Pasticciera Cream (Italian Pastry Cream )

Total Time
Prep 10 mins
Cook 10 mins

This is a basic recipe for Italian pastry cream which is used as a filling for many cakes and pastries. The chocolate pastry cream is made from this same base, with the addition of the chocolate. Depending on the recipe you are going to use the pastry cream for, you may prefer to omit the lemon rind. Here are the recipes for the basic and chocolate variety. Prep/Cook times do not include chilling time.

Ingredients Nutrition

  • Basic Recipe

  • 3 tablespoons sugar (or confectioner's sugar)
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 12 teaspoon grated fresh lemon rind (omit for chocolate pasticciera cream) (optional)
  • 12 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • Chocolate Pasticciera Cream

  • 2 ounces baking chocolate, grated


  1. Place sugar, egg yolks flour, lemon rind (if using it), and vanilla in a sauce pan and mix together well.
  2. In a separate sauce pan, scald milk.
  3. Very slowly pour milk over egg yolk mixture, in a thin stream, beating constantly with rotary beater.
  4. Continue cooking on low heat, stirring with a wooden spoon, until mixture reaches the boiling point.
  5. Cook 4 minutes longer, stirring constantly.
  6. (**At this point, if making chocolate pasticciera cream, add chocolate and while stirring, cook 1 minute longer.) Remove pan from heat, add butter and mix well.
  7. Pour into bowl and let cool, stir occasionally to prevent skin from forming over the top.
  8. If using as a cake/pastry filling, chill (with plastic wrap pressed onto the surface to prevent a skin from forming) until very thick at least 3-4 hours.
  9. For Chocolate Pasticciera Cream: **Add grated chocolate to cooked pasticciera cream and cook 1 minute longer, stirring constantly, until chocolate is blended well.
  10. Cool/chill before using as a cake/pastry filling.
Most Helpful

5 5

This was perfect! Just what I was looking for. I ommitted the lemon rind and the chocolate and it was wonderful with just the vanilla flavour. I used a cafe style tomato ketchup bottle that I picked up from the market to inject the luscious cream into some profiteroles I had made. Marvellous stuff - Thank you :)

5 5

This cream is absolutely delicious. Since the recipe said approximately 2.5 cups, I didnt take off stars for only getting a little under 2 cups of cream. I really needed the 2.5 cups, but I stretched it and just under 2 cups was just fine. I used 5 tablespoons sugar as we like ours a bit sweeter, but did everything else as stated. The flavor is fabulous, texture is amazing. I will be making this again. Tonight I used it in my trifle. Thanks :)

3 5

I made the chocolate version of this. It came out okay, but it tasted as if it were under sweetened. This might be partly due to my not knowing what type of baking chocolate to use since it doesn't specify (I ended up using one ounce of unsweetened and once ounce of semi sweet).

I ended up adding at least another 3 tablespoons or more of confectioners sugar post-cooking. I just kept adding and tasting until it seemed right. It was much better after I added the extra sugar.

Maybe the lemon version is just right (haven't tried that yet) but the chocolate version definitely could use the extra sugar.

Overall, a decent recipe. Thanks!