Make a light and airy profiteroles recipe and fill the pastry with ice cream. Profiteroles are a fancy way of saying "the best cream puffs you've ever tasted!" I used vanilla ice cream instead of the classic pastry-cream filling for a summer dessert everyone will love.
When I think of one of my favorite, and most impressive desserts, Ice Cream Profiteroles immediately come to mind. I mean who wouldn't want this in front of them at a summer party!?
What are Profiteroles?
Profiteroles are a crispy and custardy pastry filled with ice cream (or pastry cream) and topped with chocolate or caramel sauce and traditionally whipped cream.
They are made using choux pastry, a tender French dough that is cooked on the stove top, then baked in the oven to create treats like eclairs and cream puffs.
The main difference between cream puffs, eclairs, and profiteroles is that profiteroles are frozen. The others certainly can be, but it's not standard.
All of them are made from choux paste, a very eggy dough that forms a crisp exterior and a hollow inside, often with a custardy texture.
Profiteroles are the French way of saying cream puffs filled with ice cream! Feel free to refer to these little numbers either way, but profiteroles (prof-IT-er-rolls) just sounds so cute and fancy coming out. They're pretty darn tasty going in as well!
Make cream puffs
Don't be intimidated making cream puffs. This profiteroles recipe is hard to mess up.
Now if I were having you make eclairs or some other fancy, piped pate au choux dessert I'd make you be more technical. But this pate au choux (cream puff dough) is simple and doesn't need to be piped.
Simply spoon it onto parchment and bake.
Classic profiteroles recipe
These pastries are made from a cooked dough, so it's mixed in a saucepan. Melt butter, sugar, water, and salt together and add some flour.
Eggs are incorporated one at a time. You don't add the eggs all at once because the flour mixture needs to gradually get used to them, like a slowly cultivated relationship!
As one egg is absorbed and mixed in, the dough is ready for another one.
Vanilla or chocolate profiteroles
I filled my little baked cream puffs with store-bought ice cream or a homemade eggless vanilla ice cream recipe for a classic summer situation. But any flavor will do. Think mint chip! Or strawberry, pistachio or even coffee. All are perfection in this dessert.
Profiteroles au chocolat might be more tempting to you! Fill them with homemade chocolate ice cream (or store-bought for ease).
Profiteroles recipe with a bonus hot fudge recipe:
I make my own fudge sauce. I do it because it's quite easy and super delicious--the recipe is below.
If you're into the store-bought kind I'd suggest this awesome sauce trio that includes a white chocolate sauce!
You can get my Hot Fudge Sauce recipe below or in my Chocolate Book mini magazine. Buy it now!
Make-ahead and freeze
Profiteroles are the perfect dessert to freeze. Cream puffs can be made weeks in advance and kept in the freezer for an impromptu treat.
Make and your cream puffs ahead and keep them in the freezer in a ziptop bag. No defrosting needed: simply slice the tops off, fill and serve!
You can fill them ahead and freeze them, however I don't condone this as the ice cream will change the texture of the choux pastry.
Ice Cream Profiteroles Recipe
- ¼ cup (½ stick) unsalted butter
- ½ teaspoon sugar
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup all-purpose flour
- 2 large eggs
- Vanilla ice cream
For Fudge Sauce
- ¼ cup sugar
- ¾ cup unsweetened cocoa
- ½ cup heavy cream
- 3 tablespoon butter
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Pinch of salt
- Heat oven to 425°F. Line two baking sheet with parchment.
- In a small saucepan over high heat bring ½ cup water, butter, sugar and salt to a boil. Immediately remove from heat and stir in flour with a wooden spoon. Continue to stir until mixture pulls away from sides of pan, about 30 sec. Let cool 2 min.
- Add eggs one at a time, stirring after each, until batter comes together.
- Drop slightly rounded teaspoonfuls of batter 1 inch apart on baking sheets. Smooth pointy tops with a wet finger.
- Bake 10 min, then reduce oven temperature to 350°F and bake until golden brown, 10 to 12 min more. Let cool on wire racks. Store in an airtight container until ready to serve.
- Cut off tops and fill with ice cream. Put four or five pastries in each bowl and drizzle with warm chocolate sauce.
For Fudge Sauce
- Stir together sugar and unsweetened cocoa in a small saucepan. Stir in heavy cream and butter. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly, over medium heat; boil 30 sec. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla extract and a pinch of salt. Serve immediately or cool and refrigerate in an airtight container up to 1 month. Reheat over low heat before serving.
Desserts are an essential and anticipated part of any meal. I mean sometimes I don't anticipate it, I just eat it first. This No-Bake Cheesecake Tart won't disappoint and it's gorgeous, and since mangoes always please, try Blow Your Mind Coconut-Mango Pie.
Cake recipes for any occasion
Recipe Tara Teapsoon. Originally published in LHJ 07/11. Photograph Con Poulos. Food Stylist Prop stylist