How to make French croissants at home from scratch

Making croissants at home is such an achievement and whilst making croissants is definitely not for the faint-hearted, it is so rewarding once you have mastered the process.  While there is an incredible amount of technique involved, following some simple (and repetitive) processes, will ensure that your end product is delicious.

This article is a comprehensive guide, with step-by-step, detailed instructions on what to do and how to do it. It is supported by many photos of each stage, as I know that sometimes the words don’t tell the full story. When it comes to learning how to make croissants, I think the more detail, the better. Making croissants is not easy, and the devil is in the detail, so the more information available the better. I’ve made this recipe many times over and I rely on these steps every time.

So, just to warn you, this is a long article. I can’t give you insider tips and advice on croissant making without it. If you can stick with me, I’ll show you how to make classic French croissants like an expert.  I learned all of this through a cooking class I went to in Paris.

  • Use the Jump to Recipe button at the top of the article to go straight to the recipe if you want to, but I can (almost) promise you that you will keep scrolling back up to the detailed information that has. all the photos.

What is a croissant?

We all know what a croissant is right? Perhaps we do, but I think many people would be surprised to know that their origins are Austrian and not French. Although, like many other foods the world over, the French have certainly claimed them as their own. Croissants were part of the group of baked goods known as Viennoiserie that sits somewhere in between luscious pastries and bread.

The key ingredient in croissants that is different to most pastries is yeast. Croissants are the crescent-shaped pastries now folklore in France, that uses yeast but also plenty of butter to produce a soft, buttery, flaky pastry that melts in your mouth.

Can anyone make croissants?

Yes, anyone can make croissants, although it is fair to say that unless you are a classicly trained pastry chef, it’s likely to take you a while to master them. Practice does make perfect though. Expect that your first batch might not be the best-looking batch around, but keep on trying and learning. Even a bad croissant that you have made yourself will still be delicious.

Why this recipe works

  • If you follow the process step-by-step in this article you will definitely be able to make croissants. This is not an easy recipe for croissants. It’s a recipe for the correct way to make them.
  • I learned this process and all of the tips and techniques in this recipe directly from a French-trained pastry chef, in Paris. I made them in Paris. So I am living proof that this process works.
  • Better still, I took copious notes whilst making these in Paris, so that I could make them over and over again at home. The extra notes I took are all in this article, identified as Cook’s tips. Follow these extra pieces of advice and you’ll stay on the right track.
  • I have included heaps of photos so that you can actually see what I mean as I explain the process. Sometimes, the words can be a little tricky to understand. The photos show you exactly what needs to be done.
  • This recipe only makes a small number of croissants. I’ve found that making a small batch increases the chances of success, and takes less time. I’d prefer to see six amazing, flaky croissants than a dozen dodgy ones.
  • This recipe would suit beginners as well as those who have been baking for a while.
  • You don’t need to make them all at once. Making the dough is time-consuming but you can spread that over a number of days. You can literally make dough on a different day to actually creating and baking the croissants.

Equipment for making croissants

  • Teaspoons
  • Digital kitchen scales
  • Jug
  • Baking paper (parchment paper)
  • Plastic wrap
  • Rolling pin
  • Sharp knives – a small paring knife and a large knife
  • Ruler
  • Biscuit trays
  • Pastry brushes (for egg wash and sugar syrup)
  • Dough scraper

What goes into this recipe

Croissant dough ingredients (starting dough – détrempe)

  • 250g all purpose flour (around 11% protein)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 35g sugar
  • 10g fresh yeast (5g instant dried yeast)
  • 115g water
  • 25g melted butter

Butter block ingredients (tourrage)

  • 125g unsalted butter (high fat content)

Eggwash ingredients

  • 1 whole egg

Sugar syrup ingredients

  • 100g water
  • 50g sugar

How to make croissants

Preparing the butter block

Step 1

First, we need to make a template. Fold a piece of A4 paper in half. This is now known as C5 size. Put in the centre of a large piece of baking (parchment paper).

