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Puff Pastry Dough
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5 from 5 votes

Puff Pastry

Homemade puff pastry is well worth the extra especially once you experience the flaky buttery goodness when it's baked you'll understand. It can be made well in advance and frozen to have on hand for sweet and savory dishes.
Prep Time15 mins
Chilling10 hrs
Total Time2 d
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: French
Servings: 2 pounds


  • 3/4 teaspoon white vinegar
  • 6 1/2 ounces (180 grams) cold water
  • 1 3/4 teaspoons (12 grams) kosher salt
  • 3 1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons (400 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 4 tablespoons (60 grams) unsalted butter room temperature 65-70 degrees F
  • Butter Block
  • 12 tablespoons (340 grams) unsalted butter 60-65 degrees F


  • Add the water, white vinegar, and kosher salt to a 1 cup measuring cup and whisk until the salt dissolves.
  • Place the flour in the bowl of a stand mixer, add half the water mixture and 60 grams of the butter. With the paddle attachment begin mixing on low speed and while it is mixing slowly pour the other half of the water mixture. Continue to mix on low speed just until the dough comes together.
  • It should look a little shaggy or rough, but all the flour should be mixed in. Turn off the mixer and touch the dough with your fingertips. If there are no lumps the dough is sufficiently mixed. If you feel any lumps mix the dough for a few more seconds to ensure all the flour is mixed in.
  • Remove the dough from the mixer and shape it into a ball. Use a pair of sharp kitchen shears and cut a 3/4-inch deep gash across the top of the ball of dough. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for 1 hour.
    Puff Pastry Dough

Make the Butter Block

  • Before you start the butter should be between 60-65°F. At this temperature the butter will be easier to shape into a block.
  • While the dough is chilling, use a pencil and draw a 5 x 5-inch square on wax paper. If using sticks of butter place 340 grams of butter in a bowl and use a dough scraper or stiff spatula to mix the butter together. Place the butter on the sheet of wax paper, place another sheet on top and roll and shape the butter into the 5 x 5-inch square. The butter will be somewhat soft at this point. With the wax paper still in place wrap the butter in plastic wrap and place it in the freezer for 30 minutes and then move it to the refrigerator for another 30 minutes.

Make the Puff Pastry

  • Before you begin make sure the dough and the butter are about the same temperature - 50 degrees F. I recommend rolling the dough on Silpat. It’s easier to roll the dough and it won’t stick as much as it would with a table or wood board.
  • Roll the dough out to an 8-inch square. Unwrap the butter and place it on top of the dough at an angle so it looks a diamond in the middle of a square. Use the rolling pin to gently roll out the corners of the dough or use your hands to gently to stretch out the corners. Fold these flaps over the dough until all four corners meet in the center of the butter block. Pinch these four corners and the seams together until the butter is completely enclosed in the dough. Tap the dough gently with your rolling pin for 30 seconds. Turn it over and gently tap again to bound the butter and dough together.
    Puff Pastry Dough
  • Dust the Silpat or the work surface with flour. Roll the dough into an 18 x 8-inch rectangle. When rolling the dough roll in one direction in long continuous strokes and make sure to roll over the ends. If the butter starts to ooze out of the sides or ends of the dough stop rolling and place it in the refrigerator for 30 minutes. If the butter starts to crack and break apart the butter is too cold. If that happens stop rolling and let the dough sit for 5 minutes.
    Puff Pastry Dough
  • Once the dough is 18x8-inches and 1/4-inch thick, brush off the excess flour. With the long side facing you fold the dough like a business letter. Fold the right third of the rectangle over the center third and the left third over the center. This is the first turn. Wrap the dough tightly in plastic and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  • Flour your work surface. Place the dough on top with one of the open ends facing you and the folded sides to your right and left. Roll the dough out to an 18 x 8-inch rectangle, 1/4-inch thick. Turn it 90 degrees, so the long side is facing you and fold it like a business letter. Wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for 1 hour. This is your second turn.
    Puff Pastry Dough
  • After the rest repeat the book folds two more times, with a rest of 30 minutes between each turn. You now have 4 turns. Refrigerate the dough overnight. The next day repeat the book folds 2 more times, with a 30 minute rest between the folds. Let the dough rest for 1 hour. The dough is now ready to use. At this point you can refrigerate the dough for up to 3 days (72 hours) or freeze it for up to 2 months.
  • To freeze the dough cut the dough into 2 equal pieces and roll each piece until 1/2 inch thick. Wrap each piece tightly in plastic and then place the plastic-wrapped dough in a gallon freezer bag. Place the dough on a sheet tray and freeze until stiff.
  • When you're ready to use the dough, place it in the refrigerator 24 hours before you're ready to use and allow it to thaw.


Recipe adapted from The Art of French Pastry by Jacquy Pfeiffer