The PERFECT filling for your donuts, eclairs, cream puffs, etc. Every avid baker needs to know how to make this drool-worthy staple.
I have tried quite a few pastry cream recipes and this one is my favorite by far. Also, through my trial and error, I have learned what to do and what not to do to attain the perfect pastry cream.
If you are an avid baker, you must know how to make pastry cream!
Pastry cream was something that I thought was hard to make, but I am here to tell you that the most difficult part of making this recipe is waiting for it to chill in the refrigerator. It is very hard for me to not steal a taste before it is ready to be served.
Also, if you make this and you decide it is a bit too rich for you...you are in luck! In walk the fan fave Diplomat Cream. Diplomat cream is basically pastry cream mixed with whipped cream.
I honestly prefer most things with whipped cream, and pastry cream is no different. The whipped cream makes it fluffy, and light, and adds a bit of sweetness, if you make it the way I recommend. You can see that recipe here >> Easy 3- IngredientWhipped Cream
Anyway, back to the pastry cream. I have made pastry cream so many different ways and none of them have disappointed me. Adding in crushed Oreos is my favorite and paired beautifully with my eclairs. I need to share that recipe ASAP and I will.
Let's Get Started
Section 1: Tips for Successful Pastry Cream
I want to make sure you avoid my mistakes, so here's what I have learned from all of my trial and error.
Watch your pastry cream closely while it is on the stove. It cooks rather quickly and can easily overcook. There's a fix for that (see below), but it is best to avoid it.
For the smoothest finish, strain the pastry custard back into your pot after adding the milk into the egg yolk mixture.
You can add cocoa powder, melted chocolate, crushed cookies, or even fruit jams and jellies to make unique flavors. Get creative!
I recommend making this a day in advance, so all you have to do is pull it out of the fridge when you are ready to assemble your treats. Give it 30 mins minimum to come closer to room temperature.
If you accidentally overcook your pastry cream, just mix in a little warm milk to thin out the consistency.
Be sure to press your plastic wrap down firmly on top of your cooked pastry cream. You don't want to leave any air bubbles on top before you place it in the fridge to chill. This just helps prevents undesirable skin from forming on top.
Section 2: Here's what you need
Always prepare your ingredients before starting to achieve the perfect results.
1 cup Milk - whole milk that will be scalded on the stove
1 Vanilla Bean - vanilla beans are best, but I have used real vanilla extract numerous times and it was still delicious. Just be sure to add extracts at the end instead of to the hot milk, to ensure maximum flavor.
6 Egg Yolks - room temperature eggs yolks
1/4 cup Sugar - granulated sugar
1/4 cup Corn Starch - sifted
1 tbsp Butter - unsalted, room temperature
This recipe makes a fair amount of pastry cream, but if you'd like to double the volume you can fold in whipped cream to make it go further and make it lighter and fluffier.
Technically that turns it into a classy, delicious Diplomat Cream. It is honestly my favorite way to eat this, especially inside of a fresh donut. Check out my go-to donut recipe here >>> Easy, Fluffy Donuts (Beginner Friendly)
Once you make this and realize how easy it is, you will want to make it time and time again. Don't forget to get creative and add your favorite crushed cookies, melted chocolates, fruit reductions, etc to make some awesome, unique flavors.