My dear friend Lauren (who I’ve known for 25 years!) has recently started making and selling macaroons! I’ll be honest in saying that as cute and colorful as macaroons are, they have never been one of my favorite desserts or something I particularly craved. Well, here I am eating my words, because LuLu’s macaroons have changed my mind! They are not dry at all, they are jam packed with flavor and her presentation is spot on.
These would make a wonderful gift for anyone with a sweet tooth, especially around holidays like Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day. They would also be adorable for bridal or baby showers and even split up into smaller packages for teachers at the end of the year!
Lauren and I have teamed up to give one of my local readers two boxes of LuLu’s macaroons! Head on over to my instagram to enter – it’s easy and will only take a minute!
Below is my Q&A with Lauren on everything LuLu’s!
1. How did you get started with Lulu’s Macaroons? Have you always enjoyed baking? What got you into macaroons specifically?
Hi my name is Lauren Engle. I am the baker behind LuLu’s Macaroons. I was raised in Sugar Land and attended UT where I graduated as a RN in 2011. I am a full time Labor & Delivery nurse for Texas Children’s Hospital and just about to graduate with my MBA through UT-Tyler in June. I have always loved to bake because of how happy all the sweet treats make people. I love to people just smile and melt after they take a bite of your creation.
Every year my group of girlfriends that I graduated with from UT Nursing School get together for a little reunion weekend. This past summer we met up in Dallas. We took a macaroon baking class where we could bring snacks & wine and just have some fun learning something new. I had never been a huge macaroon connoisseur. The few times I tried macaroons they were just dry and flavorless. So essentially if I was going to get a dessert it was going to be some ice cream, a brownie, or a chocolate chip cookie… definitely not a macaroon. During the macaroon class I learned about the delicate baking process and how many flavor combinations there could be. We had so much fun taking the class. The macaroons we made in the class completely changed my perspective of macaroons. They were light, fluffy & so flavorful! I was in love!
I went home back to Houston after that weekend and immediately bought a kitchen aid and gathered the ingredients to start making my own at home. Little did I know, but making macaroons without the teacher around to help would be a lot more difficult than I expected. After a lot of trial and error & botched batches of shells, I finally started to get the hang of it.
My coworkers who had tried a lot of macaroons around town and also overseas said that I should really consider selling some because mine were so delicious. I laughed because I thought no one would want to buy these. They suggested that I try to sell some around Thanksgiving. So I went back to the kitchen and made some Pumpkin Cheesecake Macaroons. They sold SO FAST! And that was the start of LuLu’s Macaroons. I am still a very novice macaroon baker and totally new to the world of starting a small business, but LuLu’s Macaroons is gaining speed quickly!
2. Where did you get the idea for the name?
The name actually comes from my name “Auntie LuLu”. My real name is Lauren. When I first became an Aunt this past June, I wanted my nephew, Coleman, and (at the time) soon to be future niece, Rylan, to call me LuLu. After deciding to start selling the macaroons I settled on the name “LuLu’s Macaroons”.
3. I’ve heard making macaroons can be really tricky. How long did it take you to perfect your recipe and method?
Oh man! Perfecting the macaroon recipe took longer than I anticipated. But you can ask my family and my coworkers, they truly saw the progression of my macaroons. From grainy and broken shells to shiny and sophisticated shells, it took a lot of practice and patience.
4. What kinds of flavors does LuLu’s Macaroons offer? Which is the most popular, and what is your personal favorite?
LuLu’s Macaroons currently offers a variety of flavors which include: Lemon, Raspberry, Vanilla, Red Velvet, Toasted Coconut, Strawberry, Coffee, Caramel, Peppermint, Pumpkin, and Gingerbread. Upcoming flavors include: Blueberry, Key Lime Pie, Pistachio, and Blackberry. Most of my Macaroons come with a customizable cheesecake buttercream filling.
My personal favorite macaroon is the Lemon Cheesecake. I just love anything with lemon!
Something for customers to look forward to in February are the LuLu’s Valentine Macaroon Variety Boxes. Macaroon Colors will be Red, Pink, White and Purple with flavors of Chocolate Raspberry, Vanilla, Strawberry, and Blueberry.
5. What are your prices, and how do people order a box? How does pickup (or delivery if thats an option) work?
Boxes of macaroons are $20 per box. A box includes 12 macaroons. To order a box simply email firstname.lastname@example.org with your color, flavor, and quantity of macaroons desired. Ideally, I request at least a 2 weeks notice before your desired pick up date/event date. For larger orders (weddings, events, etc.) further advanced notice is preferred. I am currently operating out of the Houston, 10 minutes West of the Galleria area in my apartment (small businesses have to start somewhere haha). This is where order pick ups will occur. For larger orders I will deliver to you.
6. What does the future look like for LuLu’s Macaroons? Any goals or plans you’d like to share?
The future for LuLu’s Macaroons looks bright! What started as a small hobby has now turned into a bright future. My goal for 2019 is to look into shipping options for people that want some of LuLu’s Macaroons that are outside of the Houston area. Another goal for 2019 is to create a macaroon spread for a wedding or larger scale event!
7. Do you have any advice for someone wanting to start their own home bakery or similar small business? Have you had any lessons learned so far you’d like to share?
Things I have learned: Starting a small business is very exciting but also comes with many challenges, especially when you are also managing a full time job and in Grad school. I can’t wait to get out of my apartment and into a kitchen with a double oven! Coworkers and family are the best taste testers. Amazon Prime has saved my life with last minute supply orders!
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