Cream Puffs with Vanilla Custard


Cream puffs with vanilla custard are a delightful and classic dessert that showcases the perfect combination of light, airy pastry and rich, creamy filling. Originating from France, these delicate pastries, known as “choux à la crème,” have become beloved treats worldwide. The beauty of cream puffs lies in their simplicity: a crispy, hollow choux pastry shell encasing a luscious, velvety vanilla custard. Whether serving them on a special occasion or enjoying them as a luxurious treat at home, cream puffs with vanilla custard are sure to impress with their elegant appearance and irresistible taste. This recipe will guide you through the steps to create these delectable pastries, ensuring a perfect balance of texture and flavor that will delight any dessert lover.

Cream Puffs


  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 4 large eggs


  1. Preheat Oven: Preheat your oven to 425°F (220°C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Boil Water and Butter: In a medium saucepan, bring the water and butter to a boil over medium-high heat.
  3. Add Flour: Once boiling, add the flour and salt all at once. Stir vigorously until the mixture forms a ball and pulls away from the sides of the pan.
  4. Cool the Dough: Remove the pan from the heat and let it cool for about 5 minutes.
  5. Add Eggs: Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition until the dough is smooth and glossy.
  6. Pipe or Spoon Dough: Using a piping bag or a spoon, drop the dough onto the prepared baking sheet in mounds about 2 inches apart.
  7. Bake: Bake for 15 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 375°F (190°C) and bake for an additional 20-25 minutes, until the puffs are golden brown and sound hollow when tapped.
  8. Cool: Remove from the oven and let the cream puffs cool on a wire rack.

Vanilla Custard


  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 vanilla bean (or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract)
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter


  1. Heat Milk: In a medium saucepan, heat the milk and 1/4 cup of the sugar over medium heat. If using a vanilla bean, split it and scrape the seeds into the milk, then add the pod as well. Bring to a simmer, then remove from heat and let it infuse for 10 minutes. Remove the vanilla pod.
  2. Mix Egg Yolks: In a separate bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, remaining sugar, and cornstarch until smooth and pale in color.
  3. Temper the Eggs: Gradually whisk in the hot milk mixture into the egg yolk mixture, a little at a time, to temper the eggs.
  4. Cook Custard: Return the mixture to the saucepan and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until it thickens and comes to a boil. Boil for 1-2 minutes while stirring to ensure it doesn’t burn.
  5. Add Butter and Vanilla: Remove from heat and stir in the butter and vanilla extract (if using).
  6. Chill Custard: Transfer the custard to a bowl, cover it with plastic wrap directly on the surface to prevent skin from forming, and refrigerate until chilled.


  1. Cut Cream Puffs: Once the cream puffs are completely cool, cut them in half horizontally with a sharp knife.
  2. Fill with Custard: Pipe or spoon the chilled vanilla custard into the bottom half of each cream puff.
  3. Top with Puff: Place the top half of the cream puff on top of the custard.
  4. Dust with Sugar: Optionally, dust the cream puffs with powdered sugar before serving.


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