macarons
    These macarons have very distinctive “feet,” which are the ruffles on the bottom of the shells.

    Folding the Batter for Cotton Candy Macarons

    Macarons have whipped egg whites folded into the batter, meaning you should not overwork the batter. Too much folding can deflate the egg whites, and the macaron cookies will be hard. I know this firsthand from experience! This recipe uses an extra 1/2 egg white to help you mix the batter. It takes the guesswork out of determining when the batter is ready.

    Cotton Candy Macarons

    Piping Batter

    I use a medium-sized plain round tip and an ex-large piping bag to make macaron cookies. Here are some tips that have served me well:

    1. Do not overfill the piping bag because the batter might escape from the top when you apply pressure.
    2. Roll down the top of the piping bag and hold it as you pipe. Keep rolling it down as you pipe out more batter and the bag empties. This will help keep the batter in the nose of the bag.
    3. Hold the piping bag perpendicular or straight up and down to the baking mat. Do not hold the bag at an angle. When held correctly, the cookie circles are round and uniform.
    Cotton Candy Macarons

    Resting the Cotton Candy Macarons

    1. After you pipe the macarons, rest them before baking them. Resting allows the macarons to dry out a little so that the tops dry and form a “skin.”
    2. Resting times depend on the amount of humidity in the air. I usually allow 30+ minutes of resting time; however, on a dry day with low humidity, they can be ready in as little as 10 minutes. The best way to tell if they are ready is to gently touch a macaron. If the batter sticks to your finger, the macarons should rest longer. If the batter doesn’t stick, it is time to bake them.
    Cotton Candy Macarons

    Baking Cotton Candy Macarons

    1. Macarons are baked at a low temperature. Check them as they bake to learn how fast your oven bakes. Do not let them brown, or they can lose their color. Macarons should also have a chewy texture, achieved with a lower baking temperature.
    2. After baking, cool the macarons by letting them sit. Once they are completely cooled, remove the macarons from the baking mat or parchment paper by pulling the paper or mat away from the macaron. The cookies are fragile, so take your time when you remove them.
    3. Place the baked shells flat-side up on a plate. This way, they will be ready for you to pipe frosting on the bottom flat side.
    Cotton Candy Macarons

    Storing Cotton Candy Macarons

    Macarons have a short shelf life and will dry out in a few days. The best way to keep them fresh is to freeze them. If frozen, they will keep their fresh taste for a few months without altering the texture. One of my favorite ways to enjoy a macaron is to eat it partially thawed because it has a chewy texture, which is the hallmark of a delicious macaron!

    Cotton Candy Macarons

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    Click on each photo or name to link to the recipe.

    Cotton Candy Macarons

    Dainty pink macarons with cotton candy buttercream
    Prep Time 50 minutes
    Cook Time 14 minutes
    Total Time 1 hour 34 minutes
    Course Anytime, Dessert, Snack
    Cuisine French
    Servings 50
    Calories 168 kcal


    • food processor
    • 1 round piping tip (medium sized)
    • 1 Large or extra-large piping bag
    • 1 small star piping tip
    • 1 small piping bag


    Cookie Shells
    • 2 ¾ cups (275 g) almond flour
    • 2 cups + 1 tablespoon (250 g) confectioners’ (icing) sugar
    • 6 ½ large egg whites, divided & at room temperature (Place 6 egg whites in a bowl and 1/2 egg white into another bowl)
    • 1 cup + 1 tablespoon (210 g) castor or granulated sugar
    • pink gel food coloring
    Buttercream Filling
    • 1 ½ sticks (3/4 cup) butter, softened
    • 3 ½ cups confectioner’s (icing) sugar
    • ½ teaspoon cotton candy flavoring (LorAnn Oils used)
    • 2 tablespoons cream or whole milk
    • pink gel food coloring (optional for coloring the filling)


