The Perfect Gluten Free Pastry Cream – Dairy-Free Option – No Egg Whites (Lump Free with Dairy Free Option)

If you’re tired of your pastry cream tasting like flour or lumping when you make it, this is a must-make! Not only does this recipe create the perfect gluten free pastry cream, but it is so easy to make! Its rich and satiny texture is hard to resist. Your guests will surely be impressed. Serve this pastry cream as a sauce over unfrosted cakes, use as filling for cakes and cupcakes, like a custard, or use to fill pastries. They make homemade cream puffs and eclairs taste like a professional pastry chef made them. Turn this pastry cream into a sturdier and lighter filling by mixing with whipped cream.

Included, is an amazing dairy-free substitute for whole milk that turns out thicker than the dairy version. You will never need to add gelatin.

The Perfect Gluten Free Pastry Cream (Lump Free)

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 7 minutes

Total Time: 12 minutes

Yield: Makes 20 - 22 ounces

The Perfect Gluten Free Pastry Cream (Lump Free)

Satiny, rich pastry cream that turns out perfectly every time.


  • 2 cups whole milk (or 1-1/3 cups water + 2/3 cup full-fat coconut milk)
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 5 large egg yolks, at room temperature
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces
  • For Dairy Version Only (Optional):
  • 1 teaspoon KNOX unflavored gelatin
  • 2 tablespoons room temperature water
  • 2 tablespoons boiling water


  1. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together milk, sugar, and salt. Cook over medium-high heat using a double boiler or bain marie (glass bowl over a saucepan of simmering water).until mixture becomes hot before it boils.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together cornstarch, egg yolks, and vanilla. (If the mixture is too dry to whisk, add an additional egg yolk. Egg yolks sizes may vary.)
  3. Slowly pour about 1/2 cup of the hot mixture into the cornstarch mixture while whisking constantly. Pour the mixture back into the saucepan and cook over medium heat, whisking constantly, until it thickens, 2 - 3 minutes. Remove from heat and add the butter. Whisk until the butter melts.
  4. If you need a sturdy pastry cream for pies that need slicing, etc, add 1 teaspoon unflavored gelatin to 2 tablespoons room temperature water, stir, and allow to rest for 1 minute. Add 2 tablespoons boiling water, stir; set aside to cool. Stir this mixture into the pastry cream.
  5. Immediately distribute among four 6-ounce ramekins or one large bowl. Cover with plastic wrap directly over the pastry cream. (This prevents a skin from forming on top.) Cover with plastic wrap, Refrigerate until chilled, at least 2 hours.



Banana: Substitute banana extract for half of the vanilla extract and adjust to your liking.

Compare the above recipe with my other two pastry cream recipes:

Gluten Free Pastry Cream

Gluten Free Pastry Cream Using Cornstarch

2 Replies to “The Perfect Gluten Free Pastry Cream – Dairy-Free Option – No Egg Whites (Lump Free with Dairy Free Option)”

  1. I am looking for a nice pudding like cream but am also dairy free and I find it is very difficult to get a nice cream without whole milk!! Any suggestions?

    1. Judy,

      If you’re looking for dairy-free egg-free pudding and perhaps used to enjoy Jell-O brand instant pudding, here’s a recipe using coconut milk and Jell-O instant pudding:

      I also have a dairy free pastry cream recipe here: It’s a little thin but you can either add more guar gum or use milk that contains gum. Also, if it is not thick enough for you, try whisking in a teaspoon or more of cornstarch or arrowroot powder to the milk and sugar prior to heating.

      Also, don’t miss my new dairy-free yogurt substitute recipe: They’re both so good!

      Chia coconut pudding:
      Maple syrup sweetened dairy free rice pudding: and more!

      Don’t hesitate to ask for more recipes. You can also use the Search box in the menu for “dairy free pudding” and a bunch should show up.


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