The holiday of Passover is soon approaching, and if you observe Passover, you know that you’ll bid a temporary farewell to leavened breads and ingredients like flour, baking powder, and baking soda–the building blocks of tasty sweets! What’s a dessert-lover to do?
Fortunately, I have the perfect solution for you Passover cookie monsters out there. Coconut macaroons are cookies made with shredded coconut and ground almonds, making them ideal desserts for Passover. Plus, the coconut and almonds available from Oh Nuts are certified Kosher for Passover and Parve! Even if you don’t observe Passover, you’ll love the tropical coconut flavor and contrasting semi-sweet chocolate in these crisp and chewy cookies.
Passover Macaroons Recipe
yield: 15-20 macaroon cookies
- 4 large egg whites, room temperature
- 1.25 cups sugar
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tbsp honey
- 2.5 cups shredded coconut
- 1/2 cup whole blanched almonds or 1/4 cup almond flour
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 4 oz (about 2/3 cup) chopped semi-sweet chocolate (optional)
The secret to making these macaroons Passover-appropriate is using almond flour or almond meal instead of regular wheat flour. If you have almond flour handy you can use that, but you can also easily make your own by grinding fresh blanched almonds. So put your almonds in a food processor high-speed blender…
And process the nuts in short bursts until they’re ground into a fine powder. Homemade almond flour isn’t as fine as the kind you can buy, but for this recipe a little texture is no problem at all. If you’ve made your own almond flour, measure out 1/4 cup and if you have any extra, set it aside to use in another recipe.
Now combine that 1/4 cup almond flour with the egg whites, granulated sugar, salt, honey, coconut, and vanilla extract in a medium-sized saucepan with a heavy bottom.
Place the saucepan over medium-low heat and stir until the egg whites moisten everything, the sugar melts, and you have a gorgeous gloopy mess.
Cook the macaroon mixture, stirring constantly so it doesn’t scorch on the bottom of the pan. As the egg whites heat, it will look creamy and almost foamy, as pictured above. We want to gently cook the whites and cook off some of the liquid, so slowly heat and stir the macaroons for about 5-7 minutes.
As the macaroons cook, they’ll go from loose and creamy to a texture that’s more sticky and gluey. The whole mixture will start to hold together in more of a clump. It shouldn’t reach a point where it gets dry, pasty, or crumbly.
Once the macaroons are done cooking, scrape the dough into a bowl and press a piece of cling wrap on top of it. It needs to cool and set a bit before you can form and bake the cookies, so either let it cool at room temperature for several hours, or put it in the refrigerator to speed up the process. At this point, you can pause the process and chill the well-wrapped dough for up to a week, or freeze it for up to two months.
When you’re ready to bake, preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, and use a cookie scoop or a tablespoon to form 15-20 cookies. They don’t spread at all, so you can place them close together on the baking sheet.
You can bake the cookies as they are, or if you want to make the traditional “haystack” shape, wet your hands and pinch and press each cookie into a triangle. Don’t make them too thin and pointy on top, or the tops will get very dark before the rest of the cookies are done baking.
Once all of your cookies are formed, bake them in the preheated oven for 18-20 minutes, rotating them halfway through the baking time so they bake evenly.
When they’re finished, the macaroons will be golden brown all over and have a crackly, glazed finish.
Now, you can stop right here and have an awesome Passover macaroon. Crunchy on the outside, soft and chewy on the inside, it’s pretty much my idea of heaven. But why stop when there’s a bowl of chopped chocolate we haven’t even gotten to yet?
If you want to add a touch of chocolate to your macaroons, let the cookies cool completely. Melt the chopped semi-sweet chocolate and dip the bottoms of each cookie in the chocolate, then place them back on the cooled baking sheet to set.
If you have melted chocolate left over, scrape it into a plastic Ziploc bag and cut a small hole in the corner. Drizzle the melted chocolate over the macaroons for a beautiful, tasty finish! Briefly refrigerate the tray to set the chocolate completely.
These Passover macaroons are so good, you’ll be looking for excuses to make them year-round! Store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week, or in the freezer for several months.
You can also checkout our selection of Passover Cakes and Cookies
All text and images (c) Elizabeth LaBau