Boston [Pastry] Cream Cup-pies

March 19, 2008 at 7:12 AM | Posted in cupcakes | 40 Comments
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I would say that cupcakes are my most favorite thing to bake (no seriously! its true!) but I do branch out at least once a week with my baking group, Tuesdays w/ Dorie [Greenspan], started by my friend, Laurie, who also heads up the cupcake-tastical Cupcake Hero event too. She *IS* the foodie event queen! Why Tuesdays? Honestly I have no idea! haha. I am sure there’s a reason behind the madness but it never crossed my mind until now.

Yesterday we made these amazing Brioche Snails. Don’t let the name fool you. Its not a slimy slow paced garden creature (unless you are Leigh and have a great sense of humor!). Its a pastry. Reminds me of a hybrid between a cinnamon roll and a croissant. It was even more incredible the 2nd day! Let me just tell you that these did not last long in my house. The recipe is multiple recipes in one – brioche dough, pastry cream, cinnamon/sugar and flambeed raisins. Since I am an avid raisin-in-dessert-hater I substituted mine with chocolate chips. GENIUS!

It was a long recipe but I wouldn’t say it is as hard as the length implies, unless of course you are like me and can not read a recipe correctly to save your life! We were only suppose to make 1/2 the pastry cream and I skipped over that part and was left with massive amounts of glorious pastry cream. Whats a girl to do?


Forgive me cupcake gods for I have sinned… I used a cake mix. But me and cake mix are friends. Friends need to spend quality time together once in a while. If you are anti-cake mix, please stop here (*ahem* Nikki *ahem*)… If you choose to ignore my warning, I can not be responsible for the consequences of your reaction.

Click image to enlarge
(Recipe adapted from Baking: From my home to yours & Crazy About Cupcakes | photos from me!)

Makes about 24 cupcakes


1 box white cake mix (I used Betty Crocker)

For pastry cream
1 cup whole milk
3 large egg yolks
1/4 cups sugar
1/6 cup cornstarch, sifted
3/4 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1-3/4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into bits at room temperature

For ganache
1/2 cup bittersweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
3/4 cup heavy cream


Make cupcake per box instructions.

To make pastry cream—
Bring the milk to a boil in a small saucepan.

Meanwhile, in a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan, whisk the egg yolks together with the sugar and cornstarch until thick and well blended. Still whisking, drizzle in about 1/4 cup of the hot milk– this will temper, or warm, the yolks so they won’t curdle. Whisking all the while, slowly pour in the remainder of the milk. Put the pan over medium heat and, whisking vigorously, constantly and thoroughly (making sure to get the edges of the pot), bring the mixture to a boil. Keep at a boil, still whisking, for 1 to 2 minutes, then remove the pan from the heat.

Whisk in the vanilla extract. Let sit for 5 minutes, then whisk in the bits of butter, stirring until they are full incorporated and the pastry cream is smooth and silky. Scrape the cream into a bowl. You can press a piece of plastic wrap against the surface of the cream to create an airtight seal and refrigerate the pastry cream until cold or, if you want to cool it quickly–as I always do–put the bowl into a larger bowl filled with ice cubes and cold water, and stir the pastry cream occasionally until it is thoroughly chilled, about 20 minutes.

To make ganache––
Place chocolate in bowl.

In saucepan bring whipping cream to boil over high heat. Pour hot whipping cream over chocolate and stir until chocolate melted. Spread ganache over cupcake.

To assemble cupcake—
After cupcake cools, cut in 1/2 with a serrated knife. Spread pastry cream between the 2 halves. Frost cupcake with ganache.

Variation: Pipe the pastry cream into the cupcake. I used a 2A piping tip.


Husband rating: N/A

Wifey rating: A
These were so yummy. The pastry cream is smooth but not overwhelmingly sweet so it compliments the cupcake and the chocolate really well.



  1. You did it wrong … everyone knows that one a boston cream pie the chocolate is supposed to be drizzled over everything :P

  2. This looks sooo delicious! It’s a good think I’m not a cake mix snob like some people, ::cough cough::

  3. Yuuuuuuuuuuummmmmm! I must try this!

  4. You know, I don’t think I’ve ever had boston cream pie. These look really yummy, though!

  5. These cupcakes look delicious!

  6. OMG Yum! Hey..a girl’s gotta do right? And if they turned out good with a cake mix, then no problem!
    Basically you put custard in it, or around it, or in the near vicinity and I am a huge fan.
    Weird note..are you a yogurt fan? the Yoplait light Boston Creme…so awesome.
    Ok..shutting up now.

