How to make Puff Pastry Dough (Cheaters method)


Time needed: 3 hours

Make The Cheaters Puff Pastry

  1. The Detrempe

    With a hook attachment beat together all ingredients for the detrempe. first on low until everything is incorporated then mix on high for 4 minutes. Roll out onto floured surface. Use a heavy duty rolling pin to roll Detrempe into a rectangle. Wrap with plastic wrap and place in fridge for 1 hour to cool.

  2. The Beurrage

    Grate 1 1/2 lbs. frozen butter using a micro-plane into a freezer safe bowl. wrap with plastic wrap and set in freezer for 45 minutes to re-freeze.

  3. 1st fold

    In the first fold roll the detrempe into a rectangle on a floured surface to 15-inches long. use the grated butter and spread onto 2/3 of the detrempe.
    fold a tri-fold to layer the butter. wrap and place back in fridge for 1 hour.

  4. 2nd fold

    repeat Step 3 to layer more butter into the detrempe. place back in fridge for 1 hour. after the hour of cooling is done puff pastry is ready for use. roll out into desired size. freeze pastry dough up to 2 months.

  5. To bake

    follow desired recipe to bake pastry
    such as my recipe: Dutch oven chicken pot pie!

The other day I wanted to bake a chicken pot pie from scratch and had no idea how. I spent majority of the day looking up different recipes and methods of baking one. I really just got excited to use my brand new cast iron dutch oven. One of the requirements for this recipe was I had to create a puff pastry. I’ve heard of it before but never made one from scratch. I didn’t have all day at this point to make a real French puff pastry, so I found a cheaters method that saved a whole day and I want to share it with you. This is the fastest way to make puff pastry dough also known as the cheaters method!

Origin of Puff Pastries

Puff pastry was supposedly created by French painter and apprentice cook, Claude Gelée, in about 1645, when he accidentally created a laminated dough when trying to make a form of rolled butter cake for his sick father.

I thought this reference to the origins of puff pastries to be a funny story.

I made this only once for the chicken pot pie recipe I made and I was overwhelmingly surprised at how well it turned out. I did get a little stressed out while making it because I cut it a little close to dinner time.

Why is this tricky?

A puff pastry is a dough that has been layered with butter or another solid fat. This layering is called laminating. When this is made it creates a flaky crust when baked.

What happened was I followed a quick recipe and rationalized it to my needs. I watched a video to see the process so I assumed that I was on the right track. But while making this butter was just seeping out of the layers, it made a huge buttery mess on my counter.

I buy butter in bulk now because I make everything with butter so I always have a couple pounds in the freezer which is exactly what I needed for this recipe.

Now this being the fastest way to make puff pastries, I had to use every short-cut possible.

One thing that is recommended was to grate the butter first and set it back in the freezer. Do this just before you make the dough you’re going to use.

There are two french phrases used to describe the puff pastry: the Detrempe and the Beurrage. The Detrempe is the pastry dough and the Beurrage is the butter mixture that you’ll add to the Detrempe.

For the Detrempe:

  • 2 C AP flour
  • 1/2 C + 6 Tablespoons cold water
  • 1/4 Tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 Tablespoon lemon juice

For the Beurrage:

  • 1 1/2 lbs. frozen butter
  • 1/2 C AP flour

In the french pastry you beat the frozen butter and flour together in a stand mixer with a paddle attachment until everything is incorporated. Then re-freeze the mixture for a few hours.

The Cheaters method

skip this step by grating the butter with a micro-plane then place it back in the freezer for 45 minutes. This Requires a little elbow grease but its a pain everyone should experience.

While the butter is freezing mix all of the Detrempe together in the mixing bowl. Mix until you get a dough ball, then mix on high for 4 minutes. Roll out onto a floured surface with a heavy duty rolling pin into a rectangle. Wrap the mixture with plastic wrap and place in fridge for 1 hour.

After the first hour this is ready to roll into the fastest way to make a puff pastry.


If you found this post helpful in making your own puff pastry please share so other might find an easier way.

Share what you made with your puff pastry I would love to hear!

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