I am amateur and novice baker. I cannot differentiate the two recipes. Are they only different in proportion?

I know that the two are egg-based, mixed with sugar and starch and tempered with milk (or occasionally fresh cream) previously boiled with vanilla bean and then heated until it thickens. So what is the difference between the two?

2 Answers 2


Crème Pâtissière is a thicker mixture, and is usually used for filling a pastry. It would be rolled into, or injected into something that would then be baked. As such, it needs to be thicker, so as not too leak out, and usually more flavourful, as it is the main flavour in the pastry.

Crème Anglaise is what the English would call custard. It is usually served as a "sauce" for sweet dishes. A classic dish would be apple crumble, served in a bowl with custard around it. The custard is there to add richness, and complement the flavour of the cake, and is therefore usually more subtle in flavour.

  • 1
    Another name for crème patisserie is confectioner's custard.
    – user23614
    Nov 15, 2015 at 11:39

In a nutshell, both have the same ingredients, except crème pâtissière also has flour in it. That is the main difference.

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