As an Amazon Affiliate, I earn from qualifying purchases.
Decorating chocolate chip cookies is a fun way to dress up your cookies.
Some of the decorating examples involve the cookies needing to be laid flat, and not stacked for storage purposes.
Make sure you have a big enough storage container for all of your decorated chocolate chip cookies before beginning.
How to decorate chocolate chip cookies with sprinkles
Bake your chocolate chip cookies. As soon as the cookies are placed on the cooling rack, toss your sprinkles on top of the chocolate chip cookie.
The heat from the cookie will let the sprinkles adhere to the cookie.
How to decorate chocolate chip cookies with frosting and sprinkles
Make your favorite vanilla or chocolate buttercream frosting to top your chocolate chip cookies with.
Add any food coloring you wish to the buttercream icing (vanilla buttercream).
Let your chocolate chip cookies come to room temperature. You do not want to frost the cookies if they are too warm, or the frosting will melt on the cookie.
You can use a piping bag fitted with a decorative tip, or use a knife to place your buttercream on the top of the chocolate chip cookie.
Before the buttercream starts to dry, toss your sprinkles on top of the buttercream icing.
Buttercream icing will not fully dry, therefore the cookies cannot to be stacked on top of one another. Place the cookies so they are sitting beside one another when storing them.
How to decorate chocolate chip cookies with candy eyes
Melt 1/4 cup of chocolate in the microwave. It should take about 30 – 45 sec to melt the chocolate. Use a spoon to mix the chocolate until it’s fully melted.
Use a toothpick to pick up a small amount of chocolate. Place the small amount of chocolate on the chocolate chip cookie where you would like the candy eye to go.
Place the candy eye on top of the melted chocolate on the cookie, and press down so it “glues” together.
Let it sit and harden together for 20-30 minutes before stacking the chocolate chip cookies together.
How to decorate chocolate chip cookies to create a cookie monster
Make your favorite vanilla buttercream icing. Add blue food coloring and mix together.
Fit a piping bag with the star tip and add your icing to the bag.
Pipe the icing by placing a small amount of icing on the cookie and lift vertically to create the monster cookie body.
Pipe the entire cookie this way until the edges are covered.
Add 2 candy eyes to the cookie. The eyes should be right next to one another. The pupil of the eye should be faced inward to make the cookie monster look crosseyed.
To create the mouth of the cookie monster you have a couple of options. One way is to break a cookie in half, and place the broken half in the icing. This will make the cookie monster look like he’s eating a cookie. Another option is to create the mouth using icing or melted chocolate. Create the mouth to look like the cookie monster is smiling wide open.
How to decorate chocolate chip cookies with whipped cream
Only decorate your chocolate chip cookies with whipped cream right before serving, otherwise the whipped cream with melt. Place a chocolate chip cookie on a clean plate. Hold a can of whipping cream in an upside down vertical position right above the cookie.
Gently place a small amount of whipping cream in the center of the cookie.
Top the whipping cream cookie with a drizzle of chocolate sauce or caramel sauce.
Gently hover over the whipped cream and put a couple of sprinkles to finish off the decorated chocolate chip cookie.
As an Amazon Affiliate, I earn from qualifying purchases.
Limes have a rich, sweet, tart taste to them. Limes are not typically eaten on their own, and have a bitter taste to them if you bite into a slice of lime.
When limes are added as a sweetener to foods like guacamole, beverages, rice, Thai dishes, it enhances the flavor of the food, giving it a refreshing lime taste to them. Only a little lime juice is needed to amplify the food or beverage and take it to the next level of flavor.
What to do with lots of limes
There are a few recipes that use a ton of limes, both lime bars, and key lime pie. Each recipe uses 4-8 limes minimum, which will help you to use up your limes when perhaps you have a few too many.
Lime desserts are a refreshing special dessert that isn’t served often. It’s a unique taste to serve to your guests as a burst of flavor that will overwhelm their senses. Try out one of these delicious desserts for your next gathering with family and friends.
Lime cake recipes
Lime cakes have an invigorating taste to them that is sure to go over well with your guests!
As an Amazon Affiliate, I earn from qualifying purchases.
Lemons have a strong taste that resembles a bitter, sour, harsh flavor. Lemon is not typically eaten by itself, it is meant to enhance the flavor of other foods.
