Pistachio Financiers with Pistachio Whipped Ganache

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This pistachio financier recipe jazzes up a French favorite with some pistachio paste and a whipped ganache topping if you’re feeling fancy. It’s easy, fun, and sure to please anyone looking for a nutty dessert.

Creamy ganache frosting on fluffy pistachio-flavored financiers

Recipe At a Glance

Financiers are these lovely almond mini cakes with brown butter, and pistachio financiers are a simple twist on the French classic. The change from the base recipe is super simple: we add a bit of pistachio paste (which you can make at home) and remove some of the butter so the financiers aren’t too greasy. We also add some chopped pistachios, but that’s totally optional.

(If you only have pistachios and can’t be bothered by making or buying pistachio paste, use my base financier recipe and top the batter with chopped roasted pistachio. It’ll taste great.)

To make the recipe worth its own article, I frosted these with pistachio whipped ganache. This way, we have a nutty, moist base and a sweet, creamy, and pistachio-y frosting. Adding the frosting also makes the financiers look and feel more like cupcakes, which might be a bonus for some eaters.

This recipe is straightforward: the batter for the financiers takes about 20 minutes to prepare and 13 to 15 minutes to bake. The frosting requires 10 to 15 minutes of preparation, a couple of minutes of whipping, and a few more to pipe onto the mini cakes. The only downside is that you need 6+ hours between preparing and whipping the pistachio ganache so that it has enough time to cool and thicken.

In other words, if you want to top yours with the pistachio ganache, it’s not a dessert you can whip up on a whim.

Making these pistachio financiers for the first time? Read the ingredients notes, step-by-step instructions, and tips. If you’re familiar with the recipe, feel free to jump to the recipe card.

Ingredients Notes and Substitutes

Pistachio Financiers

Pistachio financiers ingredients
  • Egg whites. The base for the mini almond cakes.
  • Unsalted butter. We’ll brown the butter to infuse the cakes with its characteristic flavor and aroma.
  • Sugar. Regular white sugar is perfect, though you can use powdered sugar if that’s what you have.
  • Honey. Honey helps to keep the cakes super moist. To substitute, you could increase the amount of sugar. While the cakes might not be as moist, the ample amount of other liquids (egg whites, butter) in the recipe will help keep them somewhat moist.
  • Almond flour. Go with store-bought, or you can make it at home if you have some blanched almonds on hand.
  • Cake flour. I use cake flour for the financiers based on the Hanbit Cho’s recommendation, but I’ve seen people have success with all-purpose flour as well. The recipe doesn’t use that much flour anyway, so substituting with AP flour shouldn’t be a big deal.
  • Pistachio paste. For the best flavor, use unsweetened pistachio paste from roasted pistachios or make it from scratch.
  • Vanilla extract. Optional, but a bit helps improve the flavor.
  • Baking powder. If you prefer your financiers fluffy and cupcake-like, add baking powder, or omit it for a denser texture. I recommend using baking powder for first-timers.

Pistachio Ganache Frosting

Pistachio whipped ganache ingredients
  • White chocolate. Couverture chocolate or any other one that melts easily works great, but your favorite white chocolate should work just as well.
  • Heavy cream. Use your go-to brand for whipping.
  • Pistachio paste. For the best flavor, use unsweetened pistachio paste from roasted pistachios or make it from scratch.
  • Gelatin. I use powdered gelatin, but you can use an equivalent in gelatin leaves if that’s what you prefer.

How to Make Pistachio Financiers with Pistachio Ganache Frosting

The high-level gameplan for these looks like this:

  1. Prep and refrigerate pistachio ganache.
  2. Make and bake the financiers.
  3. Whip the ganache and top the cooled mini cakes.

Let’s get to it, shall we?

Step 1: Prep Pistachio Whipped Ganache

(Read my pistachio whipped ganache article to learn more about the recipe.)

