Musical pairing – Let It Snow by Ella Fitzgerald

I guess I was a weird kid because one of my favorite candy bars was Almond Joy – I love coconut – and coconut plus chocolate plus almonds? Uhm, yes please. I don’t eat candy bars anymore but I still love coconut – especially coconut macaroons.  But until a couple of years ago, I bought coconut macaroons from the store because I was terrified to try and make them at home . . . it was those dang terms that threw me: ‘medium-firm peaks’ in reference to whipped egg whites and the ever elusive ‘fold’. Now the way I see it, if you’ve never whipped an egg white, how the heck are you supposed to know what ‘medium-firm’ looks like as opposed to ‘soft’ or ‘stiff peaks’, whaaaa?  And ‘fold’?  Isn’t that something you do with the never-ending pile of laundry??  Sigh . . . so I bought macaroons from a box.
But Ina changed all that . . . Ina and her cookbooks.  And then my coconut macaroon world was turned upside down when I discovered that – GASP -there were only FOUR INGREDIENTS to coconut macaroons – hey Abby Dodge, did you hear that?!!!  Now I know what you’re thinking . . . you’re thinking, ‘Debra, I count six ingredients’ . . . and you’d be right except that the cookbook gods deem you don’t need to count things like salt or pepper . . . and I added the Nutella drizzle ‘cuz that’s how I roll.  So originally, these little gems can be made with four ingredients. And you basically dump, stir, scoop and bake – exactly my kinda baking!
And for whatever reason, I always make these for the holidays . . . which is why Nutella seemed appropriate . . . not that Nutella is reserved only for the holidays . . . nope . . . Nutella is an ‘all-season’ kinda ingredient!  So head to the kitchen and in about an hour you’ll have some of the best coconut macaroons you’ve ever eaten!
Barely adapted from Barefoot Contessa Family Style
Makes 20 to 22 cookies
14 ounces sweetened shredded coconut
14 ounces sweetened condensed milk (NOT evaporated)
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 extra-large egg whites, at room temperature
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
Nutella for drizzling (about 1/4 cup or a little less)
SMITH BITES NOTE: I warmed the Nutella in the microwave for 30 seconds, gave it a stir, another 30 and then just drizzled with a fork.  It will not be liquid like a ganache so work quickly – and you may have to warm again to complete the macaroons.
Preheat oven to 325 degrees
Combine the coconut, condensed milk and vanilla in a large bowl.  Whip the egg whites and salt on high speed in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment until they make medium-firm peaks.  Carefully fold the egg whites into the coconut mixture.
Drop the batter onto sheet pans lined with parchment paper using either a 1-3/4 inch ice cream scoop or two teaspoons.  Bake for 25 to 30 minutes at 325 degrees until golden brown.  Cool and serve.
The cookies will stay fresh for a few days if wrapped well and left at room temperature.
You might also like:
Decorating Cookies w/Kids – She Wears Many Hats
Peppermint Brownies – My Baking Addiction
Gluten-Free Cookie Roundup – Sensitive Pantry
Fruit Cake Cookies – Merry Gourmet


  1. Is there any substitute for condensed milk?

    • Hi Isabella ~ you can make your own sweetened condensed milk by using 3/4 cup sugar, 1/2 cup water and 1-1/8 cups of dry powdered milk. Boil for 20 minutes, cool. If you’re asking for a no-sugar substitute, I don’t know of one. Thanks so much for stopping by!

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  4. These are beautiful! And Nutella sends them over the top.

    Also – Just about 2 minutes ago, one of my office colleages walked by to say, “when can you bring in some macaroons?”

    So you can see how timely this post is. Because I cleaned out my pantry (for the first time since 2007) this weekend, and inventoried, and now know for a fact I have some (still good) shaved coconut.

    Guess what I’ll be making this month?!?!?? 😀


  5. I’ve always been intimidated by the whole whipping egg whites thing, too. I guess I just need to give it a go. And I love Almond Joy! 🙂

  6. These macaroons look so sweet and innocent. They could probably go down very easily…like a chocolate martini! I’m afraid I would be the kind of person who could easily have one too many of these! They’re low calorie, right???? Yummmm!

  7. Hah!! So glad to meet a fellow coconut fan!! As a kid, I loved mounds bars – something about dark chocolate and coconut… oh my!!!

    These look right up my alley – I’ve made ones similar to this but w/o the egg whites and with pecans and mini chocolate chips… so these are definitely going to be on my list to try very soon!!

  8. I LOOOOVE these macaroons with a drizzle of nutella. I want them. I’ve got to make them. Thanks for sharing!

  9. These look to die for, Debra!

  10. Oh MY! you ARE dangerous!!!

  11. Fellow Almond Joy lover here. Gorgeous macaroons and the Nutella just puts it way over the top! Very nice.

  12. These look lovely – I am not a huge macarOOn fan but I do like me some nutella. Like bacon, makes everything better. I think these would be my cup of tea!

  13. Coconut Macaroons….. Oh yes please 🙂

  14. Remember that macaroon from that last place we stopped in Charleston? These look as good as that one was– and that’s saying something!

  15. I also ate Almond Joy candy bars as a child AND I love macaroons now. Beautiful pictures. I think I need to whip up some of these soon. Thanks for the inspiration.

  16. I’m not always a fan of coconut – mostly when it’s not toasty but since these are baked I think it’d be a safe bet to try. And the drizzle makes them so much prettier!

  17. So I know what I’m picking up at the grocery store! These look just amazing, and like you, I have such a fondness for almond joys. I can’t wait to give these a try. They are the perfect holiday treat. Thank you for sharing. I hope you have a great day!

  18. Oh my goodness!! Those look sinfully delicious 🙂

  19. No disrespect to Ina, but I have an even easier recipe. No fussing with peaks or folding or condensed milk. For real.

    And if you ever get a hankering to make your own Almond Joy, I’ve got you covered there too.

  20. I’m already in love with coconut macaroons. With Nutella? ::swoon::

  21. I love Almond Joy too–and those coconuty girl scout cookies. I want you to come over to my house and make these right away! I’ll start the coffee pot…

  22. You had me at Nutella. Really, I can’t wait to make these.

  23. Beautiful! What a fabulous combination of flavors too. Nutella + Coconut = YUM! Great cookie for the holiday season too.

  24. We must be twins separated at birth. My favorite candy bars were Mounds and Almond Joys. And I’m a total sucker for a freshly baked macaroon. So much more doable than the maccaron. 😉

  25. such a pretty addition to the cookie tray.

  26. To die for! ALL my favorites all rolled (or should I say spooned) together in one cookie? Must. Make. These!!!

  27. You almost have me convinced to get up and make these now. Too bad I had a little distraction called a job or I would be in the kitchen this morning. I’ll be dreaming of a Nutella drizzled macaroon all day! 🙂

  28. Dear Debra, This is and was one of my all time favorite desserts and I am not a dessert person with few exceptions. Thanks for sharing this recipe and I will definitely mark it as a favorite!! Shulie

  29. We love coconut around here, too – and Almond Joy is my husband’s favorite. Obviously, that makes macaroons his favorite cookies, too. 🙂 Loving your Nutella drizzle, ’cause hey! it’s Nutella! 🙂

  30. The addition of Nutella makes these perfect!

  31. Beautiful!! This is one of the MUST TRY NOW recipes!!!

  32. I’ve never made them for the same reasons! But now…oh my… My husband is a big coconut fan too. YUMMY!

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