  7. That looks sooo heavenly!!

  8. Tuesdays with Dorie is a play on the best selling book called Tuesdays with Morie. Just an FYI on that.

    The cupcakes look amazing! I might have to do this with my left over pastry cream, too.

  9. NIKKI, what do you mean its wrong? cake, cream and chocolate.

    NINA, tvym. haha

    ANDREA, oh you must. Now that you are a certified cake decorator in training… you need to put your skills to good use on lots and lots of cupcakes.

    KRISTINA, never? you are missing out!

    APRIL, I have to admit they were quite good! That pastry cream is so yummy. Do you have any leftover from TWD too? Definitely give it a try!

    SUZY Q-ZY, Omg I totally know what you are talking about. The yoplait BCP is so freakin good!!

    JENMARIE, thanky!

    RACHEL, I just had a ::smack forehead:: moment. thanks.

  10. Yummy. Did you get to use the bismark tip for filling, or did you try something else?

  11. Those look sooooo good!

  12. ZEBE, what is bismark? star? round? I used the 2A (large round) tip.

    BB, hey there stranger! thanky!

  13. Give! Boston Cream anything is my fav!

  14. LT, you loved the pastry cream right? You’d love these cupcakes. Mmmm…

  15. You have no idea how much I love pastry cream. To tell you would be violating many statuates on innapropriate conduct in public.

  16. W00t w00t! I know what the Bismark is! I own it!! It’s number 230 and it comes in the supplemental cupcake kit (which I just assumed you had – and now MUST get). It’s made specifically for filling cupcakes.

  17. ANDREA, oohhh ok! I’ve seen the cupcake kit @ Michaels but I don’t have it. Its the long round tip right?

  18. Yes, it’s that super long one. They don’t sell Bismark separately, so that’s why I bought the cupcake kit (I used my 40% off coupon and it was like $5).

  19. ANDREA, well poo about having to buy the kit. I wonder if the cake store I go to has it separately. I’ll have to give it a try!

  20. CB, ebay. :)

  21. NINA rocks.

  22. “Boston [Pastry] Cream Cup-pies”

    I’m just dropping you a line to thank you very much. Your blog has just created me some extra work for me (lol).

    My husband for some reason during his internet escapades came across your recipe and is currently swanning around the house singing yummy, yummy, yummy I’m going to have some cream cup pies in my tummy.

  23. SUZANNE, LOL. I am so sorry! but I am truly impressed that your husband was the one who found my recipe. My hubs barely knows the name of my blog! Definitely let me know what you think of the cupcakes and a video of your husband singing would be a bonus! ;)

  24. Eeeeek! I LURVE Boston Cream Pie! I am SO making these.

  25. WOW, they are looking really yammi. Can’t believe they are made with a mix, great.

    Have you ever seen this cupcake pan. So you can make real cakes, just looking like a cupcake:

    Greatings from Germany, Azrael!

  26. ALANNA, definitely! let me know what you think!

    AZRAEL, that pan is so cute! I wonder if I could find that in the US b/c shipping from Germany might be a tad expensive ;) ps. Nice to “meet” you!

  27. Oh, you’ll find these pan at Wilton:
    and there’s another one, also very cute pan:

    But I think you’ll get them much cheaper at! ^^

  28. AZRAEL, oh wow! Thanks for the links!! I am a huge ebay freak so I’ll definitely have to see if I can find it even cheaper on ebay ;)

  29. *lol* I’m a ebay freak, too. At the moment I’m bidding for a lovely Winnie Pooh Silikon Pan. Wish me luck! ^^

    Is it okay for you, if I’m going to put a link to your blog online.

  30. AZRAEL, GL with your pan! definitely link away!

  31. These look mighty tasty :)

  32. SOPHIE, thanky!

  33. eeps these are so cute! and i am realllly wanting some pastry cream now… =)

  34. ALLISON, I didn’t know that pastry cream was pretty straight forward to make. At first I thought it would be much sweeter but the subtle flavor grows on you and you get addicted fast!

  35. ooh~ smart idea on using the leftover pastry cream! I lurves me some Boston Cream pie. I actually made them as cupcakes before- I think I used Chockylit’s recipe. It’s been a while. And I choose to just ignore the shameful use of cake mix.

  36. TW, haha. thanks for cake mix ignorance on my behalf. I’ll have to try chockylit’s recipe! She’s fabulous.

  37. Oh my, this looks like extreme fantastic goodness–like the magic of unicorns and puppies and sugar cubes all rolled in one. But not, like, the same taste as aforementioned elements.

  38. CAKESPY, ok what drugs are you on? and why aren’t you sharing! haha.

  39. Wow… these look amazing. I’m gonna have to try them…

  40. MARILLA, please do! Let me know what you think, k? :)

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