  1. Bloom the gelatin. Pour the water over the gelatin in a tiny bowl and stir it. It takes about 5 to 10 minutes to bloom, so it should be ready by the time you need it.
Gelatin for stabilized whipped cream
Bloom gelatin in water for 5-10 minutes
  1. Prepare the chocolate. Finely chop the white chocolate and place it into a large heatproof bowl. White chocolate melts easily, so there’s no need for a super fine and precise chop. Plus, we will blend the chocolate with the heavy cream anyway.
  2. Heat the cream. Heat half the heavy cream over medium heat in a small saucepan until it just begins to simmer. Do not let it boil over; you’re looking for small bubbles near the edges of the pot and a bit of steam. Take the cream off the heat.
Heating the cream
Heat half the cream until it simmers without boiling
  1. Add gelatin. Add the bloomed gelatin to the hot cream and whisk until it dissolves.
Adding the bloomed gelatin to the cream
Add the gelatin
  1. Combine chocolate and cream. Pour the hot cream and gelatin mixture over the chopped chocolate. Let it sit for about 1 minute for the chocolate to warm and start melting. After a minute, whisk the mixture until the chocolate fully melts and the mixture is smooth.
  1. Add pistachio paste and blend. Add the measured pistachio paste into the bowl and stir it. Use an immersion blender to carefully blend the mixture for 1-2 minutes. Ensure you move the blender around to incorporate all the chocolate, pistachio paste, and cream thoroughly. This ensures our ganache is niche and smooth.
  1. Add remaining cream. Pour the remaining cream (the portion that wasn’t heated) into the mixture and blend for another minute or so. That quickly lowers the temperature of the ganache, making it ready for refrigeration.
  1. Cover and refrigerate. Cover the ganache with plastic wrap, making sure the wrap is in direct contact with the surface of the ganache. That prevents a skin from forming. Put the bowl in the fridge for 6+ hours, ideally overnight.
Cover with plastic wrap
Cover with plastic wrap and chill

Step 2: Make Pistachio Financiers

(Read my financier recipe for tips on making financiers.)

  1. Preheat oven. Preheat the oven to 390°F (200°C).
  2. Brown butter. Begin by melting the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until the butter becomes golden brown and gives off a nutty aroma (brown butter is also known as hazelnut butter for this reason). Depending on the heat, the browning process usually takes 5 to 10 minutes once the butter has melted. Initially, you’ll hear a sizzling sound, followed by bubbling and then a crackling noise. That’s when you should pay close attention to the butter as it should be ready (brown and smelling nutty) soon. Once browned, remove from heat and place in a bowl of cold water so that it cools.
  1. Mix egg whites and sugar. Combine egg whites and sugar in a bowl and whisk until combined. You don’t need to whip the whites – a good stir that makes a tiny bit of foam is good enough.
  1. Add honey and vanilla. Pour the honey and vanilla extract into the bowl and mix everything.
Adding honey
Mix in the honey and vanilla extract
  1. Add pistachio paste. Add the pistachio paste into the bowl and stir to combine. Make sure the pistachio paste is spread thoroughly, and there aren’t any big lumps. If your paste is dry and lumpy, try blending it or stirring in a small amount of neutral oil to smooth it out beforehand.
  1. Add dry ingredients. Sift and mix together the almond flour, cake flour, and baking powder. Then, add the mixed ingredients to the bowl and stir to combine.
  1. Add butter. Pour the brown butter into the bowl, including all the dark bits on the bottom of the pot, and stir to combine. Make sure the butter isn’t super hot so it doesn’t cook the whites.
  1. Prepare the pan. For the financiers to come off the pan, you need to grease the mold with butter. The way I like to do this is to scoop some butter onto a piece of wax paper and spread it around the interior surface of the pan, trying to cover everything, including corners and edges. Once done, I use my index finger to spread the butter more evenly and reach all surfaces I might’ve missed. If your pan isn’t non-stick, dust it with AP flour or white sugar to make a non-stick layer. Cover everything and tap out any excess that doesn’t stick to the butter.
Greasing the pan
Grease the pan with butter
  1. Fill molds. Spoon or pour the batter into the molds, filling each to about three-quarters full. Depending on the size of your muffin tin, this should yield between 8 to 12 financiers. Optionally, top each financier with chopped pistachios for added crunch and flavor.
  1. Bake. Place the pan in the preheated oven and immediately lower the temperature to 360°F (180°C). Bake for 13 to 15 minutes or until the edges begin to brown and the centers are set. If you need another test for doneness, insert a toothpick into a financier; it should come out dry.
Baked pistachio financiers
Baked pistachio financiers
  1. Cool. Allow the financiers to cool in the pan for 10 to 15 minutes before removing. To ease removal, gently run a silicone spatula around each cake, then invert the pan onto a wire rack to release the cakes.

Step 3: Whip Ganache and Frost Financiers

  1. Whip ganache. After those 6+ hours in the fridge, the ganache will look set and pretty stiff. That’s expected, so don’t panic. Grab a hand or stand mixer with the whisk attachment and whip the ganache on medium speed until the whisks leave a clearly visible trail and the ganache looks light and fluffy. That should take 3 to 5 minutes. Stop immediately if you notice the ganache starts looking grainy.
  1. Use. Pipe the financiers immediately after whipping the ganache. Optionally, sprinkle some chopped pistachios on the piped frosting.
  2. Serve or refrigerate.
Smooth whipped ganache frosting on soft pistachio flavored financiers
Smooth pistachio whipped ganache on pistachio financiers

Variations

Here are a few ideas to tweak this recipe based on your preferences and time constraints:

  • Skip the frosting. The financiers are delicious even without the added frosting.
  • Use a different frosting. If you’re out of gelatin, try substituting it with pistachio pastry cream. You’ll need about a cup to frost these, so consider halving the linked recipe. Or, for a simpler alternative, use whipped cream. If you plan on refrigerating the financiers for longer than a day, stabilize the whipped cream (which I cover in the linked article).
Moist pistachio-flavored financiers
Delicious pistachio-flavored financiers

Storage

Store unfrosted pistachio financiers at room temperature, tightly sealed, for 3 to 4 days. Frosted financiers will last in the fridge, sealed tightly, for the same duration.

