You're in for a real treat! This Chocolate Madeleine recipe produces delightful little cake like cookies with that signature shell shape. These little French cakes are then dipped in chocolate for the perfect finish. They're soon to become one of your favorite little treats!
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Why You’ll Love This Recipe
If you've never made this classic French cake-like cookie before, I highly recommend giving these madeleines a try. Here are just a few of the reasons why:
- These fluffy chocolate madeleines are light, with just enough chocolate flavor and a soft, buttery taste
- Slightly crisp exterior making for a satisfying bite
- Perfect for displaying and serving at your next brunch, with a cup of tea for dessert or at snack time
You will need one of the special madeleine pans. They are relatively inexpensive and a must for making madeleine recipes.
What are Madeleines?
The Classic French madeleine is a delightful, light French cake made in a special pan, or madeleine mold, that produces their unique shell shape on one side and a "bump" on the other side.
We tend to refer to madeleines as cookies because you can pick one up and eat it just like a cookie, but technically they're considered cakes (fun fact!).
These chocolate dipped madeleines are made of whipped eggs and sugar, flour, a little bit of cocoa powder and melted butter as the main ingredients.
Madeleines have a spongey and light texture. And, when dusted with confectioner's sugar or dipped in melted chocolate, as I've done here, they make for a perfect snack.
These chocolate French madeleines are best served and consumed shortly after they're baked, so plan accordingly!
Ingredients & substitutions
Here is a list of what you'll need to make perfect madeleines! I would not recommend making any substitutions in this recipe. See the full recipe below for amounts and baking time:
- All-purpose flour: be sure to measure your flour properly by scooping the flour into your measuring cup then leveling off the top. Do not scoop the flour from the container/bag or pack or pat it into the cup. Madeleines are light and delicate and too much flour will lead to dense and dry little cakes
- Unsweetened cocoa powder: Use a high-quality cocoa powder. Since these are chocolate madeleines, the higher quality, the better tasting your madeleines will be.
- Baking powder
- Large Eggs: remove the eggs from the fridge at least 30-60 minutes prior to baking to ensure they reach room temperature. This will allow the eggs to whip up properly and to incorporate well with the other ingredients
- Granulated sugar
- Vanilla extract
- Salt: fine salt is recommended
- Unsalted butter: the butter needs to be melted and slightly cooled before adding to the batter. I like to melt the butter first so it has time to cool
- Dark chocolate: this is for dipping and it's optional. Substitute with melted white chocolate, milk chocolate or leave plain. I sprinkled mine with grated ruby chocolate for a fun pop of color. Try sprinkling with chopped nuts or even orange zest for a fun twist
How to make Chocolate Madeleines
Making madeleines is a bit of a delicate process. Please don't let that deter you from making them, though! They're really not very complicated. Here's how:
Prepare the pans properly to avoid sticking. Start by brushing the pan with melted butter using a pastry brush or spray liberally with cooking spray. Then, coat the pan cavities with sifted cocoa powder.
This is better than using flour to coat the pans since the batter is chocolate. You won't end up with madeleines covered in excess flour. Turn the pan over the sink and tap out the excess cocoa powder.
Repeat the process of brushing or spraying then sifting a second time to ensure the madeleines do not stick. Set the pan aside.
Sift together the dry ingredients. I find it easiest to lay a piece of parchment on the counter and sift the cocoa powder, flour, and baking powder together over top. You'll want to sift the dry ingredients twice to ensure they are well mixed and well sifted.
The parchment paper allows you to easily lift it and fold in half lengthwise to allow you to easily add the dry ingredients to the sifter set over top of a mixing bowl to sift again, without a lot of mess.
Add the eggs, sugar, and vanilla to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Start out on low speed, gradually increasing to medium speed as the egg mixture begins to combine. Whisk at medium speed for 2 minutes, stopping to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl with a spatula.
Turn the mixer to full speed, whisking for 8-10 minutes until the mixture is very light in color and the ribbon stage has been achieved. This means that when you lift the whisk out and form a shape with the batter, the shape remains present for 3 seconds.
If you are in doubt about whether or not ribbon stage has been achieved, keep whisking for another minute or two. It’s very difficult to over whisk, so keep going until you’re sure the ribbon stage has been achieved.
Using a rubber spatula, carefully fold in ⅓ of the dry ingredients to the egg/sugar mixture. Once it’s incorporated, fold in half the melted, cooled butter.
Folding, if you aren't familiar, is not the same as mixing or stirring. To fold the dry ingredients into the whipped eggs, use a large spatula and gently "cut" the flour into the eggs by slashing the spatula through the middle of the whipped eggs, then gently scooping the spatula around the outside edge of the batter.
Continue doing this until all the dry ingredients are incorporated. Here is a visual on how to do the folding technique.
Add the batter to a piping bag or gallon-sized ziplock bag and snip off ½ inch from one corner. Pipe the batter into the buttered pan, filling each cavity to the top.
Bake in the preheated oven for 5 minutes if making mini madeleines or 7 minutes if making regular-sized madeleines, rotate the pan and bake for another 5-7 minutes.
You’ll know they are done if you press down on the madeleines gently and they bounce back. Allow to cool in the pan for 5 minutes before gently tipping onto a piece of parchment paper to cool (I do not recommend using a wire rack so as to avoid getting marks on your madeleines).
If your madeleines seem to be sticking, use an offset spatula to gently ease them out of the pan cavities.
While your madeleines are cooling, melt the chocolate in the top of a double boiler over simmering water.
Once chocolate is completely melted, dip the bottom half of the madeleines in the melted chocolate, allowing the excess chocolate to drip back into the bowl then place on parchment paper to allow the chocolate to set.
Alternatively, you can dust the baked madeleines with powdered sugar or leave plain.
