Dessert / Recipe

Cranberry Almond Coconut Macaroons Recipe

Macaroons filled with sweet cranberries and almonds, and topped with chocolate. It’s the perfect coconut macaroons recipe.

Cranberry and Almond Coconut Macaroons Recipe |

Here in the United States, we’re less than two weeks from one of my favorite holidays of the year. It is a time where I get to stuff my face without people staring at the skinny kid eating with his hands. It’s a time where tons of pie is made (we’ll talk about pie later on in the week, but this recipe for Coconut Macaroons is the highlight right now). And it’s a time where I have an excuse to be in the kitchen, while other wash dishes for me.

Last year, I was the leader in the kitchen- cranking out a turkey, homemade marshmallows for the kiddies, Apple purses for dessert (those didn’t turn out too well because I accidentally added too much flour to the dough- I’ve fixed that this year!), caramel candies, warm apple cider, pies, and tons of side dishes including an amazing “stuffing” (dressing).

Cranberry and Almond Coconut Macaroons Recipe |

I was quite proud of all of the sweets I cranked out that day- and the turkey that my mother and I made together- it was a masterpiece with a lot of latin influence.

This year, one of the sweets that I’ve decided to make for Thanksgiving day will be these lovely Cranberry Almond Coconut Macaroons. We’ve decided that they’ll sit right next to all of the other little snacks on the coffee table while everyone talks about politics and how horrible our economy is. This is where I look up and thank God that I stay in the kitchen while this all happens.

Cranberry and Almond Coconut Macaroons Recipe |

Luckily for me, everyone will briefly stop talking (ah, silence!) while they bite into these macaroons.

The inspiration behind these macaroons came from a two-hour wait at Penn Station, which resulted in a few purchases from Au Bon Pain- of the three purchases made, one thing made me start doing a happy dance (an amalgamation of the chicken dance and a disco dance)- a cranberry almond macaroon slightly dipped in dark chocolate. Once I bit into the macaroon- I immediately saw pieces of coarsely chopped cranberries and sliced almonds piercing the macaroon. The flavor combination of the coconut, cranberries and sliced almonds were simply amazing. The cranberries were definitely a nice touch.

Cranberry and Almond Coconut Macaroons Recipe |

I immediately wrote down what was in the macaroons, and I looked to re-create something similar to that of what I ate that day.

I turned to one of the best macaroon recipe I’ve ever made- an easy recipe that requires you to practically dump everything into one pan and stir. Molly’s recipe for Coconut Macaroons from her book, A Homemade Life.

Cranberry and Almond Coconut Macaroons Recipe |

Molly’s recipe is made with chocolate ganache (you could go for the one in this recipe) spooned over the tops of the macaroons, but you can easily melt up some couverture chocolate and drizzle it (or spoon it- as I did) onto cooled macaroons. Whatever floats your boat!

Yield: Makes 18 Large Macaroons and 36-40 Smaller Macaroons

Cranberry & Almond Coconut Macaroons Recipe

Cranberry and Almond Coconut Macaroons Recipe |

Inspired by Au Bon Pain, Adapted from A Homemade Life and Bon Appétit

Like Molly, I love using Valrhona Manjari chocolate, which can be easily found at Whole Foods. If you want to simply spoon melted chocolate onto the macaroons, you’ll only need about 2 ounces of chocolate.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Additional Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 30 minutes



  • 3 cups lightly- packed sweetened shredded coconut
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • ⅓ cup sweetened dried cranberries, roughly chopped
  • ¼ cup sliced almonds
  • ¾ cup egg whites (from about 4-6 large eggs)
  • ⅛ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ⅛ teaspoon almond extract


  • 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped.
  • ½ cup heavy cream


Place the coconut, sugar, chopped cranberries, almonds, and egg whites in a heavy 2- to 3-quart saucepan and stir well. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring frequently, 10 to 15 minutes. The mixture will look creamy as it heats, and then it will slowly get a bit drier, with individual flakes of coconut becoming discernable. Stop cooking when it no longer looks creamy, but is still quite sticky and moist, but not dry. Remove from the heat, and stir in the vanilla and almond extracts. Scrape the mixture into a small baking dish, spread it out, and allow it to cool in the refrigerator for about ½ hour (I placed the mixture in the freezer for about 10 minutes).

