Cream Puffs (Easy Filling) (2024)

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These cream puffs feature crispy choux pastry and a luscious sweetened whipped cream filling. You’ll experience “amour” with the first bite!

Cream Puffs (Easy Filling) (1)

What Are Cream Puffs?

Cream puffs are a classic French pastry composed of choux dough and a sweet cream filling. The dough (also called pâte à choux) is made from four simple ingredients: butter, flour, water, and eggs. Because of its high moisture content, the dough “puffs” as the steam escapes in the hot oven, hence the name. Cream puffs are typically filled with a pastry cream, custard, or sweetened whipped cream.

Cream Puffs Vs. Profiteroles Vs. Eclairs

What’s the difference between cream puffs, profiteroles, and eclairs? The main differences are the shape, filling, and topping. Profiteroles are usually filled with ice cream and topped with chocolate ganache, while eclairs are oblong and topped with icing. Cream puffs are the simplest of the three — dusted only with powdered sugar.

Cream Puffs Video

How To Make Cream Puffs

This cream puff recipe takes a bit of technique, but you’re bound to succeed by following along carefully. It’s easy — we promise there’s no “huffin'” and “puffin'” here!

  • Prepare the oven and pan: Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  • Boil the water and butter: Add the water and butter to a saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat.
  • Add the flour: Turn the heat down to low and add all the flour, stirring vigorously with a wooden spoon. Cook the dough for 1-2 minutes, stirring continuously.
  • Beat in the eggs: Transfer the dough to a mixing bowl and beat with an electric hand mixer for 2-3 minutes until the dough has slightly cooled. Add one egg at a time, mixing until fully incorporated between each addition.
  • Pipe the puffs: Transfer the dough to a pastry bag fitted with a large round tip. Pipe dollops onto the prepared baking sheet and smooth down the peaks with a moistened finger.
  • Bake the puffs: Bake the puffs for 25-35 minutes, or until they are golden brown and dry. Allow the puffs to cool completely on a wire rack.
  • Make the cream filling: In a clean bowl, whip together the heavy cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla until soft peaks form. Transfer the cream to a piping bag fitted with a small round tip.
  • Assemble the cream puffs: Fill the cream puffs using your preferred method (see section below). Refrigerate and enjoy!
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Assembling Cream Puffs

You’ve probably seen cream puffs assembled in two different ways: poked and filled, or sliced in half and sandwiched with cream. Let’s look at a more detailed explanation to ensure your assembly goes smoothly.

  • Filled: This is the quickest way to fill cream puffs — poke a hole in the side or bottom of each puff with the piping tip or a sharp paring knife. Insert the piping tip and fill the puffs with cream until they feel heavy and the cream pushes back.
  • Sandwiched: Do you want more elaborate-looking cream puffs? Slice the puffs in half horizontally and pipe the cream in a swirl or spoon it onto the bottom half. Top gently with the other half.
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Filling & Topping Variations

Cream puffs are a versatile dessert and a canvas for creativity. Keep them simple or make them as fancy as your heart desires with these additions!

  • Fruit: Slice the puffs in half and sneak in fresh raspberries, strawberries, blueberries, or blackberries along with the cream.
  • Chocolate: Add a chocolate drizzle on top or dip the puffs in melted chocolate for extra sweet flavor.
  • Powdered sugar: Dust the cream puffs with powdered sugar for a sophisticated finish.
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Troubleshooting Cream Puffs

Did your eyes light up at the initial gorgeous “puff” of your cream puffs only to be disappointed with the end result? Here are the two main issues you might run into with these pastries, as well as how to avoid them.

  • Doughy: Cream puffs turn out doughy because of excess humidity or moisture in the dough. Cook the dough on the stove until it pulls away from the sides of the pan. If the puffs are still turning out too moist, bake them for a few minutes longer to allow the moisture to evaporate, resulting in perfectly crisp puffs.
  • Flat: Cream puffs deflate for a variety of reasons. If they start sinking while baking, the oven may not have been properly preheated or you may have allowed cold air in by opening the oven door. If the puffs deflate after baking, the culprit is likely underbaking.

Hot tip: Don’t worry if your puffs turned out flat! Give them a face lift with a generous amount of cream, and they’ll be golden.

Tips For Foolproof Cream Puffs

Choux pastry dough? Chantilly cream? These fancy names may sound daunting, but we’ve compiled a list of tips to help you make perfect cream puffs!

