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Easy Vegan Custard Recipe (Pastry Cream)

A small white bowl filled with my vegan vanilla custard recipe and topped with raspberries, blackberries and fresh mint leaves.


Rich and creamy Vegan Custard Recipe made with just 6 basic ingredients! This vanilla cream is perfect for tarts, pastries, doughnuts, and more!

Prep Time 0 minutes

Cook Time 10 minutes

Total Time 10 minutes

A small white bowl filled with my vegan vanilla custard recipe and topped with raspberries, blackberries and fresh mint leaves.

This Vegan Custard Recipe is quick, easy to make, and ready in just 10 minutes! With its velvety and creamy texture, you’ll want to put this pastry cream on everything.

Traditional custard is made with cow’s milk, heavy cream, and egg yolks. But we aren’t going to use any of those today!

Similar to my vegan vanilla pudding, this recipe uses soy milk as the base and cornstarch as a thickening agent. But there is one secret ingredient that makes all the difference: vegan butter.

Those ingredients make the custard so smooth and creamy that you’d have never guessed that it’s dairy-free.

A small white bowl filled with my vegan vanilla custard recipe and topped with raspberries, blackberries and fresh mint leaves.
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Ingredients You’ll Need

Get all the details on these simple ingredients in the recipe card at the post’s bottom.

  • Soy milk: For best results don’t substitute with other types of plant milk such as oat milk or coconut milk.
  • Coconut milk: Use full-fat coconut milk from a can. You can also substitute it with a plant-based cream such as soy cream or coconut cream.
  • Cornstarch: You’ll need it to thicken the pastry cream.
  • Granulated sugar: I like using granulated sugar because it leaves the color of the cream bright, but you can use any type of sugar including brown sugar and even maple syrup.
  • Vegan butter: This is an essential ingredient in this vegan custard recipe. Vegan butter makes it rich and creamy and gives the custard a smooth texture.
  • Vanilla extract: A little bit of vanilla goes a long way here. Better yet, use a vanilla pod for even more flavor.
  • Salt and turmeric: I use a pinch of turmeric to give the custard a nice yellow tint, and you can’t taste it at all.
Gathered ingredients for making my vegan pastry cream recipe.

How to Make This Vegan Custard Recipe

  1. Add the soy milk, coconut milk, cornstarch, sugar, vanilla, salt, and turmeric to a saucepan. Mix until the cornstarch has dissolved and no clumps remain.
  2. Place the saucepan on the stovetop and heat over medium heat, until it starts to simmer.

3. Once it’s bubbling, reduce the heat to low and start wishing constantly until it thickens (2-3 minutes).

4. Remove from the heat and stir in the vegan butter. Transfer the custard into a large bowl and cover it with plastic wrap. Let it cool completely before serving.

Top Tips

  • Use soy milk for best results. This is the best plant milk for making custard because it’s rich and creamy. Alternatively, you can use cashew milk.
  • Constant stirring is key. The mixture tends to burn quickly, so whisk very often and cook it over low heat. Too high temperature and the bottom will burn.
  • Chill for at least 1 hour. Chilling the custard helps it thicken further. It’s also easier to handle when it’s cool, especially if you want to fill pastries with it.
  • Adjust the consistency as needed. After chilling, if your vegan vanilla custard is too thick, you can thin it out by mixing a few tablespoons of soy milk.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is this vegan custard recipe good for freezing?

You can freeze it, but I don’t recommend it because it thickens and the texture changes quite a bit. I always prefer to make it fresh since it takes just 10 minutes, but if you really have to, it will last for 1 month in the freezer.

Why does my custard have a rubbery texture after cooling?

Both vegan custard and traditional custard thicken after cooling and become rubbery. Don’t worry, all you have to do is mix it really well with a whisk or blend it with an immersion blender.

Can I turn this into chocolate pastry cream?

Yes! All you’ll need to do is stir 2-3 tablespoons of cocoa powder when you add everything in the beginning. Then, stir 6 ounces of dark chocolate alongside the vegan butter at the end.

Does this have a coconut flavor?

Because we’re using full-fat coconut milk you’d think that this custard tastes like coconut, but it doesn’t. We’re using a small amount and there are other ingredients that overpower the taste of it. However, if you don’t like coconut, you can use soy cream instead.

A close-up shot of vanilla custard served in a white bowl and topped with berries and mint leaves.

Serving

There are many ways you can use this vegan custard recipe. My favorite is to serve it on top of apple cake or apple pie and over ice cream.

You can also use it to make a vegan fruit tart, custard pie, or fill doughnuts and croissants.

Storage

Let cool to room temperature and whisk until smooth and creamy. Transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 1 week.

A piece of apple cake serve in a small white plate and topped with powdered sugar and pastry cream.

More Vegan Desserts

Vegan Chocolate Cupcakes with Chocolate Frosting

Vegan Chocolate Covered Strawberries

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Bites

Chickpea Flour Brownies

Pumpkin Pie Truffles

Easy Vegan Peanut Butter Cups

A small white bowl filled with my vegan vanilla custard recipe and topped with raspberries, blackberries and fresh mint leaves.

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Vegan Custard Recipe

Rich and creamy Vegan Custard Recipe made with just 6 basic ingredients! This vanilla cream is perfect for tarts, pastries, doughnuts, and more!

Cuisine Gluten-Free, Vegan
Keyword pastry cream, vanilla custard, vegan custard, vegan pastry cream

Ingredients

  • ¾ cup soy milk
  • cup full-fat coconut milk (or plant-based cream of choice)
  • 3 tablespoon cornstarch
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar (or more if desired)
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoon vegan butter
  • A small pinch of salt
  • A pinch of turmeric (for color; optional

Instructions

  • Add the soy milk, coconut milk, cornstarch, sugar, vanilla, salt, and turmeric to a saucepan. Mix until the cornstarch has dissolved and no clumps remain.

  • Place the saucepan on the stovetop and heat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until it starts to simmer.

  • Once it’s bubbling, reduce the heat to low and start wishing constantly until it thickens (2-3 minutes).

  • Remove from the heat and stir in the vegan butter. Transfer the custard into a large bowl and cover it with plastic wrap (make sure the plastic touches the surface of the pudding).

  • Let it cool completely. Then, using a whisk or an immersion blender, mix until the custard is smooth and creamy and no clumps remain. Use right away or refrigerate for up to 1 week.

(Please refer to the post above for instructional photographs and other helpful information for this recipe)

Suggested Equipment/Tools

Notes

  • Use soy milk for best results. This is the best plant milk for making custard because it’s rich and creamy. Alternatively, you can use cashew milk.
  • Constant stirring is key. The mixture tends to burn quickly, so try to whisk non-stop and cook it over low heat. Too high temperature and the bottom will burn within minutes.
  • Chill for at least 1 hour. Chilling the custard helps it thicken further. It’s also easier to handle when it’s cool, especially if you want to fill pastries with it.
  • Adjust the consistency as needed. After chilling, if your vegan vanilla custard is too thick, you can thin it out by mixing a few tablespoons of soy milk.

 

The nutrition information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. Accuracy is not guaranteed. Information shown should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

 

Nutrition

Calories: 172kcal | Carbohydrates: 18g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Fiber: 0.2g

Post photography by: Petranka Atanasova.

©Watch Learn Eat. All content and images are copyright protected. Recipes and images are not to be used or republished without prior permission. If you adapt this recipe, please re-write the recipe in your own words, and link back to this post for the original recipe.



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