Posted by Grace Massa Langlois on Friday, 21st January 2011

What is a Profiterole?  A Profiterole is a dessert dish consisting of Pâte à Choux Puffs (Choux Pastry Puffs) filled with Crème Chantilly (Sweetened Whipped Cream flavoured with Vanilla) or Crème Patissiere (pastry cream). The puffs can also be filled with ice cream.  If you frequent Italian Bakeries you will generally see the choux puffs made to resemble swans and filled with Crema Pasticcera.

A photo of a Profiterole with Vanilla Crème Chantilly.

Profiteroles can be garnished simply with a dusting of confectioners’ sugar or decadently with chocolate sauce or caramel sauce drizzled on top.  The tops can also be dipped in a crunchy caramel glaze.  The crunchy caramel glazed profiterole is generally used when assembling a Croquembouche (the profiteroles are arranged in the shape of a cone and held together by the caramel glaze and decorated with spun sugar).

A photo of Profiteroles with Vanilla Creme Chantilly dusted with confectioners' sugar on a wooden cutting board.

You may be asking yourself why the “Profiterole tutorial” – I am asked on a regular basis “What is the dessert pictured in your web site banner?” and “Do you have the recipe posted?”  I thought it was high time that I share one of my favourite desserts – Profiteroles with Vanilla Crème Chantilly and Hot Chocolate Sauce.

A photo of a Profiterole with Vanilla Crème Chantilly and Hot Chocolate Sauce.

Shortly after getting married I attempted Profiteroles for the first time.  At the time I referred to them as “Cream Puffs“.  I was hoping to impress my new husband with light and airy puffs filled with cloud like cream.  Unfortunately the puffs were rock hard and burnt on the bottom.  And the Crème Chantilly – lumpy!  Thankfully I have come a long way since then.

A photo of Profiteroles with Vanilla Crème Chantilly and dusted with icing sugar placed in a row on a white rectangular plate.

Choux dessert pastry recipes on a whole are quite similar.   The basic ingredients are butter, salt, sugar and water or a combination of water and milk.  I prefer making choux pastry with 100% water because I have found the puffs rise much better.

A photo of 3 Profiteroles with Chantilly Cream on a black plate.

The water in the mixture creates steam while baking, which forces the pastry to expand in volume creating a hollow centre giving the puffs a much lighter texture.  I spritz the puffs lightly with water immediately before baking to help create more steam, which also creates volume in the puffs.

A photo of Profiteroles on a wooden cutting board.

The Pâte à Choux Puffs can also be used to make another of my favourite French Pastries, the Chocolate Éclair (decadence at it’s best!).  The flip side to the dessert Profiterole is the savoury Profiterole known as the Gougères.  The Gougères is a savoury Pâte à Choux with cheese.  They can be filled with an assortment of different ingredients such as meat and vegetables.

A photo of Profiteroles with Vanilla Chantilly Cream.

Be it sweet or savoury the Profiterole will be sure to please!

A photo of a Profiterole with Vanilla Chantilly Cream and drizzled with Hot Chocolate Sauce.

A photo of Pâte à Choux Puffs (Choux Pastry Puffs) on a wooden cutting board.


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Posted in Baking & Pastry, Baking Mise en Place, Basics, Custards, Creams & Mousses, Eggs, Fillings, Frostings & Dessert Sauces, Pasticcini, Pastries, Pastry Doughs & Batter, Recipes, Ricette di Base

Comments (43)

43 Responses to “Profiteroles with Vanilla Crème Chantilly and Hot Chocolate Sauce”

  1. Belinda @zomppa Says:

    Yours are so beautiful, I barely want to touch them and mess them up (though I would be more than happy to).

  2. Grace Says:

    Wish I could keep my hands off of them, too addictive.

  3. Hester aka The Chefdoc Says:

    Oh man… a profiterole sounds so good right now! I like mine with custard, yum :-)

  4. Grace Says:

    I love them with custard too but I just made Cannoncini and used a pastry filling so I thought I would do something a little different.

  5. Cajun Chef Ryan Says:

    Indeed Pâte à Choux is one of those classics that never dies, and continues to contribute as an amazing canvas of unlimited tasty treats.

    Bon appetit!