When lemon is added to foods, it adds a pungent, tart flavor that can be both refreshing and light.
Lemon flavor can be added to foods using lemon juice and lemon zest. For foods like lemonade, only the lemon juice is added. For baking lemon flavor into muffins, loaves, lemon curd, lemon cakes, both the lemon juice and lemon zest are added.
Lemon juice can be extracted from a lemon using a juicer. Cut the lemon in half, then place half of it on the juice and grind it to extract the juice. Keep pressing and moving it side to side to remove all of the lemon juice. Once you’ve extracted your lemon juice, remove any seeds.
If you don’t want any pulp to be present in your baking, you can strain the pulp of the lemon juice using a strainer or sifter.
Baking with lemons
When baking lemon bars, the pulp is removed from the juice to make sure the lemon flavor is smooth and velvety and without any stringy bits. Keep this in mind when using lemon juice for baked goods.
Lemon zest is made by using a grater with small holes.
Press one side of the lemon onto the grater and cut in a downward motion. Repeat this process until the whole lemon has all of the lemon rind removed.
Lemon rind has a potent flavor, therefore you only want to use a grater with small holes.
Using larger wholes to grate the lemon will produce zest that is too large and overwhelming for baking.
How to reduce lemon taste
To reduce lemon taste in baking, you can use 1-2 tsp of vanilla extract. The vanilla extract calms the bitter lemon flavor and makes it much more neutral.
To reduce lemon taste in lemonade or lemon water, add sugar, mint leaves, rosemary sprigs, water, or soda to your beverage to dilute out the lemon flavor.
As an Amazon Affiliate, I earn from qualifying purchases.
Fresh spinach can be easily sautéed in a couple of minutes on the stovetop. The spinach must be moved constantly to avoid burning the leaves.
In a medium frying pan on low-medium heat, place all of the spinach you would like to cook. Make sure your spinach has been washed, there is no need to dry it off before cooking. The water from the spinach will steam off in the cooking process.
Using a pair of tongs, grab sections of spinach and turn them over. Constantly move the spinach this way to cook the leaves at all angles.
It should take about 5-10 minutes to cook ~3-4 cups of spinach. You’ll know when it’s finished, because it will be completely wilted and a dark green color.
How to use freshly sautéed spinach for a recipe
Spinach, even when using it frozen, needs to have the water removed before using it.
To drain the water out of your freshly sautéed spinach, you’ll want to cool it for a few minutes before touching it.
Wrap small bunches of spinach in paper towel.
Hold the wrapped spinach over a bowl and squeeze the water out.
Remove the spinach from the paper towel and place in a fresh bowl to use for your recipe.
When making a recipe with cooked spinach, the water needs to be removed because it can interfere with the liquid to solid ratio.
For example, if you’re making spinach dip, the water will not be absorbed by the dip, therefore it will ruin the spinach dip.
If you’re making lasagna with ricotta and spinach, the water will not be absorbed by the ricotta cheese, and will make the lasagna runny.
For these reasons, it’s important to remove the water from the spinach after cooking it down.
Vanilla buttercream wedding cake is the most classic and traditional wedding cake flavor you can choose. Since vanilla is a neutral flavor, most people that attend your wedding will enjoy it.
Sometimes picking a wedding cake that has chocolate cake, will not go over well with everyone. It’s best to select a cake that most of your guests will enjoy, without being too shocking of a flavor.
Vanilla buttercream cake is made with a buttermilk vanilla cake base.
In between the layers are vanilla buttercream icing.
Alternatively, you could ice the cake with vanilla buttercream, and in between the layers you could make vanilla custard.
Adding Vanilla Beans and Custardto your Wedding Cake
Sometimes vanilla buttercream cake is made with real vanilla beans. If you choose to go with a vanilla bean buttercream cake, this can be a bit more expensive, but it’s worth it.
The vanilla bean is opened, and the vanilla beans are extracted from the pod. The pod infuses its vanilla flavor into vanilla custard. The remaining tiny vanilla beans will fill the custard with luscious vanilla flavor.
The outside of the cake will be covered in vanilla bean buttercream icing. The vanilla beans extracted are added to vanilla buttercream icing, adding a ton of vanilla flavor. Vanilla bean buttercream icing is much more flavorful than just regular vanilla buttercream icing.