    Cookie Shells
    • Place a nonstick silicone baking mat or parchment paper on a baking sheet. (See notes below.) This recipe will make enough macarons for several baking sheets.
    • Using a food processor, combine the almond flour and confectioners’ sugar and process until the mixture is fine. Then sift the flour mixture, discarding any large almond pieces if necessary. Set aside.
    • Using a mixing bowl and the whisk attachment, beat 6 egg whites until foamy. Add 1/3 of the sugar and beat another minute until the sugar dissolves. Add half of the remaining sugar and beat another minute. Then, add the rest of the sugar and beat until firm, glossy peaks form, about a minute or two.
    • For pastel-colored cookies, add a small amount of pink gel coloring and beat until well mixed. (For darker pink cookies, add a larger amount of coloring.)
    • Use a spatula to gently fold in the almond mixture to the egg whites. Mix well. The batter will be thick. Then, with a hand whisk, beat the 1/2 egg white until frothy. Stir this egg into the almond mixture to soften the batter and moisten it.
    • Snip off the end of the large piping bag and place the round tip into it. Then, place the batter into the bag. Fold over the top of the piping bag and then roll it down and hold the top so none of the batter can escape. Position the bag over the baking sheet and position it vertically straight. Pipe 1 to 1 1/2-inch round circles onto the baking sheet. Leave room between each circle for the batter to spread.
    • Tap each baking sheet on the counter as you finish piping a full pan. Tapping will spread the macaron batter and also help remove air bubbles. Use a toothpick to burst any bubbles in the macarons. Let the macarons sit for about 30 minutes to form a dried skin on top. In dry climates, they might dry out in 10 minutes. In very humid climates, it might take longer. Test the macaron skins with your fingertip. If the batter sticks to your finger, they are not ready and should sit longer. If no batter sticks to your finger, they are cured for baking.
    • Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F (150 degrees C). Bake the macaron shells for 14-15 minutes. Do not brown them or they will lose their color. Cool them completely after baking.
    • Remove the macarons gently by pulling the mat (or parchment paper) away from the shells. Place the shells flat side up (upside down) on a large cutting board or another flat surface. This will make it easier to add the filling to them and they will also be easier to pick up.
    Buttercream Filling
    • Use an electric mixer to beat the butter until fluffy. Add the cream and cotton candy flavoring and beat until well mixed.
    • Add the powdered sugar, one cup at a time, beating after each addition until smooth. If the frosting is too stiff, add more cream. If too soft, add a little more sugar.
    • Add the star tip to the small piping bag. Then, add the frosting to the bag. Pipe small stars on half of the cookie shells. Then, gently place the remaining cookie shells on top of the cookie shells with stars.


    Weighing Ingredients

    Macarons need precise measurements of dry ingredients. For best results, use a food scale to weigh the dry ingredients. Otherwise, measure carefully.


    Castor sugar is the same as granulated sugar, except it has been ground finer. You can create your own by placing granulated sugar into a food processor and processing it until it has a fine texture.

    Gel Colorings

    For the cookie shells, use a gel coloring that is not liquid. I used Wilton Rose food coloring and you can click here to see it.

    Baking Options

    There are three options for baking the macarons.
    1. Use parchment paper on a baking sheet.  To help guide the size of the macarons, draw a circle on the parchment paper using a 1 1/2-inch round cup or another object, spacing out the circles for the macrons to spread.  Place the parchment paper onto the baking sheet with the side you drew on facing the baking sheet.  You will be able to see the circles through the paper.
    2. Use a Silpat-type nonstick baking mat.  Some baking mats have circles printed on them for macaron making.
    3. Or use a silicone mat with macaron cavities.  This type of mat has small cavities that you fill with batter so they are all uniform.  Do not fill the cavities to the top or the batter might run over the rims and distort the macaron shapes.  It is better to fill them almost full and then take a toothpick and spread the batter until you gain experience filling the cavities.

    Baking Sheets

    If you don’t have enough baking sheets to prepare all the macarons at one time, pipe them onto parchment paper and let them rest until the skin forms on top. Then, slide the parchment paper onto a baking sheet. Once the skin forms, the macarons will retain their shape when you move them to a pan for baking.

    Baking Time

    Total baking time is determined by multiplying the cooking time by the number of pans used to bake the macarons. The individual baking time may increase if 2 or more pans are baked in an oven.


    This recipe makes about 50 macaron sandwich cookies.

    Freeze Macarons

    Macarons have a short shelf life, so freeze leftovers. They will keep for a few months in the freezer. Thaw before serving.


    Calories: 168kcalCarbohydrates: 26gProtein: 3gFat: 7gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.01gMonounsaturated Fat: 0.1gTrans Fat: 0.001gCholesterol: 1mgSodium: 8mgPotassium: 8mgFiber: 1gSugar: 23gVitamin A: 10IUVitamin C: 0.004mgCalcium: 28mgIron: 1mg
    Keyword candy cotton macarons, French Macarons, Macarons, pink macarons
    Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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