Fold the baking paper in towards C5 paper in the centre.  From left to right, then right to left, then top to bottom, then bottom to top.  It should now envelope the C5 piece of paper.  Crease the baking paper along the edges.

Note:  A4 measures 210 × 297 mm (8.27 × 11.69 inches). C5 is 162mm x 229mm (6.37 inches x 9.01 inches)

how to make classic french croissants like an expert
Making the template for the butter block for the homemade croissants

Open up and remove the C5 sheet of paper and put the baking paper aside for later use.

Step 2

If you have a 250g block of butter, cut it across on the diagonal.  You need to be precise here so that you have 125g.

how to make classic french croissants like an expert
Cutting the block of butter into half on the diagonal

Cut the 125g block in half so that you have two thin triangles of butter.  Put the two halves together to make a rectangle.  You don’t need to be as precise here.

how to make classic french croissants like an expert
Cutting the half into half again, this time widthways

Step 3

Open up the baking paper that you put aside and put the butter in the middle.

how to make classic french croissants like an expert
Place the butter together to form a rectangle

Step 4

Fold the baking paper back into the format of the template that you made earlier.  i.e. place the butter into the centre of the baking paper that has been folded out. Fold the sides in so that the paper is covering the butter and the C5 size again.

how to make classic french croissants like an expert
Fold the butter up inside the baking paper

Step 5

Turn over so that the folded sides are on the back.

how to make classic french croissants like an expert
Turn the paper over so the folds are underneath

Step 6

Flatten the butter slightly with the rolling pin. Push the butter into the four corners first.  Be very careful not to pierce the edges of the paper. Roll and push gently into the corners.  Turn the paper around so that you are pushing ahead of you instead of behind.

Flatten to the same thickness.  Apply less pressure to do the sides. Put into the fridge until cold and hard. I usually place it on a flat tray to ensure it doesn’t get broken.

how to make classic french croissants like an expert
Butter block ready for the fridge

Making the croissant dough (Détrempe)

Step 7

Melt the butter, add it to a jug with the water in it and let it set slightly. 

melted butter and water in a jug
The melted butter sets on top of the water

Step 8

In a bowl, mix the dry ingredients (flour, sugar, salt) together. Do not add the yeast at this stage. It is very important that the yeast does not touch the salt. Tip dry ingredients onto the bench.  Use the bottom of the bowl to make a well.

adding liquid to dry ingredients for classic french croissants
Adding the liquids to the dry ingredients

Step 9

Mix liquids together slightly and then pour into well. Add the yeast.

Making the classic french croissants
Adding the fresh yeast. Dried yeast is ok to be used.

Step 10

Break the wall slightly, a bit at a time and mix in with fingers of one hand only.  This keeps as much of your body heat out of the dough as possible. The mixture should incorporate all the wet ingredients and should look like a thick pancake mix.

Making the classic french croissants
Mixing the croissant ingredients together, taking in some of the flour bit by bit

It should come to the ‘pancake’ stage without using all the flour.  Don’t worry, this will be used soon.

When it takes on the thick pancake consistency, quickly mix the remaining flour into the wet mix. Work quickly but without overmixing to stop the spread of the liquid. Cut it with the scraper to bring it all together.

Knead the croissant dough

Step 11

The kneading process is next, and it will require about 10 minutes of constant activity.  This is where you build your muscles.

Push the dough away from you and bring it back.  Turn with three fingers holding the bottom of the dough and the palm of your other hand, stretch away from you.  Rollback.  Turn clockwise. Repeat. Don’t flour the bench.

Kneading the classic french croissants
Kneading the croissant dough by pushing away and rolling back

Step 12

When it is laminated (smooth and elastic) roll it into a ball using curved hands running around the bottom of the ball.  (make your hands like a cup and roll around underneath the ball )

Dough rolled for classic french croissants
Laminating the dough by rolling it in cupped hands

Step 13

Press down. Take edges and fold into the middle from six points.

