An eclair is a long pastry made with a basic choux dough that is then baked, filled with cream, and topped with a rich layer of chocolate. Although they look like a difficult dessert to prepare, eclairs from scratch actually quite easy!
This recipe creates delicious eclairs from a basic choux pastry dough of water, flour, butter, and eggs. Choux dough is the basis for many pastries such as French Crullers, beignets, and more.
The difference between a choux pastry and a puff pastry is that puff pastries use fat to create volume. Choux dough uses the water content within the eggs to generate steam and ‘Puff.’
How to Make Chocolate Eclairs from Scratch
1 cup water
1 stick of REAL Butter
1 cup of All-purpose Flour
- Preheat the oven to 400F. Line a baking sheet with a Silpat and set aside until needed.
- In a medium saucepan, combine water and butter over medium heat and bring it to a rolling boil.
- Add 1 cup of flour, constantly stirring until the mixture cooks and forms a ball (about 1 minute!). Immediately remove from the heat and transfer to a mixing bowl. (Some residue will be left on the bottom of the pan, do not scrape this into your mixing bowl).
- Add the eggs all at once and use a hand mixer or stand mixer to mix them in completely, creating a creamy panade. It should NOT be choppy looking.
- Immediately spoon the hot dough into the piping bag and pipe it onto a Silpat or baking sheet that has been covered with parchment paper.
- Pipe the dough in short 4″ strips for a quick piping bag and snip off one corner of a heavy plastic baggie.
- Bake for 35-38 minutes or until the eclairs have puffed and are golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool in a draft-free spot. Do not touch them until they’ve cooled completely or they may collapse.
- Once they have cooled, fill a piping bag with the pudding flavor of your choice and then poke it gently into one end of the eclair. Slowly squeeze the bag to pipe the filling into the eclair, filling the entire length of it.
- Top with hot fudge or chocolate frosting, and serve immediately.
Do not attempt to remove them from the pan until they are completely cool.
Homemade Eclairs from Scratch Flavor Variations
- Chocolate Pudding
- Vanilla Pudding
- Lemon Meringue Filling
- Spiced Pumpkin Mousse
- Eggnog Cream Eclairs
- Strawberry Eclairs– fill with Vanilla Cream or Vanilla Pudding, strawberry slices, and top with powdered sugar and strawberries
Eclairs from Scratch Recipe- Print Now
How to Make Homemade Eclairs
- Preheat the oven to 400F; Line a baking sheet with a clean silpat and set aside.
- Bring butter and water to a rolling boil in a medium saucepan over medium heat.1 cup water8 tablespoons Butter
- Add 1 cup of flour, stirring constantly until the mixture cooks and forms a ball, (about 1 minute!). Immediately remove from the heat and transfer to a mixing bowl.1 cup All Purpose Flour
- Using a hand mixer or stand mixer, mix the eggs in completely, creating a creamy panade. It should not look choppy. Put the hot dough in the piping bag and pipe it onto a Silpat or parchment-covered baking sheet.4 large eggs
- Cut one corner off of a heavy plastic baggie to create a quick piping bag. Pipe the dough into short 4 inch strips.
- The eclairs should be baked for 35-38 minutes until they have puffed and are golden brown.
- Remove the pastries from the oven and allow them to cool completely in a draft-free spot.
- Note: To avoid collapse, it is critical not to touch them until they have cooled completely. Do not attempt to remove them from the pan until they are completely cool.
- Once they have cooled, fill a piping bag with the pudding flavor of your choice and then poke it gently into one end of the eclair. Slowly squeeze the bag to pipe the filling into the eclair, filling the entire length of the pastry.
- Top with hot fudge or chocolate frosting and serve immediately.
If you altered the ingedients above by doubling or tripling the recipe, you may also need to change the pan/dish size and adjust the cooking/baking time.