Nuts are a hot topic in today’s cooking environment. Not only are schools becoming more cautious about nuts (some even ban all nut and peanut products), but more and more people are being diagnosed with a nut allergy, even as adults!

So what’s a person with a nut allergy to do when a delicious confectionery treat’s main ingredient is almond flour? Well, I’m glad you asked!

Nut-free macarons!

Yep, you heard me. Nut-free macarons. The same melt-in-your-mouth, sugary goodness without all those troublesome nuts.

Now, you naysayers are probably already up in arms about a nut-free macaron. I mean, is it really a macaron if it doesn’t have the staple ingredient?

YES! Y’know the saying, “If it walks like a duck and talks like a duck, then it must be a duck”?

Quack. Quack. Waddle.

These three macaron recipes fit the tasty bill on this one. You don’t need those pesky allergens to make this yummy, sweet treat. Get that mouth salivating and those taste buds ready.

So what do you need to make macarons without almond flour?

*Quick note – as pointed out in the comments below, almonds and peanuts are not in the same family. Almonds are considered a tree nut, while peanuts are a legume. An allergy to one doesn’t necessarily mean an allergy to the other. We’ll keep both out of the recipes below.

3 Creative Ways to Make Macarons Without Almond Flour

Below you will find three different recipes for peanut and tree nut free macarons. One uses sunflower seeds, one uses pumpkin seeds, and one even uses white chocolate.

Don’t have an oven to bake your macarons? Check out my article showing you how to make them without one!

1 – Sunflower Seed Macarons

Sunflower Seeds

Easy French Nut-Free Macarons

~Ingredients~

  • 2/3 cup of raw sunflower seeds [71 grams]
  • 1 cup confectioners’ sugar [117 grams]
  • 2 large egg whites, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar [53 grams]
  • Jam or other filling

~Instructions~

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Place sunflower seeds in a food processor (see my recommendations) along with confectioners’ sugar.
  3. Process until combined, about 1 minute.
  4. Pass seed/sugar mixture through a sieve.
  5. Transfer bits that did not go through the sieve back to the food processor; sift again, pressing down on clumps.
  6. Repeat until less than 2 tablespoons of solids are left.
  7. Whisk egg whites and granulated sugar by hand to combine first.
  8. Then whip on medium speed and increase the speed every 3 minutes until stiff peaks form.
    *This should take between 6-10 minutes.*
  9. If you are adding color, add it now and then whip on high for 30 seconds.
  10. Add dry ingredients and fold in with a spatula.
  11. Repeat just until batter flows like lava.
  12. Pipe small circles onto parchment paper or on a macaron sheet.
    *Tap sheets firmly against counter 2 or 3 times to release air bubbles.*
  13. Bake until risen and just set, 10-12 minutes.
  14. Let cool.
  15. Pipe or spread filling on flat sides of half of cookies; top with remaining half.
  16. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate.

~Recipe Notes~

It is best to refrigerate overnight and then let them come back to room temperature before eating.

Recipe by Sister DIY – Easy French Macaron (nut-free) Recipe

2 – Pumpkin Seed Nut Free Macarons

Pumpkin Seeds

In case you were concerned, pumpkin seed allergies are rare. They are not in families closely related to tree nuts, and do not usually produce life-threatening reactions.

As always, take care when consuming them if you are not completely sure you are not allergic.

Malted Pumpkin Seed Macarons with Malted Vanilla Buttercream

~Ingredients~

  • 4 ounces (115g) toasted pumpkin seeds
  • 8 ounces (230g) powdered sugar
  • ¾-ounce (21g) malt powder
  • ¼-ounce (7 g) cocoa powder
  • 5 ounces egg whites (144g)
  • 2½ ounces (72g) sugar
  • The scrapings of 1 vanilla bean
  • ½ tsp (2g) salt
**Filling**
  • 8 ounces (230g) of your favorite vanilla buttercream
  • 1-ounce (28g) barley malt syrup

