Paris-Brest is made with pate a choux pastry dough, just like the kind used to make eclairs and cream puffs. The French dessert was originally created for a bicycle race, the big ring representing a bicycle wheel! And the idea stuck around for decades. My berry Paris Brest is light as air, fruity and not too sweet – the perfection combination in the dessert world! It’s loaded with tons of berries, sweet fruit and a cream mascarpone filling. Every bite is bursting with berries and cream flavor! When I was making this dessert, I just couldn’t stop obsessing over how beautiful it was! It’s elegant and simple yet show-stopping! It’s perfect for any occasion or celebration.
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How To Make Pate a Choux
Believe it or not, I was completely terrified of making pate a choux for the longest time! I always thought it was complicated and not worth the effort. Boy was I wrong! Making pate a choux is super easy and doesn’t require any special equipment. This basic pate a choux recipe is the same used for all pastries: cream puffs, eclairs and even savoury profiteroles!
- Place the water, salt and butter together into a medium sauce pot and bring to a simmer.
- Add the flour and cook for about 1 minute, until a dough ball forms.
- Let the dough cool for about 20 minutes, until it’s just warm.
- Add the eggs, one at a time, until a sticky and smooth batter forms.
- Transfer batter into a pastry bag and pipe away!
When baking pate a choux for this Paris Brest recipe, do not open the oven door!! The cold air draft from your kitchen can cause the pastry to fall flat! Allow it bake until it’s a deep golden color, then cool and fill.
This Paris Brest recipe can be used to make the large, traditional pastry, or for smaller, mini Paris Brest versions. Also, you can added melted milk or dark chocolate to the whipped cream for a chocolate twist; or, use a bit of caramel for a more traditional flavor. Feel free to add your favorite fruit like raspberries, kiwi, mango, cherries, and even pineapple!
If you love French desserts and Paris Brest, make sure to check out my other recipes you’re sure to enjoy!
- Chocolate Caramel Paris Brest – these mini chocolate pastries are filled with a salted caramel cream!
- Chocolate Coffee Eclairs – the best eclairs recipe with coffee whipped cream filling!
- Raspberry Pistachio Eclairs – with fluffy pistachio cream and raspberry glaze!
- Strawberry Cream Puffs – a berry delicious twist on classic pastry puffs!
- Classic Cream Puffs – timeless and delicious classic profiteroles filled with pastry cream whipped cream and glazed with chocolate! Incredible!
- Fruit Mille Feuille – easy dessert for any occasion! Buttery, flaky puff pastry topped with mascarpone cream, raspberry sauce, and loads of fruit!
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Need some supplies to make this recipe? You can get them here (Amazon affiliate links):
- I love these aluminum baking sheets for everything from dessert to roasted veggies!
- These silicone non-stick mats are simply amazing!
- This set of jumbo cake decorating tips includes all the tips that I use. Use them with these disposable pastry bags.
Berry Paris Brest Recipe (video)
For Pate a Choux:
- 1 cup water
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 4 large eggs
- 1/2 cup sliced almonds
- 8 oz mascarpone cheese, softened for 30 minutes
- 1 cup white chocolate chips, melted; optional
- 2 cups heavy cream, chilled
- 1/2 cup confectioner's sugar
- 3 cups berries and fruit
- confectioner’s sugar, for dusting
- Preheat oven to 425F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or silicone mat. Prepare a large pastry bag tipped with a simple, round tip.
- Prepare the pastry dough first. In a large saucepan, combine the water, salt and butter. Cook over medium heat until the butter is melted and mixture comes to a simmer. Add all the flour at once and stir with a spatula for about 1 minute; the mixture will come together into a dough ball.
- Remove the dough from heat and allow it to cool until just warm to touch, about 10 to 15 minutes. Begin adding the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. The dough will come together after adding the last egg. Transfer the dough into prepared pastry bag, packing the dough without air pockets.
- Pipe the dough onto prepared pan, creating a 9-inch circle. Pipe 5 to 7 rings, some concentric and some overlapping (see video). Sprinkle the top with slice almonds. If making mini Paris-Brest, pipe 4-inch circles. Bake pastry at 425F for 10 minutes, then reduce heat to 350F and bake for 40 to 45 minutes without opening oven door. Pastry should be a rich golden-brown color. Allow the pastry to cool completely before using a serrated knife to split open.
- Prepare the cream: in a large mixing bowl, beat the softened mascarpone for about a minute until it's smooth. Mix in the melted white chocolate, if using. Add the chilled heavy cream and confectioner's sugar and whisk again until stiff peaks form, about 4 minutes. Transfer the whipped cream into a pastry bag; I used tip #8FT.
- Transfer the lower half of the pastry onto a cake stand, then pipe a generous amount of cream into the center. Top with berries and sliced fruit. Pipe additional cream into the top half of pastry, then cover the first half. Dust the top of the dessert generously with confectioner's sugar. Keep dessert refrigerated.