Easiest Cream Puffs (Simple Recipe for Classic Flavors!) (2024)

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Cream Puffs are a classic French dessert that are filled with a creamy, sweet filling and sprinkled with powdered sugar for a delicious treat! And you don't have to be a pastry chef or go to France to enjoy that classic flavor because my recipe will teach you the easiest way to make them at home!

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They're an incredibly versatile dessert too, and you can fill them with sweet cream filling, chocolate ganache, or other flavored fillings and they'll taste delicious every single time!

These cream puffs are perfect for a dinner party, or even for the holidays, and what's best is that you can make them way ahead of time! They can be baked, filled, and frozen weeks in advance!

You can just pop some out if any guests show up unexpectedly at your place and enjoy them with a cup of tea or coffee. They're seriously convenient to have on hand and are also the perfect way to have a treat whenever you'd like! Trust me, when you try this recipe once you'll want to make them again and again!

Want to learn how to make Cream Puffs? Then keep on reading!

Table of Contents
  • What are Cream Puffs?
  • What Makes This Cream Puffs Recipe Special?
  • What You Need to Make Cream Puffs at Home
  • How to Make Cream Puffs (Step-by-Step)
  • Tips for Making the Best Cream Puffs Ever
  • Recipe Variation Ideas for Cream Puffs
  • How to Store Leftover Cream Puffs
  • More Partry Recipes You'll Love
  • Recipe Card
  • Easiest Cream Puffs (Simple Recipe for Classic Flavors!)
  • Comments

What are Cream Puffs?

Cream puffs are a classic French dessert that are made by baking choux pastry dough (also known as pâte à choux) in small, round mounds. After baking, the hollow puffs are filled with a sweet cream filling, such as custard or whipped cream.

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They can be served plain with just the cream filling, or they can be topped with icing and/or chocolate ganache. Cream puffs often come in a variety of sizes and shapes, such as éclairs and profiteroles.

Cream puffs are versatile desserts that can be enjoyed any time of the day. They make great additions to breakfast or brunch buffets, they can be served as a light dessert, or they can even be filled with savory fillings for an appetizer option.

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What Makes This Cream Puffs Recipe Special?

This cream puff recipe stands out because of its unique cream filling. Instead of using a traditional custard or whipped cream, this recipe utilizes two different types of cheese to create an incredibly rich and creamy center.

The combination of mascarpone and ricotta cheese is sure to wow even the most discerning palate. Topped with icing or ganache, these puffs are truly irresistible!

What You Need to Make Cream Puffs at Home

All you need are some simple ingredients to make these delicious French classic treats at home. Let’s look at what these are in more detail:

For the Eclairs:

  • Water:Using high-quality water, such as distilled or purified water, will give you the best results while ensuring your cream puffs are free from contaminants sometimes found in tap water.
  • Butter:Butter doesn't just add a rich taste to this recipe, it also makes these cream puffs tender and helps them maintain their structure while baking.
  • All-Purpose flour: Flour is an essential ingredient in all kinds of baked goods, and cream puffs are no exception! All you need is some simple all-purpose flour for this recipe.
  • Eggs:Delicious and nutritious, eggs will give us the structure, richness, color, and flavor that makes this recipe a hit!
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For the Cream Filling:

  • Cream cheese:This tangy and sweet cheese adds the best rich and creamy texture to our cream puffs.
  • Heavy cream:We'll be using heavy whipping cream in this recipe which will give us a rich, fatty flavor while helping the cream puffs maintain their shape while baking. I've used Cool Whip for some added sweetness.
  • Powdered sugar:A light dusting of powdered sugar is the perfect sweet topping for these delicious baked treats!

You will also need a piping bag with Wilton 1M piping tip.

How to Make Cream Puffs (Step-by-Step)

Making this delicious cream puffs recipe is incredibly simple and easy! Here's what you need to do to make it at home step by step:

How to Make Eclairs

First, pour the water into a large pot or saucepan, then add the butter.

