Authentic Bavarian Cream
Want to make a delicious dessert that is sure to impress? Bavarian cream is definitely a recipe for you.
Similar to a custard, this light and whipped cream dessert is served in a mold (but is traditionally unmolded) and served up with a delicious berry puree.
Even though this Bavarian cream recipe includes a few steps, it’s not that difficult to make. It’s a dessert with a long history of impressing food lovers.
Bavarian cream was actually invented by a French chef – Marie-Antoine Carême – who specialized in “high cuisine” (dishes that took long to prep, looked beautiful, and tasted exceptional).
So, he usually gets the credit for the modern version of Bavarian cream we enjoy today. The recipe made its way to North America and was included in cookbooks in the late 1800s.
Today, Bavarian cream is still widely enjoyed in France and in Germany. It’s also popular in North America – but usually as a cream filling in donuts!
Try these other great French pastry recipes that include cream fillings!
Before you make this authentic Bavarian cream recipe, be sure to consider these few tips:
- When you heat up the egg mixture, make sure that you are patient since it can take up to ten minutes until it thickens. Also, make sure that the egg doesn’t start boiling – this would ruin the dish.
- When you prepare the gelatin, be sure to read the direction on the package because they might differ from brand to brand.
- Make sure to let the egg-gelatin mixture cool sufficiently and start setting before folding in the whipping cream. Otherwise, the mixture might separate after you’ve poured it into serving bowls.
- Very similar to Italian panna cotta, Bavarian Cream can be served in glasses or bowls but it is also often unmolded by turning it over. For this, be sure to grease the mold so that the set cream comes out easier. Also, make sure it’s set really hard before turning it over!
- If you top the Bavarian cream with a berry puree, you really should put the puree through a strainer to catch the seeds if there are any.
How to Make Bavarian Cream – Step by Step Instructions
To create this delicious dessert, you can find the recipe for Bavarian cream at the bottom of this post.
For those wanting to follow along with visual step by step instructions, you can check out the recipe process photos in this section.
Bavarian cream has a number of steps so it’s a good idea to follow these visual steps if you want to double-check what you’re cooking!
Separate the eggs and place the egg yolks into a medium-sized, heat-resistant mixing bowl. Also, add the sugar.
Beat the mixture with the normal beaters of your electric mixer until very creamy and lighter in color. Set the bowl aside for now.
Add the milk, vanilla extract, and a pinch of salt to a small pot and bring it to a boil on the stove. Whisk regularly to keep the bottom from burning.
Once boiling, remove the milk from the heat and slowly pour it into the bowl with the egg yolk mixture while whisking constantly.
Now, place the heat-resistant mixing bowl with the egg-milk mixture into a hot water bath.
The best way to do this is by putting the bowl into a large pot with hot water on the stove with the heat on low.
You want the water to simmer, not boil vigorously. Whisk regularly until the egg mixture thickens slightly, then remove it from the heat. This can take up to 10 minutes, so don’t give up too early.
Prepare the gelatin according to package directions (this can vary from brand to brand).
Then pour the gelatin into the warm egg-milk-mixture while whisking consistently.
Either wait until the mixture cools down to room temperature on its own while whisking regularly.
Or place the mixing bowl into a larger bowl with ice-cold water and whisk regularly while the mixture cools.
In the meantime, whip the whipping cream until stiff using the normal beaters of your electric mixer.
Once the egg-milk mixture has cooled down to room temperature and is starting to set/gelatinize, fold in the whipping cream using a spatula.
Make sure to not add the whipping cream before this – otherwise the mixture might separate once you’ve poured it into serving bowls.
Keep folding until there are no lumps from the whipping cream left.
When everything is well mixed, pour or ladle the cream into four small bowls or glasses.
Cover them with cling film and place them into the fridge for at least two hours – but ideally longer.
You can garnish the Bavarian cream with fresh fruit and/or a fruit puree before serving.
