Haselnussmakronen are German Hazelnut Macaroons. Chewy and sweet, these German cookies are made with only egg whites, ground hazelnuts, cinnamon, and sugar. Naturally gluten free and dairy free.
Haselnussmakronen are a traditional German Christmas cookie. They are light and chewy, filled with hazelnuts, and made without any leavening agents or flour.
These cookies are dairy and gluten free, made with only egg whites, ground nuts, cinnamon, and sugar.
Lightly spiced with cinnamon, they make a fantastic addition to holiday cookie trays for Christmas.
What does haselnussmakronen mean?
- Hasel = Hazel
- Nuss= Nut
- Makronen = Macaroon
Macaroon vs. macaron
What is the difference between a macaroon and a macaron? Sometimes the names are used interchangeably, or pronounced the same. But is there really a difference between a macaroon and a macaron?
Macaroons and macarons are indeed two different types of cookies.
Without getting too in depth, a macaron (mack-ah-rohn) is made with egg whites, almond flour, and sugar. They have a delicate crust, chewy interior, and are often made into sandwich cookies with a filling in the middle.
Macaroons (mack-ah-roons) are made with egg whites, sugar, and another ingredient mixed in - most commonly shredded coconut. They can also be made with ground nuts - like our hazelnut macaroons today.
For more information, check out this awesome infographic made by Shari's Berries: Macarons vs. Macaroons: What’s the Difference?
Ingredients and substitutions
- Egg whites - For this recipe, you'll need three large (US) egg whites or three medium (Europe) egg whites. Standard egg sizes vary depending on location - a medium egg in Europe is about the same size as a large egg in the US. Canadian egg sizes are about the same as US egg sizes. For more information: Wikipedia: Chicken egg sizes
- Sugar - Confectioner's sugar is recommended because it blends seamlessly into the egg whites.
- Vanilla extract - Adds depth of flavor to your macaroons.
- Ground hazelnuts - Ground hazelnuts can be substituted with a coarse hazelnut flour if desired. Or, make these macaroons with your favorite nut, like almonds.
- Cinnamon - Adds a hint of warmth to your macaroons.
- Salt - Enhances the flavor of your macaroons without making them "salty".
How to grind hazelnuts
For this recipe, you'll need ground hazelnuts. Nuts can be ground in a food processer -shown below is a mini prep food processor that I've had for years. It's been a workhorse in my kitchen and I highly recommend it.
Shown here, grinding almonds for my Zimtsterne and Vanillekipferl cookie recipes. The same process works for any nuts, like hazelnuts. Simply place the nuts in your food processor and pulse until the desired texture is achieved.
Take care not to pulse much, or you'll make hazelnut butter. While tasty, it's not what we're looking for today.
Tips for whipping egg whites
- As you're whipping your egg whites, you'll notice when they begin to keep their shape and thicken in the bowl.
- Continually check for stiff peaks by turning off your mixer, then pulling out the whisk and pointing it upward. Once the egg whites hold their shape and stand straight up on the end of your whisk, they are ready.
- Take care not to overwhip your egg whites - they should look smooth, not lumpy. If your egg whites look lumpy, they've been overwhipped. Unfortunately, the protein in overwhipped egg whites begins to break down and will collapse if baked. They'll also look watery and grainy, and can't be used. If you get to this point, you'll have to start over with fresh egg whites and try again.
Forming your macaroons
You have several options for transferring the meringue to your baking sheet.
- Transfer your meringue to a piping bag, or large plastic bag, cut off the tip, and pipe your meringue into small heaps.
- Using two spoons, gently scoop and form mounds of meringue on your baking sheet.
- Use a medium cookie scoop to perfectly portion the meringue to make 24 cookies. I feel like a broken record talking about my cookie scoops, but they really are a time and mess saver when baking!
Haselnussmakronen need time to cool completely before coming off the baking sheet. Once your cookies have baked and cooled completely, gently lift them from the parchment paper onto a cooling rack.
Note - If your cookies are sticking to the parchment - this means that they need more time in the oven, or they haven't cooled completely.
Once the macaroons have made it to the cooling rack, allow them to rest for a few more hours at room temperature, if possible. After that, they can be stored in an airtight container for up to a week.
Macaroons can also be refrigerated if you don't plan to enjoy them right away. You can also freeze your macaroons! Baked macaroons can be frozen up to a month.
- 3 large egg whites (US), or 3 medium egg whites in Europe*
- ¾ cup (85 g) confectioner's sugar
- 1 teaspoon (5 g) vanilla extract
- 1 ½ cups (185 g) ground hazelnuts, or hazelnut flour
- ½ teaspoon (1.3 g) cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon (1.5 g) salt
- 24 whole hazelnuts
- Preheat oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper (do not use grease/cooking spray) and set aside.
- In a large bowl, beat egg whites until stiff peaks form (about 2 minutes). Whites should look smooth, not lumpy (if lumpy, your eggs have been overwhipped and you'll need to start over). Add confectioner's sugar and mix until fully incorporated and glossy. Add vanilla extract and mix until combined.
- In a separate bowl, combine dry ingredients - ground hazelnuts, salt, and cinnamon. Add dry ingredients to egg mixture and gently fold in until evenly incorporated.
- Using a medium cookie scoop, two spoons, or a piping bag, drop into 1.5 tablespoon heaps onto lined baking sheet. Top each cookie with a whole hazelnut.
- Bake for 23-26 minutes, or until edges are lightly browned and the tops begin to very lightly brown.
- Allow cookies to cool completely before removing from baking sheet to a cooling rack. If cookies stick to baking sheet or feel sticky to the touch, they need more time in the oven.
- Parchment paper, or a clean silicone baking mat, must be used to line your baking sheet. Adding grease/cooking spray to your baking sheet will cause the macaroons to spread when baking. Macaroons will stick to an unlined baking sheet.
- * Standard egg sizes vary between the US and Europe. In the US, large eggs are about the same size as a European medium egg.
- To make your own ground hazelnuts - place whole hazelnuts in a food processor and pulse until the desired texture is achieved. You're looking for a coarse texture similar to a meal, but not as fine as a flour.
- Macaroons can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week. Macaroons can also be refrigerated if you don't plan to enjoy them right away - up to two weeks. Baked macaroons can also be frozen for up to a month.
- Be sure to check out my 10 tips for baking cookies, based on reader comments and questions!