These non-traditional yet easy homemade croissants are just as delicious and surpass any croissant that you would unroll from a can and bake. If you can make biscuits and roll out pie dough, then you definitely can make these beauties.Buttery and flakey and beautifully golden brown — I’ve never met anyone who doesn’t love croissants.
I crossed another recipe off my bucket list! I’ve been wanting yet kind of scared to make homemade croissants. So I started out with this easy “cheater” croissant recipe. Still flakey and delicious without all the back breaking work.
These are great for breakfast, brunch or cut in half and filled with chicken salad. This is great dough for pigs-in-a-blanket too! We had these with butter and jam, I had mine with coffee. But I have so many plans with this croissant dough. So many.
Can you smell all the butter??
The croissant dough comes together pretty quickly.
To Make These Easy Homemade Croissants You will need:
- bread flour
- [warm] milk
- active dry yeast
Add 3 tablespoons of sugar to 1/2 cup of warm milk. Stir to dissolve and then add the 2 teaspoons of active dry yeast. Set this off to the side so the yeast can proof and milk will cool.
In a bowl, combine 1-1/2 cups bread flour with 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt. Stir and set off to the side.
Next, drop in 14 tablespoons (1 stick plus 6 tablespoons) of ice cold butter (I actually slice it and freeze it) and use a pastry blender and cut the butter into the flour. You want the butter to stay in large pea-size pieces.
Pour the [cooled] yeast/sugar mixture into the flour/butter mixture and stir to combine.
The first time I made these homemade croissants, I didn’t check the temperature of my milk before adding, so my dough ended up less flakey because the milk was still warm and softened the butter. DON’T do what I did and make sure everything is cool before adding and mixing.
Stir until the dough comes together, wrap in plastic and pop into the freezer for 30 to 40 minutes.
On a floured surface, roll into a giant [sort of] rectangle. The dough is a little hard to manage at this stage, but as you work it, it will start to shape up.
Fold the shorter sides in towards the middle so they’re touching. Then roll it out a little to lengthen it a bit.
Now fold the [new] shorter sides into the middle so the edges touch.
Flip the dough so it is seam side down.
Roll the dough out into a rectangle again and repeat these same steps 3 to 4 more times. If at any point during the rolling and folding stage the butter starts to get soft and stick to the rolling pin, wrap and pop it into the freezer for 15 minutes or so.
Once you’ve rolled and folded the dough, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 4 hours or overnight — overnight is best, it gives the dough time to relax.
Once the dough has chilled, on a lightly floured surface, roll the dough out to a 10 x 16 rectangle.
Trim any rough edges and then cut 8 triangles.
Make a small score in the base of each triangle and roll and place it point-side-down on a lined, rimmed metal baking sheet.
Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let the croissants rise for 2 to 3 hours. I know! I said easy… not quick. 😉
Once the croissants have risen, brush with an egg wash.
I whisked one egg yolk with 1 tablespoons whole milk or heavy cream and brushed the top and sides of each croissant. Bake on the middle rack of your preheated 425° degree oven for 10 minutes, reduce the temperature to 375° and bake for 4 to 6 minutes more.
Or until the crust is deep golden brown.
One day I’ll make traditional croissants with all that butter, but for now, my life can only handle these easy and almost effortless homemade croissants.
Easy Homemade Croissants
- 1/2 cup milk
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 2 teaspoons active dry yeast
- 1½ cups bread flour, plus more for rolling
- 3/4 kosher salt
- 14 tablespoons cold unsalted butter
- 1 tablespoons heavy cream, or whole milk
- 1 beaten egg
- Heat the milk until warm. Remove off of the heat and stir in the sugar and then add in the yeast. Set this off to the side so the yeast can proof and the milk can cool.
- Meanwhile, combine the flour and salt in a bowl. Add in the butter and use a pastry blender to cut the butter into the flour, until the size of large peas. Stir in the cooled yeast/milk mixture until it forms a dough. Wrap in plastic and freeze for 30 to 40 minutes.
- On a floured surface, with a floured rolling pin, roll out to a large rectangle. Fold the shorter sides into the middle and roll out a little to lengthen it. Fold the [new] shorter sides into the middle and flip so the dough is seem-side-down. Repeat this step 4 to 5 times total, dusting your surface and rolling pin when needed. If the butter starts to soften at any moment, wrap and pop the dough into the freezer for 15 minutes or so. Otherwise wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 4 hours to overnight. -- overnight is best.
- Once the dough has relaxed and chilled overnight, roll the dough out into a 10x16 inch rectangle. Cut 8 triangles and make a small incision at the base of the triangle. Starting at the bottom, widest part of the triangle and loosely roll towards the narrow point of the dough. Place on a parchment lined baking sheet, tip side down spacing the the croissants a few inches apart. Loosely cover with plastic wrap and let rise for 2 to 3 hours.
- Before baking, beat the egg and 1 tablespoon of whole milk or heavy cream and use a pastry brush to coat the top and sides with the egg wash. Bake at 425° for 10 minutes, then reduce the temperature to 375° and continue to bake for 4 to 6 more minutes. Rotate the pan to ensure even baking and browning. Watch carefully so they do not burn.
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