  6. Tweets that mention Profiteroles Recipe, Chantilly Cream, Chocolate Sauce Recipe | La Mia Vita Dolce -- Says:

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by CajunChefRyan, Grace Langlois. Grace Langlois said: New Blog Post – Profiteroles with Vanilla Creme Chantilly and Hot Chocolate Sauce #sweets #chocolate #desserts #fbz […]

  7. Marly Says:

    I like the picture with your hand holding the cream puff. Is that for me? Thank you very much! These look delicious!

  8. Grace Says:

    You’re back – yahoo! Just for you – How was the trip?

  9. Lisa @ Tarte du Jour Says:

    These look fabulous! I love making pastry….I haven’t made pâte à choux in quite a long while. Thanks for the inspiration to try them again.

  10. Gemma Says:

    Oh la la! Those profiteroles look delicious! My sister loves them so I’ll try this recipe asap! Thanks for sharing!

  11. Lizzy Says:

    Gracie, boy do those look wonderful!!!! Gosh, I think I could eat every part on its own, but all together? Ah….perfection!

  12. Annie Says:

    I have been wanting to make cream puffs for a while now but have never gotten around to it. Your look so delicious! Maybe you could just send me some ;)

  13. Maria Says:

    Wow, these look fabulous!

  14. Blog is the New Black Says:

    Gorgeous pics! Great reipce.

  15. Tiffany Says:

    Profiteroles are TIMELESS! and yours are very pretty!

  16. penny aka jeroxie Says:

    Profiteroles are on my list of goodies to bake this year. :D

  17. Chef Dennis Says:

    those are gorgeous profiteroles!! your images are stunning! Now you have me wanting to make those little beauties, thanks so much for the detailed recipes!

  18. Kita Says:

    When I was a little kid my father and I made these once. I have often wanted to try them again as an adult. These are beautiful. :)

  19. Lisa Says:

    Wow, those profiteroles sound like a real treat and with that luscious chocolate sauce pouring down them, I have no doubt that one is never enough.

  20. Julie Says:

    Gorgeous profiteroles! Have always wanted to try making these. Lots of effort went into the photography! Keep us drooling!! Julie

  21. something_good Says:

    Amazing photos! I can taste them with some ice cream on top (that used to be my favorite dessert while in high school).

  22. Lacey @ Says:

    Those look absolutely delicious! We’d love to see your recipe posted on!

  23. Saime Urus Says:

    Your profiterols look wonderful. I tried twice, but they puff off after I turned off the owen. Where did I make wrong? Thank you in advance.

  24. Grace Says:

    Here are a few tips:
    Hi Saime, here are a few tips I follow to help get light and fluffy choux buns;

    1. Preheat oven to desired temperature and using an oven thermometer (you can pick up at the hardware store for a few dollars) check that the oven is reading the actual temperature and continue to heat for an additional 10 minutes before putting the choux buns in the oven to bake, so it gets nice and hot.
    2. Put one baking sheet in at a time on the middle rack.
    3. Do not use dark coloured baking sheets.
    4. If you prefer to egg wash, make sure it does not drip down the sides, I no longer egg wash and I find the colour to be just fine.
    5. If you are using a recipe that calls for milk switch to one that is 100% water (every time I use a recipe with milk it fails for me)
    6. Immediately before placing the choux buns in to bake spritz with cold water, the steam created will help with the rise (if you do not have a spray bottle do as I do, I fill a glass with very cold water and dip my fingers in and flick cold water on each profiterole). Place in the oven immediately to bake.
    7. Do not open the door during the first 15 minutes of baking, if you do the temp will decrease and you could lose the rise,

    I hope these tips help, let me know how it goes.

  25. Saime Urus Says:

    Dear Grace;
    Thank you very much for your kind reply and your interest.I wil try again and inform you about the result.Lots of love from Turkey.

  26. Grace Says:

    Thank you!

  27. Pauline Says:

    Glad you made these with hot chocolate sauce, best way to eat them. Lovely pictures, I could eat everyone.

  28. Grace Says:

    I almost did Pauline, one is never enough.

  29. Jan Judd Says:

    Your recipes are Just incredible..Have had a lovely time Looking through them and they are Beautifully Illustrated and easy to follow…Many Thanks Jan

  30. Grace Says:

    Thank you Jan – Did you see my reply on the Facebook page? If you’d like I can email you any of the recipes in Word format. Hoping to have the print feature really soon.

