Easy Pastry Cream

Pastry cream in a bowl.

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5 from 1 review

This easy Pastry Cream, also known as crème pâtissière, is silky, rich and so delicious. This thick custard is made using common kitchen ingredients, takes only about 15 minutes to put together and is perfect for many different fine pastries such as tarts, eclairs or cream puffs!


  • 1/3 cup (70 grams) granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons (21 grams) cornstarch
  • Pinch salt
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 2 cups (480 grams) whole milk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract or 1 vanilla bean, split
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter


  1. Whisk together sugar, cornstarch, and salt. Whisk in egg yolks and milk until fully combined. 
  2. Turn on the heat to medium and cook the mixture, whisking constantly, and occasionally taking a spatula and scraping up any thickened cream in the edges of the pan. Cook until the pudding has completely thickened and large bubbles are forming and popping, about 5-8 minutes.
  3. Remove from heat; immediately pour the cream through a fine mesh strainer into a bowl, using a spatula to push all the pudding out while leaving behind any bits of cooked egg.
  4. Whisk the butter and the vanilla extract (or scrape the vanilla bean) into the pastry cream until fully combined.
  5. Pour the cream into a bowl and place a piece of plastic wrap directly on the top of the cream. Let cool at room temperature before chilling in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours or overnight.
  6. When ready to use, whisk together until smooth and silky.