Usually, vanilla buttercream cake is flavored only with vanilla extract, which can be just a hint of vanilla. Adding vanilla beans will be sure to overwhelm your taste buds and will be a huge hit at your wedding.
Vanilla bean custard adds a ton of flavor to your wedding cake. Vanilla custard is a sweet and rich addition to your wedding cake.
Vanilla custard is made by tempering eggs. Tempering eggs is fairly time consuming and laboring for a baker. Vanilla custard is warmed until it has thickened enough, and then it needs time to chill in the refrigerator until it’s ready to use.
I would highly recommend adding vanilla custard to your wedding cake. It will take your wedding cake from tasty to mouthwatering.
Lemon Custard Wedding Cake
Lemon custard wedding cake is a light, and tangy cake for your wedding.
Lemon custard wedding cake is made by adding fresh lemon juice and lemon zest to a vanilla cake base. Lemon cake will have strands of lemon zest throughout the cake base, making it quite eye catching when it is served.
In between the layers of lemon cake is lemon custard.
Lemon custard has a bit of a tart and sharp taste to it, since it has lemon juice added to it for the flavoring.
Lemon custard wedding cake can be frosted with either a lemon cream cheese frosting, or a lemon buttercream icing.
Lemon cream cheese frosting will be a bit more creamy and full than lemon buttercream icing.
Lemon custard wedding cake has a strong pungent flavor. I would recommend adding lemon cream cheese frosting, as this will make the cake have complimenting flavors, and won’t be too overwhelming with lemon flavor for your wedding cake.
Champagne cake one of the newest trends in wedding cakes. Champagne has hints of lemon, peach, almond, or white cherry notes depending on the bottle of champagne.
By adding these hints of flavor to a wedding cake, it gives just a touch of citrus and toasted almond flavors that come together well for a light and flavorful wedding cake.
Champagne cake is made by adding champagne to a vanilla cake base.
Adding Strawberry flavoring to champagne wedding cake
For a little more succulent flavor, strawberry extract, and chopped strawberries are added to the champagne vanilla cake base.
Strawberries are a little bit sweet and acidic, making them a burst of flavor inside a wedding cake.
For the champagne cake layers, they have an added thin layer of champagne infused syrup. The cake has small holes poked in it to have the champagne syrup seep into the cake, making it a little sweeter with more champagne flavor.
Champagne strawberry wedding cake is filled with layers of cream cheese icing, made with whipped cream, strawberry extract and strawberry purée.
Champagne strawberry wedding cake is covered top to bottom in champagne buttercream frosting, with added strawberry extract and strawberry purée.
Champagne cake with strawberry buttercream is one of the most memorable cakes you can choose for your wedding. It has a light pink color to the frosting from the strawberries. When the cake is cut, it has the chopped strawberries popping with color throughout the layered pink cake.
Choosing a champagne cake for your wedding will thoroughly impress your guests by its unique special flavor. Most people will never have tried a champagne cake before, so it will be an remarkable choice for a wedding cake.
How are wedding cakes decorated
You can choose to have your wedding cake decorated with
a cake topper
sprigs of greenery
If you’re going with a more modern wedding, you can opt for detailed or painted icing on the sides of your wedding cake as added decoration.
For a rustic wedding you could choose to go with the fresh flowers or sprigs of greenery for your wedding cake decorations.
Mille Feuille cake is made by baking puff pastry into sheets. The sheets are stacked in layers. In between the layers are vanilla pastry cream. The vanilla pastry is made by adding vanilla beans, and infusing the pod into the pastry cream. Mille Feuille cake is topped with royal icing and melted bittersweet dark chocolate. Mille Feuille has specific lines of chocolate that are made with a sharp knife, creating beautiful lines on the top of the cake.
Lemon raspberry cake is made by infusing lemon juice and lemon zest into a cake recipe, and then adding a few frozen raspberries. The cake has the raspberries throughout, giving it a beautiful look of yellow and red. The colors are vibrant when you cut the cake. Lemon raspberry cake is coated in lemon infused cream cheese icing. Lemon raspberry cake is satisfying and light.
