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When it comes to hamantaschen, I like to think outside the box. Many people like the traditional flavors of apricot, poppy, and prune. I have never enjoyed any of those. Since Purim is such a fun, festive holiday, it is a great opportunity to play with different flavor profiles. Recently, I had a Danish that was filled with pastry cream. That’s one of my favorite breakfast treats, and it was one of the best things I learned to make in culinary school. The Danish got me thinking about how delicious it would be to incorporate pastry cream into hamantaschen. That’s how these Boston Cream Pie Hamantaschen came to life.

What I particularly love about these hamantaschen is that you can really go to to town with the pastry cream. I like to fill the hamantaschen with it before baking. Once baked, the pastry cream sort of deflates, so I like to add more pastry cream post-bake, which is totally safe because the pastry cream is already cooked. In my opinion, there is never too much pastry cream.

three Boston cream pie hamantaschen on a plate surrounded by more Boston cream pie hamantaschen.
A fun, modern twist on hamantaschen!

What Are Hamataschen?

Let’s first make sure we are all on the same page. Hamantaschen are triangular shaped cookies (or pastry) that are made with a variety of different fillings. Why are they triangular? Long story short, they are traditionally made for the Jewish holiday of Purim — a joyous holiday that commemorates the saving of the Jews from an evil dude named Haman. According to legend, Haman wore a three-cornered hat. (Very fashion-forward for such a hateful man!) Why they decided to shape cookies like his hat is beyond me. All I know is that, made properly, they are delish.

What is pastry cream?

Pastry cream is magical. It seriously takes 15 minutes to make. It is used to fill eclairs, cream puffs, Napoleons, Boston cream pie, among other tasty treats. With just a handful of ingredients, you can have a rich, delicious pastry cream for any pastry. All you need is:

  • Milk (whole milk is best)
  • Eggs
  • Sugar
  • Flour
  • Corn starch
  • Vanilla (preferably a bean, but vanilla bean paste or extract will work too)

How to make pastry cream

The video included with this post shows you in detail how to make pastry cream, but here is the rundown:

  1. Heat up the milk with the scraped vanilla bean and half of the sugar. (If using vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract, add it just when the milk comes to a boil.)
  2. While the milk is heating up, whisk together the rest of the sugar, flour, corn starch egg, and egg yolk.
  3. Once the milk comes to a boil, turn the heat off and pour approximately one-third of it into the egg mixture, whisking constantly. The trick here is to start whisking before you even start pouring the milk. If you do not whisk immediately, you will end up with scrambled eggs. Safety tip: Place your bowl with the egg mixture on a rubber mat or wrap it in a towel at the base to hold it in place. Alternatively, if someone else is around, have that person hold the bowl in place while you carefully pour the hot milk and whisk it in.
  4. Pour the tempered egg mixture into the pot with the rest of the heated milk. Whisk to combine. Turn the heat to medium high and whisk the mixture constantly. Once it comes to a boil, set a timer for 2 minutes and continue whisking and cooking for exactly 2 minutes. The timing is critical, as that is the time it takes for the enzymes in the cornstarch to do their thing, but you you do not want to overcook it either. Whisk it constantly for the two minutes while cooking. It’s your arm workout for the day!
  5. Immediately pour the pastry cream onto a sheet of plastic wrap and enclose it tightly to avoid a skin forming on the pastry cream.
  6. Allow it to cool to room temperature. If you want to speed it up, fill a large bowl with ice and cold water, about half way up. Place a metal bowl on top of the ice water. Place the package of pastry cream in the clean, dry bowl. Allow it to sit for 10 minutes, then flip it for another 10 minutes or so. You can use the pastry cream once at room temperature or store it in the refrigerator for up to 2 days before you use it.

A note about pastry cream

Some pastry cream recipes include a little butter. Adding butter (which is a fat) helps prevent the fats in the pastry cream from separating if you freeze it. I never freeze pastry cream, so my recipe does not include butter. I therefore do not recommend freezing the fully assembled hamantaschen for any extended period of time. (They will probably be ok in the freezer for a week or two, but I have not tried it.)

Also, pastry cream should be stored in the refrigerator. Once fully assembled, store the Boston Cream Pie Hamantaschen in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Do not leave them unrefrigerated for more than four hours.

Interested in a chocolate pastry cream? You can make the chocolate pastry cream recipe in my S’mores Boston Cream Pie.

three Boston cream pie hamantaschen on a plate with a bite taken out of one of them showing the pastry cream inside, al surrounded by more Boston cream pie hamantaschen
Pastry cream makes everything taste delicious!

Making the Cookie Dough for Boston Cream Pie Hamantaschen

The dough for these Boston Cream Pie Hamantaschen is similar to all my hamantaschen dough, which is an adaptation from Shannon Sarna’s recipe from her book Modern Jewish Baker.