Creamy ganache frosting on fluffy pistachio-flavored financiers

Pistachio Financiers

This pistachio financier recipe jazzes up a French favorite with some pistachio paste and a whipped ganache topping if you’re feeling fancy. It’s easy, fun, and sure to please anyone looking for a nutty dessert.
Prep Time: 40 minutes
Cook Time: 13 minutes
Total Time: 53 minutes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: French
Keyword: Almond Cakes, Financiers, Pistachios, White Chocolate
Servings: 9 pistachio financiers

Ingredients

Pistachio Financiers:

  • 5 oz egg whites 141 g, about 5 egg whites
  • 7 tbsp butter 100 g, plus a bit more for greasing the pan
  • 3 oz sugar 85 g
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract optional
  • 1 oz honey 28g or about 1 1/3 tbsp
  • 2.5 oz almond flour 70g
  • 2 oz cake flour 56g or about 9 tbsp
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder optional
  • 1 oz pistachio paste 28g

Pistachio Frosting:

  • 1 cup heavy cream ~240 g
  • 3.5 oz white chocolate ~100 g
  • 1.5 oz pistachio paste ~42g
  • 1 teaspoon powdered gelatin
  • 1 tablespoon water

Instructions

Pistachio Whipped Ganache:

  • Bloom Gelatin: Stir gelatin into water in a small bowl and let sit for 5-10 minutes.
    1 teaspoon powdered gelatin, 1 tablespoon water
  • Chop Chocolate: Chop white chocolate and place it in a large heatproof bowl.
    3.5 oz white chocolate
  • Simmer Cream: Heat half the heavy cream in a saucepan until it begins to simmer (look for small bubbles around the edges), then remove from heat.
    1 cup heavy cream
  • Dissolve Gelatin: Add gelatin to the hot cream and whisk until fully dissolved.
  • Combine: Pour the gelatin-cream mixture over the chocolate, let sit for a minute, then whisk until smooth.
  • Add Pistachio Paste: Add the pistachio paste into the bowl and stir to combine.
    1.5 oz pistachio paste
  • Blend: Use an immersion blender to mix thoroughly for 1-2 minutes, ensuring no lumps remain and everything is incorporated.
  • Add Cream: Incorporate the remaining cream to cool the mixture, then blend for another minute.
  • Refrigerate: Cover the ganache with plastic wrap in direct contact and refrigerate for at least 6 hours, or overnight.

Pistachio Financiers:

  • Preheat Oven: Set the oven to 390°F (200°C).
  • Brown Butter: Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat until it turns golden brown and smells nutty, about 5-10 minutes. Cool it by placing in a bowl of cold water.
    7 tbsp butter
  • Mix Egg Whites and Sugar: Whisk egg whites and sugar just until a bit of foam forms.
    5 oz egg whites, 3 oz sugar
  • Add Honey and Vanilla: Stir in honey and vanilla.
    1/2 tsp vanilla extract, 1 oz honey
  • Add Pistachio Paste: Stir in the pistachio paste, ensuring that it's spread evenly throughout.
    1 oz pistachio paste
  • Incorporate Dry Ingredients: Sift almond flour, cake flour, and baking powder together and mix into the wet ingredients.
    2.5 oz almond flour, 2 oz cake flour, 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • Combine Butter: Add cooled brown butter, including the burned bits, ensuring it's not too hot.
  • Prepare Pan: Grease the mold with butter, ensuring all surfaces are covered. Optionally, dust with flour or sugar if not using a non-stick pan.
  • Fill Molds: Fill each mold about three-quarters full with batter. Optionally top each with chopped pistachios.
  • Bake: Place in the oven, immediately reduce heat to 360°F (180°C), and bake for 13-15 minutes until the edges brown and the center sets.
  • Cool: Let financiers cool in the pan for 10-15 minutes, then remove.

Combine:

  • Whip: Whip the chilled ganache with a mixer until light and fluffy, about 3-5 minutes. The whisks should leave clearly visible trails. Stop immediately if you notice any graininess.
  • Pipe: Pipe the financiers immediately after whipping the ganache. Optionally, top with chopped pistachios.
  • Serve or Refrigerate.
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