Cookies and cream cake is made by adding cocoa powder and coffee to cake. The cake is made with buttermilk, making it extra creamy. The cookies and cream cake is iced with a cookie Italian buttercream frosting.
Caramel chocolate cake is made by creating a chocolate cake using cocoa powder. The caramel chocolate cake is iced using a salted caramel infused icing with a touch of chocolate using cocoa powder. The layers are assembled by adding salted caramel sauce, and salted caramel chocolate icing in between the chocolate cake.
Black forest cake is made by baking a cake with cocoa powder and coffee infused into it. The cake layers are then soaked in a cherry syrup. In between the cherry soaked chocolate layers of cake, are whipped cream and cherries. The cake is covered in whipped cream on its exterior, and chocolate shavings are added to the sides of the cake.
Vanilla buttercream cake is made by baking a vanilla cake with buttermilk. In between the layers are vanilla buttercream icing. Alternatively, you could ice the cake with vanilla buttercream, and in between the layers you could make vanilla custard.
Cookie dough cake is made by baking a cake using vanilla and Greek yogurt at its base. The cookie dough is made using a recipe that does not have eggs in it. The cookie dough is made with mini chocolate chips, as to not be too overwhelming in the cake. The cookies are shaped, chilled, and gently placed into the cake, and then the cake is baked. The rest of the cookie dough is shaped again so it’s flat and chilled. This will act as the top of the cake and will be crumbled to look like mini bits of cookie dough. In between the layers of cookie dough cake, is cookie dough frosting. Cookie dough frosting is made by adding a little bit of flour, brown sugar and mini chocolate chips. The brown sugar gives the look of cookie dough by turning it a golden brown color. Covering the cake on the top is chocolate ganache with the bits of cookie dough crumbled on top.
Chocolate Kahlua cake is made by making a cake with cocoa powder, espresso powder and Kahlua infused into it. The strawberry buttercream is made by combining whipped cream, buttercream, and diced strawberries, giving the icing a beautiful pink color. The strawberry buttercream fills the layers in between the cake. The cake has dripped chocolate ganache to give the cake a little bit more of a chocolate hint to it.
Chocolate cake is made with cocoa powder and espresso powder. The cake is iced using chocolate buttercream which is made with cocoa powder and espresso powder infused into it. Chocolate cake is a very rich and heavy dessert.
Hazelnut chocolate cake is made with cocoa powder and it uses hazelnut flour at its base. In between the layers of cake is hazelnut spread and cocoa powder infused icing. The hazelnut buttercream icing is coated around the cake, with the option of adding hazelnut meringues to the top as well.
Vanilla chai cake is made by adding chai spice to a vanilla cake base. Chai spice includes cinnamon. ginger, cardamom, allspice, and cloves. Vanilla chai cake is iced with vanilla and chai spiced buttercream icing.
S’more cake is made by adding allspice, cinnamon, and brown sugar to a vanilla cake base. In between the layers of S’more cake is chocolate buttercream and homemade marshmallows. The chocolate buttercream is made by adding melted chocolate to buttercream frosting. On top of the two fillings is a mixture of spices and crumbled graham crackers. The cake is topped with more homemade marshmallows and torched to give it a “fired” look to it.
Peanut butter cake is made by adding peanut butter and chopped peanut butter cups to complete the cake base. The peanut butter icing is made by adding whipped cream and peanut butter to buttercream. Peanut butter cake has the icing covering the entire cake and topping with a few peanut butter cups.
Lemon and elderflower cake is made by adding lemon juice and elderflower cordial to a vanilla cake base. The cake is filled with lemon curd in between the layers. The cake is iced topped to bottom with elderflower buttercream frosting.
Orange and cream cake is made by adding orange zest to a buttermilk cake base. The cake is filled with cream cheese and whipped cream filling, infused with orange juice and orange zest. The cake is covered with orange zest flavored whipped cream.
Lavender cake is made by adding culinary lavender to a vanilla buttermilk cake base. Lemon curd fills the layers of the cake. The white chocolate buttercream is made by adding melted vanilla chocolate to a buttercream base. This frosting covers the lavender lemon cake, making it very flavorful and light.
Coffee cake is made by adding instant coffee to a buttermilk cake base. In between the layers of cake is apricot jam. The coffee layer cake is covered in coffee buttercream icing, which is made by adding instant coffee to buttercream icing.
