This post is a part of my Madeleine series in tribute to this iconic French pastry and all that it means - from its fascinating history, choosing the right pan, all the secrets of authentic madeleine hump, and storage suggestions - you name it!
A madeleine pan substitute is what you can use instead of a fancy madeleine pan. Learn about some alternatives and their pros and cons.
I hear you when you are tired of buying a special baking pan each time you find a new recipe.
Do you love madeleines but are not ready yet to buy a madeleine pan? It is a common problem.
You might not know that you can make your own with a simple madeleine pan substitute.
It is the perfect way to get that same taste and texture you love without all the hassle of buying an expensive specialty pan.
So let's find out alternative pan options and how to make madeleines in a simplified way.
So I'll show you how to make these delicious little cakes without all of the fuss.
It starts by making your madeleine batter as explained in the recipe, then chilling for at least 2 hours or overnight - don't forget it is essential to obtain a madeleine hump.
Once ready, preheat your oven along with preparing a pan that is just waiting on hand.
So, what are alternative pan options to make madeleines in a simplified way?
One way to make madeleines more versatile, though not exactly like the original recipe, is to make madeleine muffins.
A muffin pan or cupcake mold is an excellent alternative when baking madeleines.
You can either bake your little cakes with cupcake liners: you can make your own cupcake liners or use the store-bought ones.
If you don't want to bother making or buying them, bake madeleines without baking cups, but make sure to prepare your muffin pan.
To do so, use softened butter before brushing it down into each well; then sprinkle liberally over flour until every cavity has been covered frontward. And don't forget to remove excess flour.
Then use a cookie scoop to spoon the batter into muffin cups - about 1 ½ to 2 medium cookie spoons. Pro tip: don't fill muffin cavities more than ¾ full.
Place the muffin mold filled with batter on the middle rack of the hot oven to bake.
Use the baking time enclosed in the recipe for making madeleines without mold.
Indeed, you can make your cakes in a mini muffin pan as well, but you will need to adjust the baking time and check for doneness several minutes early.
Mini tart pans or tartlet tins
Making bite-sized madeleines in mini tart molds is perfect for smaller gatherings and will give you the same delicious madeleine experience.
To start the recipe off, simply use a mini tart pan or fluted edge tartlet tins - you will find them in both metal ones with removable bottoms or silicone ones.
Follow all steps from start until making the madeleine batter as per instructions - but do not forget to butter and flour your mini pans. Fill each of them up to ¾ full.
Heat the oven and a baking sheet at the same time. Then place your pans filled with batter onto the hot baking sheet and bake.
The baking time can vary, so it must be tested and adjusted accordingly.
Other specialty pans
Do you know that feeling when you find a mini scone pan or petite popover pan in your grandma's cupboard? You are lucky enough to experience madeleines like the real thing.
Whether wedge-shaped or cylinder-shaped, these little guys will still hold their shape while being loaded up on flavors.
Your madeleines will have an amazing sponge texture and taste delicious. So don't worry about them being so humble: they are called homemade DIY madeleines.
You can create different shapes and sizes of madeleines by changing up the shape of aluminum foil cups.
The best thing about this alternative way of making your favorite cakes is that it takes some basic skills in origami or crafting things from scratch.
It is no surprise that the madeleine recipe and preparation steps are similar to mini tart pans.
Since the aluminum foils are pretty thin, madeleine cakes prone to burning, so you need close observation of their baking time.
Madeleines are petite and sweet, but did you know that they can also be made into a cake? It is called cake Madeleine (gâteau Madeleine in French).
The best part is it doesn't need to be chilled before baking - just pour it into the buttered round cake pan and bake.
Let it cool down after baking for 15 minutes, and enjoy that authentic flavor and taste you love so much.
Check out this simple cake pan converter if you even need to re-calculate your baking pan size.
You might be wondering if you can use a sheet pan to make your Madeleine cake.
It will work, but keep in mind that the baking time and doneness check should be adjusted accordingly.
After pouring your batter into a thin layer onto a buttered sheet pan, bake it until golden brown on top.
When you are done baking, cut it into squares and enjoy this delicious treat.
The authentic Madeleine cake has a different shape than what you will bake on the sheet pan, but who doesn't like trying new things? It will still taste great.
King Arthur Baking Company offers to use cupcake papers for baking madeleines.
They suggest doubling up and opening the pleats on each side so you end up with diamond-shaped cupcake liners.
Then you should place them on a baking sheet, grease each with cooking spray, and fill with batter.
The cupcake papers have a higher chance of getting burnt if you aren't watchful with their baking time.
Also, baking papers don't provide as much protection for your sweet treats, so those are one of the least recommended alternatives.
Another least recommended alternative to a madeleine pan is a baking tray.
I don't even know if it's worth trying because of how flat your final product will be. You can try using one if you really want to.
When it comes to making madeleine recipes, they are easy to follow and use four basic ingredients: eggs, sugar, butter, and flour.
You can even make the batter one to two days in advance, so when you need it, it is ready to go.
The most important is that you can always make and enjoy these buttery cakes without taking extra costs of buying molds. Just use the baking pans or tools you have in your kitchen.
But the real secret of these delicate cookies is their flavor: they are filled with love.
Now, follow these simple recipes or get inspired to create your own: no more excuses for not making delicious treats at home without a fancy madeleine mold.
Those pan substitutions would be a lot more helpful if pictures accompanied them.
Hello Jan, Thank you for your suggestion. I tried to include links to products. I will see how else I can improve the post.