Cook on the stove on medium-high heat until the butter melts while gently mixing with a wooden spoon, then bring it to a boil.

Next, turn the stove off (keeping the pot on the hot stove), pour the flour in, and whisk it quickly. Mix it for about a minute or until the texture is smooth and soft.

Remove from the pot from the stovetop and let the mixture cool until it reaches room temperature.

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Now place the cooled batter into the bowl of a stand mixer or large mixing bowl using a paddle attachment and add 3 eggs at a time.

Beat the batter thoroughly on medium speed in-between adding eggs. It will become more smooth and thinner with each egg addition too.

Then after all the eggs are mixed in and beaten until the texture is smooth and peaks are forming in the dough, scrape the sides of the bowl and the bottom and beat it on high for a minute to make sure all the batter is well mixed.

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Next, take the batter and fill your pastry bag halfway. Pipe out rose shapes onto a greased baking sheet (you can also line the baking pan with parchment paper).

Preheat the oven to 400 F and bake them for 20 minutes or until light golden brown in color.

While the first batch is baking, repeat the piping step onto a second greased or parchment paper lined or greased with butter baking sheet.

When the first batch is finished, remove them from the oven and put the second batch in. Let the cream puffs cool for about 15 minutes before removing them from a baking sheet.

Next, remove the cooled cream puffs (they will still be warm to the touch) from the baking sheet and place them on wire racks to finish cooling.

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How to Make Cream Filling

Now it's time to make the cream!

First, beat the cream cheese and powdered sugar together in a medium bowl.

Second, add the whipping cream and beat it again until everything is well mixed. Scrape the sides and the bottom of the mixer bowl with a spatula and beat it for another minute.

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How to Assemble Cream Puffs

Next, attach any pointy star tip decorator (I used Wilton 47) to your piping bag. Fill the pastry bag with cream halfway.

Finally, insert the tip decorator into the cream puff on the bottom side and squeeze the pastry cream in. Fill each cream puff to about ¾ of the volume of the puff.

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Sprinkle some powdered sugar over the filled cream puffs and enjoy with a cup of tea or homemade latte. These treats are freezer friendly if you have leftovers.

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Tips for Making the Best Cream Puffs Ever

  • When making the dough, make sure to mix the butter and flour mixture quickly and thoroughly so that it is smooth. This will ensure a light and airy texture in your finished product.
  • Use heavy cream in the cream filling to give it an extra rich flavor and keep its shape while baking.
  • Decorate your cream puffs with powdered sugar for a sweet finishing touch. You can also top them off with a drizzle of chocolate sauce or fresh fruit.
  • Make sure to let your cream puffs cool completely before filling them, otherwise, the cream will melt and make a mess!
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Recipe Variation Ideas for Cream Puffs

These cream puff eclairs are absolutely delicious and I'm sure you're going to love them. But if you're looking to customize the flavor, here are a few ideas you can try:

Chocolate cream puffs: For a delicious chocolate variation, add ¼ cup cocoa powder to the cream puff dough before adding the eggs. Once you’ve piped out your puffs, sprinkle them with some mini chocolate chips for an extra sweet touch.

Coffee cream puffs: Try adding 2 teaspoons of instant espresso powder to the cream puff dough for a delightful coffee flavor. Fill the puffs with a coffee-flavored whipped cream for an extra special treat. Stir in a pinch of salt with flour to help bring out all the delicate flavors of these delicious pastry treats.

Lemon cream puffs: For a tart and tangy flavor, add 2 tablespoons of freshly squeezed lemon juice and 1 teaspoon of lemon zest to the cream puff dough. Fill your puffs with a light lemon-flavored whipped cream.

Flavored fillings: You can also make vanilla flavored cream puffs by adding a little vanilla extract to your eclairs. Alternatively, you can add the extract to your cream filling and even experiment with other extracts like almond extract.