Carrot cake is made by adding shavings of carrots, ginger, nutmeg, and cinnamon to a vanilla cake base. Carrot cake is also made with applesauce and brown sugar, giving it a caramelized carrot flavor. Carrot cake is covered in cream cheese icing from top to bottom.
Chocolate cake is made by adding instant coffee and cocoa powder to a buttermilk cake base. The next layer is the chocolate mousse, which is made by adding gelatin to warm heavy cream and chocolate. The gelatin helps to stabilize the chocolate mousse for using it in a cake. The chocolate mousse cake is topped with chocolate ganache to give it a rich chocolatey flavor.
Mint chocolate chip cake is made by adding cocoa powder to a vanilla cake base. The cake is covered in mint buttercream icing which is made by adding mint extract, and dark chocolate chips to Italian buttercream icing. The cake is topped with a thin layer of chocolate ganache to finish it off with a rich chocolate and mint flavor for the cake.
White chocolate raspberry cake is made by baking a vanilla cake base. The cake is filled with raspberry and lemon sugar sauce. The cake is covered in white chocolate buttercream which is made by adding melted white chocolate to buttercream icing.
Almond amaretto cake is made by adding almond extract and amaretto to a vanilla cake base. The cake is covered top to bottom is amaretto infused buttercream frosting. To add a bit of decoration, you can add some sliced toasted almonds on the top of the cake.
Chantilly cake is made by first baking a vanilla cake base. A Chantilly cake has a unique frosting that is made by combining whipped cream, mascarpone cheese and cream cheese together to a buttercream frosting base. The layers of cake are made by creating a berry syrup, such as raspberry syrup, and then placing the unique cream frosting on top of the syrup. Fresh berries are place into the cream frosting, making this beautiful and colorful layered cake. Some of the berries that are too large, like strawberries, are cut in half to have an even layered cake. When the Chantilly cake is sliced, you can see the colorful red and blue berries throughout the layered cake. The Chantilly cake is covered in the cream frosting all over the sides and top of the cake. Chantilly cake is usually topped with a few fresh berries, giving it an eye catching look to it.
Irish cream cake is made by adding Irish cream and cocoa powder to a buttermilk vanilla cake base. In between the layers of cake is Irish cream infused whipped cream. The cake is covered in Irish cream flavored buttercream icing. Using the drip method, chocolate ganache is dripped from the top of the cake down the sides of the Irish cream cake.
Mocha cake is made by adding coffee and cocoa powder to a vanilla cake base. Toasted pecans and toffee bits are added to the cake to be baked into the cake only on the top of the batter. The cake is covered in mocha buttercream icing, which is made by adding coffee and cocoa powder to a vanilla buttercream icing. The cake is topped with a few more toasted pecans and toffee bits for added decoration and flavor.
An ombre cake can be a combination of icing colors or cake colored layers going from dark to light. An ombre cake is eye catching and unique. The colors are made by adding more or less food coloring to change the colors of the cake or icing.
Dulce de leche cake is made by adding caramel sauce to a vanilla cake base. The cake slices are soaked with a combination of condensed milk and whipping cream, making the cake extra sweet. The layers of the cake are filled with caramel flavored whipped cream. Toasted hazelnuts are added on top of the whip cream layers to give the cake an added crunch. The cake is covered in dulce de leche whipped cream.
Champagne cake is made by adding champagne, strawberry extract, and chopped strawberries to a vanilla cake base. The cake layers have a thin layer of champagne infused syrup. The cake has small holes poked in it to have the champagne syrup seep into the cake, making it a little sweeter with more champagne flavor. The cake is filled with layers of cream cheese icing, made with whipped cream, strawberry extract and strawberry purée. The cake is covered top to bottom in champagne buttercream frosting, with added strawberry extract and strawberry purée. The cake has a light pink color to the frosting from the strawberries. When the cake is cut, it has the chopped strawberries popping with color throughout the layered pink cake.
Coconut cream cake is made by adding coconut emulsion and coconut milk to a vanilla cake base. Coconut cream cake is filled and covered with coconut buttercream frosting. The coconut buttercream icing is made by adding cream of coconut and coconut emulsion to buttercream icing.
