Meyer Lemon & Brown Butter Madeleines

meyer lemon & brown butter madeleines

I’m not sure of the reason but recently madeleines seemed to be popping up everywhere! It wasnt long before those delicate, shell shaped cakes lodged themselves into my subconscience and finally I had to get the madeleine pan out and make some for myself! That shell shaped pan is one that I have rarely used, bought in a sale long ago it joined the bundt and other shaped baking pans in my cupboard, all coveted then once obtained, for some reason, rarely used!

When my friend Charlotte made madeleines she shared the tip that the madeleine batter should be chilled to improve the texture of them, this was news to me! My impatient nature had me seeking out madeleine recipes that didn’t require chilling but it seemed there was no escaping the chilling stage! I settled on Dorie Greenspan’s recipe (I’m a big fan of Dorie’s recipes) and it was actually really easy, I made up the batter in the morning and chilled my madeleines for 3 hours while I went out then I came home to bake them.

Once Id decided to make madeleines I knew the last of my Meyer lemons would be part of that recipe, I also had some browned butter in the fridge so thought Id use that too. I finished off with a little bit more Meyer lemon loveliness by brushing the finished madeleines with a lemon glaze. As I added that sweet glaze at the end I used less sugar in the madeleine mixture, I’ve been experimenting with less sugar in everything these days as my husband has recently been diagnosed with diabetes. I was really happy with my madeleines, the brown butter adds a lovely almost toasty taste ,which alongside the slightly sweeter Meyer lemon flavour is a lovely combination indeed! Of course I’m sure regular lemons and regular melted butter would also be delicious!

My husband (feeling very deprived of cakes due to his recent diabetes diagnosis) loved these and asked how long Id had that tin, when I told him his reply was “why have I only just had these now then”? Good question, maybe I was just looking for the right recipe!

Meyer Lemon & Brown Butter Madeleines (adapted from Dorie Greenspan’s recipe)


  • 90 grams flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 75 grams caster sugar (I use unrefined)
  • zest of one Meyer lemon
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 90 grams brown butter melted

For the Glaze

  • 75 grams icing sugar
  • 1.5  tbsp Meyer lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp lemon zest

For the method

  1. To make the madeleines I used Dorie Greenspan’s method here
  2. For the brown butter simply melt the butter over medium heat until the butter turns nut-brown in colour,  this takes around 10 minutes. Remove pan from heat, and pour the butter into a bowl. When you are ready to use your butter leave any burnt sediment behind.
  3. Once the madeleines have been removed from the tin, allow to cool for around 10 minutes. While they are cooling you can make the glaze by simply mixing the icing sugar, lemon juice and zest together.
  4. Using a pastry brush, brush some glaze on the shell patterned side of each madeleine. It’s not very thick so wont show very much but adds a lovely lemony finish.

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  1. #1 by Wendy Read (@Sunchowder) on March 11, 2013 - 12:51

    Ah! Love the look of your madeleines! I do have an “unused” pan at my house…so funny that is…I am so pleased that your Andy enjoyed them too. They look gorgeous in the photo–I am bookmarking this for future baking for sure.

    • #2 by Jayne on March 11, 2013 - 21:25

      Thanks! Hope you get to use your tin soon!

  2. #3 by bakeaffairs on March 11, 2013 - 14:42

    They look so delicious and mouth watering.. Thank you for sharing this great recipe!

    • #4 by Jayne on March 11, 2013 - 21:26

      Thanks so much!

  3. #5 by Lizthechef on March 11, 2013 - 16:12

    These look lovely – and, of course, I love the touch of the mighty Meyer lemon!

    • #6 by Jayne on March 11, 2013 - 21:27

      Thank you Liz, sadly I think the Meyer lemons are finished for us now.

  4. #7 by Susan on March 11, 2013 - 21:15

    They look so tempting Jayne, and light too…green with envy as I still haven’t got a tin yet!

    • #8 by Jayne on March 11, 2013 - 21:28

      Thank you, they are light which does however mean too many can be consumed! Hope you get your tin soon!

  5. #9 by laura_howtocook on March 11, 2013 - 21:43

    I also don’t have a Madeleine tin but when I get one I will enjoy making these. Maybe not with Meyer lemons, I would never find them where I live!

    • #10 by Jayne on March 12, 2013 - 12:17

      Im sure regular lemons would taste just as nice, in fact I will be using them now as I cant seem to get any more Meyer lemons! Thanks for commenting!

  6. #11 by Charlotte @charlottekdiary on March 21, 2013 - 13:10

    How delicious Jayne. I will give this recipe a go and make sure I try the glaze – I bet that makes them extra special!

    • #12 by Jayne on April 4, 2013 - 12:41

      Thanks! Yes I ran out of glaze for the final madeleine and the ones with the glaze were much more special!

  7. #13 by Monica on April 9, 2013 - 05:54

    I just used madeleines as the base for strawberry trifle, but this version could totally up the ante…

    • #14 by Jayne on April 11, 2013 - 21:15

      Wow, madeleines as a trifle base! So fancy, I am impressed!

  8. #15 by Jen on April 9, 2013 - 10:30

    These look delightful, love madeleines but have never made them myself. Must get a madeleine tin!

    • #16 by Jayne on April 11, 2013 - 21:16

      Thank you, they are great and that tin is a good investment!

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