Planning a morning visit to your neighborhood bakery might fill your mind with puffy cinnamon rolls dripping with tangy cream cheese frosting. But then you arrive and spot those cream-filled eclairs behind the glass—you can’t decide which would be a better choice for your morning sugar rush. Sure, you could buy both and go splitsies with your roommate, but you could also try making a frankenfood. Cinnamon roll eclairs are sweet and creamy interspersed with warm cinnamon and a cream cheese glaze.
These pastries start as choux, which you may also know as the stuff that becomes the outside of cream puffs or profiterole. It’s a delicate batter that’s made partially on the stove and in the mixer (or with a wooden spoon and some arm muscles), piped into logs on a baking sheet, then baked until golden brown. The choux are filled with vanilla pudding—though we’d also recommend chocolate or butterscotch—then dipped in a cream cheese glaze, like a classic cinnamon bun.
Cinnamon Bun Eclairs
- Yields: 16 eclairs
- Cook Time: 35 minutes
- Hands-On Time: 35 minutes
- Total Time: 4 hours 50 minutes
Prepare pudding according to package directions using milk. Stir in cinnamon; cover and chill until cold, at least 4 hours.
Preheat oven to 425°F. Whisk together flour and sugar in a small bowl; set aside.
Combine butter, salt, and 1 cup of the water in a medium saucepan, and bring to a boil over medium. Add flour mixture, and cook, stirring constantly and vigorously, until a smooth dough pulls away from sides of saucepan and a film develops on bottom of saucepan, about 2 minutes.
Transfer dough to a heavy-duty electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat on low speed until dough cools slightly, about 2 minutes. Increase speed to medium, and add 4 of the eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat until dough is smooth and a soft peak forms, about 2 minutes. Transfer dough to a piping bag fitted with a large French star tip.
Pipe dough into 5-inch- long logs 3 inches apart on 2 parchment paper-lined baking sheets. Using a wet finger, press down on the pointed tip of each éclair to round off end.Whisk together remaining egg and 1 teaspoon water in a small bowl. Brush éclairs lightly with egg wash. Place in preheated oven, and decrease temperature to 375°F. Bake until deep golden brown, about 35 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack; cool completely, about 30minutes.
Poke a small hole in one end of each éclair. Place pudding mixture in a piping bag fitted with a medium-size round tip. Pipe about 3 tablespoons pudding mixture into end of each éclair. Dip tops of éclairs in Cream Cheese Glaze, allowing excess to drip off. Sprinkle cinnamon on wet glaze. Let stand until dry, about 15 minutes.
Cream Cheese Glaze
- Yields: 1 1/2 cups glaze
- Hands-On Time: 5 minutes
- Total Time: 5 minutes
Beat cream cheese with a heavy-duty electric stand mixer on medium speed until smooth.Gradually add powdered sugar, beating until incorporated. Gradually add milk, beating until smooth, about 1 minute. Use immediately, or cover tightly with plastic wrap until ready to use.