French Vs Italian Macarons – What’s The Difference?

Macarons have become a global phenomenon! The two kinds you will see on the web are French macarons and Italian macarons.

Sadly, even as everyone is rambling about macarons in general, no one bothers explaining what each is!

What are the main differences between French macarons and Italian macarons? The first is that the meringue differs completely. French macarons are made with uncooked French meringue, whereas an Italian macaron uses prepared Italian meringue. The meringue type used creates French macarons to become less stable and chewier and less sweet. Italian meringue makes a more crisp macaron that is more durable to work with and, in general, sweeter.

None of them is superior to the other, and it is about individual preference!

Today, we’ll examine every distinction between French and Italian macarons, such as the method of production and their taste, texture, appearance, and texture, and the advantages of each.

What are Macarons?

In simple words, macarons are small, round cakes that are made of meringue-based batter. It’s comprised of two shells that have been baked. They are filled with a delicious and strongly deliciously flavored filling.

The filling could include custard, jam frosting, cream, or another filling.

Macarons are made of egg whites, sugar, ground almonds, and other flavorings such as essences or extracts. They also can contain powdered food coloring in order to give some taste to the macaron.

Making the perfect macarons is a nifty skill and is extremely difficult. The shells need to be airy and light with a perfect oval shape with a perfectly smooth, ruffled “foot” or edge at the bottom of the shell.

The shell’s base must be smooth and flat with no sticking.

There are several kinds of macarons that you can buy, and the two most well-known are French macarons and Italian macarons. Let’s take examine the variations.

What are French Macarons?

French macarons are recipes that utilize French meringue to create the batter. To make the French meringue, egg whites get whipped together with the sugar until they form the most fluffy and stiff consistency.

The sugar must be completely dissolved before the egg whites can be whisked to the right consistency.

French Meringues aren’t cooked and have some controversy about their cooking. However, it is a more efficient method that doesn’t require the same amount of effort.

French Meringues, however, are more fragile, and people tend to overwork the batter while mixing dry and wet ingredients. This is due to the egg whites that have not been cooked.

Regarding appearance, French macarons usually appear thinner and do not have much rise. This can be attributed to the fragile meringue, which is unable to hold the weight of other ingredients and isn’t able to rise very much.

Foots of French macarons are more ruffled and usually contain more air pockets (spaces between the cracks).

Finally, French macarons are chewier and sweeter. French macarons usually have more almond flour. Consequently, the almond flavor is more evident.

What are Italian Macarons?

Italian macarons are made from Italian meringues. To create an Italian meringue, you first need to make the sugar is heated to create the sugar syrup (which must be transparent).

As the egg’s uncooked whites are whisked, the syrup made of sugar is slowly poured over the egg whites. This is cooked.

This technique naturally requires longer to complete and takes more effort to finish. However, it comes with its advantages. In the first place, and possibly the most significant, Italian meringues add a lot of stability.

When dry ingredients and wet ones come together, This is typically the place where macarons of all kinds do not work.

However, since you’re using the solid Italian meringue, it can increase the chances significantly!

Italian macarons tend to rise higher, which is a great characteristic of authentically made macarons. Footprints are more refined and smooth due to how their macarons are raised.

In terms of taste as well as texture, Italian macarons have more of a crunchy or crumbly texture. It is also evident that they tend to be more sweet due to the syrup they use.

What’s the Different?

The primary and most crucial distinction between French, as well as Italian macarons, lies in the ingredients used to create them.

French macarons are made using the French meringue created using egg whites that are not cooked. Italian macarons are prepared using easy syrup and cooked egg whites.

The variations in meringues naturally influence how the product is created. The first and most important thing is in terms of creating the actual meringues, French meringues have less stability in their structure and may result in more failures.

Italian Meringues on the other on the other hand, are much more accommodating and make an even batter that is able to be used to a greater extent.

The Italian meringue causes the macarons’ volume to increase and creates a more smooth foot with a finer texture and incredibly crispy, sweet and airy cookies.

French meringue is a common ingredient that creates thinner macarons with small feet and big air pockets. They are more almond-like in flavor and are chewier in texture.

SpecificationsFrench MacaronsItalian Macarons
Meringue UsedFrench meringue technique
Egg whites that are not cooked
Italian meringue technique
Egg whites cooked in the oven
Sugar usedFine sugar (castor sugar)Colorless sugar syrup
StabilityMore unstable
The risk of overmixing is high.
More stable
More likely to succeed in creating perfect macarons
Smaller feet
Ruffled feet
Higher rise
Higher feet
Fine-textured feet
Taste and textureChewier
Sweeter but not as sweet
Norah Clark

Norah Clark

Norah Clark, the founder and editor of YummyTasteFood! She's a seasoned food writer and editor with over a decade of experience in the hospitality industry as a former pastry chef, sous chef, and barista. When not writing about food, she explores new recipes or travels the world for culinary inspiration.

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