Lemon Pastry Cream

I think having a “go to” pastry cream in our repertoire can really up the baking game!  It can be used in so many ways.  Having a smooth and creamy pastry cream is a deal changer!!

This luscious made from scratch pastry cream is perfect for filling crepes, cakes, eclairs, tarts and other confections.  I have tried several different recipes and the end result was always the same….lumpy!!  I would always strain the pastry cream and it would look and taste great, but after it was refrigerated it would still be lumpy (even after whisking again).

Well, here is the secret my friends!!  The magic to achieving lump free pastry cream is to keep whisking until it starts to thicken and bubble, and then continue whisking for another minute.  This process is going to take some time, but trust me, it is sooo worth it!!

Also, make sure to let the milk mixture cool slightly before adding to the egg mixture so you don’t end up scrambling the eggs.

This pastry cream does not have to be strained.  Once it has been refrigerated, give it a quick stir and it comes back to it’s smooth and creamy self…NO LUMPS!!!



  • 3/4 cup whole milk (180 grams)
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream (180 grams)
  • peel from 1 large lemon (be sure to use only the yellow part of the peel)
  • 4 large egg yolks (68 grams)
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar (100 grams)
  • 2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons all-purpose flour (19 grams)
  • 1 teaspoon lemon paste
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste


  1. In a medium sauce pan heat milk, cream and lemon peel until very hot (do not boil). Remove from heat.
  2. In another pot whisk together egg yolks and sugar until combined.  Whisk in the flour, lemon paste, and vanilla bean paste.  Whisk until fully incorporated.
  3. Place the pot with the egg yolk mixture over a low heat.  Strain the milk, cream and lemon peel slowly into the yolk mixture and begin to whisk.  Keep whisking until it begins to thicken.  This will take a few minutes.
  4. Increase heat to medium/low and cook, stirring continuously until very thick. Once the mixture starts to bubble, continue to whisk for one more minute.
  5. Place the thickened pastry cream in a glass bowl, cover with plastic and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.

The texture of this pastry cream is so smooth, and the hint of lemon adds to the overall flavor.  There are endless ways to use this ambrosial cream.  I like to fill crepes with this delicious cream (and roasted strawberries too)….Yummm!!

Top with whipped cream and juice from roasted strawberries!
Top with whipped cream and juice from the roasted strawberries!

I hope you make this divine pastry cream, and if you do, please tag me on Instagram @goodeatsbymimi.  I would love to hear from you and see your photos!



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