Zesty Orange Madeleines with Dark Chocolate Drizzle

Happy Hump Day, friends! I hope you’re ready to enjoy some Zesty Orange Madeleines with Dark Chocolate Drizzle with me.

Zesty Orange Madeleines with Dark Chocolate Drizzle | CaliGirl Cooking

The one-month wedding countdown is almost upon us, so I’m squeezing in at least one more dessert before the fiancé and I really hunker down and focus on eating the most nutritious, wholesome foods over the next few weeks. In order to stay accountable to ourselves, I’ve decided to bring you all along on the journey, so expect to see lots of extra-fresh and nutritious recipes showing up here in the days leading up to the wedding. Have no fear, though, we’ll be right back on track with “mostly” healthy, but still balanced, eating after we’ve tied the knot.

Which brings me to a topic I’ve been wanting to talk about with you all. If you’ve been following CaliGirl Cooking for any period of time, you’ll know that I’m clearly against advocating for any particular diet or dietary restrictions. Rather, I’m all about focusing on using as many whole, unprocessed foods as possible to make delicious food and consuming it in a balanced, responsible way.

Zesty Orange Madeleines with Dark Chocolate Drizzle | CaliGirl Cooking

BUT, this doesn’t mean that I don’t like to “step it up” at times. Out of the 365 days in a year, I’d say I spend about 65 of those REALLY focusing on the foods that I’m putting into my body, and making sure they are as healthy and nutritious as possible. Don’t get me wrong, I already do this most of the time, but it means maybe not helping myself to one of the dozen doughnuts a coworker brings in or having that second glass of champagne on the weekends. Because I don’t restrict myself on a regular basis, it’s easier for me to practice slightly more restraint for a week (or month) leading up to a big event such as a vacation or a WEDDING!

But we’re not quite there yet (let’s get through this week first!) so today let’s talk about these Zesty Orange Madeleines with Dark Chocolate Drizzle. I first have to give a shout-out to my gal Amanda (a.k.a @sommvivant) who’s become a great “Insta-friend” over the past few months (can we just go ahead and coin that term right now?) We instantly found common ground seeing as she loves wine AND food, just like me (she is a Sommelier, after all) and she lives in my old stomping grounds up in Napa. Amanda has been asking me to come up with some healthier versions of her favorite baked goods in the Valley and, I must say, I love a good challenge! Especially when it involves “health-ifying” something.

So, this week I undertook the first challenge I received from her:  to make a healthier version of the madeleines served at Thomas Keller’s Bouchon Bakery in Yountville.  Now, I’m not going to go completely rogue here, and I did not “health-ify” these beyond recognition, but I did work in a couple of small swaps to make us feel just a little bit better about eating these delicious, bite-size desserts.

Zesty Orange Madeleines with Dark Chocolate Drizzle | CaliGirl Cooking

I actually referenced two madeleine recipes for inspiration, and came up with my own version loosely based on a combination of the two. Fortunately, I already own a copy of the Bouchon Bakery cookbook but unfortunately, Keller’s version of madeleines requires an overnight rise, which I just wasn’t about to commit myself to. I want these to be super easy for you guys! So I also pulled out my Gourmet cookbook and cited their Lemon Poppyseed Madeleine recipe, which doesn’t involve the overnight rise (and also isn’t broken down into strange metric measurements such as the Bouchon Bakery cookbook is.)

I DM’ed Amanda to ask what her favorite flavors were, and she quickly replied that her go-to’s were classic, orange or chocolate. So, being the creative-minded food blogger that I am, I decided to combine all of her favorite flavors into one!

To make this recipe slightly healthier than the classic madeleine, I decided to use nonfat plain Greek yogurt in place of some of the butter. I also opted to use just one egg instead of the two that some of the recipes I looked at called for. Finally, of course we’re adding in orange zest as well as orange oil for that extra hit of Vitamin C 😉 And if you can’t find orange oil, have no fear, you can omit it, there just won’t be quite as much intense orange flavor in the finished product.

Zesty Orange Madeleines with Dark Chocolate Drizzle | CaliGirl Cooking

We bake the little cookie-cakes off (which, I have to add, only takes about 10 minutes!) and heat up some pure dark chocolate to drizzle over the top once they come out of the oven. The dark chocolate drizzle may ever so slightly mask the distinguished shell shape of the madeleine, but the pop of flavor you get makes it totally worth it. We will most definitely have some trouble waiting for these to cool and set before we start shoveling them into our mouths. The results will make your tastebuds do a happy dance, and you MIGHT not even feel like sharing these with your friends (don’t worry, Amanda, I got you girl!)

Zesty Orange Madeleines with Dark Chocolate Drizzle | CaliGirl Cooking

So, there you have it, Zesty Orange Madeleines with Dark Chocolate Glaze FTW! And if anyone has any uber-healthy recipe ideas for the coming month, please send them my way! XO

This post contains affiliate links. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Zesty Orange Madeleines with Dark Chocolate Drizzle
Prep Time
20 mins
Cook Time
10 mins
Total Time
30 mins
These healthy madeleines are laced with zesty orange flavor and drizzled in bittersweet dark chocolate. The perfect afternoon treat!
For the Zesty Orange Madeleines:
  • ¼ cup butter plus 1 tablespoon melted (separated)
  • ½ cup flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon orange zest
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons nonfat plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 ½ teaspoons honey
  • 2 drops orange oil optional
For the Dark Chocolate Drizzle:
  • 5 ounces dark chocolate I used 72%, chopped
  1. Brush madeleine molds with 1 tablespoon melted butter. Place pan in refrigerator for butter to harden. This will prevent the madeleines from sticking to the pan during the baking process.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  3. Sift flour, baking powder and salt together into a small bowl, then stir in orange zest. Set aside.
  4. Heat ¼ cup butter, brown sugar and honey in a small saucepan over medium heat, stirring until sugar dissolves. Remove pan from heat.
  5. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat together sugar and egg on high for about 3 minutes. Add Greek yogurt and beat to combine, then add flour mixture. Once again, beat to combine and then finally add warm butter mixture and orange oil (if using.)
  6. Once batter has formed, scoop into a piping bag (no piping tip needed.) Simply squeeze the batter into the madeleine molds, being careful not to overfill.
  7. Bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes, or until very lightly golden and a toothpick inserted in the center of one comes out clean. Remove from oven and turn out of pan onto a cooling rack immediately. Let cool for about 20 minutes.
  8. While madeleines are cooling, place chopped dark chocolate into a double boiler over medium heat. If you don’t have a double boiler, simply place the chocolate in a small mixing bowl over a small saucepan filled about 1/3 of the way full with water. As the water heats up, keep stirring the chocolate until it forms a smooth glaze.
  9. Transfer to a piping bag (again, no piping tip needed) and drizzle over madeleines in desired pattern. Although you could technically eat these right away, you may want to place them in the refrigerator for a half hour or so for the chocolate to re-harden, and then bring them back to room temperature before serving.
Recipe Notes

These are best if eaten within the first day or two of baking.

Zesty Orange Madeleines with Dark Chocolate Drizzle | CaliGirl Cooking

Who’s coming over for tea and madeleines?

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