Madeleines are the perfect mix between a cookie and a cake! Their gorgeous shell-like shape topped with some chocolate and powdered sugar makes this a treat fit for a king!

This cookie is perfect for the Holidays! For more treats to impress your guest with them try out these Soft and Delicious Alfajores Cookies, these Homemade Butter Cookies, and these perfectly Italian Cookies.

Powdered sugar and chocolate dipped madeleines.

What ARE Madeleines?

These amazingly delicious Madeleine cookies are from France! Even if you have never been to France, I am sure that you know that they are known for all of their delicious treats! These madeleines are a delicious cookie that has a sponge-like texture. So basically, they are like tiny little cakes that people call cookies. They are nice and airy and even though they look fancy, they are simple to make! That’s the beauty of so many French desserts… They can all be made in the comfort of your own home!

I love that this recipe uses a few simple ingredients but it somehow mixes up into a dessert that is SOO GOOD. I can’t stop at just one! Or two… The one thing that makes a madeleine a madeleine is its shape. It’s classically made into a mold that is shaped like a shell. It’s called a madeleine well. While this isn’t necessary to make the cookie taste fantastic, it will make everyone recognize exactly what they are! Go ahead and give these a try. Your guests will be so impressed!

Ingredients You Need to Make Madeleines

The ingredients for these cookies are simple and you probably already have everything in your kitchen! See the recipe card below for a list of exact ingredient measurements.

  • Butter: I used unsalted butter for this recipe! You are going to melt it and bowrn it so make sure that you pa close attention to that part!
  • Flour: You can use all purpose flour for this recipe!
  • Baking Powder: The baking powder helps these rise and give that sponge-like texture!
  • Salt: The salt will enhance the flavors of all of the ingredients.
  • Eggs: Plan ahead and set your eggs out before hand. room temperature ingredients mix better and help the dough have a better texture!  
  • Granulated Sugar: This will make these madeleines taste sweet!
  • Lemon Zest: This secret ingredient gives these madeleines a hint of lemon and fresh taste without overpowering the other ingredients.
  • Vanilla Extract: This adds a bit of flavor to the sweet sugar.
  • Butter: You will need some more unsalted butter for brushing in the pan
  • Powdered Sugar: This will be used to dust the tops of your madeleines and make them look fancy!

Let’s Bake Some Cookies!

These instructions are very detailed but it’s important to follow them closely when it comes to Madeleines! Don’t let the steps fool you into thinking this must be hard. It’s super easy, you can totally do it!

  1. Melt and brown the butter: Melt the butter in a heavy bottomed sauce pan and cook over low heat for about 10 minutes until browned. Then, pour into a small bowl and allow to cool while you prepare the rest of the batter.
  2. Whisk: In a medium bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
  3. Beat eggs and mix in sugar, vanilla and lemon zest: In a large bowl add the eggs and sugar. Using either a stand mixer or hand mixer, use the whisk attachment to beat the eggs and sugar on medium-high speed until very thick and pale, about 5-6 minutes. Add the vanilla and lemon zest and fold in using a spatula.
  4. Fold and combine: Fold in the dry ingredients, mixing until just combined. Fold in the butter.
  5. Chill OVERNIGHT: Cover the bowl with plastic wrap, (make sure that it does not touch the batter). Then, put it in your fridge and refrigerate overnight.
  6. Preheat and prep: bout 20 minutes before you’re ready to bake, preheat the oven to 375°. Prep your madeleine pan by brushing the pan with melted butter and lightly dust it with flour.
  7. Scoop into well: Scoop a generous tablespoon in the center of each madeleine well. If the batter is still quite thick, gently press it a little flatter into the well. 
  8. Bake: Bake for 9-10 minutes or so, until the bellies have risen and are turning golden brown. The edges should just be starting to brown.
  9. Cool: Let the madeleines cool in the pan for a few minutes before gently loosening them from the pan. Let them finish cooling on a cooling rack.
  10. Topping: Dust with powdered sugar (or dip into chocolate) just before serving!
6 pictures showing the steps for how to make madeleine dough.


I absolutely LOVE these tried and true madeleines! They are so delicious and have such an amazing texture! And another thing that is so great about them is how you can top them with different things to make them look and taste a bit different!

  • Chocolate: Try dipping these in some melted chocolate or white chocolate. Just dip one half so that they look extra fancy!
  • Change the color: You can try different colors of chocolate so that you can make these for certain occasions! I especially love doing that to make them festive for the holiday season!
  • Add sprinkles: Once you have dipped them in chocolate on one end, top that with some sprinkles. You can make them extra fancy by using gold sprinkles. Or, tie them into whatever occasion it is! Red and green for Christmas, pink for Valentine’s Day or red, white and blue for the 4th of July! This is such a cute way to make them mfit just what you need!

A madeleine with a bite taken out of it.

How to Store Leftovers

These madeleines are SOO GOOD that you will be lucky if you have any leftovers! Here’s how you can store them and eat them later!

  • On the Counter: Go ahead and place them in an airtight container and store them on your counter for 3-4 days.
  • Freezer: If you decide to make them ahead and freeze your madeleines, you totall can! Just make sure to only freeze the ones that are plain (without chocolate or powdered sugar.) Wrap the madeleines in a double layer of plastic wrap. Then, place them a in a ziplock bag (labeled with the date) in the freezer. They can last in the freezer for up to 3 months. Take them out to thaw and dust them with powdered sugar right before serving!

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