An easy homemade marzipan recipe, also called almond paste, full of sweet flavor and made with 2 main ingredients in 2 minutes! This German recipe is egg-free, vegan, and gluten-free.
An easy homemade marzipan, also known as almond paste, is a candy more commonly bought commercially. But it's easy to make at home. This is a common European treat, and often found in the international food aisles or as almond paste in the baking aisle, but when made at home it is fresher and has no preservatives and additives. My recipe has four main ingredients, can be ready in minutes and is so forgiving.
What is Marzipan?
Marzipan is a soft, pliable paste made with almond flour and sugar. The traditional recipe tastes like a sweet soft paste and is made of skinless almonds, powdered sugar, egg whites and almond extract. My version eliminates the egg and uses a pinch of baking soda to replace the egg-white contribution. I also add rose water as an option to support the European habit.
It can be eaten as is, or shaped into marzipan candy such as fruits or figures that are colored and sugared, or it can be used as a filling for pastries, and marzipan cakes, used as a baking ingredient for Stollen or danish. I use it as a filling for marzipan chocolate cups here. Marzipan is a delicious treat that has a solid place at the holiday dessert table worldwide. [source]
Almond flour - There is no substitute for this in marzipan as it is an almond paste. Choose finely ground almond flour for best color and texture. You can use almond meal but your marzipan will have dark specs.
Powdered sugar - Sugar is the traditional way to sweeten marzipan but I also have a marzipan recipe here that uses maple syrup instead if you'd prefer a refined-sugar-free marzipan.
Almond extract (optional) - Add this for a more powerful almond flavor. Using almond flour alone will not bring you there.
Baking Soda (optional) - This is a no bake candy so baking soda is NOT essential, but a pinch - less than ⅛ a teaspoon - is enough to temper the super sweet flavor and make your marzipan flavor delicious.
Rose water (optional) - Europeans find rose water is essential in their versions.
Steps to Make
step 1: Add flour, sugar, baking soda, almond extract and rose water to a food processor.
step 2: Process for one minute or enough to get a crumbly batter.
step 3: If needed, add in 1-2 tablespoons of milk, processing between each until you achieve a sticky rollable batter. Whether you need milk will depend on the fat content of your almond flour.
step 4: Scoop the final mixture on to parchment paper, and roll back and forth until you have a 2-inch log.
step 5: Eat as is, or shape into shapes and chill, or use as a filling for either bake or no bake desserts.
This recipe makes just under a cup of marzipan.
Use finely ground almond flour. Don't use almond meal which is made by grinding almonds with the skin on and will make your marzipan rough and speckled.
Adding milk to dry dough. If your dough is a bit too crumbly, you might want to add a tablespoon or more of milk. This will be necessary if your almond flour is on the dry side or has a lower fat content. I added almond milk to mine but you can also use water.
Use a Food Processor. You can blend this mixture up in a blender, but it's easier to remove all bits from a food processor. You could even knead it by hand. Place ingredients in a bowl, wash your hands or wear pastry gloves and knead until smooth.
How to Use Marzipan.Marzipan can be eaten as is, dyed and shaped into candies, shaped and coated in chocolate, rolled out to covered cakes, or used as a filling in pastries and candies. Try my Chocolate Marzipan Cups here.
What Does Marzipan Taste Like?
Marzipan tastes like a nutty cream with a very sweet taste. The baking soda in this recipe cannot be tasted but helps bind the mixture without any eggs present.
Where Was Marzipan Invented?
Some records show the candy originated as early as the 16th century in Persia. It has been embraced internationally, especially by Germany where the largest and oldest marzipan manufacturer is located. The company, Niederegger, was founded in 1806 in Lübeck and still operates today making a type of marzipan that actually has no sugar. Other countries have created different versions of Marzipan.
France, for instance, make massepain which use a sugar syrup instead of sugar for its sweetener. This is similar to my marzipan recipe that I used for my marzipan chocolate cups which uses maple syrup as the sweetener. India uses cashew nuts instead of almonds to make their marzipan which they use to stuff Easter eggs. [source]
Marzipan vs Almond Paste
Marzipan is often referred to as almond paste in the United States. Europeans make a stronger distinction between the two. Technically, Marzipan has the texture of smooth putty, is sweet and tends to be about 25% almonds and the rest sugar. [source]
In contrast, almond paste has a different texture, is more easily spreadable with a knife and tends to have more almonds and less sugar. In fact though there are no official standards for almond content for marzipan in the US, general consensus among experts agree quality marzipan tends to have at least 50% almonds.
Can Marzipan be Eaten Raw?
The traditional recipe that includes raw egg whites cannot be eaten raw. But my recipe is vegan and does not contain eggs and can be.
Is Marzipan Candy Nutritious?
My marzipan recipe contains 4 grams protein, 2 grams fiber, and is high in essential nutrients such as calcium, potassium and magnesium. However it is a dessert and is high in fat and sugar so should be eaten in moderation.
How to Store
Even though marzipan is made with sugar, the emulsion with almond oil protects it from growing mold so it can be stored at room temperature for a week. Keep it in a sealed container to prevent it from hardening and drying out. To keep it longer, refrigerate it for up to two weeks, or freeze it for three months or longer
Other Holiday Treat Recipes
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Marzipan Recipe (almond paste)
- Combine all ingredients except the milk into a food processor. I have also used my twister jar for a small blender if you prefer.1 cup almond flour, 1 cup powdered sugar, ½ teaspoon almond extract, ½ teaspoon rose water, ⅛ teaspoon baking soda
- Process the mixture until you have a crumbly dough. Add up to (4) ½ tablespoons for milk and process between each half tablespoon.1-2 tablespoon dairy free milk
- You are looking to achieve a squishable dough.
How to Use Marzipan
- Slice and break off pieces to eat chilled, or use as an ingredient for baked goods or candy such as these Chocolate Marzipan Cups. Read notes for more uses.
- Store sealed marzipan at room temperature for one week, or in the refrigerator for two weeks. Or freeze it for three months or longer.