  • Cool the dough before adding the eggs. Scrambled eggs are delicious for breakfast… but not so much in cream puffs. Take the dough off the heat as soon as it releases from the sides of the pan, and beat it in a separate bowl until it’s cool to the touch — otherwise the eggs will scramble when you add them in!
  • Avoid opening the oven door. We know it’s tempting to take a peek at the puffs while they’re baking, but it is essential to keep the oven door closed. The cooler air from outside may cause the puffs to collapse. To keep an eye on the progress, use the oven light.
  • Dry out the puffs fully. Here’s a hack for you — as soon as the puffs come out of the oven, poke a small hole in the top with a toothpick and place them back into the turned off oven for a few minutes. This helps ensure that any internal moisture evaporates.
  • Consider waiting to add the cream. Are you planning to serve these cream puffs at an event? Hold off on filling them with cream for as long as possible to decrease the likelihood of soft puffs — they should be filled no more than five hours before serving and kept refrigerated.

Make Ahead

Do you want to whip up a batch of cream puffs for a party? Make the shells up to two days in advance and store them in an airtight container at room temperature. To re-crisp the shells, pop them in a 300°F oven for 5-10 minutes, then allow them to cool completely. Fill with the cream and enjoy!


Cream puffs are best enjoyed on the day they’re made, but the fun doesn’t have to stop so soon! Get the most out of your leftover puffs with these storage tips.

  • Refrigerator: To store for up to three days, place leftover assembled cream puffs in an airtight container in the fridge.
  • Freezer: For long-term storage, freeze the shells (unfilled) for up to two months. Allow them to thaw at room temperature, then fill with cream.

More French Sweets

  • Macarons — Crisp almond cookies sandwiched with filling
  • Palmiers — Sweet and flaky puff pastry bites
  • Madeleine Cookies — Soft shell-shaped cookies flavored with vanilla
  • Apple Galette — Free-form apple pie


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Cream Puffs (Easy Filling)

Print Pin


25 puffs

Prep Time 20 minutes mins

Cook Time 30 minutes mins

Total Time 50 minutes mins

Recipe contributed by: Natalya Drozhzhin

These cream puffs feature crispy choux pastry and a luscious sweetened whipped cream filling. You'll experience "amour" with the first bite!



  • 1 cup water
  • 8 tbsp salted butter
  • 1 cup all purpose flour sifted
  • 4 large eggs room temperature


US UnitsMetric



  • Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.

  • Place a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add one cup of water and eight tablespoons of butter. Mix together and bring to a light boil.

  • Turn the heat down to low. Add all the flour at once and stir vigorously with a wooden spoon until the flour is fully incorporated and the dough forms a smooth ball. Keep mixing as the dough cooks for an additional 1-2 minutes.

  • Turn off the heat and transfer the dough to a mixing bowl. Beat with an electric hand mixer at medium speed for 2-3 minutes until the dough has slightly cooled.

  • Add one egg at a time and mix until fully incorporated before adding the next egg. Once all four eggs are mixed in, the dough should be thick and smooth.

  • Transfer the dough to a pastry bag fitted with a large round tip. Pipe dollops about 1.5 inches wide and one inch high onto the prepared baking sheet. Lightly wet a finger and pat down the peaks.

  • Bake the puffs for 25-35 minutes, or until they are golden brown and dry. Remove the puffs from the oven and place them on a wire rack to cool completely.

Cream Filling

  • In a large mixing bowl, combine the heavy cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla. Beat on medium-high speed for 2-3 minutes until the cream is fluffy and soft peaks form. Set aside.

Assembling Cream Puffs

  • Once the puffs are completely cooled, it's time for assembly. Transfer the cream to a piping bag fitted with a small round tip.

  • Create an opening in the bottom or side of the cream puff with the pastry tip.

  • Pipe the cream inside until it pushes back and the puff feels heavy. Refrigerate and then enjoy!

Nutrition Facts

Cream Puffs (Easy Filling)

Amount Per Serving

Calories 131 Calories from Fat 99

% Daily Value*

Fat 11g17%

Saturated Fat 7g35%

Trans Fat 0.1g

Polyunsaturated Fat 1g

Monounsaturated Fat 3g

Cholesterol 57mg19%

Sodium 45mg2%

Potassium 35mg1%

Carbohydrates 6g2%

Fiber 0.1g0%

Sugar 2g2%

Protein 2g4%

Vitamin A 430IU9%

Vitamin C 0.1mg0%

Calcium 19mg2%

Iron 0.4mg2%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Cream Puffs (Easy Filling) (2024)


What is cream puff filling made of? ›

Light and airy cream puffs, filled with thick pastry cream, fluffy whipped cream, or velvety crème légère (pastry cream lightened with whipped cream), are a classic dessert. Composed of just two versatile elements—pâte à choux and the filling of your choice—they're also cinch to whip up.

