If your kids are anything like ours they love madeleines. These light and airy sponge cakes with their distinctive scalloped shape are perfect for a delectable mid afternoon treat and even better just out of the oven.  Madeleines aren’t in the slightest bit complicated and they definitely beat store bought ones.

We took this recipe from Rachel Allen’s CAKE cookbook which is really easy to follow. FYI, ‘Cake’ is also a brilliant go-to cookbook for foolproof cakes & bakes and one which we continually refer to.

So to get started you will firstly need a Madeleine baking tray with the shell shaped mould.


What you’ll need

  • 1 egg
  • 50g caster sugar
  • 50g plain flour
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 50g butter (melted)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • decoration: chocolate, sprinkles, raspberry jam, coconut or whatever else you fancy.


  1. Heat oven to 180C.
  2. Grease your Madeleine tray with a little butter.
  3. Mix the egg and sugar in an electric mixer for about 5 mins on high speed (it will become pale and mousse like and will increase in volume).
  4. Sieve the flour and baking powder into the egg and sugar mixture and fold it in carefully.
  5. Add the vanilla extract and melted butter to the egg mixture and fold. You don’t want to over mix this to ensure you have lovely light madeleines (it may seem like the butter won’t mix in but just give it another fold or two and it will be perfect). Note: you can add the butter warm or cool – we tried it both ways and it didn’t make a difference.
  6. Spoon the batter into each mould, filling them almost to the top.
  7. Bake for approx 12-15 mins or until they are lightly golden (they should be springy to the touch).
  8. Carefully extract them from the mould using a spoon or a palette knife.
  9. Allow the madeleines to cool fully before decorating them.
  10. For a chocolate dipped effect melt some dairy chocolate in a bowl over a pan of steamed water. Dip the round end of the Madeline in and coat with sprinkles, chocolate flakes or coconut. The possibilities are endless.
  11. We used an egg box to allow them to dry – not that they even had a chance to dry in our house!

Flatten the crumble mixture tightly into the tin

Allow to cool completely before cutting