How to make marzipan from scratch

When I first learned how to make Marzipan, I thought that must be wrong: Only 3 ingredients? That can’t be right. But it really is all you … plus some little tricks which I will share with you.

Video for Marzipan

What is it Made of?

The three ingredients for marzipan are almond flour, confectioners sugar, and rosewater. In the video, I mention that the taste of rosewater is quite intense and not everybody’s piece of cake. That is why I substitute half of the rosewater with plain water. If you don’t have rosewater or don’t like it, then you can as well only use water and still have delicious marzipan.

Marzipan ingredients

Where was it invented?

Although some German cities claim to have invented marzipan, it seems that it originally came from Arabia or China or somewhere in between. Nobody really knows exactly. However, in Germany especially the town Lübeck is known for its marzipan production. Lübeck is a beautiful town with medival flair in the North, not too far from Hamburg and worth visiting. The Marzipan there is considered very high quality and is deeply knitted into the history and culture in that town.

What Makes a Good Quality of Marzipan?

The marzipan from Lübeck is considered very high quality because of its low content of sugar. The less sugar, the more almond it has (duh) and therefore contains more of the expensive ingredient which leads to the idea of a higher quality. That said, this doesn’t necessarily mean that you like it better than marzipan that is considered lower quality. It really depends on your personal preference. The Lübecker marzipan also has more rosewater in it than I am using in my recipe. If you had that marzipan and liked it, go ahead and just use rosewater for the liquid ingredient. Otherwise, I would recommend you first stick to my recipe with 50:50 water to rosewater and then take it from there for your next batch.

German marzipan and marzipan potatoes

Marzipan Potatoes

Well, I guess marzipan potatoes are one of the odd things we have in Germany. It is basically nothing else than marzipan in the shape of a small sphere, rolled in cocoa powder. But the bitterness of the cocoa in combination with the sweetness makes it such a treat. I mix some confectioners sugar to the cocoa powder though, to make it a little milder. Watch the video for more instruction on that.

Other than potatoes, we make a lot of things from marzipan like marzipan carrots for easter or pigs for new yeats eve, marzipan vegetables, cake covers (like our wedding cake) and sometimes even really big artwork like child high castles and monuments. Don’t believe me? Check this link to see some landmarks of Lübeck made just from marzipan and food color!

The most common shape for marzipan is the marzipan loaf, especially at Christmas time. It is covered with dark chocolate and we really treat it like a loaf of bread. We cut slices of that loaf and enjoy it slice by slice.

Other than that, we also use it in a lot of cake and cookie recipes as an ingredient, like Poppyseed Cake … coming up soon.

How to Store it

How to make marzipan

Unfortunately, it tends to dry out after a while. This is great for marzipan artwork but to so great if you want to use it for a recipe. I would recommend to wrap it tight into cling wrap or anything like that. Store it in the pantry, not in the fridge. In the fridge it would become too hard and then it’s difficult to work with. But you will probably not need to store it at all and instead eat it right away ;-)

If you can’t find almond flour …

… then you will have to make it yourself. Here is how it works:

  • Put the almonds in a bowl.
  • Pour boiling water over the almonds and let this stand for a while.
  • Remove the water and put the almonds on a towel or paper towel.
  • With a fabric or paper towel, rub the skin from the almonds.
  • Once you have removed the brown skin, you can put the almonds into a food processor or whatever machine you have to grind the almonds.
  • Your almond flour might not be as fine as the store-bought but it will still work. Remember: Marzipan is produced for hundreds of years – most of that time without machines!

Pin this Marzipan recipe to Pinterest

Marzipan ingredients

Marzipan

Barbara
4.75 from 4 votes
Prep Time 5 mins

Ingredients
 
 

  • 100 g almond flour (96 g or 4.4 oz)
  • 120 g confectioners sugar (120 g or 4 1/4 oz)
  • 1 Tbsp. rosewater
  • 1 Tbsp. water

Instructions
 

  • Put the almond flour and confectioners sugar on a large cutting board.
  • Creat a little hollow in the center.
  • Put the 1 tbsp. rosewater and 1 tbsp. water into that center (or 2 tbsps. of either one of them).
  • Use a dough scraper to push the dry ingredients from the edges to the center and make cutting movements at the center.
  • Repeat until the consistency changes from dry to crumbly, then continue with your hands, kneading the dough.
  • Once you have kneaded the marzipan to a smooth consistency, your marzipan is ready to use or to be eaten.
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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10 thoughts on “How to Make Marzipan”

  1. It’s so generous of you to share your marzipan recipe. Thank you! Can I leave them at room temperature or do they need to be refrigerated and how far ahead can I make the little animals and fruits? Can the marzipan be frozen and thawed later to use?

    1. Hi Ingrid,
      you can leave the marzipan at room temperature but if you have kneaded it with your bare hands, even if clean, there is always a bit of a bacteria spread and those little creatures like to multiply at warmer temperatures. So, refrigerating is probably the safer choice.
      You can shape animals and fruits way ahead. To be honest, that little marzipan pig that I made for one of the videos, is still living in my fridge (I just couldn’t get myself to eating this cutie).
      I’ve never frozen marzipan and don’t know if it works. Maybe try it with a small amount and see how it goes?
      Best wishes and have a wonderful Christmas time,
      Barbara

  2. 5 stars
    Just made these and YUM what a wonderful little treat!!! SO SIMPLE!! TY for posting the videosand blog- it’s great!!

  3. 5 stars
    Never thought I would learn how to make my own Marzipan. Funny story, never liked it as a kid (I dealt with it, since it was candy after all) but now find myself making batches and eating it straight out of the fridge as a “snack”. It’s soooo good!

    As always, thank you, for sharing authentic recipes with the world that taste like home!

    Bravo!

    1. Isn’t if funny how taste changes over time? I used to hate Brussel sprouts and now I like it. Tofu? Wouldn’t touch it with a tongs, now I love it!

  4. Can you share a recipe for Frankfurt Bethmännchen? I would like to make them for a friend for Christmas using your homemade marzipan. Thank you for all the wonderful recipes and tips. Happy Thanksgiving.

  5. Since living in Germany I’ve come to like marzipan a bit more than I used to, especially the chocolate-covered marzipan logs you find around this time of year. I’m definitely going to use lots of rosewater, I just love the exotic fragrance and taste. Thanks for the recipe.

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