French Dessert Recipes

French dessert recipes can be complex. However, there are some you can make at home. We have picked a few easy and delicious ones for you to try. Some are have steps that can be done by children; all will be enjoyed by kids!


Baked in fluted scallop shaped molds, madeleines are little bite sized cakes that are the best accompaniment to a cup of tea. In Marcel Proust’s novel "À La Recherche du Temps Perdu", a madeleine dunked in tea becomes a memory trigger to a vivid childhood scene. In France, the madeleine has become a metaphor for such memories. Proust describes the cakes “An exquisite pleasure had invaded my senses”.

Although we can’t assure you that our recipe will produce any memories, we can guarantee you comfort from our delicious French Dessert Recipes.

Madeleine Recipe

  • ½ cup flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/3cup sugar
  • ½ stick (4 tbsp) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp freshly grated lemon zest
  • You will need nonstick madeleine molds, which should be well greased and dusted with flour for baking.

  • Beat the eggs and sugar together for about 4 minutes. Then add the lemon zest and vanilla. Separately sift together the flour, baking powder and salt. Then fold the dry ingredients into the egg mixture, a little at a time. Mix well.

  • Refrigerate the batter for 2 hours for best results.

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Fill the molds almost to the top and bake for 11 to 13 minutes or until golden brown. Remove the madeleines gently and cool on a wire rack. It is best to eat them freshly baked and still warm. Don’t forget the cup of tea!

    Chocolate Dipped Variation

    Make the same recipe as above. After the madeleines have cooled, melt you favorite type of chocolate. Dip madeleines into the melted chocolate, until the chocolate covers half of the madeleine. Place on wax paper to cool.

    Who Was Madeleine?

    The legend goes that In the 1700’s, in the town of Commercy, France, a servant girl named Madeleine made the little cakes for the exiled king of Poland. He enjoyed them so much that he shared them with his daughter Marie, who just happened to be married to King Louis XV. From the palace in Versailles, they became popular throughout France.

    Want to try making a few more French desserts? Try macarons or bûche de noël.

    French Vocabulary

    Flour La farine
    Baking powder La poudre à pâte
    Butter Le beurre
    Salt Le sel
    Vanilla La vanille
    Lemon zest Le zeste de citron
    Tea Le thé

    Coffee Le café
    Hot chocolate Le chocolat chaud

    Molds Les moules
    Cakes Les gâteaux

    In Search of Lost Time À La Recherche du Temps Perdu

    Memories Les souvenirs
    Oven Le four
    To bake Cuire
    Snack Le goûter

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