Macarons are a dainty French delicacy that can wow anyone who hasn’t tried one before in their life. They are delicate meringue cookies that have a crunchy exterior and a soft and delicate interior.
And macarons are best eaten after two shells have been put together with a filling of myriad flavors and matured for 24 hours. This allows the flavors to develop in the shells and marry with the flavor of the filling to create an exquisite dessert.
So, it is as important to know how to keep macarons fresh as it is to know how to make them perfectly. Here, we will explain the best and the easiest ways that you can store your macarons to keep them fresh for the longest possible time.
Problems You Might Face While Storing Macarons
Macarons are delicate desserts. The quality of the macarons largely depends on the contrast of textures between the chewy inside of the cookies and the crunchy exterior. They need to be stored in a way that keeps this property intact.
Here are the common problems people face while storing their macarons.
- Don’t stay fresh under room temperature: Macarons will start to get soggy, and the outer crust will not remain crunchy at room temperature.
- Absorb moisture: If the macarons aren’t stored in an airtight manner, they will absorb any moisture they come in contact with.
- Stick to surfaces: Often, people are careless about the container used to store macarons. If the container has any kind of moisture, the macarons will break down and stick to the surfaces.
- Stick to wax paper: If you use wax paper instead of parchment paper to separate layers of macarons, the shells will stick to them.
- Filling can spill: If they are overfilled, the filling between the cookie shells will spill out and damage the exterior of the macarons.
Best Methods for Keeping Filled Macarons Fresh
There are many techniques you can utilize to keep your macarons fresh. We will discuss a few of the methods so that you can apply the one that suits you best.
Method 1: Store in an Airtight Container at Room Temperature
For this method, you will need some airtight boxes and parchment paper.
- Have your macaron shells cooled and ready for applying the filling
- Create sandwiches with your cooled cookies with filling in the middle
- Completely dry your container and make sure that the lid is airtight
- Line up some parchment paper with your containers
- Cut the parchment paper or fold them so that they don’t go over the sides
- Lay down your macarons on the containers in a way that they don’t touch each other
- Do not stack multiple macarons on top of each other
- Store the container in a cool and dry place
Pros: If you aren’t making a lot of macarons and expect them to be finished in a day, this is the most convenient method for storing them.
Cons: By storing them this way, the macarons will stay fresh for 24-30 hours to the maximum. This might not allow you to give them enough time to mature before eating them.
Method 2: Store in Special Macaron Boxes
There are special boxes for storing macarons. These boxes generally hold 12 macarons at a time, but you may be able to find bigger or smaller boxes depending on your needs.
- Put your filled and cooled macarons in a vertical manner along with the placeholders in the box
- Close the box as designed, making sure there aren’t large gaps for air to pass
- As the boxes aren’t airtight, wrap them in plastic wrap carefully, applying as little pressure as need
- Twist the ends of the plastic wrap closed to make an airtight seal
- Store in a cool and dry place until you need them
Pros: These boxes are your best way to carry macarons from one place to another. They can be great for separating different flavored macarons that you made. You can also use them to make macaron gift boxes.
Cons: The boxes aren’t airtight, so shelf life at room temperature will be 24 hours at the most. You will also need to buy these boxes separately if you don’t already have them.
Method 3: Refrigerate Your Filled Macaroons
For refrigerating your macarons, you will need to first put them into a container and make them airtight. To achieve this, follow method 1 or method 2 to have your macarons airtight in a container, ready to be chilled.
Simply store your container or box on the middle shelves of your refrigerator. Don’t keep them on the door as the temperature along the door fluctuates the most, which can tamper with the freshness of your macarons.
By storing in a refrigerator, you can keep your macarons fresh from 3 days up to a week, depending on the materials used in the filling. If there is heavy cream, cheese, or other highly perishable components in the filling, they won’t keep for long.
Pros: This method will give enough time for both the shells and the filling to set well and mature, making the macarons more delicious than keeping them at room temperature.
Cons: If the seal on the boxes isn’t airtight, or if there are small gaps, the macrons will go soft and inedible. Further, they will start losing flavor if you are keeping them for more than 5 days.
Method 4: Freezing Your Macarons
Freezing is the best way to keep them fresh for the longest amount of time. If every condition is an idea, the macarons will keep all of their flavor and texture for upwards of 3 months.
Again, follow method 1 or 2 for getting your macarons in an airtight container. Now, you can put them in the freezer safely and store them for any amount of time up to 3 months, as required.
However, you will need to follow a special thawing process when you have to get them out for use. Take your container out of the freezer and put it inside your refrigerator for 30 minutes. Don’t try to thaw them out of the containers, as it will cause condensation to dampen your crunchy exterior of the shells.
Pros: This method will give you the longest shelf life of 3 months. After you take them out of the freezer, they will still keep fresh for 3-7 days if kept in the refrigerator or 1-2 days at room temperature in their containers.
Cons: The macarons can’t be used straight away. You need to follow the special thawing procedure.
Best Ways to Keep Macarons Shells Fresh
You can store your macaron shells separately for getting a higher shelf life. Storing shells are also much easier than storing filled macarons. Here are the ways to store the shells.
Store in a Zip Bag
Cool your shells after baking them to room temperature and place them neatly in a zip bag. Do not overcrowd the bag, as it can damage the shells. Lay your bag horizontally to store.
Airtight Tupperware Container
Unlike filled macarons, you can layer your shells on top of one another. Lay down parchment paper at the bottom and lay down your shells with the flat side up. Make sure there is space between each shell.
After the first layer, lay down another parchment paper and put another layer of macrons on top. You can use 3-4 layers depending on the height of your bowl but not any more than that.
Glass Jar with an Airtight Lid
A dry glass or mason jar with an airtight lid can also be used to store the shells. Put the shells in the jar in a random pattern of vertical and horizontal so that there is enough space between them.
After you have stored them in a container – you can refrigerate, freeze, or keep them at room temperature.
They will stay fresh for a week at room temperature, for 2-3 weeks in the refrigerator, or 3-6 months in the freezer.
Last Words on Storing Macarons
Now that you know how to keep macarons fresh using different techniques – get started with the method that suits you the most and serves up some delicious ones whenever you need them.