Dough rolled for classic french croissants
Making the ball into six points

Step 14

Turn over and roll into a ball again. Wrap in plastic wrap. Put the dough in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.

Rolling the croissant dough

Step 15

Place a little flour on the bench.

Take the dough from the fridge and put it on the bench.   Draw a rectangle in the flour to visualise where the pastry is going to be rolled to. Bang down on the dough gently with a rolling pin and flatten a little.

Dough rolled for classic french croissants
Press down gently with a rolling pin to slightly flatten the dough

Step 16

Fold an A4 piece of paper in half again.  This is used to help measure how long and wide to roll the dough.

For the width of the croissant dough, it should be the width of the A4 plus thumbs on either side.

Dough rolled for classic french croissants
Measuring the width for the dough to be rolled out to

Step 17

The length you are aiming for is 1x the A4 length plus a little more than 1/2 of the A4 paper again.

Roll using the rolling pin.  To keep the dough as straight as possible, keep your hands on the middle of the rolling pin, not the ends.

Dough rolled for classic french croissants
Rolling the dough out gently

Adding the butter to the croissant dough

Step 18

Take the butter out of the fridge and unwrap the top of the baking paper, leaving the butter still attached.  Place on the lower part of your dough.

adding the butter to the french croissants dough
Adding the hardened butter to the croissant dough

Unwrap the butter, turn over and remove the baking paper, leaving the butter on the croissant dough, noting the position of the butter in the photo below.

adding the butter to the french croissants dough
Note where the butter is placed

How to fold the croissant dough

Step 19

Folding the croissant dough will require four folding processes.  A simple fold, a double fold and then another simple fold.

For the first simple fold, bring the top of the dough down to halfway down.  This will bend over the top of the butter.

adding the butter to the french croissants dough
Bringing the top of the dough down over the butter

Next, fold the bottom of the dough up to the top.  This will also take the butter with it.

The dough with the first fold completed over the butter for the croissants
The dough with the first fold completed over the butter
how to do a simple fold

Gently press the open ends with the rolling pin.

French croissant dough
Press down on the edges gently to seal

Put some more flour on the bench and move the dough around on it. Note, if the dough feels warm at this stage, wrap it in plastic wrap and refrigerate.

Step 20

This is the second fold. Place the bookend (rounded side) on the left-hand side.  (ie turn 90 degrees).  Add some flour.

The second fold of croissant dough sitting on bench
The croissant dough after the second fold.

Using the rolling pin, tap gently all over the dough.  This helps distribute the butter through the dough.

French croissant dough
Tap the rolling pin over the entire length of the dough – gently

Roll up and down on the dough from the middle.  Always roll from the middle up and then the middle down. Never roll from side to side. Remember to roll with your hands in the middle of the rolling pin to keep the dough as straight as possible.

Dough rolled for classic french croissants
Rolling the dough out gently

For this fold, you need to fold each end up towards the middle so they are kissing/touching.  They are not to be folded over one another like the simple fold done previously.

Folding French croissant dough
This fold sees the two ends “kissing” in the middle

Pinch in the middle to seal. Dust off any flour. Fold over so that it is like a book. Turn the dough around so that the bookend is on the left-hand side.

multiple layers of croissant dough on bench
The multiple layers of dough after the final fold

Wrap in plastic wrap.

Put in fridge/freezer depending on how quickly you want to make these.  You need at least one hour in the fridge between this fold and the last fold.

Step 21

This is the last fold. Be more delicate with the last fold. Place bookend on the left-hand side.  Move around in the flour. Press ends together gently with a rolling pin.

French croissant dough
Press down on the edges gently to seal

Tap all over once again with the rolling pin.

French croissant dough
Tap the rolling pin over the entire length of the dough – gently

Roll out once more.

Dough rolled for classic french croissants
Rolling the dough out gently

Fold the top third down to the bottom and then the bottom third back up to the top (exactly like the first time we folded). Press ends together lightly. Wrap it in plastic wrap once again and leave it for an hour in the fridge.