- For this recipe, I used a mini madeleine pan. The recipe made 48 mini madeleines. And since I only have one pan, I made one batch at a time. If you have or if you purchase a regular-sized madeleine pan, this recipe will yield approximately 24 chocolate madeleine cookies
- I highly recommend using a non-stick madeleine pan for making these madeleines. A non-stick pan will make the process of removing your baked chocolate madeleines way easier and with way less disappointment. If you have a regular madeleine pan, I recommend spraying the pan very liberally with non-stick cooking spray then sifting cocoa powder over top to cover all the nooks and crannies. Then, repeat this process one more time. Spray again then sift again. Tilt the pan over a large bowl or your kitchen sink and tap out any excess cocoa powder. Don't skip this step, especially if you are using a regular madeleine pan. There's nothing worse than going through all the trouble of making these delightful cookies and having them stick to the pan
- When you are whisking the eggs, sugar and vanilla, you will have the mixer running for a full 10 minutes at least before the desired consistency is achieved. You are looking to achieve the ribbon stage. This means, when you stop the mixer and lift the whisk out of the batter, try forming a shape with the batter such as a figure 8 or your first initial using the batter that's dripping from the whisk. The shape should hold for approximately 3 seconds before disappearing into the batter. If you have any doubts as to whether or not the batter has achieved ribbon stage, keep whisking. It's almost impossible to over-whisk here, so whisk for 1-2 minutes more and test it again
- The best way to test for doneness of your baked madeleines is to poke at them. Poke one with your finger and if it bounces back, it's done. You can also stick a toothpick or skewer into one. If it comes out clean or with only a few crumbs on it, it's done baking. I prefer to poke the cookie, as I don't like to have holes in my madeleines, but that's a personal preference. Either method will work!
- If you do not have a double boiler, you can create your own by setting a heat-proof bowl over a pot of simmering water about an inch of two deep. You don't want the water touching the bottom of the bowl. Place the chocolate in the bowl and allow to melt slowly over the simmering water
Madeleines are often referred to as cookies, however, they are more cake-like than cookie. They are made in a madeleine pan that produces their distinctive shell pattern on one side and a u0022bumpu0022 on the other side.They are often dipped in chocolate and sprinkled with nuts, chocolate shavings or citrus zest.
Madeleines are best served and eaten the day they are made. To store, allow them to cool completely and store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.
Yes, madeleines can be frozen. I recommend freezing them plain, without the melted chocolate dip. Allow them to cool completely then wrap them mini in wax paper then aluminum foil.
Place in a freezer safe bag and store in the freezer for up to one month. Allow them to thaw at room temperature and then dust with powdered sugar before serving.
To achieve their signature shell-shape, a madeleine pan is needed to make proper madeleines.
FOR ALL MY FAVORITE BAKING TOOLS INCLUDING THOSE USED TO MAKE THIS RECIPE, CHECK OUT MY BAKING RESOURCES PAGE!
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- 1 ⅓ cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder plus extra for coating the pans
- ¼ teaspoon baking powder
- 2 large eggs room temperature
- ½ cup + 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ cup unsalted butter melted and cooled plus more for brushing pans
- 6 ounces dark chocolate chopped
- Preheat oven to 375ºF (190ºC).
- Brush the Madeleine pan with melted butter or spray liberally with cooking spray then coat the pan cavities with sifted cocoa powder. Turn the pan over and tap out the excess cocoa powder. Repeat this a second time to ensure the madeleines do not stick. Set pan aside.
- Lay out a large piece of parchment paper on your counter.
- Using a sifter or fine-mesh strainer, sift together the flour, cocoa powder, and baking powder.
- Repeat the sifting of these ingredients to ensure they are well blended. To do this, place your sifter or fine-mesh strainer over a large bowl, pick up the parchment paper by the long edges and fold in half over the sifter/strainer, so the dry ingredients are now sifted into the bowl. Set aside
- Add eggs, sugar, and vanilla to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Start out on low speed, gradually increasing to medium speed as the ingredients begin to combine.
- Whisk at medium speed for 2 minutes, stopping to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl with a spatula.
- Turn the mixer to full speed, whisking for 8-10 minutes until the mixture is very light in color and the ribbon stage has been achieved. This means that when you lift the whisk out and form a shape with the batter, the shape remains present for 3 seconds. If you are in doubt about whether or not ribbon stage has been achieved, keep whisking for another minute or two. It’s very difficult to over whisk, so keep going until you’re sure ribbon stage has been achieved.
- Carefully fold in ⅓ of the dry ingredients to the egg/sugar mixture. Once it’s incorporated, fold in half the melted, cooled butter.
- Repeat this by folding in ⅓ of the flour, followed by the second half of the butter and finishing by folding in the final ⅓ of the flour. Don’t overwork the batter, but make sure no flour streaks present in the batter.
- Add the batter to a piping bag or gallon-sized ziplock bag and snip off ½ inch from one corner.
- Pipe the batter into the Madeleine pan, filling each cavity to the top.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 5 minutes if making mini madeleines or 7 minutes if making regular-sized madeleines, rotate the pan and bake for another 5-7 minutes.
- You’ll know they are done if you press down on the madeleines gently and they bounce back.
- Allow to cool in the pan for 5 minutes before gently tipping onto a piece of parchment paper to cool (don’t use wire rack to avoid getting marks on your madeleines).
- If your madeleines seem to be sticking, use an offset spatula to gently ease them out of the pan cavities.
- While your madeleines are cooling, melt the chocolate in the top of a double boiler over simmering water.
- Once chocolate is completely melted, dip the bottom half of the madeleines in the melted chocolate, allowing the excess chocolate to drip back into the bowl then place on parchment paper to allow the chocolate to set.
- Store madeleines in an airtight container for up to 4 days