  31. Chocolate Éclairs with Vanilla Bean Crème Pâtissière Recipe | La Mia Vita Dolce Says:

    […] Crème PâtissièreChocolate Ganache GlazePâte à Choux Puffs (Pasta Choux – Choux Pastry)Recette Pâte à Choux {Ricetta Pasta Choux – Choux Puff Pastry Recipe}To shape Éclairs PuffsTransfer pâte à choux to large pastry bag fitted with large plain tip […]

  32. shamiyah Says:

    hi grace i made them n they came out nice but i have a small question.mine came out a little crispy is it normal?they should b crispy?

  33. Grace Says:

    Yes, yes and yes. They should be crispy on the outside, well done!

  34. Zeppole-Italian Desserts-Italian Pastry-Italian pastry desserts-Donuts | La Mia Vita Dolce Says:

    […] craving for Chocolate Éclairs and before I knew it one batch of éclairs turned into one batch of profiteroles and one batch of Zeppole.  My kitchen island resembled a pastry shop display counter.  Can you […]

  35. in my studio | food . design . life | profiteroles Says:

    […] RECIPE FOR PROFITEROLES/CREAM PUFFS Adapted from Graces Sweet Life […]

  36. M K Says:

    Been looking for great profiterole (pate choux) recipes and I love the crust you have here.

    I have made this before and even though I pipe them evenly, they don’t seem to bake the same way.

    So my question is – if the height should be 4 cm, what about the base? Should the pate choux be pushed to form a specific diameter or just dropped and pulled to form 4 cm high?

  37. Grace Says:

    Hi Nazir, for the larger profiteroles like I have shown in the images, you should pipe the base about 4-cm (1 1/2 inches), for smaller profiteroles about 2.5 cm (1-inch). Hold the bag about 1 1/4-cm (1/2 inch) from the top of the parchment-covered baking sheet, squeeze dough out (until you reach desired diameter) and flick the bag away at the top to break the dough. Make sure to wet your finger to pat down the peaks or they will burn. Also I spritz my puffs with water immediately before popping them in the oven, this creates steam and they puff better. Let me know how it goes, I love profiteroles!

  38. Daring bakers challenge: profiteroles « rebel lemming Says:

    […] read about 20 different articles on choux pastry and ended up going with the one on “la mia vita Dolce” purely because it was the most non fuss and easiest to follow one. and it turns out, gave me […]

  39. Michelle Says:

    Hi There! I tried your yummy recipe and the profiteroles came out great, but I just wanted to ask how big is a “large” egg? (I am from South Africa and our “Jumbo” egg is +66g). My profiteroles tasted a little eggy, so Im thinking my eggs were a little to big! Thanks so much :)

  40. Grace Says:

    Hi Michelle, I’m so happy you enjoyed them, pastry is one of my downfalls, I could eat these all day. Our large egg is 57 grams in the shell, 50 without, 30 white only and 18 for a large yolk. I believe our extra large eggs are 63 g and our jumbo is 70 g. I’m going to assume your jumbo is 66 with the shell, I would recommend trying 3 whole eggs plus 1 egg yolk the next time you prepare the profiteroles. Please let me know if this produces a better choux bun for you hopefully it won’t be quite so eggy. You’ve inspired me to write a post on eggs sizes and the variations across the globe. This sort of question came up the other day only the subject was gelatine, it too varies depending on where you live. Have a great day Michelle and thank you so much for taking the time to comment.

  41. Michelle Says:

    Hi Grace! Thanks so much for getting back to me and for the VERY helpful info. Yes depending on where you live there seem to be a few differences! Looks like your large egg is the equivalent to our “extra large” variety which is +/- 59g in the shell. Who knew eggs could be so complicated! I shall bake my next batch with that size instead – have 100 profiteroles to do for a function so I will definately let you know how they come out next time! I look forward to your post re the egg sizes :) Thanks again!

  42. Gabriela Says:

    Well fancy that, I go searching for a profiterole recipe and stumble upon a fellow Londoner. :) I made these profiteroles today and they came out really well! It was my first time ever making profiteroles and they got eaten up in a snap (and not just by myself)

  43. Grace Says:

    So happy you’ve enjoyed Gabriela, very nice to have a London visitor!

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