Small Batch

Cronuts, Made at Home

By • June 26, 2013 • 71 Comments

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It's always more fun to DIY. Every week, we'll spare you a trip to the grocery store and show you how to make small batches of great foods at home.

Today: Embrace the trend. Hop on that bandwagon. And make cronuts at home. Julie from Dinner with Julie shows us how.

Yes, I made cronuts. I jumped on the bandwagon. Turns out, everyone’s right. I might pay $40 for one of these on the black market.

Not since Krispy Kreme have I seen this level of fried dough fanaticism. In the month since their inception tons of copycats have popped up -- since the name is copyrighted, others are calling theirs “Dossaints” or “CroNots” -- and in New York, lineups are going around the block for the things, which are also being sold on the black market. It’s full-on cronut mania.

Madness, I tell you. But I’m always up for a challenge, and we really need to start warming up for Stampede. So I took out the deep fryer. (Note: you don’t need one. A pot works just as well.)

Puff pastry sounds daunting to make from scratch, but it's really a matter of mixing together a basic yeasted dough, slathering it with butter, and then folding it up like a letter a bunch of times, rolling and chilling between each fold. It isn't as finnicky as you might think, particularly when the end result is a batch of buttery, golden croissoughnuts. 

Homemade Cronuts (a.k.a. Croissoughnuts)

Inspired by Dominique Ansel Bakery

Makes 1 dozen

Dough
3/4 cups milk, warmed
1 tablespoon active dry yeast
1/3 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (divided)
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup butter, at room temperature

Maple Glaze
1/2 cup powdered sugar
3 tablespoons pure maple syrup
1 to 2 tablespoons milk, cream or water

In a large bowl, stir together the milk and yeast. Stir in the sugar, eggs, and vanilla and mix well. Add a cup of the flour and the salt, then gradually add another 2 1/4 cups of the flour, stirring and then kneading for a few (or several) minutes, until it’s smooth and elastic, and still a little tacky.

Transfer your dough to a baking sheet and cover with plastic wrap; chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, beat the butter and remaining 1/4 cup flour with an electric mixer for a couple minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl, until smooth.

When the dough has chilled, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and roll into a rectangle that is about 13 by 18 inches and 1/4-inch thick. Spread the butter evenly over the dough.

Fold it as you would fold a letter, in thirds. (Unlike a letter, the dough ends should line up, so that it’s folded exactly in thirds.) Cover the dough in plastic wrap and put it back into the fridge for 30 minutes.

Pull the dough out and put it back on the countertop, with the open sides to the left and right. Roll it out into another rectangle.

Fold the left third over the middle, then the right third over the middle. (This is referred to as a "turn”. To keep track of each fold -- or turn -- press your finger into the dough at the edge to make two marks -- you can do this each time you roll and fold so that you know how many times you’ve done it.) Chill the dough for another 30 minutes.

Roll, fold, and refrigerate the dough two more times, so that you’ve done it four times total. Cover and refrigerate for at an hour, or overnight.

Then, roll your dough out to 1- to 2-inch thickness, then cut it into rounds, or rings, or scraps.

 

In a heavy pot (or deep fryer), heat a couple inches of oil to about 350° F, or until it’s hot but not smoking, and a scrap of bread sizzles when you dip it in. Cook the doughnuts in batches, without crowding the pot (this can cool down the oil), flipping as necessary until deep golden. Transfer to a baking sheet lined with a paper towel.

Meanwhile, whisk together the icing sugar, maple syrup, and enough milk, water, or cream to make a drizzling consistency. Drizzle over the croissoughnuts while they’re still warm. Then try not to eat the whole batch.

See the full recipe (and save and print it) here.

Photos by Julie Van Rosendaal

Tags: small batch, cronuts, criossant, donut, how-to & diy

Comments (71)

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about 1 month ago Sarah Ferrency

I'm going to try this tomorrow for my local women's shelter dessert auction. But here's the thing. If you look at the pictures of the original cronuts, there is a very distinct larger layer between thinner dough layers. I think there's an extra butter layer- so maybe you do two turns, and then add in another butter layer, and do two more turns. That's where the filling goes. Either that or it's a cut in dough, like some other recipe sites suggest, that then only has a couple of turns. This recipe seems like the best bet with the egg enriched dough. Can't wait to try it!

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2 months ago Forkandstory

Thank you for the recipe. I attempted it last weekend. Didn't get too tall, but tasted good. I will try again! :) Here's the result. Thanks for the inspiration
http://www.forkandstory...

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2 months ago Forkandstory

Take two looks much better! Thanks!
http://www.forkandstory...

