Mini Boston Cream Pies

Mini Boston Cream Pies

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Traditional Boston cream pie ingredients stacked in easy-to-transport cups!MORE+LESS-

Updated November 24, 2014



teaspoons vanilla extract



container Yoplait® Boston cream pie yogurt


teaspoons vanilla extract



cup semi-sweet chocolate chips


teaspoon vanilla extract

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  • 1

    To make the cake, preheat oven to 350°F. In a mixing bowl, whisk together cake flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

  • 2

    Using the paddle attachment of a stand mixer or a hand mixer, blend in unsalted butter until it's well-mixed into the dry ingredients. It should resemble a coarse sand.

  • 3

    In a separate bowl, stir together eggs, buttermilk, and vanilla.

  • 4

    Add wet to dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Try not to over-mix.

  • 5

    Butter and flour a 9 inch cake tin and pour batter into tin.

  • 6

    Bake cake for 35-40 minutes at 350°F until the cake is set and a tester comes out clean from the center. It should be nicely browned on top.

  • 7

    Let cake cool for a few minutes and then break it into pieces.

  • 8

    For filling, whisk together eggs, sugar, and yogurt in a medium bowl.

  • 9

    In a small saucepan, whisk together milk and cornstarch over medium-low heat. Continue to heat until the mixture is steaming and thick.

  • 10

    Whisk hot milk mixture into yogurt mixture. Stir in vanilla. Cool in the fridge for 2-3 hours until the custard is thick and set.

  • 11

    For ganache, add all the ingredients to a microwave safe bowl and microwave on high in 20 second bursts until the mixture is melted.

  • 12

    To make the cups, add some cake to each glass/cup, then top with a spoonful of vanilla custard, and then a small spoonful of chocolate ganache. Repeat the layers in each.

  • 13

    Chill cups until you serve them.

No nutrition information available for this recipe

More About This Recipe

  • Every city is known for a food. New York has pizza and cheesecake. Chicago has hot dogs. Atlanta has BBQ.

    Boston has a bunch of specialty foods, but I always think of Boston cream pie: A thick vanilla custard layered between light cakes and covered with chocolate ganache. Yes, please!

    If you like the flavors but are in the mood for something a bit more casual (and portable) try out my Mini Boston Cream Pies. All of the same ingredients, but layered in individual cups.

    Obviously, you’ll need some cake for this recipe. You could make it from a box or pick up a cake from a bakery, as any light white cake will do the trick. If you want to bake your own though, check out the recipe where I give directions for a quick and simple cake.

    You start by blending some butter into the dry ingredients until it resembles coarse sand and then adding all the wet ingredients. You don’t want to over-mix the batter.

    Butter and flour a 9-inch cake pan and pour in your batter!

    This cake will need to bake for 35-40 minutes at 350 degrees F. It should be nicely browned on top.

    Let this cake cool and then you can crumble it up for your cups!

    On to the filling, which is my favorite layer in the cups. I took a little shortcut for this version and used some Yoplait Boston Cream Pie yogurt for the filling.

    Whisk together the eggs, yogurt, and sugar in a mixing bowl and then stir together the milk and cornstarch over medium-low heat in a small saucepan. Once the milk mixture is thick and steaming, whisk it into the egg mixture.

    Stir in the vanilla at the very end, and the filling is done. This filling will be best if you let it chill for a few hours to thicken before using it in the cups.

    When you’re ready to make the cups, just crumble some cake into each cup.

    Then add a spoonful of cream and chocolate ganache.

    Repeat the layer again (cake, cream, chocolate). Chill these guys if you are making them in advance.

    One of these cups is about the equivalent of a small piece of pie. You get all the flavors in a nice portable little cup.

    These would be great for any kind of party and theyr’e pretty easy to make. Give them a shot if you’re a cream pie fan!

    Nick thinks cake in a cup is always a good idea! Be sure to check out his blog, Macheesmo, and follow him on his Tablespoon Profile.

  • Yoplait is a registered trademark of YOPLAIT MARQUES (France) used under license.

Mini Boston Cream Pie For Two

As I mentioned in my last post, I’m working on bringing you your favorite classic recipes in small batch sizes.

Next up is this Mini Boston Cream Pie For Two, which is a 4 inch small sponge cake filled with vanilla custard then covered with a melted chocolate glaze.

This mini cake for two recipe is actually one I published way back in 2008. However, the recipe needed to be updated and the photos reshot.

I forgot how much I loved Boston cream pie until I started making it again.

I made the sponge cake layers in two 4-inch springform pans. That way you can make a 2 layer cake without having to cut anything in half.

This mini Boston cream pie does take some time to prep because you need to chill the custard at least an hour, but that also means you can make each component ahead of time.

