Learn how to make the cutest little Rudolph Reindeer Chocolate Macarons with chocolate ganache filling, red M&M nose and pretzel antlers in this easy recipe. Santa is sure to love festive French macarons for the night before Christmas!
Have you ever made your own French macarons?
They are really quite simple to make if you follow the instructions I’ve included in this recipe. You’ll be so proud of yourself. I know I was. And they’re amazingly delicious. Plus, you will save a bundle as they are so expensive to buy at the store. Usually $2.00 to $3.00 dollars each.
Ingredients You Need for Homemade French Chocolate Macarons
Blanched Whole Almonds – Make sure they are blanched.
Powdered Sugar – Also called confectioner’s sugar (I like to buy them in the clear plastic bag instead of the box as they have less lumps).
Cocoa Powder – I used Hershey’s Unsweetened Cocoa 100% Cacao.
Egg whites – You will need to separate your egg whites from large eggs (not the egg whites in the carton).
Cream of Tartar – Found in the spice aisle at your local grocer.
That’s it! Just five ingredients in this cookie recipe (plus the filling ingredients and decorations).
How to Decorate Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer Macarons
Once you make your chocolate macarons (recipe follows), then you can decorate them to look like Rudolph.
Prepare the chocolate ganache filling and pour into a pastry bag fitted with a round tip (such as Wilton #12).
Pipe filling on the flat side of half of your cookies (you should have 72 total single macarons which will make 37 cookie sandwiches).
Break pretzel twists into smaller pieces that resemble reindeer antlers. Place two on each filled cookie.
Add the remaining plain cookies on top of the filling with pretzels.
Pipe eyes, nose and smiley face on top of each cookie using a smaller round tip such as a Wilton #3.
Place a single red M&M on the piped nose of each macaron. Then take photos before they’re eaten up because you will want to document the ultimate cuteness!
The Most Important Tool You Need for this Recipe
If you love French macarons and are tired of paying $3.00 per cookie at the store, why not make your own. This Rudolph Reindeer Chocolate Macarons recipe really is not hard. You can do it! I’ve included extensive instructions in the recipe below. Follow the steps and you will be so happy with the results. The most important tool you need is a food processor. If you do not have one, I highly recommend getting one. It is so useful for so many things. Not just baking. I use mine for soups, riced or mashed caulifower, homemade mayonaise, pesto, cracker crumbs, and so much more. It’s perfect for making homemade pie crust as well.
This year’s cookies for Santa are going to be so fancy and delish!
p.s. I used this French macaron making kit that I ordered from Amazon and it was great. (Affiliate link: As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.)
TOOLS FOR SUCCESS
Note: The above items are affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.
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Rudolph Reindeer Chocolate Macarons
For the macarons
- 1 1/2 cups blanched whole almonds
- 2 1/4 cups powdered sugar sifted
- 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder I used Hershey's Cocoa 100% Cacao
- 3 large egg whites room temperature
- 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
For the filling
- 4 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 2/3 cup heavy whipping cream
For the decoration
- 37 red M&M's candies
- 2 cups pretzel twists
For the macarons
- Preheat oven to 400°F. Line 3 half sheet pans with parchment paper or silicone mats. (I used macaron mats with pre-marked circles.) Set aside.
- Place almonds and 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar in a food processor and pulse to combine, then process until nuts are as finely ground as possible; this could take several minutes. Mixture should be powdery. Pulse in cocoa powder.
- In a large, clean, grease-free bowl, whip egg whites with an electric mixer on high speed until foamy. Add cream of tartar and beat until soft peaks form. Add remaining 3/4 cup powdered sugar and beat until stiff but not dry peaks form. Fold nut mixture into meringue. Scrape mixture into a pastry bag fitted with 1/2 inch round tip (I used a plastic coupler - see example below recipe). Pipe 1-inch rounds 2 inches apart onto cookie sheets. Allow to sit for 10 minutes so that the "kiss" shapes begin to settle iinto smooth rounds.
- Bake until dry to touch and you can lift one from parchment (or mat) without it breaking, about 10 minutes; tops may look crackled, which is okay. Slide parchment onto racks to cool cookies completely. Recipe should make about 72 cookies or 37 cookie sandwiches, once filled and decorated.
For the filling
- Place chocolate chips in a heat proof bowl. Bring heavy cream to a boil in a small saucepan (as soon as bubbles cover the top, remove from heat) and pour over chocolate chips. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit for 10 minutes. Then whisk until smooth. Stir over ice filled bowl until thick enough to spread (if needed). Do not put ice in chocolate (you probably knew that already but just wanted to make sure).
For the decoration
- Break up pretzels to look like antlers. Set aside.
- Using a pastry bag fitted with a coupler and a round tip (such as Wilton #12) pipe a swirl of ganache onto half of the cookies on their flat bottoms. Another option is you can use a butter knife to spread the ganache. Place 2 pretzel antlers on top of ganache, then place a plain cookie on top, flat side down.
- Then switch out the pastry tip of the ganache and use a smaller round tip (such as Wilton #3). Pipe eyes, nose and smile. Put one red M&M on top of the ganache piped nose. Cookies are ready to serve. Store covered at room temperature up to 24 hours. You will need to refrigerate them after that, but keep in mind that the M&M candies fade when chilled.
- Note: If you want to make the macarons ahead of time, the plain cookies can be frozen in an airtight container before they are decorated.
This recipe is featured on Meal Plan Monday #244.
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All text and images © Lise Ode for Mom Loves Baking. Please do not use my images without prior permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please re-write the recipe in your own words, or link back to this post for the recipe. Disclaimer: Nutrition information shown is not guaranteed to be accurate. This post may contain affiliate links.