Coconut Macaroons Two Ways

photo of two macaroons on a plate

A while back I made coconut macaroons for the first time, using a very simple recipe.  You can read my previous post here.  Since then I have been looking at other various coconut macaroon recipes.  A lot of the recipes call for egg whites.  I was curious how a recipe with egg whites would work compared to using condensed milk.  So I decided to make coconut two ways and compare them.

For the egg whites recipe, I chose one posted by use real butter, which I believe she got from Martha Stewart’s Cookies.  I had to make some adjustments.  In the original recipe, she made a chocolate glaze for the macaroons.  I think the macaroons are sweet enough on their own, so I didn’t make the chocolate glaze.  Also, the recipe calls for unsweetened coconut flakes, which I have been looking for, but unable to find.  So I used sweetened coconut flakes and cut down on the sugar.  Here is my modified recipe:

Ingredients

1/2 cup sugar
2 1/2 cups sweetened, shredded coconut
2 large egg whites
1 tsp vanilla extract
pinch salt

Directions: Set oven at 325°F. Set parchment paper on a large
baking sheet. Mix all ingredients together by hand in a large bowl. Wash hands off. Dip hands in cold water and shake
off excess. Shape a mound or ball from 1-2 tablespoons of dough and set
on parchment paper with an inch of spacing between each cookie. Bake
16-17 minutes, rotating the baking sheet after 8 minutes, until golden
brown. Cool on a wire rack.

 

photo of macaroons on a baking sheet
Conclusions:  The batter was a bit loose.  When it baked, it came out a
pretty golden brown.  However, there also pooled a gooey later at the
bottom.  I think it was from the egg whites.  The gooey layer at the
bottom didn’t taste like much.

The macaroons were easy to remove from the parchment paper.  The macaroon wasn’t as chewy as I would have liked.  It was very loose. I love the pretty golden brown though.
close-up photo of a macaroon

Next, I tried using a condensed milk recipe.  I used a recipe from All Recipes. I followed the recipe exactly:

Ingredients

  • 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 5 1/2 cups flaked coconut
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Directions

  1. Preheat
    oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Line cookie sheets with
    parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, stir together the flour, coconut and salt. Stir in the
    sweetened condensed milk and vanilla using your hands until well
    blended. Use an ice cream scoop to drop dough onto the prepared cookie
    sheets. Cookies should be about golf ball size.
  3. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes in the preheated oven, until coconut is toasted.

photo of baked macaroons

Conclusions:  This recipe was a lot easier.  No need to separate egg whites.  Just combine a couple of ingredients and you’re done. Also, the condensed milk and flour acted as a good binding agent.  This macaroon was a lot more compact and created a chewier macaroon.

When I originally first made my macaroons for the first time using condensed milk, it was so easy, i thought that it was almost like cheating.  I thought that perhaps a more complicated recipe would create a better macaroon and that the condensed milk version was just a “quick fix” for someone really craving macaroons.  But both recipes yield similar results, and in fact, I preferred the dough of the condensed milk version.

photo of three macaroons on a black platephoto of three macaroons on a white plate

Coconut Macaroons Two Ways

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American

I tested two ways to make coconut macaroons and am sharing both recipes. One version has egg whites and the macaroons bake up with a beautiful golden color, but are less chewy. The condensed milk version is very easy to make and I love how chewy the cookies turn out.

Ingredients:

Egg Whites Version

  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 1/2 cups sweetened shredded coconut
  • 2 large egg whites
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • pinch salt

Condensed Milk Version

  • 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 5 1/2 cups flaked coconut
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 14-oz can sweetened condensed milk
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract

Directions:

Egg Whites Version Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 325°F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Mix all of the ingredients for method 1 together by hand in a large bowl. Wash hands off.
  2. Dip hands in cold water and shake off excess. Shape a mound or ball from 1-2 tablespoons of dough and set on parchment paper with an inch of spacing between each cookie. 

  3. Bake 16-17 minutes, rotating the baking sheet after 8 minutes, until golden brown. Cool on a wire rack. Makes approximately 18 macaroons.

Condensed Milk Version Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C). Line cookie sheets with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, stir together the flour, coconut and salt. Stir in the sweetened condensed milk and vanilla using your hands until well blended.
  3. Use an ice cream scoop to drop dough onto the prepared cookie sheets. Cookies should be about golf ball size.
  4. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes in the preheated oven, until coconut is toasted. Makes approximately 12 macaroons.

Notes:

All images and content are © Kirbie's Cravings.

12 comments on “Coconut Macaroons Two Ways”

  1. Actually, a lot of recipes I’ve seen call for whipping the eggs into a meringue. I wonder if the foaminess adds structure which prevents the gooey pooling you experienced.

  2. I’m not sure if it would make a difference. I’ve seen the whipping eggs recipes as well, but people who commented on this egg white recipe said whipping wasn’t necessary.

  3. Kirby, you said that you cannot find unsweetened coconut. I found some at Midwest Northern Nut Co in Minneapolis, MN. Their phone number is 612-781-6596. It is a wholesale nut company but open to the public. I use coconut for candy I make for the holidays so I bought the smallest amount I could – 5 lbs for $11.00. It is a huge amount..i have put it in the freezer and figure it will last me for the rest of my life!

  4. Thanks for the information!

  5. That sweetened condensed milk recipe is just fantastic! It’s my go to recipe whenever I’m in the mood for macaroons. My friends love it too!

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  9. What a waste of time and food! I made 2 dozens with 5 cups of coconut, but I can not taste them because everyone of them got stuck on the paper! there is no way to remove it from the bottom of the cookie, so i’ll have to throw it away. Next time i’ll try aluminum foil instead. They look good though.

    • Hmm, I think aluminum foil would stick. Are you sure you used parchment paper? I haven’t had any problems with them sticking to parchment paper. The reason I ask is I once used waxed paper back when I first started baking. I thought waxed paper and parchment were the same thing. But they are definitely not. They stuck to the wax paper like crazy, but when I switched to parchment paper, it was fine.

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