Banana cream cake is made by adding bananas to a vanilla cake base. Banana cream cake is filled with vanilla pastry cream. Banana cream cake is frosted with banana buttercream icing. Banana buttercream icing is made with banana extract to buttercream frosting. You could add food coloring to the icing if you wanted it to have a hint of yellow in it. The sides of the cake have crushed graham crackers, and the top of the cake has banana chips for added decoration.
Strawberry shortcake is made by baking biscuits or vanilla cake. In between the layers of cake or biscuits are vanilla bean and sugar coated strawberries and whipped cream. The whipped cream helps hold the strawberries in place, and acts as an filler instead of icing or custard.
Melt your chocolate in 30 second intervals until it’s fully melted. Use a spoon to mix your chocolate in between intervals. You’ll only need 1/4-1/3 cup of chocolate to make a few beautiful chocolate garnish.
Place your piping tip into a piping bag. Put the piping bag over the edges of a tall glass.
Pour the melted chocolate into the piping bag.
Cut the piping bag tip and twist the end of the piping bag to get it ready for piping.
Cut a strip of parchment paper as long as the length of your chocolate garnish.
Begin piping your garnish by piping circles the length of your parchment paper. Continue and go back the same way.
Make another layer of circles beside the first layer. Go back over and create another layer of circles.
Cut the parchment paper close to one side of the circles.
Roll the parchment paper and make sure the chocolate does not touch itself when closing the circle of parchment paper.
Place an elastic band gently over the roll of parchment paper. Don’t squish the parchment paper or you’ll ruin your design.
Place the chocolate garnish in the freezer for 20 minutes to set it.
Take the elastic band off of the roll of parchment paper.
Gently unwrap the parchment paper. Remove the chocolate garnish from the parchment paper.
Do not hold the chocolate garnish for a very long time in your hand or it will start to melt.
Place your chocolate garnish in an airtight container until you’re ready to use it.
As an Amazon Affiliate, I earn from qualifying purchases.
To put melted chocolate on a cake, you can make a chocolate ganache for topping your cake.
Chocolate ganache is a type of icing or glaze that is made by using warm heavy cream to melt chocolate.
The chocolate pieces that are melted by the warm cream melt slowly, therefore they must be in small pieces.
The smaller the pieces of chocolate, the more likely the chocolate ganache will become smooth and melt together to create a homogeneous mixture.
Chocolate ganache is a better choice for covering a cake over melted chocolate because it’s more rich and creamy than regular chocolate. Melted chocolate will be very hard to bite into if it were to cover a cake. Chocolate ganache is easy to bite into and it flows better for covering a cake than regular chocolate.
Is chocolate ganache hard or soft
Chocolate ganache can either be hard or soft depending on the ratio used of heavy cream to chocolate. Ganache will be hard if the ratio is 1:1. Ganache will be soft if the ratio is 1:2.
Softer ganache is typically used to coat brownies or cakes. When you bite into the cake or brownie the ganache is easily moveable.
Hard ganache can be used for chocolate tarts or éclair topping.
How to store a chocolate ganache cake
Chocolate ganache cake should be stored in the refrigerator for 2-3 days.
Chocolate ganache cake is best served within 1-2 days.
Chocolate ganache cake shouldn’t be left out of the fridge for more than 2 days.
The ganache cake will stay better in the refrigerator as well; it slows down the aging process which lets it remain fresher for longer than if it was at room temperature.
How to make dark chocolate ganache for use on cakes
Yield: 1cake glaze
8ozdark chocolatechopped into small pieces
Place heavy cream in a saucepan over low-medium heat. Bring the heavy cream to a simmer, but not boiling. Remove the cream from the heat source as soon as it starts simmering.
Place your finely chopped chocolate in a heat proof bowl. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate and let it sit for a couple of minutes.
Mix the chocolate and cream together. Be patient. It won't look like it's coming together, but it will eventually. Keep mixing until you get a homogenous mixture.
Let the dark chocolate ganache cool down before you use it on your cake. Let it cool for 15-20 minutes.
Place your cake on a wire rack. The chocolate will flow off of it if you are encasing the cake in the ganache. Be prepared for spillage. You might want to place a plate underneath the wire rack to catch any drippings.