Step 22

Remove the dough from the fridge. Roll the dough out to be approximately 57 cm long (22.5 inches) and about 22 cm wide (8.5 inches). Before moving, check it is not sticking to the bench.  Add flour if necessary.

Turn 1/4 turn clockwise. Move around in the flour and put some more flour on top. Check the length.  If you have lost length, roll from the middle to left and middle to right.

If you have an odd shaped end, just roll out diagonally at the corners.

Preparing French croissant dough
Rolling the dough out into a rectangular shape

Step 23

Starting at the right-hand side of the dough and working to the left,  make a mark on the top long edge of the dough that is half a knife blade length.  (see cut in dough in the photo below)

Cutting the edges of the croissant pastry to make french croissants
Cutting the edges of the croissant pastry
Cutting the edges of the croissant pastry to make french croissants
Cutting French croissants from dough

From the half blade mark, cut the dough to the bottom right-hand corner and scrap dough.  This can be used to make other pastries later.

On the bottom side of the dough, make a full knife blade mark (to the left).

Cut first croissant shape from this mark to the first half knife blade mark.  And then from the top face continue cutting croissant shapes with full knife blade widths.

Making classic french croissants
This is how the croissants should be cut
Cutting the dough into croissants
Starting to cut the dough into croissants

Step 24

Once you have your triangles, take the individual piece and stretch gently to make it a little longer.

croissant dough cut into triangles

Then, fold the two bottom corners up a little as per the photo below.

Making classic french croissants
Roll the bottom edges in

Gently roll up the croissant.  Limit touching as much as possible.  Ensure the final end of the triangle is placed underneath the croissant on the tray or else it will unfold when cooking.

croissants that have been rolled
Rolled croissants ready to egg wash

Step 25

Brush with egg wash (plain egg)  and leave to prove for 2-3 hours at a temperature no higher than 25 degrees Celsius (77 degrees Fahrenheit).

Ensure there is space between the croissants to allow for expansion whilst proving. They will be ready to bake when they have doubled in size.

Eggwashing the classic french croissants
Eggwashed croissants

Step 26

Preheat oven to 200 degrees Celsius (392 degrees Fahrenheit) and bake croissants for 15-20 minutes or until golden. Resist the urge to eat them immediately. Allow them to cool down so that all the layers will set, leaving distinct layers of flaky pastry goodness.

Step 27

Prepare sugar syrup by mixing 100g boiling water and 50g sugar.  Stir until sugar is dissolved.  Using a small brush, glaze the croissants with the sugar syrup as soon as they come out of the oven.  Use the syrup sparingly as you don’t want to make them soggy.

baked french croissants on a plate

A professional chef’s tips for making French croissants 

There is no denying that making croissants is a time-consuming process.  To make all the effort worthwhile, you need to take your time.  Luckily, there is a way you can do a few steps every day, making it far less demanding of your time.

Day 1  – Beat butter, make Détrempe (dough). Put in the fridge.

Day 2 – Put butter and dough together.  This equals one simple fold.  Put in the fridge.

Day 3 – Do a double fold.  Put in the fridge.

Day 4 – Do the last simple fold.  Put in the fridge.

Day 5 – Shape the dough. Put it in the fridge.

Day 6- Prove the dough, egg wash, bake and apply sugar syrup.

Of course, depending on your time available, you can do all of the dough making and folding on one day, or across two, instead of taking four to do it as above.

So there you have it.  Take the time to follow all of these instructions and steps, taking note of how it should look in the photos and you will produce some amazing classic French croissants.

The final product - fresh, flaky classic french croissants
The final product – fresh, flaky classic French croissants

Recipe FAQs

Can I make croissants with this recipe if I’ve never made them before?

Of course you can. Everyone has to start somewhere. Unlike many recipes, I have made this recipe over and over and I know it works. It’s also taken from a French pastry chef, so it comes from good origins. That’s also why I’ve included so many photos of the steps, so you can actually visualise what you are doing.

