Madeleines with Nutella

2 October 2011

Post image for Madeleines with Nutella

I have a real soft spot for madeleines. It could be because I have very early memories of eating these dainty little cakes, their light sponginess making them the perfect snack for little hands. The madeleines of my childhood were always plain or lemon flavoured. These days, recipes abound with countless variations of flavours for these little cakes, both sweet and savoury. And I love them all!

One particular variation which I make perhaps a bit too often is with Nutella, another great love of mine from my childhood. Growing up, I was made to believe that Nutella was unhealthy and, anyway, none of my school friends ate Nutella. You see, the “good kids” ate Vegemite so I was usually only given a little sachet of Nutella once in a blue moon as a treat.

Since meeting my husband, well, I don’t think he grew up eating Nutella but a lot of his friends certainly did. I recall one weekend where we were at brunch together and his friends were making themselves large bowls of hot chocolate and slathering thick spoonfuls of Nutella onto their slices of white bread. I watched in amazement, thinking to myself, “Is this really their breakfast?!” It was a revelation for me, a confirmation that the French really do have it right most of the times when it comes to food :-) And since that time, I have been happily tucking into my jar of Nutella at breakfast and even branching out into more gourmet variations from specialty stores, making up for lost opportunities when I was younger.

I am a bit anxious to reveal photos of my madeleines here because my father-in-law has lay claim to making the best madeleines in the family. Once upon a time (yes, I think it was that long ago!), he made his first attempt at baking madeleines and claimed to have produced the most beautifully risen cakes with perfect little humps that no one else in the family had ever achieved, nor been able to replicate since. Alas, he achieved his goal with that one attempt and has since retired from any further baking.

I’m sure it’s all scientific and perhaps somebody out there knows why, but my madeleines sometimes rise a lot, and other times have a rather flat surface.

The recipe here is a basic recipe for plain madeleines; the Nutella is really optional. It is hard to say how many madeleines this recipe produces because madeleine moulds vary so much. I make about 20 madeleines from this recipe, and often make one batch plain and the other batch with Nutella. The batter can be made in advance and should rest for at least 1 hour in the fridge, but you can also leave it there overnight or even for a few days. This means they are perfect for when you have guests over as the batter can be prepared well in advance.

{ 25 comments… read them below or add one }

Caroline 2 October 2011 at 5:05 am

I tried your recipe recently Thanh and it was a bit of a revelation! A batter that can sit in the fridge for days, be baked straight from the fridge and one that rose and peaked beautifully in mere minutes? Too good, but so true! Absolutely fantastic!

Love your FIL’s story!!!


eat little bird 2 October 2011 at 9:19 pm

Hi Carrie! I’m so happy to hear that you and your family enjoyed this recipe. It is a pretty simple recipe, isn’t it? It’s a favourite stand-by of mine. I can’t wait to see your photos! :-)


Caroline 22 October 2011 at 9:01 pm

Coming soon…though mine aren’t as delicately pale as yours! Didn’t stop me eating them though!


manu 2 October 2011 at 2:05 pm

Hi, these madeleines sound so yummy!!!
Have a nice week end


eat little bird 2 October 2011 at 9:19 pm

Thanks manu!


Claudine 2 October 2011 at 5:35 pm

I adore the main photo here and you know how much I love this recipe Thanh – I have made these on many an occasion now both with and without the Nutella and still feel that, without a shadow of doubt, this is by far and away the best Madeleine recipe ever…

It makes you appreciate why Marcel Proust was inspired so heavily by them!

Thank you once again for sharing one of my favourite recipes ever :)

Claudine x


eat little bird 2 October 2011 at 9:22 pm

You are more than welcome, Claudine :-) When I first shared the recipe a year ago, little did I know that anyone would even attempt it, so I’m just thrilled that this recipe has become a favourite of yours :-)

And that main photo also remains my favourite. I can’t believe I took it nearly a year ago!


Dawn 2 October 2011 at 9:16 pm

Oh my, madeleines batter that can be made in advance and sit happily in the fridge, to be baked whenever I want a nice warm madeleine (or four)? That spells trouble! And these sames madeleines with Nutella?! Double trouble!!!