Preheat the oven to 300ºF. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Using your hands or a spring loaded ice cream scoop (for the larger macaroons, I used a scoop with a 2 tablespoon capacity), scoop and firmly pack the coconut mixture into small domes. Whether you are using your hands or an ice cream scoop, a bowl of warm water to swish the scoop or your hands helps a lot. Space each macaroon evenly on the baking sheet.

Bake the macaroons until evenly golden, 27-35 minutes. Cool completely on the pan on a wire rack (or if you’re impatient like me, place the pan of macaroons in the freezer for about 7 minutes). Then remove the macaroons from the baking sheet and set them on the rack. Set the rack over the baking sheet.

Place the chopped chocolate in a medium bowl. Heat the cream in a small saucepan over medium heat, swirling the pan occasionally, until it is hot and steaming. Do not allow it to boil. Remove the pan from the heat, and pour the cream over the chocolate. Let sit for 1 minute, then stir until smooth. Spoon the warm ganache (or simply- melted chocolate) generously over the macaroons, shaking them gently, if needed.

Refrigerate the macaroons on the rack until the ganache sets, about 2 hours (if using melted chocolate- it will set rather quickly). Transfer the macaroons to the airtight container, and refrigerate or freeze (do this if you’re only using the ganache… simply freezing the one with melted chocolate will leave your macaroons with an odd-looking sheen).


The macaroons will keep up to 5 days in an airtight container in the refrigerator, and one to two months in the freezer.

Nutrition Information:


18 Large Macaroons

Serving Size:

1 Large Macaroon

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 183Total Fat: 10gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 8mgSodium: 61mgCarbohydrates: 20gFiber: 3gSugar: 16gProtein: 3g


  • leaf (the indolent cook)
    November 15, 2010 at 12:48 am

    Nice! Every so often I do eat something I really like and then plot on re-creating it… :)

  • Karen at Globetrotter Diaries
    November 15, 2010 at 1:53 am

    Ah these look so yummy! I love your blog btw, really beautiful photos!! Will be following you…

  • Jessica @ How Sweet
    November 15, 2010 at 6:37 am

    These macaroons look fabulous. Chocolate and coconut? Sign me up!

  • Jessie -- The Messie Kitchen
    November 15, 2010 at 7:42 am

    I can’t believe I’ve NEVER tried macaroons. They never look appetizing to me but these definitely did–enough to make me comment! Maybe I’ll try them

  • Jen @ My Kitchen Addiction
    November 15, 2010 at 8:14 am

    Beautiful! I have never made macaroons before… Can you believe that? They look fabulous, though. Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday, too. I’ve hosted a few years, but this year we are headed to my parents’ house. Fortunately, my mom will be more than happy to put me to work in the kitchen! Might have to add these macaroons to my baking list, though… They’d be a perfect snack while we’re working so diligently on the turkey!

  • Tokyo Terrace
    November 15, 2010 at 8:15 am

    What a perfect idea for the holidays! I love macaroons and this is exactly the motivation I needed. Great photos and great recipe :)

  • Avanika (Yumsilicious Bakes)
    November 15, 2010 at 8:49 am

    Apple purses?? Really? I’m dying to see them!
    The macaroons look delicious, and unlike the other kind, it’s something I can actually manage to make :)

  • Angela@spinachtiger
    November 15, 2010 at 9:05 am

    I think this bit of different taste from pumpkin will go a long way as a nice treat for the holidays. I’m already thinking I need something a bit different this year and these would work out perfectly for those wanting that bite of chocolate and texture.

  • TheKitchenWitch
    November 15, 2010 at 9:59 am

    I adore macaroons, and these variations look a-ma-zing. My mouth watered at the first sight of them!

  • Shaheen {The Purple Foodie}
    November 15, 2010 at 10:26 am

    These look sooo lovely, K! You seriously got me salivating. I need to get some coconut to make these asap. Thanks for the inspiration. Can’t wait to see the photograph of the 20 pies you made!

  • Michelle (What's Cooking with Kids)
    November 15, 2010 at 1:50 pm

    There’s no way those beauties would last 5 days in my house! (Stomach is rumbling now!)