What is the best butter to use?

Butter from Europe is the best butter to use. French butter is my favourite. It’s best because it always has a high-fat content, and is not blended in any way with vegetable or canola oils. Butter with low-fat content cannot be molded the way this recipe requires and will cause issues with folding the dough. Always use unsalted butter as well.

Can I substitute butter for another product?

No you can’t. Only butter with a high-fat content will help you to make the perfect croissants. Anything else other than butter will have additives like oil or reduced-fat and it simply won’t work.

My croissants don’t have flaky layers? What did I do wrong?

It’s likely that this is due to an issue with the butter. The most common issue causing this is the butter has melted during the folding/rolling process and has blended into the dough. This is why it’s important to keep the butter cold and to work quickly. Or, if you don’t fold and turn the correct way. The recipe mentions things like starting with the bookend on the left, rolling from the middle up and middle down, and turning 90 degrees clockwise. This is all noted for a very important reason. If you mix this up, the layers will be ruined.

Why do my croissants look like bread?

This will be because the butter has melted and also because they didn’t prove long enough. Croissants must be proven for the right amount of time, not under or over.

I’ve got leftover pastry, can I use it for something else?

You sure can. Use it to roll up mini croissants, make pinwheels or let your imagination run wild. You can also use it to top a pie. Just remember to keep the dough cold at all times to avoid having the butter melt.

Tips for making croissants

  • Cool temperatures are essential for making croissants. Heat will destroy the butter layers. If you sense the dough is getting too warm, put it in the fridge asap.
  • Make it on a cool day, or in an airconditioned environment.
  • For flaky layers of pastry, the butter block must stay intact and not be allowed to melt into the dough.
  • Buy the best ingredients you can afford or find. The butter, the main ingredient, is the most critical of all. Poor quality butter will reduce your chances significantly of making good croissants.
  • Be tender – whether it is mixing, rolling or cutting the dough, be as gentle as possible. The butter is being formed in delicate layers as you roll. Heavy pressure can break the layers and you won’t get that light flaky pastry at the end. Don’t roll the dough out too heavily. If you are pushing hard against it and it’s springing back, this is not what you want.
  • Work quickly to prevent the dough and therefore the butter from becoming too warm.

How to store croissants

I will admit that I’ve never had this problem. Any croissants I’ve ever made get devoured very quickly after they have been baked. There’s never been a need to store them. However, you can freeze croissants if you really need to. Let them thaw and come to room temperature and then quickly baked them in a hot oven to crisp them up. Otherwise, if you have some left-over, store them at room temperature in a sealed container. Just remember though, they won’t taste anywhere near as good.

freshly made croissants in a cabinet

How to make French croissants from scratch

Yield: 6
Prep Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Additional Time: 1 day 6 hours
Total Time: 1 day 8 hours

Comprehensive instructions for how to make French croissants at home. French recipe with process taught by a French chef. Detailed step by step guide so you can make light, flaky delicious French croissants at home.

Ingredients

  • DETREMPE (STARTING DOUGH)
  • 50g cake flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 35g sugar
  • 10g fresh yeast (or 5g instant yeast)
  • 115g water
  • 25g melted butter
  • BUTTER BLOCK
  • 125g unsalted butter
  • EGGWASH
  • 1 whole egg
  • SUGAR SYRUP
  • 100g water
  • 50g sugar

