If you've historically been someone who relies on the frozen box to pull together quick treats, let me introduce you to my 15-minute method. There are so many things you can do with a homemade puff pastry recipe. First, we'll learn to make it, and then I'll share 9 ways to use it!
This Puff Pastry Dough Recipe is glorious!
It's the holidays, and people are expecting homemade things from you! You can impress them with a homemade puff pastry recipe, and I'm going to show you exactly how to make one sheet of puff pastry from scratch! I'm even including 9 puff pastry recipes so that you can use your glorious puff as soon as possible.
I see you slowly backing away from your screen when I said 'homemade puff pastry,' but, please, come back! Yes, I found a method for 15-minute puff pastry from scratch, and you're going to love it so much that you might commit it to memory. I can't be the only one who wanted to tattoo the recipe on my forearm after just one bite.
This recipe comes from Clotilde, and I immediately trusted her because she's French. In fact, I trust the French with all pastry-related things. She calls it rough puff pastry, and I love the way that sounds. This rough puff pastry is perfect for all of your puff pastry recipes.
Puff Pastry ingredients
The first time I made this puff pastry, it took me 15 minutes while I was half-asleep in my yoga clothes. It's that easy, and after tasting it, I realized I needed to make it again so that I could photograph it step-by-step to convince you just how easy it is.
I'm dreaming up all sorts of sweet and savory applications for this quick, buttery and puffy dough, and I'm confident that you're going to love them all! The ingredients are so simple!
- All-Purpose Flour. We just 1 cup (or 125 grams) of regular, plain bleached all-purpose flour. It's truly best to measure flour by weight in a pastry recipe, but if you don't have a scale, fluff the flour, scoop it into the cup and then use a knife to level off the surface of the flour.
- Salt. Use fine sea salt for this recipe, since we're using unsalted butter.
- Butter. This is the time to break out the fancy, high-fat European style butter that contains less water than regular American style butter. We need 10 tablespoons, or 5 ounces. This recipe still works with regular butter, however.
- Water. We're using a small amount of ice cold water to bring the pastry together. In a glass measuring cup, add ¾-1 cup of water plus a handful of ice cubes. Remove ice cubes after 10 minutes, and measure out ⅓ cup of ice cold water for the recipe.
The best butter for making pastry from scratch:
This is the time to splurge on fancy butter. The reason the price is higher is because the butter has a higher fat content. The regular sticks at the grocery store have water in them. Weird, right? I'm a devoted Kerrygold girl, because I can buy a 3-pack from Costco for around $8. Très raisonnable.
Another way to tell if butter is high-quality is the color--it should be a vivid golden yellow. Of course, if you have access to French butter or cultured butter, that is great here, too.
How to make Puff Pastry
There are only three ingredients to this puff pastry recipe. It's just flour, salt, butter; well, technically cold water is an ingredient, but I don't count this one. Blend everything together with a pastry cutter or two knives, and then take a moment to assess the appearance of the dough.
Now, we're going to get our arm work out in for the day. The process is simple--just shape everything into a rough square. Don't worry, but you will still see pieces of butter in the dough.
Resist the urge to add more water; the dough will come together with each roll out.
After patting the dough into a square, flour your rolling pin very well. Roll the dough out into a long rectangle. Then, fold it up like a letter: fold the bottom third up to the middle and then the top third over the middle.
Then, give the dough a quarter turn and repeat. Roll out the dough, fold it like a letter, and turn and repeat at least 5 times. You'll notice the dough becomes easier and easier to work with. Clotilde recommends not using too much flour to prevent incorporating too much flour into the dough.
I was a little haphazard about this, because I dislike a sticky dough.
After you've rolled out the dough 6 or 7 times, you're done. Wrap it in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least one hour. This helps the gluten in the dough relax. I usually let mine rest overnight.
I like to make this on Friday night, and then whip up something puffy and flaky for breakfast Saturday morning.
I've been watching my fair share of Great British Bake Off, or as it's called here in the States, Great British Baking Show. Anytime Paul Hollywood calls for something made with puff pastry, the contestants have to choose between making it the easy or hard way. Almost always, the person who chooses to make it the hard way wins the challenge.
The 'hard way' to make puff pastry is to roll all of the butter into a flat sheet, and fold it into the dough one fold at a time. After each fold, it requires refrigeration to set the butter. Repeat this at least six or seven times! I don't think it's necessarily hard to do, but it does chain you to the kitchen all afternoon.