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4 months ago JIJI ROUKNAM

je pris de publier la recette en français :)

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7 months ago sheina

i made these today and they came out DELICIOUS...the only thing i would do differently the next time i make them is after i cut out the cronuts, i would set them aside for about an hour or two to rise and then fry..otherwise- AMAZING. i rolled them in sugar and piped a simple icing on top. perfection

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7 months ago Banny

Hi everybody, i made this last night and fry them this morning. When i cut the dough into doughnut's shape, it has beautiful layers. I heated my oil and it took like 10-15 minutes to the desired heat. I fried the leftovers first and they were beautiful, the layers are intact and is crispy and flaky. Then i fried the doughnuts one and it separated, hiks. Did i put them too long in room temperature? Or i didn't roll them tight? oh, when i rolled and fold, i didn't used any flour, i used cling wrap. Please help

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7 months ago Nani

I noticed you don't let the dough rise after you cut it and before frying?

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8 months ago Amber Dean

What a fantastic recipe, thank you!

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8 months ago Melinda

OMG! These are the best donuts ever! My daughter (a culinary student) made and fried them up for us. We had fun filling them with various goodies. I split mine and put cream and fresh peaches. My daughter made a PB&J, then filled one with my salted caramel mocha cream. I couldn't get enough of the crisp outer crust, followed by the tender flaky inside. Thanks so much!!

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9 months ago Grace's Sweet Life

Hi MollyACZ if you click on the link in my comment it will lead you to the recipe for the cream.

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9 months ago Grace's Sweet Life

Hi Julie, I went with a Vanilla Bean Creme Pat but a Crema Diplomatica would be nice too. The great thing about adding cream is that is gets into all the layers. I used a bismarck tip and it was perfect.

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9 months ago Sherman Levine

After mixing the butter & flour form this into a suitable rectangle, wrap it in plastic then chill it till it's more solid. If it's re-formed into more of a brick shape, simply take a rolling pin and give it [the block] a good bashing into the desired shape. Just remember, kitchens tend to get warm, even with the oven turned off. And the last thing you want to play with is uncooperative butter, especially when baking — even deep frying stuff!

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9 months ago Safta

So the butter should be shaped and refrigerated before it is placed in the dough for folding?

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9 months ago Safta

The butter looks like it was spread on the dough. How would you do the butter block?

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9 months ago Sherman Levine

In making croissants, the butter block is first properly chilled then mashed, smashed and/or bashed into the requisite shape & thickness. The dough also requires good chilling. From the pix, one can see this dough is nice & dry, the butter block...not so. Nevertheless, a very sharp knife or cutting edge is required for cutting [not smushing] and an "absolutely clean" oil [thank you, Sainte Julia] kept at the proper temperature should do nicely. PS: Doing the 'rithmatik for those four turns should yield just how many layers are in the finished product.

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9 months ago Maria Stordahl Nelson

@Emily Russell, is it possible you didn't let the dough chill long enough in between rolling? Sometimes if it gets too warm, the integrity of the dough suffers. I do think it does need a light hand while rolling too, so you're right that is a possibility as well.

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9 months ago Emily Russell

I will try that! A half hour in the fridge didn't seem to do a lot, maybe I'll up it to an hour. Thanks for the reply!

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9 months ago Emily Russell

Hey everybody! I made this recipe tonight and I had a few problems. The dough didn't seem to separate as much as in the photos! Did I roll out the dough with too much pressure? I also didn't have the edges separate as much, but I think that's probably part of the same thing? Any help would be great! I would love to make them again and have them turn out a bit more like the photos.

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9 months ago anita

It sounds like you may need to use a sharper cutter, too. If the cutter is dull, it seals the layers together on the edge and you don't get a good rise.

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9 months ago Emily Russell

I'll try that Anita! Thanks for the tip.

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9 months ago Grace's Sweet Life

Thanks for the tip anita, I made my own version too but my layers didn't puff up as nicely and I attributed it to rolling the dough out too thin never entered my mind that my cutter was dull but absolutely makes sense.

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9 months ago tanya1234

thankxxxxxxxxx alot

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9 months ago Safta

This is a wonderful recipe. I have made it a few times... Only once did I fill them with a cream ,but they are just fine rolled in cinnamon and sugar.