~Instructions~

  1. Preheat the oven to 300° F (148° C).
  2. Fit a large pastry bag with a plain tip, set aside.
  3. Line two sheet pans with parchment paper and set aside as well.
    *If your oven has a strong bottom level heating element, consider double panning.*
  4. In the bowl of a food processor, grind the pumpkin seeds, powdered sugar, malt powder and cocoa for one minute.
  5. Sift this mixture, reserving whatever bits do not pass through.
  6. Repeat processing and sifting until all of the mixture passes through a sieve, then set aside.
  7. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the egg whites, sugar, vanilla bean and salt. Turn the mixer to medium and whip for 3 minutes. Don’t have a stand mixer? In a previous article I wrote, you can find out if you really need one.
  8. Increase the speed to medium-high and whip another 3 minutes.
  9. Increase the speed to high for another 3 minutes.
  10. Whip for a final minute on the highest speed.
    *At the end of this minute, you should have an exceedingly stiff, dry Meringue.*
  11. Now, dump in the dry ingredients all at once and fold them in with a rubber spatula
    *mix until a cake batter-esque consistency is achieved.*
  12. Transfer the batter to a piping bag and pipe onto the parchment lined baking sheet.
  13. After piping the macarons, rap the sheet pan firmly against the counter two or three times.
  14. Bake for about 18 minutes or until you can cleanly peel the macarons away from the parchment paper.
    *This may take longer than 18 minutes depending on your oven.*
  15. Cool thoroughly before removing them from the parchment.
  16. Whip the buttercream and barley malt syrup together and use as a filling for the cookies; sandwiching
    *Approximately ½-Tablespoon buttercream between every cookie pair.*
  17. Store the macarons (see my recommended storage methods), refrigerated, overnight before consuming.

Recipe by Honest Cooking – Macarons: Not as Nutty as You Thought

3 – White Chocolate Nut Free Macarons

White Chocolate

Golden Macaron

~Ingredients~

  • 4 egg whites [140g (4.94 ounces)]
  • 1/3 cup caster sugar [72g (2.54 ounces)]
  • 8.47 ounces white chocolate, finely grated [240g]
  • 1 cup icing sugar, sifted [120g (4.23 ounces)]

~Instructions~

  1. Whisk your egg whites and sugar together until firm, add color if desired & whisk thoroughly.
    *Egg whites should be stiff enough that you can turn your bowl upside down and it will not spill out of the bowl.*
  2. Gently fold in your white chocolate and icing sugar.
  3. Once it is just combined, continue to fold while some more mixture is dropped into the bowl very slowly & melds down into the rest of the mixture.
    *You do not want a runny mixture or your macarons will be flat.*
  4. Pour the mixture into a piping bag or a Ziploc bag with the corner cut off and pipe circles onto non-stick baking paper. Piping with a Ziploc bag is just one one the ways I cover in this article about piping without needing a tip.
  5. Bake at 150°C (302 degrees Fahrenheit) for approximately 20 minutes.
  6. Leave to cool on the paper and then carefully peel off.
  7. Pair similarly sized macrons and fill them with ganache.

The recipe should make about 20 macarons.

Recipe by How to Cook That – Nut Free Macaron Recipe

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34 Comments

  1. Please don’t bring NUT allergies into this. Almonds are NOT a nut, they’re in the nectarine family. And those allergic to nuts are not necessarily allergic to peanuts/peanut butter-as those are in the legume family.

    • Sarah | Baking Kneads Reply

      Hi Mary,

      Thanks for the clarification. I will adjust the article accordingly.

      Thanks for pointing that out!

    • Many people with nut allergies are also allergic to almonds. Sure maybe it is not technacly perfectly in the nut familly but I think (as a person with nut allergies) it is perfectly fair to group them in

    • Shirlee McKay Reply

      I think it’s fair to lump almonds with other nuts even though they’re technically different. People who have those allergies know what they are and are not allergic to however somebody who’s throwing a party, for instance, might want to air on the side of caution if they’re concerned about certain allergies.

      Author, Thank you so much for compiling all of these recipes together in one article!

      My daughter is having a sweet 16 party and one of her best friends is allergic to ALL nuts and legumes.
      I was going to make some of these cookies but realized they used almond flour, which she can’t have so these recipes will be very helpful.
      🙂

      • Sarah | Baking Kneads Reply

        Hi Shirlee, You make a great point. It’s always best to be on the safe side when it comes to allergies.

        I’m glad you found the article helpful. Thanks for sharing your story!

      • Sarah | Baking Kneads Reply

        Thanks for sharing the link! I’m glad you found the recipes helpful!

    • My son is allergic to peanuts and treenuts and for some reason almonds :/

      • Sarah | Baking Kneads Reply

        Really sorry to hear that 🙁 Thank you for sharing.

    • Technically a drupe, almonds are still considered a tree nut, and are highly allergenic.

    • Thats not 100% true in any way i am allergic to peanut/peanut butter and almonds so it’s actually pretty accurate for some of us everything doesn’t always have to be scientifically correct allergies have no bounds sometimes it just is what it is !

    • They’re a drupe, technically, yes. But that’s in botanical terms, and this is a cooking blog.