Sandwich-style: You can also slice the puffs in half using a serrated knife, and then pipe the filling onto the bottom half before closing it like a sandwich with the top half of the puff. You'll need more filling for this version. Add some fruits for extra flavor!

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How to Store Leftover Cream Puffs

You can store cream puffs in an airtight container or Ziploc bag in the fridge for up to three days. If you want to freeze them, you can do that too!

Simply freeze them on a baking sheet and then transfer them into a Ziploc or resealable plastic bag. They can be frozen this way for up to two months. Let them thaw overnight before enjoying these delicious treats!

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Check out all dessert recipes.

Recipe Card

Easiest Cream Puffs (Simple Recipe for Classic Flavors!)

Valya's Taste of Home

These Cream Puffs are light and crisp with the most delicious cream filling you're going to absolutely love! It's a simple and easy recipe with classic flavors.

4.50 from 8 votes

Print Recipe Pin Recipe

Prep Time 35 minutes mins

Cook Time 1 hour hr 20 minutes mins

Total Time 1 hour hr 55 minutes mins

Course Pastries

Cuisine French

Servings 115 cream puffs

Ingredients

Cream Puffs Batter Ingredients

  • 2 cups – water
  • 8 oz. butter
  • 2 cups – all-purpose flour sifted
  • 9 large – eggs

Cream Puffs Cream Ingredients

  • 16 oz. – softened cream cheese
  • 16 oz. – thawed cool whipped (or heavy whiping cream)
  • 1 cup – powdered (confectioners’ sugar)

Read More

Instructions

How to Make Eclairs

  • First, pour the water into a large pot or saucepan, then add the butter.

  • Cook on the stove on medium-high heat until the butter melts while gently mixing with a wooden spoon, then bring it to a boil.

  • Next, turn the stove off (keeping the pot on the hot stove), pour the flour in, and whisk it quickly. Mix it for about a minute or until the texture is smooth and soft.

  • Remove from the pot from the stovetop and let the mixture cool until it reaches room temperature.

  • Now place the cooled batter into the bowl of a stand mixer or large mixing bowl using a paddle attachment and add 3 eggs at a time.

  • Beat the batter thoroughly on medium speed in-between adding eggs. It will become more smooth and thinner with each egg addition too.

  • Then after all the eggs are mixed in and beaten until the texture is smooth and peaks are forming in the dough, scrape the sides of the bowl and the bottom and beat it on high for a minute to make sure all the batter is well mixed.

  • Next, take the batter and fill your pastry bag halfway. Pipe out rose shapes onto a greased baking sheet (you can also line the baking sheet with parchment paper).

  • Preheat the oven to 400 F and bake them for 20 minutes or until light golden brown in color.

  • While the first batch is baking, repeat the piping step onto a second greased or parchment paper lined or greased with butter baking sheet.

  • When the first batch is finished, remove them from the oven and put the second batch in. Let the cream puffs cool for about 15 minutes before removing them from a baking sheet.

  • Next, remove the cooled cream puffs (they will still be warm to the touch) from the baking sheet and place them on wire racks to finish cooling.

How to Make Cream Filling

  • Now it's time to make the cream!

  • First, beat the cream cheese and powdered sugar together in a medium bowl.

  • Second, add the whipping cream and beat it again until everything is well mixed. Scrape the sides and the bottom of the mixer bowl with a spatula and beat it for another minute.

How to Assemble Cream Puffs

  • Next, attach any pointy star tip decorator (I used Wilton 47) to your piping bag. Fill the pastry bag with cream halfway.

  • Finally, insert the tip decorator into the cream puff on the bottom side and squeeze the pastry cream in. Fill each cream puff to about ¾ of the volume of the puff.

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This recipe was originally posted onJanuary 20, 2016(original picture below), and updated for a better user experience.The post may contain affiliate links. Read mydisclosure.

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Easiest Cream Puffs (Simple Recipe for Classic Flavors!) (2024)
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