Bourbon Pumpkin Pecan Madeleines

It took me quite a bit to research the best ratios of butter to flour to sugar while incorporating pumpkin puree without deflating the batter…and I still failed and had to make these a second time LOL

The first batch still tasted good..they were just slightly off in every aspect: taste, texture, and look. I felt as deflated as an overmixed madeleine batter.

For the second batch I increased the sugar in both the batter and the ganache (the recipe reflects that of course), swapped out white sugar for brown sugar, increased the BOURBON, increased the temperature from 350F to 375F, and filled the madeleine molds almost full while spreading out the batter.

And after all that….they still weren’t perfect. It frustrates the hell out of me. The taste and texture are on point (CRISPPP EDGESSS and maple-y flavors) but the look was still off. I got a slight shell imprint from the pan, but they still weren’t as deep as I’d like. Not sure what went wrong there to be honest, I really didn’t want to make another batch. Nonetheless, I hope you still try these, because I think they taste really good and makes me feel like the autumn beech I am.

Recipe down below – if you’d like to watch the process, check out my highlight for this recipe on my Instagram @pokethedough


Makes 14-16 madeleines

5 tbsp unsalted butter for batter + 1 tbsp for buttering pan + 1/2 tbsp for pecans

1/4 cup pumpkin puree

2 large egg, room temperature

1/2 cup brown sugar

3 tbsp bourbon for the batter, 1/2-1 tbsp for the ganache

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 cup (2.25oz) all-purpose flour

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp salt

1-1/2 tsp store-bought pumpkin spice or: 1/2 tsp cinnamon, 1/4 tsp allspice, 1/4 tsp nutmeg, 1/4 tsp ginger, 1/4 tsp cloves

3 tbsp heavy whipping cream

1/2 tbsp sugar

2 oz dark chocolate (60-70% dark)

1/4 cup chopped pecans

1 tbsp packed brown sugar

Powdered sugar for dusting

Optional: finely chopped pecans for decorating


Browning the butter: Place the 5 tbsp of butter in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Let the butter melt completely and continue cooking, constantly stirring.

The butter will start to foam; continue to stir and cook. The butter will then turn a deep golden color, dark flecks will appear at the bottom of the pan and the mixture will smell warm and nutty. Remove the mixture from heat immediately and pour into a small bowl to cool.

Caramelizing pecans: In a separate small pan, toast the pecans with about 1/2 tablespoon of butter on low heat. As they begin to brown, add 1 tablespoon of brown sugar and stir constantly.

Remove them from the pan immediately after everything is mixed together and the brown sugar has completely melted. Set aside to harden and cool completely as you make the madeleines.

Making the batter: Make sure the eggs are room-temperature as whipped cold eggs will not reach the volume we need.

In a large bowl, beat together the eggs and 1/2 cup brown sugar on high until pale and thick, about 8-10 minutes. Another clue – when the beater is raised, a ribbon of batter will fall back into the bowl.

Beat in the 3 tbsp bourbon and vanilla extract to combine.

Whisk the flour, baking powder, salt, and spice(s) together in a small bowl. Using a spatula, carefully fold in half of the flour mixture into the egg mixture. Fold in the other half after – we are treating this batter very delicately to retain as much air as possible.

Mix together the browned butter and pumpkin puree. Stir in about 1/4 cup of the batter into the butter mixture. It will take a minute to fully combine. Then stir in the rest of the batter.

Add the caramelized pecans and gently fold into the batter until they are distributed throughout.

Cover the bowl and place it in the fridge to chill for 30-60 minutes – try not to be over as the butter will solidify.

Melt 1 tablespoon of butter and liberally grease a madeleine pan – get all the nooks and crannies. Place in the freezer until ready to use.

Baking the madeleines: When ready to make, preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Spoon 1 heaping tablespoon of batter into each madeleine pan – since this particular batter is thick, spread it out evenly and leave a tiny bit of room up top. Tap the pan on a counter or table to get all the air bubbles out and prevent holes in the madeleines.

If you only have one madeleine pan and there is extra batter, you can put the batter into the fridge while you bake the first batch.

Bake in the preheated oven for about 12-13 minutes, or until the tops are puffed and the edges and bottom of each madeleine is golden.

The madeleines are done when the tops spring back after lightly pressed with your finger.

Invert the pan immediately after baking and transfer the warm madeleines to a wire rack to cool.

Making the ganache: Warm the heavy whipping cream and 1/2 tbsp of sugar over the stove or in the microwave just until it’s about to boil.

Remove from heat and then pour over the dark chocolate in a medium-sized bowl. Allow it to rest for 3 minutes.

Whisk the warm cream and chocolate together until smooth. If small chunks of chocolate remain, place back in the microwave for 20-second increments until it is smooth. Stir in 1/2 tbsp bourbon and taste. If you want more bourbon, add another 1/2 tbsp or more.

Finishing the madeleines: Dust the madeleines with powdered sugar. Dip each madeleine in the ganache. Sprinkle madeleines with chopped pecans if you want. Set the madeleines aside on a sheet of parchment or wax paper to set.

Madeleines are best eaten the day they are prepared but can be saved overnight if needed.