Custard-Filled Polish Paczki

Indulgence has a name, and it’s called paczki. These delectable Polish pastries are a testament to the fact that sometimes, you just need to embrace the sweet moments in life. Traditionally devoured on Fat Thursday in Poland, these custard-filled paczki are a delightful treat that can be savored any time of the year. Imagine biting into a soft, pillowy sphere bursting with creamy, luscious custard. If you’re ready to embark on a journey to create these divine confections, fasten your apron strings and prepare for a sweet adventure.


For the Dough:

  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 packet (2 1/4 teaspoons) active dry yeast
  • 1 cup warm milk (110°F)
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the Custard Filling:

  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

For Frying and Dusting:

  • Vegetable oil, for frying
  • Powdered sugar, for dusting


1. Prepare the Dough

  1. In a large mixing bowl, dissolve the yeast in warm milk and let it sit for about 5 minutes until it becomes frothy.
  2. Stir in the sugar, egg yolks, melted butter, salt, and vanilla extract.
  3. Gradually add the flour, one cup at a time, until a soft dough forms.
  4. Knead the dough on a floured surface for about 5 minutes until it’s smooth and elastic.
  5. Place the dough in a greased bowl, cover it with a clean cloth, and let it rise for about 1 hour, or until it has doubled in size.

2. Make the Custard Filling

  1. In a saucepan, heat the milk over medium heat until it’s hot but not boiling.
  2. In a separate bowl, whisk together the sugar, egg yolks, cornstarch, and salt until it’s well combined.
  3. Gradually pour the hot milk into the egg mixture, whisking constantly.
  4. Return the mixture to the saucepan and cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until it thickens.
  5. Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla extract. Let the custard cool.

3. Shape and Fill the Paczki

  1. Roll out the dough on a floured surface to about 1/2 inch thickness.
  2. Using a round cutter, cut out circles of dough.
  3. Place a spoonful of custard in the center of each dough circle.
  4. Fold the dough in half, sealing the edges, and forming a half-moon shape.
  5. Place the filled paczki on a baking sheet and cover them with a cloth. Let them rise for another 30 minutes.

4. Fry the Paczki

  1. Heat vegetable oil in a deep pan to 350°F (180°C).
  2. Carefully slide the paczki into the hot oil, a few at a time, and fry until they are golden brown on both sides.
  3. Remove them from the oil and drain on paper towels.

5. Dust and Serve

  1. While still warm, dust the paczki with powdered sugar.
  2. Let them cool slightly and indulge in the sweet goodness!


If you’re feeling adventurous, there are several ways to customize your paczki. Consider adding a fruity twist by filling them with raspberry or strawberry jam. For a nutty crunch, sprinkle some chopped pistachios or almonds on top after dusting them with powdered sugar. The possibilities are endless, so let your creativity shine through your paczki!


  • Be patient with the dough; allowing it to rise is crucial for that perfect, airy texture.
  • Make sure the oil is at the right temperature to ensure even frying and a crispy exterior.
  • Do not overfill the paczki with custard, as it might cause them to burst during frying.

In a world filled with ordinary pastries, custard-filled Polish paczki stand out as an extraordinary indulgence. The soft, airy dough paired with the creamy custard filling is a match made in dessert heaven. Whether you choose to stick with tradition or add your unique twist, paczki are a delightful treat that will transport your taste buds to a realm of pure joy. So, the next time you’re craving a taste of sweetness that’s beyond compare, whip up a batch of these delectable pastries, and savor every divine bite. Your taste buds will thank you, and so will anyone lucky enough to share in this delectable journey into the heart of Polish culinary delight.

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