Classic French Madeleine Recipe

I love to make these little treats for my family and friends, they are the perfect afternoon snack with a freshly brewed cup of tea and to snuggle up with a book. Prepare the batter in the morning and leave in the fridge for at least four hours to create that characteristic ‘hump’, transfer into madeleine trays and enjoy!

Classic French Madeleine Recipe

Recipe by Louise SinclairCourse: Snacks, PatisserieCuisine: FrenchDifficulty: Easy


Prep time


Cooking time


Resting Time



These adorable little lemon sponges with the classic shell-shaped markings are the perfect treat with a cup of tea or coffee, to share with friends or to take in your lunchbox. Prepare the batter in the morning and bake in the afternoon, stack them on a pretty plate and watch as they disappear within minutes. Very easy to make!


  • 100g Plain Flour

  • 1/2 tsp Baking Powder

  • 2 Large Eggs

  • 100g Caster Sugar

  • Zest of 1 Lemon

  • 2 tsp Vanilla Extract

  • 70g Unsalted Butter


  • Take the butter and melt it on the stove using a heavy bottomed pan. Leave to one side to cool a little.
  • Sift together the flour and baking powder and leave to one side. Using an electric whisk on a medium setting whisk together the eggs and sugar together until they thicken and lighten in colour (around 2 – 4 minutes). Add in the lemon zest and vanilla and whisk a little more until these are incorporated.
  • Switch to a large rubber spatula and gently fold in the flour and baking powder mixture. Then add the melted butter and continue to fold until you have a thick batter and everything is incorporated. Cover the bowl with a sealed lid or wrap and put in the fridge for at least four hours or overnight – the batter will last up to two days in the fridge if kept tightly covered. The chilling helps the final sponge to have it’s characteristic ‘hump’ or ‘crown’.
  • After the four hours have passed, preheat the oven to 200C (180C Fan). Take out your madeline pans – if you have metal ones butter and flour generously. If you are using silicone pans you are probably fine without anything but I often brush a little butter inside just in case. Whichever pan you are using put them on a flat baking sheet for easy transportation.
  • Fill each madeline molds filling them almost to the top and as evenly as possible, put into the oven and depending on the size of your pans either 11-13 minutes for larger madelines or 8-10 minutes for small ones. The madelines are ready when you can see the characteristic ‘hump’ and are golden brown. Keep an eye on the oven and turn the trays around if they seem to be browning more on one side.
  • Once they are out of the oven, allow to cool a little and either press out onto a cooling rack if they are from a silicone pan or if on a metal tray you can use a butter knife or ease gently off by hand.
  • Either leave to cool or if you are impatient like me serve warm with a cup of tea!