Pastry Dessert Recipes

From caramelized apple to chocolate ganache, to a tart or a puff pastry, we have tips and techniques that will ensure your dessert looks and tastes like you put some serious love into it.

Staff Picks

Classic Cream Puffs

The foundation of the perfect cream puff is light, airy pâte à choux, which is made with eggs, flour, and butter. Once the cream puffs are shaped and baked, they're filled with a rich homemade pastry cream.

Brown Sugar and Pecan Sticky Buns

Rating: 3 stars 150
Make these delicious treats ahead of time and serve these sticky, sweet buns for breakfast or brunch.

Easy Churros with Mexican Chocolate Sauce

Forgo the traditional frying -- and mixing up the batter! -- for this Latin American treat. Instead, bake store-bought puff pastry for churros that are easier to make but full of the same spicy sweetness: Muy delicioso!

Pink Croquembouche

French for "crunch in the mouth," croquembouche is a tower of cream puffs held together by hot caramel. Martha makes the dessert even more showstopping by turning the pastries pink and filling them with strawberry buttercream.

Walnut-and-Honey Baklava

The many buttered layers of phyllo dough, walnut filling, and sweet syrup make baklava the ultimate special-occasion dessert in Greece.

Honey Buns

Rating: 4 stars 46
There is very little white sugar in these not-just-for-breakfast buns -- but you won't miss it. Honey imparts its smooth, mellow sweetness to every component: the rich, buttery dough, the tangy creme fraiche filling, and the appealingly sticky topping.

Eclairs

Rating: 3.5 stars 174
Making this classic French pastry at home is easier than you think.

Cinnamon-Bun Bites

Rating: 3.5 stars 344
Serve these bites directly from the baking dish, or unmold them and place the whole mound on a serving dish or in a basket. Recipe adapted with permission from "Williams-Sonoma Family Meals: Creating Traditions in the Kitchen," copyright 2009 by Maria Helm Sinskey and Williams-Sonoma, published by Weldon Owen, San Francisco.

Classic Cannoli

Rating: 3 stars 315
True to its Sicilian roots, our cannoli are filled with fresh ricotta, instead of the custard and cream that define American versions. Cinnamon-infused dough for the shells is rolled with a pasta maker (another nod to the old country) and then lightly fried and dipped in chocolate and pistachios. The result? A dessert that is delizioso.

Cream Horns

You'll need twelve cream-horn molds or four-inch wooden cake dowels to make these horns. For a delicious alternative, add almond extract, raspberry puree, or mini chocolate chips to the whipped cream.

Apple Dumplings

A traditional Pennsylvania Dutch dessert, these apple pastries are spiced with cinnamon and studded with raisins. Martha made this recipe on episode 708 of Martha Bakes.

Apple-Cinnamon Strudel

Rating: 3.5 stars 222
Busy times call for easy desserts that have a sweet simplicity, like these flaky apple-cinnamon pastries. For our streamlined strudel, we folded convenient store-bought puff pastry around a four-ingredient filling of sauteed fruit.
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Inspiration and Ideas

Coffee-Filled Cream Puffs with Chocolate Glaze
Freshly brewed espresso amps up the rich pastry cream that's piped into these delicate puffs. Martha made this recipe on episode 611 of Martha Bakes.
French Butterfly Cookies (Papillons)
Known for their caramelized exterior and multitude of flaky layers within, these French treats call for just two ingredients: puff pastry and sugar.
Easter Babka
Rating: 3 stars 52

This delicious recipe for Easter babka comes from the "Martha Stewart Living" television show.