The contestants to make easy puff pastry my way still produce something delicious! Maybe the fluff and flake is slightly better when it's made the hard way, but the flavor is still excellent.
I would even challenge you to make your favorite recipe that calls for puff pastry with this recipe for puff pastry and compare it to a sheet of the store-bought stuff. Now, don't get me wrong--there is one type of puff pastry in the frozen section that is made with all butter. But for the most part, it isn't, so check your labels.
How to store this Rough Puff Pastry Recipe
Homemade pastry is so easy to store. It must be kept in the fridge to keep the butter cold, but it’s even easier to keep in the freezer. Place it between two sheets of parchment paper and freeze it flat. After it’s frozen, move it a freezer-safe bag and store for up to 6 months. To defrost, move to fridge overnight and then rest on the counter until soft enough to roll out. If you don’t have room to freeze it flat, fold it in thirds with a piece of parchment paper between each fold and freeze.
What to make with Puff Pastry - 9 Recipes
Now that you've mastered homemade puff pastry in just 15 minutes, what can you make with it?
I see a lot of comments below asking how to cook this puff pastry. The thing is: you need to take the finished raw dough and use it in a recipe that calls for puff pastry.
Here are 9 puff pastry recipes to give you an idea of how to use it!
You can use this 15-minute puff pastry recipe to make something sweet...like Apple Tarte Tatin:
Or a small batch of Apple Turnovers:
How about something savory: Ham and Cheese Puff Pastry:
A surplus of fresh berries would love to become a Raspberry Galette with a puff pastry crust.
Similarly, a bounty of fresh strawberries would love to become a Strawberry Crostata with a puff pastry crust.
For a really decadent topping on Chicken Pot Pie for Two, use this puff pastry recipe!
If you can't find phyllo dough at your store (which I often can not), try puff pastry on top of my Skillet Spanakopita.
Cinnamon rolls require so much less work if you start with pre-made puff pastry. This recipe is technically Sticky Buns because we're putting brown sugar and pecans in the pan before baking.
If you use the recipe to make something else, I'd love to hear about it in the comment section below! Again, please use this raw dough that this recipe produces in any recipe that calls for one sheet of puff pastry. It is not meant to be baked and eaten by itself. That would be weird, ok?
Puff Pastry FAQs
Yes, you can fry puff pastry! It makes the most delicious donuts. Check out my recipe for puff pastry donuts here.
Absolutely not. Phyllo dough does not contain any butter! Phyllo dough is made out of flour and a small amount of oil. Puff pastry contains copious amounts of butter, which allows it to puff up in the oven (as the water in the butter becomes steam in the hot oven), and creates a flaky pastry. In comparison, phyllo dough is simply crispy.
Close, but not exactly. Crescent rolls use yeast, while puff pastry does not contain yeast.
There are a few secrets to baking puff pastry. One is to use very high-quality butter with a high fat percentage (like a European-style butter), and baking at a high temperature. In the places where you want the pastry to puff up, leave it alone; in the places where you want it to lay flat (like with a filling), poke holes in it with a fork to allow the steam to escape and prevent puffing.
- 1 cup (125 grams) all-purpose flour
- ¼ teaspoon fine salt
- 10 tablespoons high-quality unsalted butter (5 ounces), cold
- ⅓ cup ice cold water
- In a medium bowl, add the flour and salt. Stir to mix.
- Next, cube the butter and then add it to the flour bowl. Using a pastry blender or two knives, cut the butter into the dough. It will be very crumbly, and you're done when the butter is in uniform pieces all about the size of peas.
- Next, make a hole in the center of the dough and pour in all of the water. Using a fork, stir to combine the dough.
- Flour a cutting board, and add the dough. Pat it into a rough square. You will still see chunks of butter and it will seem too dry, but do not add extra water. The dough will come together with each roll.
- Flour the rolling pin, and roll the dough out in front of you into a rectangle about 10" long. No need to be too precise here.
- Fold the bottom third of the dough over the middle of the dough. Fold the upper third of the dough on top of the middle too. Rotate the dough one-quarter turn, and repeat. Use additional flour as needed to prevent the dough from sticking.
- Roll out, fold, and turn the dough at least 6 or 7 times.
- When done, wrap the dough in plastic wrap and chill for at least one hour, or overnight. Dough may be frozen, too.
- Roll out with flour for desired puff pastry use.
Serving Size:1 recipe
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 1473Total Fat: 116gSaturated Fat: 72gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 38gCholesterol: 305mgSodium: 557mgCarbohydrates: 95gFiber: 3gSugar: 0gProtein: 14g