A beautiful, inspiring post – as always – cremebrulee.


eat little bird 2 October 2011 at 9:24 pm

Hi Dawn! Indeed, this batter can be kept in the fridge for a few days (I haven’t tried it past a few days) and still rises beautifully in the oven. The Nutella filling is, of course, a real treat :-)


Liz Headon 3 October 2011 at 12:09 am

These sound lovely. I’ve only ever had shop-bought madeleines, which can be very dry: I assume these are anything but…


eat little bird 3 October 2011 at 1:21 pm

Hi Liz! There are some pretty good shop-bought madeleines – I know because I grew up eating them! :-) Of course, home-baked is always better and these are pretty light, not dry at all.


Jo 3 October 2011 at 9:39 am

Creme you are the Queen of Beautiful Simplicity! What with the design of your blog, uncluttered writing and clear recipes lest we forget the stunning crockery you rock, girl! Nutella was a childhood treat of mine I’m ashamed to say on a much more regular occasion than for you but sadly I only discovered madeleines after hubby gave me a pan for our first wedding anniversary this august. I must try these, I just *know* I’ll love them without even tasting one! Can I say, I just adore the white coffee cup and saucer with a perfect space for a lil sumfin-sumfin sweet with ones coffee ūüėČ


eat little bird 3 October 2011 at 1:23 pm

Aww, thank you Jo :-) What a lovely first anniversary gift from your husband!!! Super thoughtful, I say. Have you christened it yet? If you ever pop by for a cuppa, I’ll be sure to have this tea set out for you ūüėČ


Lemon 3 October 2011 at 7:35 pm

I love madeleines, and especially I am a big fan of the different sorts and ideas that have come up recently. The nutella madeleines sound yummy!
Well, and I also have to say, this is a very beautiful blog, I like it!


eat little bird 3 October 2011 at 8:01 pm

Hallo Lemon! Thank you so much! I see you that you are also a fan of French cuisine so you must be quite familiar with these gorgeous madeleines.

I just visited your blog and am so impressed that your posts are in both English and German! Perfect for me! Ich freue mich auf deine nächste Blog-Post :-)


Natalie 24 May 2012 at 8:02 pm

Le secret de bonnes madeleines gonfl√©es √† souhait est le temps de repos de la p√Ęte. Laissez votre p√Ęte 30 mn √† temp√©rature ambiante avant de cuire les madeleines, vous verrez la diff√©rence !
By the way, vos photos sont réellement appétissantes.
Bien @ vous


eat, little bird 25 May 2012 at 10:45 am

Merci pour votre conseil! J’essaierai la prochaine fois. En mati√®re de madeleines, je suis convaincue que la r√©ussite se mesure principalement √† la taille de la bosse :-)


Camilla 21 June 2012 at 8:35 pm

Love the whole concept of these and will defo bake tomorrow. My daughter eats Nutella most mornings so these will be a big hit with her.


eat, little bird 21 June 2012 at 9:49 pm

Oh wonderful! These madeleines are definitely a hit with children … well, for any lover of Nutella really! Enjoy!


Christine 8 August 2013 at 11:14 pm

I have just made these and they are lovely. Left the mixture in the fridge for 4 days and it was fine – good to know that it will keep.


eat, little bird 9 August 2013 at 9:19 pm

I’m glad you enjoyed this recipe! It’s a great one to have which you can make in advance :-)


Christine 13 August 2013 at 10:15 pm

I’ve just adapted this recipe to make lime and blueberry madeleines and both these recipes are going down a storm with the lads on the early shift at work :)


eat, little bird 15 August 2013 at 8:43 pm

Oh that’s wonderful to hear!! And I love the changes which you have made – I’ve never thought to add blueberries to the madeleine batter before but it sounds perfect.


Emily 16 June 2015 at 11:17 am

My french boyfriend had an out-of-the-blue craving for madeleines with nutella the other day, luckily for me I found your website! These madeleines were the best I’ve ever made, absolutely perfect! I’ve made them twice now, and a third time with chocolate chips as we had finished the nutella :) Thank you so much! Will definitely try some of your other recipes now!


Eat, Little Bird 16 June 2015 at 1:26 pm

I’m so glad to hear! Thank you for your lovely feedback :-) Madeleines with chocolate chips sound great too!


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