Vanilla Custard Filling

This recipe was the sweet treat that my mom used to fill cream puffs with. When I started making cakes, I tried using it as a filling and it was a hit with my husband and family, so I’ve been using it for that purpose ever since. It is not overly sweet and when paired with a white or vanilla cake it gives just the right balance of smooth vanilla flavor. You may replace the vanilla with almond extract as well to suite your need. I have also sliced fresh strawberries and layered them into cakes with this filling for a delicious outcome!
~One very important rule to remember with this recipe: Stir, Stir, Stir, STIR! It’s almost done constantly throughout the process. And be careful at the end when your stirring the thickening, boiling mixture… it might spatter (I always wear an oven mitt)


  • 2 Tbsp Cornstarch
  • 1/8 tsp Salt
  • 1/3 cup Granulated Sugar
  • 2 cups Milk
  • 2 Lg Egg Yolks (slightly beaten)
  • 2 Tbsp Butter (room temperature)
  • 2 tsp Vanilla or Almond extract


1. Mix sugar, cornstarch and salt in a 2 quart saucepan.

2. Gradually stir in milk.

3. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens and boils.

4. Boil and stir 1 minute.

5. Gradually stir at least half of the hot mixture into the egg yolks, then stir back into hot mixture in saucepan.

6. Boil and stir 1 minute then remove from heat.

7. Stir in butter and extract.

8. Pour into bowl and cover with plastic wrap (pressed directly on the filling, so a thick skin doesn’t form) and refrigerate until chilled completely.

Can be piped into cream puffs, used to fill cupcakes or cakes, used in trifles or eaten with a spoon (like I do!).

Tags: custard cream filling vanilla


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Toni (White Crafty Cakes) ...

Thank you for posting this recipe! It sounds delicious!!!

Sandy ...

Thank you sooo much for sharing your recipe :)

Sarah ...

You’re very welcome! I hope you like it :)

TheKoekSista ...

Thank you so much for sharing this.

Fun Fiesta Cakes ...

Sounds awesome – I’ll definitely try it.

Debi ...

I use this similar recipe when I do Italian Meringue Buttercream since I have leftover egg yolks. I’ve also poured the hot mixture over some chocolate chips and stirred until creamy to make a chocolate filling :)

Sarah ...

@DessertsbyDebi – Oh yum! I never thought of mixing chocolate into it! That’s sounds delicious!!! I’ll have to give it a try. And I’m the same way – I usually make this when I made my SMBC since I always have leftover yolks! :)

Teresa Cunha ...

Do you have to refrigerate cakes filled with this recipe? Also, can you freeze it?

Lizzy25 ...

i bet it is yummi…. thanks for sharing!

thecakeplate ...

I just made this and it’s super easy. You are right, it’s not overly sweet. I think it’s perfect. Thank you

whatsyourtreasure ...

I love this recipe I used to eat this for breakfast when I was a kid except for the butter. It was called mazanna. It was served cold with cinnamon.

My Mom now has demenia and I make it for my son. I also used it inside of cream puff with whip cream added to it.

Thanks for the memories