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9 months ago lili

Just discovered Food52 thanks to a link to this cronuts recipe which I am baking at the moment. I really love that you're providing this much talked about recipe! One small critique though, I hope the other recipes on the site have clearer, more concise instructions. For example: the switch from numerical to spelled-out numbers and back again (on the flour measure) invites errors (as one comment already noted); the letter-folding directions were contradictory (finally had to ditch my (unillustrated) print-out and smart-phone versions to consult the illustrated version on my computer, all with dough-sticky hands.) I'm no novice, I bake a lot...but absolute clarity is helpful to everyone when trying a new recipe.

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9 months ago Sophia Henkel

OK so cronuts sound tasty, but I am kinda stumped at the truly bazaar way people have reacted to them, but I make Puff pastry as well and Croissant dough every couple years and some times more, But I just learned of a truly amazing I want to try ASAP and try and make my own version, The pretzel croissant, here in the bay area. http://www.tastingtable...

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9 months ago Hulala Shank

I'm folding them or turn the dough right now. As I roll it out, the butter keep oozing out. It that OK?

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10 months ago JulieVR

Sorry for the radio silence guys! I'm in Calgary, Alberta, where there has been massive flooding in recent weeks. I love the idea of these with cream filling (I know that's what Dominique does) - I'd love to hear how it works! Did you come up with a good recipe Grace? or just use a pastry cream?

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10 months ago Jaime Mormann-Richardson

I love you, Julie! These look perfect!!

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10 months ago JulieVR

Thanks Jaime! And I love your new book - it just arrived!

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10 months ago Grace's Sweet Life

I made a homemade version too, http://bit.ly/12j7Za1, but not knowing how the croissant dough was going to react when it hit the hot oil I rolled them too thin (will change that next go round). Dominique fries the cronuts in grape seed oil and I believe because it has a higher smoke point he may fry them at a higher heat, pushing up the beautiful layers even more (will test next time too). I added the cream and it nestled itself between all the beautiful layers and dipped them in honey - they were so good!

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10 months ago MollyACZ

Please share your recipe for the cream filling!

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10 months ago jorusha

Did you know this French site just blatantly copies your whole post and just mentions Food52 at the bottom ?
http://geekandfood.fr/2013...

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10 months ago Maria Stordahl Nelson

@dkerfoot, in step one of the instructions is says to add one cup of flour first, then 2 1/4 Cups. You save the remaining 1/4 C. flour to mix with the butter for spreading. Hope that helps.

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10 months ago dkerfoot

2 1/2 cups flour or 3 1/2? Ingrediant list snd directions don't match!

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10 months ago dkerfoot

"Add a cup of the flour and the salt, then gradually add another 2 1/4 cups of the flour."

Nevermind. That will teach me to start cooking before I have coffee...

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10 months ago Maria Stordahl Nelson

Made these last night. Great, great recipe. So very easy and the result was over the top amazing... The best "doughnut" I and my guests have ever had. Thanks for sharing it!

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10 months ago Pegeen

Awesome photos and article. Thank you.

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10 months ago Clare Kolat

Yup. I didn't want to do it, but I think I'm going to. *sigh* I'll be making these a.s.a.p.

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10 months ago Anna Hezel

This is great. Can't wait to start an illicit cronut black market out of my apartment.

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10 months ago Kathi Youngblood

You know, you are misleading people by calling croissant dough "puff pastry". Puff pastry does not have yeast in it. Also, why would you use warm milk and risk destroying your yeast? The milk doesn't have to be ice cold but cold works just as well and as for "blooming" your yeast, if you use instant yeast you can mix all of your dry ingredients together first and then add your milk so that you are only adding as much as you need instead of adding flour until you think it's right. If you add too much flour you will have to add more milk and then you are messing with the science of the dough. I make over 100 pounds of croissant dough a week and doing it this way is just not right.

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10 months ago Judy at Two Broads Abroad

Thank you, thank you, thank you. Croissants have yeast, puff pastry none. You are indeed a saint. I had a bakery back in the day and made them every day for seven years. I'm working on my first batch of "crornets" as we speak. I made some pretty good croissants in my time. I always used wet yeast, so the process was add flour, sugar, salt, wet yeast (make sure you don't put it on top of the salt, hit #1 on the Hobart and add water (not milk) mix, rest dough, slice butter and pound into cohesive mass, roll dough into clover, place butter into the middle, do first turn. Refrig and repeat three more times. In the morning I will complete third turn, chill and cut into donut rings, fry and fill. I'll let you know how they turn out.

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10 months ago mrslarkin

Mrs. Larkin is a trusted source on Baking.

heh, i made scronuts last week.

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10 months ago Kukla

Good for you Mrs. Larkin! I am sure they came out beautifully.

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10 months ago lorinarlock

What's a scronut?

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10 months ago mrslarkin

Mrs. Larkin is a trusted source on Baking.

