Pastry Cream Recipe
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Classic Pastry Cream Recipe (For Desserts, Cakes, Tarts and More!)

Everyone who bakes, even occasionally, should have their preferred recipe for pastry cream.
It’s one of those decadent classics that’s never out of fashion, always in season, and has TONES of ways to use it.
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Total Time15 mins
Course: Dessert
Servings: 3 cups



  • Beat egg yolks with sugar until creamy.
  • Add cornstarch, vanilla extract and a little bit of milk. Whisk well breaking all the lumps from the cornstarch. Mixer does this job really well but you can certainly use a hand whisk instead.
  • On a stove top heat whipping/heavy cream and 1 ½ cup of milk (reserving the remaining milk for later).
    IMPORTANT: Don’t bring the milk to a boil. Heat it slowly on a low heat until it becomes really hot but not burning when you touch with the inside of your wrist.
    Pour in the egg yolk and cornstarch mixture and still on LOW heat whisk continuously.
    In a couple of minutes the cream will start to thicken.
    NOTE: At this point it should be a bit thicker than the final result.
    If it starts too thicken to quickly and you get a lumpy texture faster than you whisk - simply remove the cream from the heat for a bit while still continuing to whisk.
    Once ready, transfer pastry cream to a large bowl and stop the cooking process.
    Pour the remaining 1 cup of cold milk. Stir well until your cream becomes smooth, even and velvety. And you're done!
    NOTE: As an alternative, to stop further cooking of the cream once it’s removed from the heat place a bowl with a cream into a large bowl filled with ice. In this case you don’t need to preserve cold milk. Just heat up 2 ½ cups straight at the beginning of this step.


You can make pastry cream without any whipping/heavy cream.
Just use equal quantity of milk instead.
Same with milk. You can use variations of whole milk and regular milk.
I don't recommend using skim milk as the custard will loose its rich flavor. Not recommended, but still an option.