These easy almond croissants have a wonderful "homemade quality" to them but require half the effort of a traditional croissant thanks to the use of store-bought almond paste and puff pastry sheets.
They are one of my favorite holiday recipes for Christmas morning breakfast because you can prep them the night before and then all you have to do the next day is bake!
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For more breakfast treats made with puff pastry sheets try my Sticky Bun Recipe, my Apple Cinnamon Pastries, or my Mini Ham and Cheese Croissants. All of these recipes would also be great for Christmas morning breakfast!
What's in an almond croissant?
An almond croissant is filled with almond paste and sometimes an egg and flour to create a lighter, fluffier texture. They are a popular treat in France!
How do you make almond croissants with puff pastry?
Making almond croissants with puff-pastry couldn't be easier! You'll create an almond filling (recipe below) and then spoon it into the puff pastry. Brush with a little egg wash, top with almonds, and bake!
Step#1: Cut the Puff Pastry
Slice the puff pastry into 3" x 5" rectangles. For this recipe, I recommend using the Pepperidge Farm brand of puff pastry sheets because it comes already scored into panels so all you have to do is cut each panel into 2 pieces are you are good to go!
STEP#2: Make the Almond Filling
Making the almond filling for these croissants becomes even easier with the help of store-bought almond paste because you are half-way there! If you have some leftover you can put it to good use in my Raspberry Almond Cake, or my Pear Almond Tart, both equally delicious for holiday entertaining!
What's the Difference Between Almond Paste and Marzipan?
Almond paste and marzipan are totally different ingredients. Ironically they are usually sold next to each other in the store so it's easy to make the mistake and think they are interchangeable. But they are not. For this recipe, you'll need almond paste.
Marzipan is sweeter and used as a decorative ingredient to mold into shapes. Think of those hand-painted Italian fruits sold in Italian bakeries, that's marzipan.
Almond paste is less sweet and used as an ingredient in baking. It has a more subtle almond flavor which I find needs a bit of almond extract to achieve a bold almond flavor for these croissants.
STEP#2: Fill the Croissants
Scoop a dollop of homemade almond cream in the center of each puff pastry rectangle. For this, I like to use a mini cookie dough scoop, which will prevent you from adding too much. Place two scoops in the center.
Do not over-fill the croissants or the filling will ooze out once it starts to bake. Then fold over opposing corners to meet in the middle.
STEP#3: Brush with Egg Wash and Top with Almonds
Brush each croissant with egg wash making sure to seal the overlapping flaps together. This will also prevent them from opening when the pastry puffs up in the oven, which could then force the filling to spill out.
Then top with raw, slivered almonds. I think raw almonds with the skin on makes for a pretty rustic touch.
Make-Ahead Tip: At this stage, you could cover the croissants with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to bake.
STEP#4: Bake and Serve
Bake the croissants for 20 minutes until puffed up and golden brown. Then allow them to cool slightly, before dusting with powdered sugar. The sugar adds a nice Christmasy touch to them! But if you add it too soon while the croissants are still warm, it will melt. So just give them a few minutes to cool. And then sit back and watch them disappear in minutes!
Can you freeze almond croissants?
Yes! Freezing them is a great idea. After the pastries are assembled place the tray in the freezer to harden up. Once frozen you can place them in a resealable freezer container, lined with wax paper in between the layers. Then bake when you are ready to serve. No need to thaw first.
More Christmas Morning Breakfast Recipes!
- Overnight Cinnamon Buns
- Cheesy, Herby, Egg Bake Casserole
- French Apple Pastries with Puff Pastry
- Tomato, Basil Frittata
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- ¼ cup of unsalted butter
- ¼ cup powdered sugar
- 4 oz of almond paste
- 3 eggs, separated
- ½ tsp almond extract
- 3 tbsp flour
- 1 package puffed pastry (you will need 2 sheets)
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- ¾ cup sliced almonds
- Preheat oven to 400F.
- Beat together butter, sugar and almond paste until combined.
- Add 2 eggs, one at a time, reserving the 3 egg for the egg wash. Then add the almond extract.
- Add flour slowly until just combined.
- Cut out a 3 x5 square of puffed pastry. Place 2 tbsp of almond paste in the center. Take one corner and fold it over the cream, and then take the other corner and fold it over the top.
- At this stage you could cover with plastic wrap and place your tray in the fridge overnight. And then the next morning proceed as follows.
- Lightly beat 1 egg, and then with a pastry brush, brush the egg wash over the pastries. Sprinkle with 1 tbsp of almonds
- Place in the oven 20 mins until puffed and golden brown.
Do not overfill the croissants or the filling with ooze out when baking! A little dab will do ya!
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Small Cookie Scoop, 1.5 Tbsp/ 0.8 OZ, 1.6 inch/ 4 CM Ball, 18/8 Stainless Steel Small Ice Cream Scoop, Secondary Polishing
McCormick Pure Almond Extract, 2 oz
KitchenAid KP26M1XBZ 6 Qt. Professional 600 Series Bowl-Lift Stand Mixer - Black Storm
Onwon Powder Sugar Shaker with Lid - Stainless Steel Fine Mesh Shaker Cinnamon Icing Sugar Powder Cocoa Flour Chocolate Coffee Sifter Sprinkler Dredgers for Coffee Cappuccino Latte
Fasmov Parchment Paper Baking Liner Sheets Pan liner, 11.8 x 15.7", 500 Count
AirBake Natural 2 Pack Cookie Sheet Set, 16 x 14 in
Odense Almond Paste, 7 Ounce Tube
Nutrition Information:Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 182Total Fat: 13gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 76mgSodium: 49mgCarbohydrates: 13gFiber: 2gSugar: 7gProtein: 5g