Basic Marzipan

Basic Marzipan
Marzipan Candies. Getty Images / Dorling Kindersley
  • 60 mins
  • Prep: 30 mins,
  • Cook: 30 mins
  • Yield: 1.5 lbs (24 servings)
Ratings (20)

Marizpan, an almond candy, is an old-fashioned favorite. It's often purchased in stores, but it can also be made at home! This Basic Marzipan recipe is a great all-purpose marzipan recipe for dipping in chocolate, using in recipes, or forming figurines. Using this as a base, you can color, flavor, or form marzipan into many different candies or decorations. If you're simply looking to eat the marzipan, cutting it into squares is the easiest way to serve it.

Marizpan can also be rolled out and used to cover cakes, similar to fondant. Fondant is typically sturdier, and is a better choice if you have delicate cakes, tricky shapes, or need more long-term staying power. But many people prefer the almond flavor of marzipan over fondant. If you're going to use your marzipan for rolling, try this recipe for Rolled Fondant, or this one for Marshmallow Fondant. If you don't have time to make your own marzipan, it can often be found in cake and candy supply stores, and in the Baking aisle of well-stocked grocery stores. 

What You'll Need

  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 4 cups almond meal (or ground almonds)
  • 2 egg whites
  • Optional: powdered sugar for dusting

How to Make It

1. Prepare your work space by sprinkling powdered sugar over a marble slab, wooden cutting board, or large baking sheet. Fill your sink or a large bowl with cold water.

2. Place the sugar and 2/3 cup water in a large heavy saucepan and heat gently, stirring, until the sugar dissolves.

3. Add the cream of tartar and turn up the heat. Bring to a boil and cover, boiling, for 3 minutes.

4. Uncover and boil, without stirring, until the temperature reaches soft-ball stage, 240 degrees Fahrenheit on a candy thermometer.

5. Place the bottom of the saucepan in the cold water you’ve prepared, stirring the sugar mixture constantly until it becomes thick and creamy. The cold water trick helps to cool the hot candy down quickly.

6. Once the proper temperature is recahed, stir in the ground almonds and the egg whites, then place the pan back over low heat and stir everything together for 2 minutes more, until the mixture is thick.

7. Spoon the marzipan onto your prepared work surface, and turn it with a metal spatula until it cools down enough to touch.

8. Coat your hands in powdered sugar and begin to knead the marzipan, working it until it is smooth and pliant.

9. Your marzipan can now be used immediately or stored by wrapping it in plastic wrap and keeping it in an airtight container.