How long do filled cream puffs last? ›

How long will the cream puffs be good for? We usually recommend consuming the cream puffs the same or next day, after 2 days they will start to become soggy, especially if your refrigerator has a lot of humidity in it.

How to thicken cream puff filling? ›

Starch helps to thicken the pastry cream. It's common for recipes to use flour, cornstarch, rice starch, or a combination of different types of starch. Each starch can bring the custard different textures and tastes: Rice starch: It will make the custard soft and smooth, like a gel, with a smoother appearance.

How do you keep filling in puff pastry? ›

Use an egg wash to help seal filled pastries and connect Puff Pastry pieces: mix 1 egg plus 1 tsp. water, brush between layers, then pinch or press together. When using an egg wash, be sure it doesn't run down the cut sides of the pastry, as that will make edges stick together and stop the pastry from rising.

What makes a cream puff hollow? ›

Steam forms as the puffs bake, and the strong gluten structure formed by beating the dough stretches to hold the steam, then sets into place as the heat coagulates (sets) the protein. The puffs will be dark golden brown, with a hollow center crisscrossed with soft filaments of dough.

How to fill cream puffs from the bottom? ›

Use a paring knife to make a small X in the bottom of each puff to create an opening for filling. Transfer pastry cream to a pastry bag fitted with a 1/8-inch plain round tip. Insert the tip into the opening of each pastry, and pipe to fill with pastry cream. Serve immediately.

What piping tip for filling cream puffs? ›

For cream puffs and profiteroles, use Wilton 1A piping tip. Pipe 2-inch mounds about 3 inches apart. (Watch the video above for a good visual.) You could also use a zipped-top bag and cut off the corner for easy piping.

Do cream puffs get soggy? ›

How do you keep Cream Puffs from getting soggy? First of all, make sure you're baking them long enough. Once cooled, store them in a sealed, airtight container, and do not dust them with sugar until ready to serve.

Why is my cream puff not crispy? ›

There are a few reasons your cream puffs might collapse or not puff up properly in the oven. The first is that you may not have cooked out the moisture enough. Make sure you give it a full 2 minutes on the stove. The second is that there is no way for the steam to escape when the puffs are baked.

Should you freeze cream puffs? ›

Just before baking, pop a craquelin round on top of each one and send them into the oven. Cold puffs may need a couple of minutes more in the oven. You can freeze the puffs after they're baked and they'll be really good, if a tad less magical than just-baked.

What makes cream puffs collapse? ›

Why did my cream puffs collapse? If the puffs collapse it means there was too much moisture in them. So either you did not dry the dough enough, or they were not cooked enough. To avoid this I recommend drying the dough really well (see below) and cracking the door of the oven open when the choux are baked.

What does creampuff mean in slang? ›

Slang. a weak or timid person. a gay man.

Why are my cream puffs runny? ›

If you add too much eggs, the mixture will be runny and unusable. This is what the final dough/paste should look like. If you are not sure, place some of the mixture in the piping bag with a tip fitted, and try piping. The dough should be effortlessly pipeable and holds it's shape without collapsing.

What is the composition of puffs? ›

Polyurethane foam is basically polymer, It is chemical formulation of Isocyanate and Polyol. These compounds are mixed to form rigid, cellular foam. Resultant material is light weight polymer with excellent insulating property.

What does puff puff contain? ›

Puff-puffs are generally made of dough containing flour, yeast, sugar, butter, salt, water and eggs (which are optional), and deep-fried in vegetable oil to a golden-brown color. Baking powder can be used in place of yeast, but yeast is more common.

What is the liquid in choux pastry? ›

Essential Choux Ingredients

The Liquid: You can use water or milk, or a combination of the two. Water allows you to bake either hotter or longer (or both) without as much risk of the choux over-browning, while milk, thanks to its extra proteins and sugars, leads to a more rapidly browned crust.

What is the paste or thick batter used to make cream puffs? ›

Choux Pastry can be used in anything from cream puffs, profiteroles, and eclairs to churros, croquembouche, French cruller donuts, choux beignets, and gougères! It only takes about 10 minutes to prepare and the options for filling and shaping are endless.

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