This part is super easy. Whisk the dry ingredients in a small bowl. In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar. Add the eggs, milk and vanilla, beating until well incorporated. Add the dry ingredients into the wet, being careful not to overmix. Divide the dough in half and press into plastic wrap, flatting each into a disk. You can certainly make one disk, but I like having it in two portions because I do not have a large enough counter to roll the full recipe out at one time. Refrigerate the dough for at least one hour and up to 48 hours.

For shaping, check out the video included with this post.

Once shaped and filled with the pastry cream, freeze the hamantaschen for 15-30 minutes. This will help the hamantaschen maintain their shape when you bake them.

Chocolate Ganache Drizzle to Top the Boston Cream Pie Hamantaschen

This is a standard chocolate ganache recipe. Equal parts (by weight) cream to chocolate. Use a good chocolate! I like semi-sweet or bittersweet for these hamantaschen. Scharffen Berger, Guittard and Callebaut are great brands for a ganache. I add in a little corn syrup to give the ganache a little shine. A drop of salt balances all the flavors. (You can use good quality chocolate chips, but I would skip the corn syrup.)

The trick to making ganache is to chop off the chocolate really well, avoiding large chunks of chocolate. This will help the chocolate melt when the boiling cream hits it. Once you add the boiling cream, allow it to sit for a minute or two to melt the chocolate. Then whisk it, starting from the center, making concentric circles just in the center of the bowl. Resist the urge to drag the whisk to the edges of the bowl, at least until the ganache has mostly formed. At that point, you can whisk to the edges.

Looking for Other Fun Hamantaschen Flavors?

Check out these:

Frequently Asked Questions About Making Boston Cream Pie Hamantaschen

Do I have to freeze the hamantaschen before baking?

Yes. The hamantaschen may not hold their shape if they are placed in the oven at room temperature. Baking them from the freezer ensures that they hold their shape.

What is the best way to store Boston Cream Pie Hamantaschen?

Once fully assembled, store the Boston Cream Pie Hamantaschen in an airtight container in the refrigerator. It is best not to keep them unrefrigerated for more than 4 hours.

Boston Cream Pie Hamantaschen

4.95 from 19 votes
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
refrigeration time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 42 minutes
Servings 36 cookies
Calories 118
A modern twist on a Jewish classic, these Boston Cream Pie Hamantaschen are filled with delicious vanilla pastry cream and topped with a chocolate ganache.


Pastry Cream

  • 475 grams whole milk (2 cups less 1 Tablespoon)
  • 1 vanilla bean (or 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract)
  • 125 grams sugar (½ cup plus 2 Tablespoons)
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 25 grams all purpose flour (3 Tablespoons)
  • 25 grams corn starch (2 Tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon)


  • 283 grams all purpose flour (2 cups plus 2 Tablespoons)
  • ¼ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt or table salt
  • 150 grams sugar (¾ cup)
  • 113 grams unsalted butter at room temperature (8 Tablespoons or ½ cup)
  • 1 egg, at room temperature
  • 1 egg yolk, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons whole milk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla

Chocolate Ganache

  • 57 grams heavy cream (¼ cup)
  • 57 grams semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate, chopped finely (2 ounces)
  • ½ Tablespoon cornstarch
  • pinch of salt (fine sea salt or kosher salt)


Pastry Cream

  • Line a baking sheet with plastic wrap. Set aside.
  • Heat up the milk with the scraped vanilla bean and half of the sugar. (If using vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract, add it just when the milk comes to a boil.)
  • While the milk is heating up, whisk together the rest of the sugar, flour, corn starch egg, and egg yolk.
  • Once the milk comes to a boil, turn the heat off. Hold the pot of hot milk over the bowl of the egg mixture and start whisking the egg mixture. As you whisk, pour in approximately one-third of the milk into the egg mixture, whisking constantly.
  • Pour the tempered egg mixture into the pot with the rest of the heated milk. Whisk to combine.
  • Turn the heat to medium high and whisk the mixture constantly. Once it comes to a boil, set a timer for 2 minutes and continue whisking and cooking for exactly 2 minutes.
  • Immediately pour the pastry cream onto plastic wrap lined baking sheet and enclose it tightly to avoid a skin forming on the pastry cream. Allow it to cool to room temperature.

