Eclair Cake

Eclairs are a French pastry made of pate a choux filled with a pastry cream and then coated in chocolate. Pate a choux, a dough that’s also used to make profiteroles, can be a difficult pastry to make (though definitely worth a go). So for this cheater version we use graham crackers. They aren’t really anything like an eclair, but they are still great for layering in this cake and become soft as the cake chills. Since using graham crackers will free up your time, we really encourage you to make your own pastry cream here. The cream is similar to a pudding and is lightened up with a little whipped cream for a smooth filling. After chilling the whole thing becomes incredibly delicious and addicting.

YIELDS: 6 – 8 serving(s)
PREP TIME: 15 mins

4 egg yolks
1/2 c. granulated sugar
1/4 c. cornstarch
2 c. whole milk
2 tbsp. butter
1 tbsp. pure vanilla extract
1/3 c. heavy cream
2 tbsp. powdered sugar
15 graham crackers

3/4 c. semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 c. heavy cream


Step 1
Place egg yolks in a medium heat-safe bowl and whisk until lightened in color, about 2 minutes.

Step 2
In a medium pot, whisk together granulated sugar and cornstarch. Slowly add milk while whisking. Place pot over medium heat and bring to a boil, whisking constantly. Once mixture comes to a boil reduce heat to low, then slowly pour about ½ cup of the mixture into the yolks while whisking.
Step 3

Pour warmed egg mixture back into pot while whisking. Let boil until thickened to a pudding-like consistency, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from heat and whisk in butter and vanilla.

Step 4
Pour mixture through a fine mesh strainer into a clean bowl. Press plastic wrap directly against mixture and refrigerate until chilled, at least 1 hour.
Step 5
Whip the cream: In a medium bowl add heavy cream and powdered sugar. Using a hand mixer, beat until stiff peaks form.
Step 6
Give chilled pastry cream a stir, then fold whipped cream in until just combined.
Step 7
Make the ganache: Place chocolate chips in a small heat-safe bowl. In a small pot over medium heat, heat cream until simmering. Pour over chocolate chips and let sit undisturbed for 2 minutes, then whisk until smooth. Let cool to room temperature while assembling.
Step 8
Assemble: In a 8” square pan, place an even layer of graham crackers, breaking up sleeves as needed to completely cover the bottom. Top with half of the pastry cream. Repeat with another layer of graham crackers and remaining cream, then top with a third layer of graham crackers.
Step 9
Pour ganache over top and smooth into an even layer. Cover and refrigerate until well chilled, at least 4 hours and up to overnight.