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Bakery-style Vanilla Pastry Cream by Candidly Delicious

Bakery-style Vanilla Pastry Cream

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American, Gluten-free, Kosher, Pescatarian, Vegetarian
Keyword: Building Blocks, Dairy, Husband-approved, Indulgent, Kid-friendly, Make-ahead, Milchig, Nut-free, Wheat-free
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 17 minutes
Total Time: 42 minutes
Servings: 12
Calories: 235kcal
Luscious Bakery-style Vanilla Pastry Cream is a thick, smooth custard perfect for tarts, fillings, or a midnight snack (shhh don’t tell).
Print Recipe


  • Stand Mixer
  • Fine Mesh Strainer


  • 2 Cups Whole Milk
  • ½ Cups Sugar
  • 2 Yolks
  • 1 Egg
  • Cups Cornstarch
  • ½ teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla Powder
  • ½ Cups Butter Cold, cut into pats


  • Whisk together the Milk and ¼ Cups Sugar in a Medium saucepan on Medium-High heat. Bring to boil
  • While you wait for the milk to boil, beat Yolks and Egg on High for 1 minute in the bowl of a stand mixer using a paddle attachment.
  • Sift the Cornstarch and remaining sugar into the eggs. Beat on High until very pale.
  • Bring over the boiling milk and drizzle it into the eggs slowly, while the mixer spins on medium (3-4). CAUTION Aim the drizzle so it pours down the side of the bowl, not into the center. This will prevent burns.
  • Once combined, transfer the entire mixture from the stand mixer into the saucepan. Put it back on Medium High heat and whisk non-stop until the mixture thickens.
  • Now, transfer the entire mixture back into the bowl of the stand mixer. Start the mixer on Medium High (8), add in the Vanilla Extract and Vanilla Powder.
  • With mixer still running, add in the butter, one pat at a time letting each one incorporate before adding the next.
  • Turn the mixer up to 10 and let it run until a hand on the outside of the bowl feels room temperature to the touch.
  • The pastry cream is now ready. It can be used immediately or covered and chilled. Pastry cream, and any dessert using it, must be kept refrigerated and should be used within 5 days. This recipe CAN be made dairy-free. See the text or specific substitutions.


Dairy-free Version:
To make dairy free, use a very fatty non-dairy milk. I used Macadamia nut milk. Substitute the butter with chilled margarine. I used Earth Balance Soy-Free Buttery Sticks.


Sodium: 26.3mg | Sugar: 10.5g | Cholesterol: 70.6mg | Calories: 235kcal | Fat: 19.5g | Protein: 2.3g | Carbohydrates: 13.7g