Lori, I was just playing around and made a scone/croissant/donut last week. Take a peek: http://on.fb.me/13a1tJa

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10 months ago lorinarlock

Those are awesome. You are a master.

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10 months ago mrslarkin

Mrs. Larkin is a trusted source on Baking.

haha. thanks. they tasted just like a Pillsbury Grands biscuit, only better. I baked mine - couldn't fry them, that would be SICK. I think if I took the time to chill the dough a gazillion times between folds, it would've been flakier. It was a fun experiment.

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10 months ago lorinarlock

The trick is to also get the top wider. It's that sugary top that will make mouths water. Keep experimenting!

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10 months ago Marian Bull

Marian is an editor at Food52.

Scronuts!! I love scones. Must try.

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10 months ago anita

Puff pastry is not yeasted.

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10 months ago Kukla

This particular puff pastry starts with basic yeasty dough. The same recipe is used for Sticky Buns, Croissants and Danish pastries.

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10 months ago Kathi Youngblood

Mo particular puff pastry begins with yeast. Puff pastry does not have yeast. You would not use puff pastry to make croissant or danish or sticky buns.

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10 months ago Judy at Two Broads Abroad

Amen sista.

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10 months ago anita

That makes it Croissant Dough, not Puff. I've worked as a baker and made both. They're different and used for different applications.

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10 months ago GardenMaster

Kathi,
I'm sure puff pastries everywhere are singing your praises. Now could you please grab a bar somewhere and get.a.grip. Really it's not that serious.

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10 months ago las730

Can almond milk be used instead of regular milk?

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10 months ago Emma Wartzman

Almond milk is thinner than regular milk, so it might mess up the consistency if you don't somehow adjust other ratios. Soy milk is a little bit thicker, but also has a pretty distinct flavor

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10 months ago witloof

A couple of friends and I made cronuts last Sunday. We made creme patissiere to inject into them after they were fried in addition to the glaze, but the cronuts were so delicious and crunchy without them that we ate them plain.

It's important to roll the dough thinly enough so that the cronuts will cook through, as they fry up almost instantly. I enjoyed the the holes and scraps even more than the cronuts themselves because they had more crunchy surface area. It was a lot of fun and a lot of work.

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10 months ago fiveandspice

Emily is a trusted source on Scandinavian Cuisine.

Oh boy. I was totally going to stay off the bandwagon. And then you had to go and share these photos. Those layers! That glaze drizzle! Resistance is obviously futile.

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10 months ago Kukla

I usually skip the first step and buy the basic yeasted dough from the supermarket’s freezer or from a good bakery and when the dough is defrosted enough; I proceed with spreading the butter and then folding, rolling and chilling. This way I make the whole process a little easier and faster. Although I have never heard of the Cronuts yet, this puff pastry dough is terrific for so many sweet or savory baked dishes.

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10 months ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

These are huge now, all over the local news, lines around the block, rationing because of high demand. So glad to see a recipe, they look so good I have to have one.

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10 months ago Shelby Jacobs

I made these last weekend using a different recipe, turns out I rolled and folded one two many times and didnt keep the layers in tact, I kind of made donuts? Im not really sure. this will be defeated this time around

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10 months ago HalfPint

Is it wrong of me to want to buy the puff pastry (the good stuff of course, made with real butter)to make the Cronut? I know it's easy to make, but I want instant gratification.

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10 months ago ryanm

I hope it's not wrong of you, since I was thinking the same thing. Would this be the very definition of what Dufour is good for?

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10 months ago darksideofthespoon

I made some just now with frozen, homemade puff pastry, but I bet pre bought would work wonderfully. I just made thin sticks (to prevent myself from gorging) and rolled them in cinnamon sugar. Oh god.

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10 months ago Hillary Manton Lodge

Ansel's version has a creme filling. They basically just use a pastry bag w/ a tip to inject the creme in four places. Another step, but part of the appeal.

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10 months ago Loves Food Loves to Eat

YES! That picture of dough & butter layers is the best thing I've ever seen.

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10 months ago darksideofthespoon

I have NEVER heard of these before. I also just worked out. You guys are JERKS! Can I pay someone $1000 to drive these up to Canada?

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10 months ago EmilyC

Okay, good, I'm not the only one living under a rock because I haven't heard of these either! But I totally get the hype based on those pictures. Thanks for the recipe Julie.

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10 months ago Emma Wartzman

It's absolutely crazy how much people are in love with these. See facts about the originals: http://dominiqueansel.com...

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10 months ago sygyzy

I love you Julie. Making these tonight.