  • heather
    November 15, 2010 at 2:11 pm

    Chocolate drizzled macaroon rochers are one of my favorite treats to make and eat. Really like the addition of a crunchy and a sweet ingredient. Will definitely bookmark this! Love the photos, too.



  • Maria
    November 15, 2010 at 4:22 pm

    I could eat a dozen of these! Great post!

  • jackhonky
    November 16, 2010 at 1:16 pm

    Macaroons! It’s funny, I’ve never been a huge fan of them. Mostly it’s because they are often made with old dried out coconut strands. I love the flavor of coconut, but I’m not a fan of the texture.

    However I love the idea of adding the dried cranberries and drizzling them with chocolate! I’ll say that even though I’m not really a fan of them, I can just imagine that this recipe might convert me…

  • Helene
    November 17, 2010 at 11:10 am

    Who could resist this treat Kamran. I would love to celebrate Thanksgiving in the States. Enjoy this precious time with your family.

  • Cookin' Canuck
    November 17, 2010 at 7:50 pm

    How I miss all the little treats to be found both at Grand Central & Penn Stations. I used to pass through several times a week and hit as many food vendors as possible. These macaroons are gorgeous – love the flavor combination.

  • Sprinkles of Parsley
    November 18, 2010 at 1:29 pm

    I wish I was having Thanksgiving with you! sounds like you have an AMAZING spread of treats for everyone to enjoy! Great idea to make these macaroons they look absolutely delicious!

  • Sheena
    November 21, 2010 at 2:10 am

    I’ve never had a macaroon before, but these look and sound amazing!

  • Medifast Coupons
    November 23, 2010 at 1:56 pm

    Lovely macaroon recipe, sure look awesome.

  • Fragolina
    November 24, 2010 at 4:30 am

    I never tried macaroons with almonds dipped in chocolate. These are perfect for snacking.

  • Katie (The Boston Marathoner)
    November 24, 2010 at 10:41 am

    These look incredible- and I love the idea of cranberries and almonds added! And if they produce the silence you described, sign me up.

  • Angela
    December 2, 2010 at 2:47 pm

    I made these little Macaroons for Thanksgiving, a crowd of fifty. At least 5 people asked me for the recipe, and all commented on how fabulous they were! I have been gluten-free for 15 years, and miss really GOOD desserts, these passed the test. I have to say I enjoyed them straight out of the oven, with no chocolate yet, most of all! Thansk soooooo much for sharing, they will become a regular at my home.

  • diva
    December 3, 2010 at 9:06 am

    Oh! Beautiful macaroons. And I’m lovin’ them chocolate-coated, think I can almost taste em!

  • Jennie @ Oh, Sweet Day!
    December 13, 2010 at 9:01 am

    I love macaroons but never have added cranberries! LOVING the chocolate coated goodness in yours :)

  • JehanP
    December 13, 2010 at 9:56 am

    I love coconut macaroons and this is a new spin on the old classic. I love the combination of flavors and will definitely try these!

  • Val W
    December 15, 2010 at 6:35 pm

    Kamran: Loved your commentary and can’t wait to make the Cranberry Almond Coconut Macaroons! Have a wonderful holiday season!

  • Mae Whitaker
    December 23, 2010 at 9:02 pm

    I love coconut macaroons and this is a new spin on the old classic. I love the combination of flavors and will definitely try these!

  • Hilary
    May 7, 2012 at 11:57 am

    I found this through TasteSpotting and these look amazing! I love coconut macaroons like it’s out of control but I’ve never thought to add cranberries and almonds!! Genius.

    My newest coconut find are these: I’m obsessed with coconut (and chocolate. What woman isn’t?). Thanks so much for sharing! I can’t wait to try your recipe!

  • Wayne
    August 21, 2012 at 7:38 am

    My favorite ingredients, love coconut, cranberries and almonds. I want to try it…

  • Mavie
    November 22, 2013 at 3:14 pm

    Made them and they came out very nice looking and also delicious! Def will make again!!! :)

  • Aqiyl Aniys
    March 19, 2014 at 8:42 pm

    Oh my , oh my! Please let me have some right now! Coconut, almonds, and chocolate. A match made in heaven!


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