Brown Butter Orange Madeleines

Cakes, Desserts

Brown Butter Orange Madeleines

I’ve always wanted to make madeleines because as a kid I was obsessed with the Madeline book series.

“In an old house in Paris that was covered in vines, lived twelve little girls in two straight lines …”

Whenever I misbehaved, my parents loved to threaten to send me to boarding school but because of Madeline, I was actually like, Ok, send me to boarding school—it looks like fun!

In my brain, boarding school was a place where I’d get to hang out with my friends and study together and play lacrosse together and wear knee high socks.

I went to catholic school my whole life so I was used to nun. All the scary nun stories that older people loved to tell me never had an affect on me because all the sisters at my school were so nice; I was never hit with a ruler or told to stand in the corner.

Brown Butter Orange Madeleines

Fun fact: Amelia was almost named Madeline. It was between the Amelia Bedelia books and the Madeline books.

I feel like Amelia is closer to Amelia Bedelia’s personality (read: a hot mess) than Madeline so I think it’s a good choice.

Brown Butter Orange Madeleines

Brown Butter Orange Madeleines

Brown Butter Orange Madeleines

Brown Butter Orange Madeleines

Now, to cookies/cakes. The best madeleines I’ve ever had were at Cafe Boulud, Daniel Boulud’s restaurant in the Upper East Side. I was staying at the hotel above it earlier this year for work and I headed down to the restaurant for dinner. When they bring out the check, they also bring out a warm basket of madeleines. I was dining all by myself and yet they brought out the normal amount…five warm, perfect madeleines. ALL FOR ME!

I ate every single one because they must be eaten warm.

I decided mine should have a liberal amount of orange zest and brown butter. Lots of brown butter. And since I figured he’d know better than anyone, I adapted his recipe to cater to my brown butter desires.

These are perfectly scented and buttery and nutty and just delicious.

The best part about madeleine pans are that they are made by the dozen…just like “twelve little girls in two straight lines.”

Brown Butter Orange Madeleines

Brown Butter Orange Madeleines

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 7 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 17 minutes
Serving Size: 12 madeleines


  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon light or dark brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 2 teaspoons orange zest
  • 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 8 tablespoons 1/2 cup unsalted butter, cubed
  • Powdered sugar, for garnish
  • Cooking spray, as needed


  • In medium bowl whisk together the eggs, sugar, brown sugar, honey and orange zest. It should be fragrant and delicious! In a small(ish) bowl, whisk together the all-purpose flour, baking powder and salt. Set bowl bowls aside.
  • In a small saucepan, set over medium heat, add the cubed butter. Once the butter has melted, it’ll start to foam off a bit. Stir every so often until lightly browned speckles begin to appear at the bottom of the pan. The butter should start to give off a nutty aroma! Keep stirring until the speckles are a golden brown hue. Immediately remove from the stove.
  • Sift the dry ingredients into the wet and mix until barely combined. Pour in the browned butter and mix once more until mostly smooth. Transfer the batter to a ziploc/plastic bag, press out any air, seal and transfer to refrigerator to rest for at least 1 hour, up to 2 days.
  • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. If needed, grease and flour your madeleine pan. Cut off the end of the plastic bag and pipe the batter into each mold, filling about 3/4 of the way (you may have a tablespoon or two of batter left over).
  • Transfer to the oven to bake for 7 to 8 minutes, until edges are golden brown and centers are puffed and lightly spring back when gently pressed. Tap pan against counter to release madeleines. Dust with a liberal amount of powdered sugar and serve warm.


Make ahead: Feel free to make the batter the night before. You could even double it, and then bake off a few at a time when you're in the mood for warm, soft pillow-y madeleines.
Hate orange? Swap it for lemon zest or simply leave it out.
Did you make this recipe?Tag @acozykitchen on Instagram and hashtag it #acozykitchen
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Leave a Reply

  • Reply Cerys October 21, 2015 at 2:07 am

    …and just like that I need madeleines in my life, right now.

  • Reply Kristina October 21, 2015 at 2:12 am

    Such a nice story, I have never heard of those books, but they sound really nice. Madeleines are so good, I have never made them though, I always find a sheet or pan that is going to be used more frequently than a madeleine pan, so then I never buy it. But the idea of eating these is really making me regret not buying one.