Make the sponge cakes and custard on one day, then the next day assemble and make the chocolate ganache.

It’s the perfect dessert for two, whether you’re celebrating someone’s birthday or just hungry for cake in general.

What is Boston Cream Pie?

Boston cream pie is actually a cake. It’s made up of the two buttery sponge cake layers, filled with a vanilla custard and frosted with a silky chocolate ganache. It’s called a pie because when this cake was developed, cakes and pies were baked in the same pan. The name pie and cake were interchangeable then and pie just stuck to this cake.

I took the glorious flavors of the boston cream pie and made actual mini pies. To keep things simple and delicious, I used Athens phyllo shells as my crust. To fancy them up, I dipped the shells in a chocolate glaze before I filled them with vanilla custard.

Historical Goodness: Boston Cream Pie Bundt-lets

Charles Dickens (English author of classics such as Great Expectations) and Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (the American poet who penned Paul Revere’s Ride) were just a few of the celebrities who strolled into the Omni Parker Hotel in Boston the 1850s. Probably to savor the hotel’s famed Boston Cream Pie. Maybe they connected with their muses whilst biting into a deep chocolate coating a yellow cake filled with pastry cream.

The Ninja Baker's Boston Cream Pie Bundt-let

Whether the dessert stirred Dickens or Longfellow to create classical works of literature are unknown. However, the famed cake called the Boston Cream Pie inspired somebody. It is now the official state dessert of Massachusetts. And October 23rd is National Boston Cream Pie Day in the USA.

The luxurious dessert was also the pick of the Cake Slice Baker’s group. (Spearheaded by the sweet as pie – and talented – Paloma King of the Coffee House, every month a group of bakers all bake the same recipe from the same cookbook.) This time the majority chose Boston Cream Pie Tart-lets from Vintage Cakes by Julie Richardson.

The Vintage Cakes recipe refers to the filling as vanilla pudding whereas the original recipe calls the center a pastry cream. The ingredients and the how-to are basically the same. Although I just found out the hotel adds rum…Mmm next time…In the meantime, I’m happy with my Mini Boston Cream Pie Bundt-lets and Cupcakes. Here’s the how-to.

Boston Cream Pie Bundt-lets
Adapted from Vintage Cakes


  • 2 cups sifted cake flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 ½ cups (cold) heavy cream
  • 1 ¼ cup sugar
  • 3 (room temperature) eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 vanilla bean
  • 4 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 8 egg yolks
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ cup cornstarch
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cubed

Cake Directions:

  1. Preheat an oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a large bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt.
  3. With a stand mixer whip up the heavy cream at high speed until sleepy looking waves appear. Pour in the sugar and keep beating until you see stiff peaks.
  4. Reduce the mixer speed and add the eggs, one at a time.
  5. Sprinkle in the vanilla extract.
  6. Pour in one-third of the whisked flour mixture. When fully incorporated, pour another third. Turn off the mixer and hand stir the remaining flour with a spatula.
  7. Divide the batter into mini Bundt pans and/or cupcake tins.
  8. Bake for about 32 minutes or until the middle springs back when lightly touched.
  9. Cool.

Vanilla Pudding Directions:

  1. Scrape out the seeds of the vanilla bean into a saucepan. Add the shell as well with the 4 cups of milk. Add 1/3 cup of sugar and stir over a medium flame. Keep stirring until the mixture is simmering. (Hot, not boiling.)
  2. In a bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, the remaining sugar and salt. Add the cornstarch.
  3. Whisk 1/3 of the hot milk mixture from the saucepan into the bowl with eggs. When well combined, pour the contents of the bowl into the saucepan. Keep whisking until the ingredients in the saucepan thicken. Over medium-low heat, the process can take up to 5 minutes. Strain the mixture through a sieve into a clean bowl. Whisk in the butter until thoroughly melted and combined.

Chocolate Ganache:

  1. Heat the cream in a saucepan over a medium flame. As little bubbles appear, take the pan off the stove.
  2. Pour the cream over the chocolate in a heat-resistant bowl. Cover with a tight lid for 5 minutes.
  3. Remove the lid and slowly whisk the mixture in circles from the center out. Let the ganache firm up at room temperature. (Stir occasionally for the next 2 or 3 hours.) If the ganache is too liquid, refrigerate for 10 minutes and stir the frosting.

Assemble mini Bundts and/or cupcakes by placing pudding in the centers and frosting with ganache. Mini melon ballers are useful tools for scooping out cake middles.

Wishing you a historically happy week.

The Ninja Baker

© ™ Watkinson 2012

The Ninja Baker has guest blogged and contributed recipes to numerous food sites. These additional recipes can be found here.

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