Instructions

Preparing the butter block

  1. First, we need to make a template. Fold a piece of A4 paper in half. This is now known as C5 size.
  2. Put in the centre of a large piece of baking (parchment paper.
  3. Fold the baking paper in towards C5 paper in the centre.  From left to right, then right to left, then top to bottom, then bottom to top.  It should now envelope the C5 piece of paper.  Crease the baking paper along the edges.
  4. Note:  A4 measures 210 × 297 mm (8.27 × 11.69 inches). C5 is 162mm x 229mm (6.37 inches x 9.01 inches)
  5. Tip: Butter must be high fat.  At least 82% fat.  The harder the block of butter the more fat it contains.  Use unsalted butter.
  6. Open up and remove the C5 sheet of paper and put the baking paper aside for later use.
  7. If you have a 250g block of butter, cut it across on the diagonal.  You need to be precise here so that you have 125g.
  8. Then cut the 125g block into half widthways.  Put the two halves together to make a rectangle.  You don’t need to be as precise here.
  9. Open up the baking paper that you put aside and put the butter in the middle.
  10. Fold the baking paper back into the format that you made earlier.  i.e. place the butter into the centre of the baking paper that has been folded out. Fold the sides in so that the paper is covering the butter and the C5 size again.
  11. Turn over so that the folded sides are on the back.
  12. Flatten the butter slightly with the rolling pin.
  13. The next step is to push the butter into the four corners first.  Be very careful not to pierce the edges of the paper. Roll and push gently into the corners.  Turn the paper around so that you are pushing ahead of you instead of behind.
  14. Flatten to the same thickness.  Apply less pressure to do the sides.
  15. Put into the fridge until cold and hard.

Making the Détrempe  (Starting dough)

  1. Melt the butter, add it to a cup with the water in it and let it set.  Tip - it is easier to use the melted butter if it is slightly set and it is also easier to measure accurately if it is melted.
  2. In a bowl, mix the dry ingredients well together. Do not add the yeast at this stage. It is very important that the yeast does not touch the salt.
  3. Tip dry ingredients onto the bench.  Use the bottom of the bowl to make a well.
  4. Mix liquids together slightly and then pour into well. Add yeast.
  5. Add the yeast.
  6. Break the wall slightly, a bit at a time and mix in with fingers of one hand only.  The mixture should incorporate all the wet ingredients and should look like a thick pancake mix.
  7. It should come to the ‘pancake’ stage without using all the flour.  Don’t worry, this will be used soon.
  8. When it takes on the thick pancake consistency, quickly mix the remaining flour into the wet mix. Work quickly but without over mixing to stop the spread of the liquid.
  9. Cut it with the scraper to bring it all together.

Knead the croissant dough

  1. The kneading process is next, and it will require about 10 minutes of constant activity.  This is where you build your muscles.
  2. Push the dough away from you and bring it back.  Turn with three fingers holding the bottom of the dough and the palm of your other hand, stretch away from you.  Rollback.  Turn clockwise. Repeat.
  3. Don’t flour the table.
  4. When it is laminated (smooth and elastic) roll it into a ball using curved hands running around the bottom of the ball.  (make your hands like a cup and roll around underneath the ball )
  5. Press down.
  6. Take edges and fold into the middle from six points. Turn over and roll into a curved ball again.
  7. Wrap in plastic wrap.
  8. Put the dough in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.

Rolling the croissant dough

  1. Place a little flour on the bench.
  2. Take the dough from the fridge and put it on the bench.   Draw a rectangle in the flour to visualise where the pastry is going to be rolled to.
  3. Bang down on the dough gently with a rolling pin and flatten a little.
  4. Fold an A4 piece of paper in half again.  This is used to help measure how long and wide to roll the dough.
  5. For the width, it should be the width of the A4 plus thumbs on either side.
  6. Length is 1x the A4 length plus a little more than 1/2 of the A4 paper again.
  7. Roll using the rolling pin.  To keep the dough as straight as possible, keep your hands on the middle of the rolling pin, not the ends.

Adding the butter

  1. Take the butter out of the fridge and unwrap the top of the baking paper, leaving the butter still attached.  Place on the lower part of your dough.
  2. Unwrap the butter, turn over and remove the baking paper, leaving the butter on the dough.
  3. We are ultimately going to do four-folds.  A simple fold, a double fold and then another simple fold.

First fold

  1. Bring the top of the dough down to the top of the bottom third. This will bend over the top of the butter.
  2. Next, fold the bottom of the dough up to the top.  This will also take the butter with it.
  3. Gently press the open ends with the rolling pin.
  4. Put some more flour on the bench and move the dough around on it.