Hamantaschen Dough

  • In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
  • In the bowl of a mixer, cream together the sugar and butter, approximately 2-3 minutes. Add the egg, the egg yolk, milk, and vanilla, and beat until all the liquid ingredients are fully incorporated.
  • With the mixer off, pour the dry ingredients into the mixer bowl over the liquid ingredients. Turn the mixer on the lowest speed and mix just until the dry ingredients are fully incorporated. (Alternatively, you can mix the dry ingredients in by hand using a rubber spatula.) Do not overmix.
  • Place half the dough on top of a large piece of plastic wrap. Using the plastic wrap, shape the dough into a disk or rectangle, pushing down on it to thin it out. Fully cover the disk of dough in the plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for at least one hour and for as long as 24 hours. Repeat with the remaining portion of the dough.

Hamantaschen Assembly

  • Beat the pastry cream with an electric mixer until smooth. Fill a piping bag or Ziplock bag with the pastry cream. Cut the tip of the bag (or a bottom corner of the Ziplock bag).
  • Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper. Take one of the dough disks from the refrigerator and roll it out in between two pieces of parchment paper that are lightly dusted in flour. Roll the dough so that it is approximately ¼ of an inch thick. If you roll it too thin, the dough will rip as you remove it from the parchment. Using a round cookie cutter (I use a 2½ inch diameter), cut as many rounds out as you can. You may need to dip your cutter into some flour to avoid it sticking to the dough. Use a metal spatula dipped in flour to release the rounds. Gather the scraps and roll that clump of dough out and cut more rounds. Keep repeating until you have used all the dough. If at any point the dough becomes too sticky or difficult to work with, cover it in plastic wrap and let it chill in the refrigerator for about 10 minutes. Try to avoid adding too much flour to the dough.
  • Fill each round with a generous mound of pastry cream. Lightly flour your fingertips and form each circle into triangles by folding up the rounds and pinching them tightly in three corners. (If they are not sticking together, wet your fingertip and rub it on the inside where you are trying to create the point.) You want to make sure that the seams are fully closed so that they do not open while baking. Place the shaped hamantaschen on the prepared cookie sheets.
  • Place the cookie sheets with the shaped hamantaschen in the freezer for at least 15 minutes. DO NOT SKIP THIS STEP. (If you have limited freezer space, place them tightly, right next to each other, on one prepared cookie sheet or a plate. Once frozen, you can easily remove them and set them further apart on another parchment line baking sheet for baking.)
  • Preheat oven to 400° F.
  • Repeat steps 2 through 4 with the remaining disk of dough.
  • Bake the frozen hamantaschen for 12-14 minutes until they are lightly brown around the bottom edges.
  • Cool on pan for a few minutes and then completely on a wire rack. Top the hamantaschen with more pastry cream.

Chocolate Ganache Drizzle

  • Place the chocolate, cornstarch and salt in a heatproof bowl.
  • Bring the cream to a boil. Alternatively bring it to a boil in a microwave, at 30 second intervals.
  • Pour the boiling cream over the chocolate. Allow it to sit for 1-2 minutes. Starting from the center, whisk in concentric circles until the ganache starts to form. Once it is formed, whisk towards the edges of the bowl.
  • Use a spoon to drizzle the ganache over the hamantaschen. Alternatively, fill a piping bag or Ziplock bag with the ganache and drizzle.


  • Both the dough and the pastry cream can be made up to 48 hours in advance and stored wrapped in plastic wrap in the refrigerator.
  • If you are in a rush when making the dough, you can chill it in the freezer for 30 minutes before rolling it out, instead of refrigerating.
  • Store the baked and decorated hamantaschen in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Avoid freezing them.
Calories: 118kcal
Course: Dessert, Tea Time
Cuisine: Jewish
Keyword: hamantaschen, pastry cream, Purim


Calories: 118kcal | Carbohydrates: 16g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 36mg | Sodium: 30mg | Potassium: 48mg | Fiber: 0.4g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 159IU | Vitamin C: 0.01mg | Calcium: 27mg | Iron: 1mg


  1. 5 stars
    wow i love your creativity on this Boston Cream Pie Hamantaschen. it was really tasty. Mine didn’t turn out as pretty as yours but it was really yummy!

  2. 5 stars
    These Hamantaschen are divine! Made them right away and they turned out perfectly! Thank you so much for this great recipe!

  3. 5 stars
    Love this boston cream variation – so tasty and fun to surprise guests with this!

    • Rob Finkelstein Reply

      Thanks for pointing that out! I just updated it. 2 cups less 1 Tablespoon.

  4. 5 stars
    I have never had true Hamantaschen but when we’re talking buttery pastry, then I’m in! I love you’re presentation and explanation of Hamantaschen.

  5. For the pastry cream, would I use cornstarch or fine cornmeal as a substitute for cornflour?

    • Rob Finkelstein Reply

      Whoops!Somehow the recipe said corn flour instead of corn starch. I just updated it. The pastry cream is made with part corn starch and part all purpose flour.

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