    • Reply Adrianna Adarme October 21, 2015 at 5:57 pm

      It took me sooo long to finally break down and buy one but I don’t regret it. Haha.

  • Reply Miranda | Miranda's Notebook October 21, 2015 at 5:30 am

    Oh my goodness! Those look so delicious – I so want to make them! I loved the Madeline books as a child too. xxx

  • Reply Laura (Blogging Over Thyme) October 21, 2015 at 6:10 am

    Why yes, I’d like to eat all of these. Also, Amelia Bedelia was one of my FAVE series growing up (she really WAS a hot mess, esp when it came to cooking).

  • Reply Sydney | Modern Granola October 21, 2015 at 8:04 am

    How funny! I was talking about Madeline yesterday! I’ve never tried a real, warm madeleine but these look so delicious. I love the brown butter addition. Very smart! 🙂

  • Reply Medeja October 21, 2015 at 8:59 am

    These madeleines look so great! I can only imagine the flavor.

  • Reply Nicole @ Young, Broke and Hungry October 21, 2015 at 10:07 am

    My mom was born in France so the madeline books were a staple of my childhood. I used to love reading about her adventures and wished I would grow up to be her one day.

    I don’t have a madeline pan but this post has given me the kick in the pants to buy one so that fresh madeline are in my future.

  • Reply PinkPanthress October 21, 2015 at 10:35 am

    Now I crave Madeleine… 🙂
    I need to try this Recipe a.s.a.p.!

  • Reply Ambar October 21, 2015 at 11:19 am

    wow i totally need to visit that restaurant! Love how you filled the pan with the dough, this is a must try!

  • Reply Leslie Rossi October 21, 2015 at 11:47 am

    YUM! I love madelines, so easy to make and light and fluffy. I enjoy mine with a cup of tea and a book.


  • Reply Tori October 21, 2015 at 6:25 pm

    These look fabulous! I’ve never tried this type of cookie but it’s been on my list forever. The addition of brown butter sounds amazing!

  • Reply Nicole October 22, 2015 at 4:49 am

    I love your posts. Orange w/brown butter is one of my favorite pairings – I’m going to make these little gems soon!

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  • Reply Izzy October 24, 2015 at 8:11 am

    YUM, these look soo good! I’m going to have to try these out! I also made some gingerbread halloween special, please take a look 🙂

  • Reply Dena November 26, 2015 at 8:34 am

    My 6 year old daughter and I just made a double batch of these. They are so delicious! They are really elegant looking and smell so fragrant. Going to dip one batch in dark chocolate because we just HAVE too! We made the batter yesterday which is really convenient! I had to make extra brown butter just for her to dip things in it. Yum!
    Thank you for such clear instructions (and good humor) and for taking the mystery out of baking. Definitely makes it easier to bake with a child!

    • Reply Adrianna Adarme November 26, 2015 at 9:35 am

      That’s so wonderful!! It makes me feel all fuzzy inside.

  • Reply xxx December 15, 2015 at 7:20 pm

    Thanks in favor of sharing such a pleasant idea, paragraph is nice,
    thats why i have read it fully

  • Reply arrum dika February 29, 2016 at 11:42 pm

    Hay! I don’t know how to make / get orange zest.
    Could you tell me how to make orange zest? I really want to bake this cookies!

  • Reply Wild Mushroom Spaghetti with Orange Brown Butter + Giveaway! October 16, 2016 at 10:44 pm

    […] book, Eat In My Kitchen. This pasta is so simple to make. And orange and brown butter is one of my favorite flavor combinations yet I had never had it in a savory capacity but it is SO GOOD. And I’m definitely going to try it […]

  • Reply Taina November 29, 2017 at 3:34 pm

    These look amazing! Could the batter be used to make a cake instead I wonder…

    • Reply Adrianna Adarme November 30, 2017 at 10:14 am know, I’m honestly not sure. Maybe? I don’t think it’s enough batter to make a cake tho. The madeleines are really small so they don’t call for that much batter. :/ You can try doubling it!