Delicious thick and creamy this easy recipe for pastry cream is the perfect filling for pastries and cakes! Vanilla beans make this Creme Patissiere extra special and beautiful!
Pastry cream or Creme Patissiere has got to be one of my most favorite things to make. It's basically a custard that is so smooth, creamy, and perfectly sweet. I prefer to use fresh vanilla beans or vanilla bean paste to ensure the beautiful vanilla bean flecks, I feel like it gives it that something extra that makes it so special!
✏️What are the ingredients?
- Large Egg Yolks, save the egg whites for meringue cookies
- Granulated Sugar or Caster Sugar
- Cornstarch/ Cornflour. This acts as the thickener along with the egg yolks.
- Whole Milk
- Butter, cold
- Vanilla Bean Paste or Pure Vanilla Extract or a scraped Vanilla Bean Pod
📖How do you make Pastry Cream?
Over low-medium heat cook whole milk in a medium saucepan. Let the mixture cook for a couple of minutes to warm it up - do not boil the milk.
In a medium bowl add the egg yolks, corn starch, salt, and sugar. Whisk for two minutes, the mixture should be much lighter in color.
If you want a thicker/ sturdier pastry cream use the 4 tablespoons of cornstarch/ cornflour. This will give you more of a thicker texture pudding consistency instead of the looser Crème Pâtissière.
Once the milk mixture is warmed slowly stir in a little bit to the egg mixture and whisk to combine. This is tempering the eggs, which prevents the eggs from scrambling! Once the eggs have been warmed by the small addition of milk add all of the milk slowly and whisk to combine.
Add the whole mixture back to the pot you cooked the milk in. Whisking constantly cook over low-medium cook for another couple of minutes. Do not stop whisking or walk away the mixture will slowly, then quickly thicken up. Watch for the mixture to "burp" bubbles- they will pop on the surface. Once this happens take the pot off the heat immediately.
Add the cold cubed butter and vanilla to help cool the mixture and stop the cooking process. Whisk vigorously to combine.
Let the mixture cool for 2 minutes then pour into an air-tight container and place plastic wrap on top and push directly on top of the cream- this helps prevent a thick skin from forming. Place the container in the fridge to chill for at least three hours or up to three days.
Optional- you could pour the pastry cream through a fine mesh sieve to strain out any clumps to create a super smooth Creme Patissiere . I do not normally do this step.
When ready to serve the pastry cream re-whisk to make sure there are no lumps.
⏲️ Can you make pastry cream ahead of time?
Totally, I actually will usually make the Creme Patissiere a day or two before I plan to use it. You can prepare it up to 3 days ahead of time, just make sure it is stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
Pastry cream does not freeze well, I do not recommend it.
More pastry cream recipes
I love using pastry cream in my mini fruit tarts recipe.
★★★★★ Please let me know if you make this recipe by leaving a star rating and comment below!Print
- 5 Large Egg Yolks
- ½ cup Granulated Sugar/ Caster Sugar
- 3 Tablespoon Cornstarch/ Cornflour
- 2 cups Whole Milk
- ¼ Teaspoon Salt
- 4 Tablespoons Butter, cold and diced
- 2 Teaspoons Vanilla Bean Paste or Pure Vanilla Extract
- In a medium saucepan over low-medium heat add the whole milk. Let cook for a couple of minutes to warm it up - do not boil the milk.
- While milk is warming, in a medium bowl whisk together the egg yolks, corn starch, salt, and sugar. Whisk for two minutes, the mixture should be much lighter in color.
- Once the milk mixture is warmed slowly add a little bit to the egg mixture and whisk to combine. Then add all of the milk slowly and whisk to combine.
- Add mixture back to the pot and cook over low-medium heat for another couple of minutes, whisking constantly. The mixture will thicken up. You want it quite thick, the mixture will "burp" bubbles will pop on the surface- this shows it is done.
- Take off the heat and immediately add the cold butter and vanilla bean paste or extract. Then pour into an air-tight container, place plastic wrap on top and push directly on top this helps prevent a thick skin from forming. Let chill in the fridge for at least two hours or up to three days. Rewhisk the pastry cream before serving.
If you want a thicker/ sturdier pastry cream use the 4 tablespoons of cornstarch/ cornflour.
- Prep Time: 10
- Cook Time: 5
- Category: Dessert
- Method: Cook
- Cuisine: French
Keywords: pastry cream, cream, creme patisserie