Best Food Coloring for Macarons
Macaron batter is very delicate and can be affected by many small things. The best way to color your macarons is to use high-quality edible gel food coloring. Powdered food coloring can also be used, but it is not good for macaron batter. Water-based food colors are risky and you should know some tips before using them.
Why choose gel-based food coloring for macarons?
Gel food coloring is the best choice for the macaron batter as it won’t ruin the batter’s consistency. You only need a tiny bit of it – I recommend using a toothpick to add it to the batter. As it is gel-based and you don’t need it in large quantities, it won’t change the consistency of the batter.
Good quality gel-based food colorings are highly concentrated so you only need a little drop of it to make your macarons colorful. Who wants to eat a lot of food coloring anyway?
Can you use powdered food coloring for macarons?
Yes, you can use powdered food coloring in your macaron batter. Powdered food coloring is a good choice when you want to get light pastel-colored macarons.
Powdered food coloring is usually not as concentrated as gel-based colorings so you need a lot more powder to get some color. The good thing is the powder won’t ruin the macaron batter so you have one less thing to worry about while baking macarons!
There is another great way on how to use powdered food coloring – you can use the powdered dust on the macaron shells after they are baked! There are lots of pretty sparkling edible powdered luster dusts to put onto macaron shells to make them look extra beautiful and shiny.
TIP: I have written a comprehensive guide on how to use edible luster dust on macarons making them look extra fabulous. For example, colorful powdered dust is great to paint cheeks to your unicorn-shaped macarons.
Why avoid liquid food coloring?
As the macaron batter is very delicate it is easy to ruin it. Even a simple thing like humid weather can impair your macarons and affect their quality. The same can be done by using liquid water-like food coloring.
Water will react with the egg whites and make the consistency too runny. Macarons can turn out hollow, lopsided, or cracked and I am sure you don’t want it to happen.
Even the liquid food coloring is not recommended for macarons, there still are two ways to use it. Firstly – while baking the macarons with the Italian Method you can add liquid food coloring into the sugar syrup.
This is the only way to use it for macarons batter. The second way to use liquid food coloring is to use a little bit of it in the macaron fillings.
Food coloring recommendations
There are so many food color options on the market. What brands make the prettiest colors? There is a list of my favorite food colors for macarons.
Gels-Based Food Coloring
Powder Food Coloring
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Enjoy your macarons!