Pour the ganache over the cake. Make sure to go to the edges with the ganache to make it flow and flood evenly.
Let the ganache cool on the cake. You can place it in the fridge to speed up the process. The ganache should set after about an hour.
Serve the dark chocolate ganache cake within 1-2 days. Store in the refrigerator up for 3 days.
As an Amazon Affiliate, I earn from qualifying purchases.
Macarons can have sticky bottom shells due to a number of issues. Macarons will turn out under baked, but there are a few changes you can make to prevent your next batch of macarons from having sticky bottom shells.
Using stainless steel baking pans vs aluminum for macarons
Stainless steel baking pans can get hot spots over time. The uneven distribution of heat in older stainless steel pans can make macarons have sticky bottom shells, and will come out of the oven undercooked.
Aluminum baking pans conduct heat evenly throughout the pan.
Aluminum is a light colored baking sheet; it doesn’t absorb heat like other metals, such as stainless steel.
With a lighter colored pan, you can bake your macarons for a shorter amount of time than if you used a stainless steel baking sheet.
Using an oily baking pan for macarons
Macarons need to be baked on a baking sheet that is perfectly clean.
There can be no oily residue present on the baking sheet. If there is any presence of oil on the baking pan, the macarons will absorb the oil and will not turn out. The macarons will be sticky, under baked, or will not turn out at all.
If you’re having trouble removing the oily residue from your aluminum baking pan, pour very hot water on the pan, and this should remove the oil from the baking pan.
Using an oily silicone baking mat for macarons
If you’re using a silicone baking mat to line your baking sheet, make sure there is no oily residue left on the baking mat before piping your macarons.
Your macarons will absorb the oil, and will have sticky bottoms.
If you’re not able to get your silicone baking mat clean, try using a fresh sheet of parchment paper to line your baking sheet. Another option is having a separate silicone baking mat to only use for macarons.
Cut the parchment paper to fit to the pan. It’s much easier to pipe close to the edges of the baking pan if the parchment paper isn’t overhanging the edges.
Macarons are under baked
Use an oven thermometer to check the temperature of your oven before baking your macarons. Make adjustments as needed for your recipe.
If your first batch of macarons come out of the oven with sticky bottoms, try baking the macarons for 1-2 minutes more. Keep a close eye on them as they can burn very quickly. You can use a baking utensil to check the bottom of one of them while they are in the oven to check to see if they are done.
Meringue for macarons is mixed too long
If your egg whites are mixed too long for your meringue, your macarons can be hollow inside and have sticky bottoms. Try whipping your egg whites for less time to prevent this from happening. Your egg whites are finished when you can turn the mixing bowl upside down and the egg whites don’t move. Check periodically on them as you whip the meringue.
As an Amazon Affiliate, I earn from qualifying purchases.
Balsamic vinegar is a versatile ingredient that can be used with meat, pasta, vegetables, fruit, pizza, appetizers, or in sauces. You can use balsamic vinegar as part of the cooking process, or you can use it by drizzling it to finish off a dish.
How to use Balsamic Vinegar with Pasta or Gnocchi
Use balsamic vinegar by creating a sauce with it. Melt 1/3 cup – 1/2 cup of butter over medium heat in a frying pan. Add a little (1 tbsp) of balsamic vinegar to the butter. Let it combine with the butter. Cook for a couple of minutes. Add your cooked pasta (ravioli or gnocci) to the sauce. Add any extras you like at this point (peas, sundried tomatoes, chili flakes, cherry tomatoes, etc.). Add shavings of parmesan cheese to the pasta mixture and mix together. Serve with warm bread.
How to use Balsamic Vinegar with Avocado Toast
Mash or slice ripe avocado. Add a little salt and pepper to the avocado. Toast bread. Slice garlic clove in half and rub garlic onto the toast. Add avocado to the toast. Top with any of the following: fresh basil, cilantro, dill, parsley, cherry tomatoes, sliced onions, chili flakes, chopped jalapeno, or green onions. Drizzle balsamic over the avocado toast.
How to use Balsamic Vinegar in Sauces
Add balsamic vinegar to tomato sauce around the end of cooking to add a punch of flavor. Add only about 1 tsp-1 tbsp to the sauce as a finisher.
Add balsamic vinegar during the thickening time when making gravy. Balsamic vinegar gives gravy a touch of extra flavor that will impress even yourself.
