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Choux Pastries aka Puff Pastries aka Pâte à Choux

  • Prep Time: 20m
  • Cook Time: 40m
  • Total Time: 1h


  • 4 oz Water
  • 2 oz Butter, unsalted
  • 2 5/8 oz All-purpose flour, sifted
  • 4 oz Eggs (roughly 2 large eggs)
  • 1 Pinch of salt


  1. Preheat the oven to 425°F. Prepare a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicon baking mat.
  2. Combine the water, butter and salt in a medium-sized saucepan. Heat until the butter has melted, and bring to a rolling boil. The butter should be melted before the water starts boiling.
  3. Remove the pan from heat, add the sifted flour all at once, and stir vigorously until combined and no streak of flour is visible. It will look like mashed potatoes.
  4. Return the pan to heat and cook over medium heat 4-5 minutes, stirring and mashing constantly. This will continue to dry the dough and cook the flour taste out of the flour. Cook until the mixture smooths out, balls up, and doesn't stick to the pan, 4-5 minutes. The surface will look shiny with spots of oil, and will be thick enough that the spoon will stand upright.
  5. Remove the pan from heat, transfer the mixture to a mixing bowl, and let the mixture cool to room temperature (below 120°F -- I put the mixing bowl in the freezer for a few minutes until it doesn't feel hot to my finger).
  6. Using a stand mixer, beaters, or stirring vigorously, beat in the eggs one at a time. Let each one fully combine before adding the next. Continue beating for at least 2 minutes after the last egg. It will be done when a heaping scoop is reluctant to fall from the spoon.
  7. Using a piping bag, pipe the batter into the shape you desire: Cream puffs: 2" mounds, about 3" apart. Eclairs: 5" logs about 3/4" in diameter, 2" apart.
  8. Bake the pastries at 425°F for 12 minutes, until they look puffed. Don't open the oven door while the pastries are baking, not until you think they're ready for the touch test in the next step.
  9. Reduce the oven temperature to 350°F and bake another 16 minutes. They should be golden-brown in color and dry to the touch. They should feel hollow and light, and lift easily from the baking sheet.
  10. Reduce the temperature to 300°F and continue baking for another 8 minutes or so, to continue drying them out.
  11. At this point, you can break one open and test for dryness. If not done, poke the pastries with a toothpick (I choose an inconspicuous place) and bake for another 5 minutes or so to let out as much steam/moisture as possible.
  12. Place them on a rack to cool until they are comfortable to handle. Cut in half and fill with your favorite filling (usually ice cream for profiteroles, sweet whipped cream for éclairs or cream puffs).