Sweet, buttery and flaky Almond Croissants made with store-bought croissants, almond syrup, and almond cream filling. A delicious bakery-like treat made at home. Ready in under an hour with an option to make-ahead.
Friends! Important announcement today: We can make Almond Croissants AT HOME, and they are AS GOOD as an Almond Croissant from a bakery. This means we can eat a warm, buttery, fresh-from-the-oven Almond Croissant in our pj’s/sweats/yoga pants at any given time. Eeek!
I am aghast that I have lived two decades of my adult life without realizing that I can whip-up Almond Croissants at home. I’m currently making up for lost time (read: baking and eating almond croissants all day, every day).
Note: We are not making the actual croissants, we’re just fancying up store-bought croissants and turning them into one of the best things you’ll ever sink your teeth into. Worry not, there is no 4:00am wake up call to roll and fold croissant dough (phew!). We’re going to put in under 30 minutes of effort to turn something store-bought into something AMAZING.
How to Make Almond Croissants
- Start with bakery/store-bought plain croissants. Halve the croissants and let them sit out overnight so that they dry out a little.
- Make an almond syrup by combining boiling water, sugar and almond extract. Dip or brush the croissants with the almond syrup (inside and out). This adds our first layer of almond flavor. The dry croissants quickly soak up this sweet almond-scented syrup.
- Make the creamy almond filling: a mixture of butter, sugar, almond flour, egg, and almond extract. Spread this almond mixture inside each croissant, as well as over the top of each croissant.
- Sprinkle sliced almonds over the top and bake for 12-14 minutes, until the cream is set.
HOW TO PREP IN ADVANCE: Prepare the almond syrup and creamy almond filling up to 24 hours in advance and keep them refrigerated. On the day you are serving the croissants, all you have to do is assemble and bake them (less than 30 minutes from start to finish).
You absolutely have to enjoy these croissants still warm, fresh from the oven. This is the benefit of making Almond Croissants at home – you get to enjoy them at peak deliciousness. The insides are soft and warm, the exteriors are flaky and crisp, the sliced almonds add crunch, and the almond filling is creamy and dreamy. Does life get any better?
My family adores this recipe. My kids (who usually only go crazy for chocolate/sprinkle-filled/frosting covered treats) raved and raved about these croissants. These have quickly become our new weekend breakfast, with any leftovers becoming a late afternoon snack alongside a cup of tea.
One of the top food experiences of my life involves an Almond Croissant eaten while walking the chilly streets of Paris on an early spring morning. It was, and still is, the best pastry I have ever eaten. Although no other croissant has ever come close to that one, I will always have a place in my heart (er, stomach?) for this sweet, nutty, buttery pastry.
- 6 medium sized croissants see note
- 1/2 cup sliced almonds
- powdered sugar for dusting, optional
- 1 cup water
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1/8 teaspoon almond extract
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter softened to room temp
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar
- 3/4 cup almond meal or almond flour
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
- 1 large egg
Prepare the croissants:
Split the croissants in half and lay them out on a baking sheet. Cover loosely with a paper towel and allow them dry out overnight. Alternately, you can use croissants that are already a day or two old and already slightly dry.
In a small saucepan bring the water to a boil. Add the sugar and stir until dissolved. Remove from the heat and add the almond extract. Cool slightly (or refrigerate for up to 24 hours).
Using a hand mixer or stand mixer, beat butter, sugar, almond meal, and salt until smooth and combined. Add extract and egg and beat until creamy. Use immediately or cover and refrigerate for up to 24 hours.
Preheat oven to 350°F. Get out a rimmed baking sheet (large enough to hold all 6 croissants) and set it aside.
Brush the outsides, as well as the insides, of each split croissant liberally with the almond syrup. Alternately, you can dip the inside and outside very briefly in the syrup, allowing the excess to drip off.
Scoop some of the almond filling and spread it onto the inside of each croissant, place the top half back on, and spread more almond filling onto the top of the croissant. Tip: Before starting, I spread the almond filling into an even layer in the bowl that it's in and I roughly "score" it equally into sixths. This gives me an idea of how much filling I can use on each croissant (remember, each portion will be split between the inside and top of the croissant).
Add sliced almonds to the top of each croissant. The creamy almond topping will serve as glue. Place the croissants on a rimmed baking sheet and bake for 12-14 minutes, until the cream on top has set and the croissants are light golden brown. Allow to cool just slightly, dust with powdered sugar, if desired. Enjoy warm.
If your croissants are from a bakery they might be more flaky and less moist than those bought in a grocery store. You could possibly get away with not drying them out overnight. Be sure to brush them very generously with the almond syrup (so that they don't dry out too much in the oven). Croissants from a grocery store are often more moist and they can definitely stand to dry out a bit before adding the syrup and cream.
Recipe adapted from Chocolate & Zucchini.