Balsamic vinegar can be used as a base in salads. You can add 1:1 or 1:2 ratio of balsamic vinegar to olive oil to create a salad dressing. Add honey, Dijon mustard, minced garlic, and salt and pepper to taste to create a balsamic vinaigrette dressing.
How to use Balsamic Vinegar with Roasted Vegetables
Root vegetables go well with balsamic vinegar. Toss together any of the following: chopped butternut squash, carrots, red onions, sweet potatoes, yams, or parsnips.
Drizzle olive oil all of the vegetables. Add 1tsp-1tbsp of each: dried sage, thyme, and/or rosemary. Mix together until all of the oil and spices coat the vegetables. Drizzle 1-2 tbsp of balsamic vinegar over the vegetables and bake until fork-tender.
Combine the 3 tbsp olive oil, 3 tbsp balsamic vinegar, 2 tbsp brown sugar, 2 tbsp soy sauce (optional, more of a bitter taste), 1tsp Dijon mustard, 1/2 tsp dried basil, salt and pepper to taste. Coat vegetables in the sauce and roast vegetables until fork-tender.
How to use Balsamic Vinegar with Potatoes
Make a garlic butter sauce to begin. Melt 1/4 cup – 1/2 cup of butter of medium heat in a saucepan. Add 2 minced garlic cloves and cook until fragrant. Add 1 tsp of both dried rosemary and thyme. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cook until the spices have infused the butter. Remove the butter mixture from the heat source and coat the potatoes. Bake the potatoes until they are tender and crispy. Recoat the potatoes half way through cooking by gently mixing them. Once the potatoes are finished cooking, drizzle 1-2 tbsp of balsamic vinegar over the potatoes and serve.
How to use Balsamic Vinegar with Steak
Mix equal parts of balsamic vinegar and dry red wine. Add salt and pepper to steaks. Cook the steaks. If you’re cooking on a stovetop, add the sauce to the frying pan and let the sauce be soaked into the steak. Gently coat the top of the steak with the sauce by using a brush as needed. If you’re cooking the steak on a BBQ, brush the steaks with the sauce as it cooks. To serve, spoon 1 tbsp of the balsamic vinegar and red wine mixture over the steak.
How to use Balsamic Vinegar with Chicken
Create a marinade for your chicken by combining 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar, 2 tbsp honey, 1 1/2 tbsp whole grain mustard, 3 cloves of minced garlic, and salt and pepper to taste. Marinade your chicken for least an hour. Place chicken in a roasting pan. Top with a bit of dried rosemary and thyme. Roast the chicken in the oven and serve with a bit of the pan drippings.
How to use Balsamic Vinegar with Fish
Over medium heat in a small saucepan, combine 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar, 1/4 cup white wine or chicken broth, 2 tbsp honey, 1 tbsp Dijon mustard, 1 tsp of dried rosemary or 1 fresh rosemary sprig, and a minced garlic clove. Cook for about 10-15 minutes until it reduces by 1/3 in volume. Strain the mixture and set aside. Cook fish by baking in the oven, over the BBQ, or on the stovetop. Drizzle the balsamic vinegar sauce over the fish to serve.
Balsamic vinegar is used with appetizers as a finishing ingredient. Drizzle the top of the appetizer with balsamic vinegar. Some appetizers that go well with balsamic vinegar topping include:
baguette topped with fig jam, fresh basil leaves, sliced apple, prosciutto. See the recipe here.
crostini topped with ricotta and sliced strawberries
crostini topped with goat cheese, grilled nectarines, and strips of fresh basil.
Another option for using balsamic vinegar as an appetizer is by dipping fresh French bread, sourdough, or focaccia bread in a mixture of olive oil and balsamic vinegar.
How to use Balsamic Vinegar with Fruit
Fresh fruit and be drizzled with a bit of balsamic vinegar. Fresh fruits that go well with balsamic vinegar include: strawberries, watermelon, blueberries, nectarines, peaches, kiwi, pears, and grapes.
Grilled fruit over the BBQ can be drizzled with a bit of balsamic vinegar to serve it with. Grilled fruits that go well with drizzled balsamic vinegar include: nectarines, peaches, and pineapples.