Next fold

  1. Place the bookend (rounded side) on the left-hand side.  (ie turn 90 degrees).  Add some flour.
  2. Using the rolling pin, tap gently all over the dough.  This helps distribute the butter through the dough.
  3. Roll up and down on the dough from the middle.  Always roll from the middle up and then the middle down. Never roll from side to side. Remember to roll with your hands in the middle of the rolling pin to keep the dough as straight as possible.
  4. For this fold, you need to fold each end up towards the middle so they are kissing/touching.  They are not to be folded over one another like the simple fold done previously.
  5. Pinch in the middle to seal.
  6. Dust off any flour.
  7. Fold over so that it is like a book.
  8. Turn the dough around so that the bookend is on the left-hand side.
  9. Wrap in plastic wrap.
  10. Put in fridge/freezer depending on how quickly you want to make these.  You need at least one hour in the fridge between this fold and the last fold.

Last fold

  1. Be more delicate with the last fold.
  2. Place bookend on the left-hand side.  Move around in the flour.
  3. Press ends together gently with a rolling pin.
  4. Tap all over once again with the rolling pin.
  5. Roll out once more. Fold the top third down to the bottom and then the bottom third back up to the top. (exactly like the first time we folded) Press ends together lightly.
  6. Wrap it in plastic wrap once again and leave it for an hour in the fridge.
  7. Roll it to be as long as your rolling pin less the width of the dough scraper. Before moving, check it is not sticking to the bench.  Add flour if necessary.
  8. Turn 1/4 turn clockwise.
  9. Move around in flour.
  10. Put some more flour on top.
  11. Check length.  If you have lost length, roll from the middle to left and middle to right.
  12. The width should be 2 times the size of the dough scraper.
  13. TIP - to keep dough rolling straight place hands in the middle of the rolling pin. If you have an odd-shaped end, just roll out diagonally at the corners. 

Cutting the croissants

  1. TIP - It is very important to cut/slice with a sharp knife to straighten the edges.  Do not drag the knife through the dough.
  2. Starting at the RHS of the dough and working to the left,  make a mark on the top long edge of the dough that is half a knife blade length.  (see cut in dough in the photo below)From the half blade mark, cut the dough to the bottom RH corner and scrap dough.  This can be used to make other pastries later.
  3. On the bottom side of the dough, make a full knife blade mark (to the left).
  4. Cut first croissant shape from this mark to the first half knife blade mark.  And then from the top face continue cutting croissant shapes with full knife blade widths.
  5. Once you have your triangles, take the individual piece and stretch gently to make a little longer.
  6. Then, fold the two bottom corners up a little as per the photo below.
  7. Gently roll up the croissant.  Limit touching as much as possible.  Ensure the final end of the triangle is placed underneath the croissant on the tray or else it will unfold when cooking.
  8. Brush with egg wash (plain egg)  and leave to prove for 2-3 hours at a temperature no higher than 25 degrees celsius.
  9. Tip - It is critical that a light egg wash is only placed on top of the croissant surface and not on the edges.  If it comes into contact with the edges, the dough

Baking croissants

  1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees celsius and bake croissants for 15-20 minutes or until golden.TIP - create steam in the oven by spraying water around the entire oven area or add water to a hot tray on the bottom of the oven.

Make sugar syrup

  1. Prepare sugar syrup by mixing 100g boiling water and 50g sugar.  Stir until sugar is dissolved.  Using a small brush, glaze the croissants with the sugar syrup as soon as they come out of the oven.  Use the syrup sparingly as you don't want to make them soggy.

Notes

The article above the recipe gives many tips and hints for the various stages so it is recommended that you use this recipe printout in conjunction with the main article.

Quick tips for how to make classic French croissants 

There is no denying that making croissants is a time-consuming process.  To make all the effort worthwhile, you need to take your time.  Luckily, there is a way you can do a few steps every day, making it far demanding of your time.

