I absolutely love coconut and find any excuse to incorporate them into my food. When it comes to baking, coconut macaroons are a huge hit in my book. The foundation of this recipe came from a friend several years ago, but since then I have added my own twist which eliminates chocolate and some of the guilt by using fat-free condensed milk. I am really happy with the way it has turned out – and so are my friends! In addition, a beautiful platter of freshly baked coconut macaroons as a hostess gift is a great and impressive way to say “thank you!”
Yield: 35 cookies
Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
14-ounces sweetened shredded coconut
14-ounces fat-free or regular fat sweetened condensed milk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 large egg whites, room temperature
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1. Preheat oven to 325ºF.
2. In a medium bowl, add coconut, condensed milk, and vanilla.
3. In the bowl of a mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, or alternatively in a large bowl with a hand whisk, whisk egg whites on medium – high speed until medium stiff peeks have formed.
4. Carefully fold egg whites into the coconut mixture.
5. On a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, place 1 tablespoon portions of coconut mixture with 2-inches of space between each.
6. Place in preheated 325ºF oven for 18 – 20 minutes, or until light golden brown on the bottom edges.
7. Remove from oven and allow to cool on the baking tray for 10 minutes.
8. Transfer cookies to a wire rack and allow to fully cool.
9. Keep stored in an airtight container for up to 7 days.
Kitchen Note: Once I started using fat-free condensed milk and no could tell the difference, I never looked back. Baking is all about balance and making choices. Choosing to use fat-free condensed milk doesn’t make me feel quite as guilty when I go in for a second helping.