For that, simply blend some fresh fruit (e.g. raspberries, strawberries, or mixed berries) in a blender. You might have to add a tiny bit of water if your mixer has trouble.
Spread the blended fruit through a sifter if there are ny seeds.
Then place the puree on top of the Bavarian cream. Make sure that the cream is set before adding the puree.
Feel free to get as creative as you want. We like garnishing each serving of Bavarian cream a little bit differently just to give people options.
Until consumed, Bavarian cream should be kept refrigerated.
Once served, uneaten portions can be placed back in the fridge to chill. However, portions are usually small and so there is usually nothing left to store!
Bavarian cream is a sweet, lighter custard-type dessert – thickened with gelatin – that is served in a mold (originally unmolded), sometimes with a fruit puree.
Bavarian cream is a type of custard – just lighter in thickness and consistency. This is because Bavarian cream has whipped cream folded into it to make it lighter. Another, more fundamental difference is that Bavarian cream has gelatin in it to solidify it. Common custards use corn starch or even flour to thicken them.
Again, fundamentally, they are both custards. Bavarian cream is much lighter due to the presence of whipped cream folded into it. Additionally, Bavarian cream is a dessert in itself whereas Boston cream is commonly a filling in Boston cream pie or Boston cream donuts and not eaten standalone.
American “Bavarian cream donuts” don’t have the Bavarian cream from this recipe in them. This is because the gelatin makes it hard to pipe into donuts. Usually, these donuts have a simple pastry cream and are just called Bavarian cream donuts.
Bavarian cream taste like a lighter custard which has been whipped and aerated. It’s still sweet and carried that rich, creamy taste you get from milk, egg yolk, and sugar blended together.
To make Bavarian Cream from scratch, whip egg yolks and sugar, the add milk and other ingredients while warming, prepare the gelatin, combine the ingredients, fold in whipping cream, and allow to cool in a mold. You can follow our detailed Bavarian cream recipe at the bottom of this post.
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Combine the above and allow gelatin to bloom or set. Set aside.
*3/4 cup Heavy Whipping Cream
*3/4 cup 2 percent Milk
*1 half Vanilla Bean or 1 tablespoon Vanilla Extract or Teaspoon of Vanilla Paste
In a sauce pan add cream, milk and half a vanilla bean and bring to almost a boil. Then remove from heat and remove the vanilla bean and slice down the middle of the vanilla bean and scrap about vanilla seeds and add back to cream. Set aside and prepare egg mixture for tempering.
*1/4 cup granulated Sugar, plus 1 tablespoon
Whisk together in a glass bowl the egg yolks and sugar. Then take about 3 tablespoons hot milk mixture and while whisking drizzle hot milk mixture to egg mixture, repeat and then slowly drizzle the remaining milk, whisking consistency until combined (tempering eggs).
Add the Bavarian cream mixture back to sauce pan and cook on medium-low heat just until the sauce thickens. (Be careful not to curdle eggs, don’t allow mixture to boil. You could also use a double boiler to cook and thicken Bavarian cream.)
When sauce has thickened pour the sauce through strainer into glass bowl and stir in the softened gelatin and stir until melted. Then place bowl in a cold water bath and allow Bavarian Cream to thicken as it cools to room temperature and fold in your whipped cream. Then pour into silicone molds for individual serving and refrigerate.
*1 and 1/2 cups Heavy Cream, whipped
Place cream in a chilled mixing bowl and with chilled whisk , I used stand mixer. Mix on high-speed until cream forms medium soft peaks.
Note: I like to add the whipped cream to the Bavarian Cream mixture after it has set after being refrigerated. I like to also to make the Bavarian cream a couple of days before I need to use it by allowing the Bavarian cream to set in the refrigerator, then remove when needed. Stir the set Bavarian cream until it’s a creamy texture again and then fold in 1/3 of the whipped cream at a time, making a light Bavarian Cream.
Add Bavarian Cream to cream puffs, baked pie crusts or tart crusts and etc…