Day 1  - Beat butter, make Détrempe. Put in the fridge.

Day 2- Put butter and dough together.  This equals one simple fold.  Put in the fridge.

Day 3 - Do a double fold.  Put in the fridge.

Day 4- Do the last simple fold.  Put in the fridge.

Day 5- Shape the dough.

Day 6 - Have a break!

Day 7- Proof the dough, egg wash, bake and apply sugar syrup.

Recommended Products

Beer and Croissants is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites worldwide.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 395Total Fat: 23gSaturated Fat: 14gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 90mgSodium: 447mgCarbohydrates: 46gFiber: 1gSugar: 39gProtein: 3g

This data was provided and calculated by Nutritionix.

Did you make this recipe?

We'd love for you to share it and show us how you went. Mention @beerandcroissants or tag #beerandcroissants

You might also like to cook these French dishes at home

croissants on blue background

36 thoughts on “How to make French croissants at home from scratch”

  1. These look delicious! I love croissants and there isn’t anywhere to buy them where I am now. I would definitely like to try this.

  2. Wow!! Those are gorgeous!! I’ve never attempted croissants, but my brother made them once and they were fantastic. You’ve inspired me to give it a go one day soon. 🙂

  3. Oh dear, this is a lot of hardwork. The step by step pictures are lovely and the croissantz look to die dor. Have attempted puff pastry before and it was way too delicious than the store bought ones. I am sure croissants rastes good too.. Awesome work!

  4. I’ve always just bought canned, lol. This seems like quite a bit of work but I’m sure it’s well worth the effort. They look delicious!

  5. Wow! This reminds me why I don’t bake! It is such an exact form of cooking! But when you get it right the results are amazing. Having said that I would definitely taking the class thought It would be fantastic!

  6. I shuddered a little bit, memories of THAT day nearly 20 years ago in the kitchen of chef school came flooding back. It was literally 12 hours of folding the butter into the pastry, but I had a teacher that found pleasure in setting us up to fail, moving our pastry to a warm part of the kitchen so the butter would melt, that kind of thing. I have never made since. But… perhaps its time I get over that and have a crack at your recipe. 🙂

  7. Oh wow Anna, that sounds both horrible and predictable that a chef would do that to trainees. It’s hard enough as it is without that being forced on you. Living in Queensland, the heat can make it difficult so I understand completely the issues with the heat as well. Hopefully you might give it a go one day….Good luck if you do.

  8. These croissants look amazing! Although they look like a lot of work, I’m sure that they taste even better at the end- knowing that you made them yourself!!!

  9. This is just an amazing recipe, so well explained and illustrated! Thank you very much for that 🙂 I was just wondering, do you have any experience with freezing the croissant before they are baked? Thought it would be great to make a huge batch and have them in the freezer and just take out a few to always have fresh croissants 🙂

  10. Hi Sine, that’s a terrific question and such a great idea. They do require such hard work that making a bigger amount would be just perfect. Whilst I haven’t personally done this myself, I can’t see why this would be a problem. After all, that’s how all the ones in the commercial supermarkets etc operate. Would be happy to hear back from you if you give it a good and see how it all went.

  11. I took this same class in Paris and, well, you took much better pictures and notes! So thank you for posting. Making a batch this weekend.

  12. Hi Marie, good question,
    I shall put these dimensions into my article now. A4 measures 210 × 297 mm or 8.27 × 11.69 inches. C5 is 162mm x 229mm (6.37 inches x 9.01 inches)

  13. How many croissants do we get with this recipe? do we use self raising flour for this recipe? Thanks a lot for your sharing.

  14. Hi, this recipe calls for cake flour which is a type of self-raising flour especially milled for making cakes. It’s lighter. you can try using self-raising flour, but I have only ever used cake flour. This recipe makes about 6 for us but it really depends on how large you make them. Have fun making them!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Skip to Recipe
Scroll to Top