      In the cooking world, almonds are considered a nut. Full stop. Cooking is much more loose about their terminology, and ranting here won’t change that.

      Even in the allergy world they’re called nuts/tree nuts, too, because scientifically they tend to share similar allergy causing proteins and thus a lot of people who are allergic to one specific type of “nut” can have reactions/symptoms brought on by other kinds of “nuts”. People with ANY nut allergies are more at risk to other types of nuts across the board to varying degrees. Even more specifically people allergic to walnuts are more likely to get irritated by pecans while those who react to almonds are more at risk from cashews, Brazil nuts, and pistachios, and hazelnuts affect both groups.

      But yanno, go off. Just because YOU aren’t affected by tree nuts (lucky you!) doesn’t mean your experience is the end all be all, and your indignation is completely unwarranted.

    • Elisabeth Chanzonkov Reply

      I would really like to see your research data on this. Your conclusion would be much more credible with some kind of proof. Sorry, but peanut allergies are life-threatening to some people, and after all that is in the research about peanuts and nuts, a statement like the one you made raises some eyebrows. Just saying!

    • While a fair amount of people with nut allergies are not allergic to almonds. Some are. A close friend of mine cannot have tree nuts and discovered she cannot have almonds either as she has the same reaction.

    • I have a nut allergy and this includes Almonds so it’s better to air on the side of caution rather than say Almonds aren’t nuts!!! Technically no they are not nuts but they are an allergen as are Peanuts to 90% of people with a nut allergy.
      Writing Things Like Almonds are NOT a nut is pretty misleading!!! And not very helpful to people new to Alllergies.!!!

  2. It would be nice if someone actually commented on the recipe instead of bashing you on whether almonds are nuts or not. Can’t wait to try these. I’ve never seen it done with white chocolate in the shell. I’m intrigued.

      • Your stupid recipe doesn’t work! They just fall apart. It was crap.

  3. Thank you for sharing these recipes! I can’t wait to try them!

    • Sarah | Baking Kneads Reply

      Hi, Courtney!
      So glad I could help! Good luck!

      • Sarah, almonds are considered tree nuts and have a protein that can cause a reaction to those allergic to nuts. I appreciate you pointing out there are nuts and allowing folks that are more in tune to their allergies to be aware.

        • Sarah | Baking Kneads Reply

          Hi, Michelle!!

          Of course! I have a nephew with a peanut allergy, and I have a few food allergies myself, so I know how crucial it is to have good information!

  4. Hi Sarah, interesting article/recipes, thanks. How do I keep macarons in a non refrigerated display cabinet fresh and good for a few days please? I’d like to make and sell in a mall.

    • Sarah | Baking Kneads Reply

      Hi, Mands!

      Unfortunately, I don’t know that there is a way to keep them fresh beyond a day if they are not refrigerated. I would definitely be worried about the quality. Is there any way you can use a refrigerated display case? That would probably be your best bet to have them last more than 24 hours.

  5. THANK YOU SO MUCH!! It’s awful- for as many times I’ve been to France/Europe, I’ve never been able to try a macaron because of my deadly nut allergies. There’s nothing more heartbreaking than seeing everyone else enjoy the sweet ambrosia you’re forbidden from tasting… A lot of people don’t understand or respect nut allergies, so I’m VERY grateful to have a culinary ally like you! On a scale of 1 to 10, my almond allergies are around an 8 (hazelnuts are a 1, cashews and pistachios are a 10), and it’s just so hard to avoid them. Thank you SO SO SO much for sharing your recipes!

    • Sarah | Baking Kneads Reply

      Hi, Kat!!

      I’m so glad I could help!! I can’t wait for you to try them! They’re delicious. No more missing out for you 🙂

  6. honestly idk what y’all are on but I can attest that the white chocolate one certainly doesn’t work. idk about the seed ones so imma not comment on those. but the white choc. lmao what a joke and waste of resources. my suggestion is to try to find a way to not let the chocolate stick to itself, somehow incorporate it to the egg mix (I failed this step no matter what I tried, maybe you need a colder working space? I was at room temperature) without a food processor bc the food processor makes it too runny to cook and take shape. it was just so annoying. thanks it didn’t work.

  7. Thank you for sharing this information with us we’re in quarantine right now and not everyone has almond flour

    • Sarah | Baking Kneads Reply

      Hi, Eleanor!!

      I’m so glad I could help! We’re in quarantine too, so I understand the feeling. Good luck with your macarons!

    • Sarah | Baking Kneads Reply

      Hi, Jess!

      The malt powder is not the same as malted milk powder. It’s barley malt powder. I hope that helps!

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