Croissant Dough


by: Josey

Croissant dough is similar to classic puff pastry dough - butter is folded in the dough to create layers - except that it is also leavened with yeast. You must take care not to let the yeast overferment while you're working with it, or it won't have any life left when you’re ready to shape the croissants and let them rise. To avoid this, don't make the dough wait a long time between turns and keep the dough cold as you work with it - this means frequent chilling in the refrigerator. When the dough is finished, it will keep for up to 24 hours refrigerated before it must be shaped and proofed. In fact, 12 to 24 hours in the refrigerator before proofing improves its flavor. One last precaution: Never allow the salt to come in contact with the yeast all at once, or it will kill the yeast. Note: A slightly different method of starting the dough is shown in the photographs. Either method works.


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serves: 12

3 1/2 cups flour

1 cup water (barely warm)

1 teaspoon active dry yeast

1/3 cup heavy cream

1 teaspoon salt

1 3/4 cups cold butter

Nutrition Facts
Croissant Dough

Servings Per Recipe: 12

Amount per Serving

Calories: 383

  • Total Fat: 28.5 g
  •     Saturated Fat: 17.8 g
  •     Trans Fat: 1.1 g
  • Cholesterol: 75.7 mg
  • Sodium: 437.2 mg
  • Total Carbs: 28.1 g
  •     Dietary Fiber: 1.1 g
  •     Sugars: 0.1 g
  • Protein: 4.3 g

how is this calculated?

Download Nutrition Facts Widget Code


1.  Pour the flour in a mound onto a work surface. Make a well in the middle. Pour in the milk and add the sugar, then the dry yeast. Use your fingers to gradually pull the flour away from the inside of the well.

2.  Sprinkle over the salt, then use a bench scraper to pull the dough into the center with the liquid. Press on the dough until it comes together in a loose shaggy mass.

3.  Pull the dough together with your hands. Knead for 7 minutes. Refrigerate the dough for 1 to 3 hours, covered with plastic wrap.

4.  Pound the butter between 2 sheets of plastic wrap into an 8-inch square.

5.  Uncover the dough and flatten it with the heel of your hand, then roll it into a rectangle.

6.  Place the butter on one end of the rectangle. Align the sides ofthe butter and the dough with the sides of your hands.

7.  Fold the other half ofthe dough over the butter so you end up with a square.

8.  Press gently on one side ofthe square with one hand, while firming up the edge with the other to even out the square.

9.  Gently pound the dough with the rolling pin to stretch the dough and the butter in it.

10.  Roll the dough into another rectangle.

11.  Fold the rectangle like a letter so you have three layers. This is the first "turn".

12.  With the thick fold on your left, roll the packet into another rectangle.

13.  Again, fold the rectangle like a letter. This is the second turn.

14.  Pound the dough with the rolling pin to flatten it and roll it into another rectangle.

15.  Fold in thirds, again, like a letter to make the third turn.

16.  Pound and then roll with the rolling pin to form a rectangle. Fold as before to make the fourth turn. The dough can novv be rolled out and used.

Cooks' note:
Combine 1 cup of the flour with the water and yeast just long enough to break up the lumps of flour, and let rise for 1 hour.
Stir in the remaining flour, the cream, and salt and knead the mixture for 1 minute. Cover and let rest for 20 minutes.
Knead the mixture by hand for about 10 minutes or with a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook for about 20 minutes, or until smooth and elastic. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Work the butter with the heel of your hand or the paddle attachment until there are no lumps. Shape the butter into an 8-inch square. Roll the dough out into a 9 by 17-inch rectangle and place the square of butter on one end. Fold over the dough so the butter is encased in a square. Press together the edges of the square to seal in the butter. Press gently on the square with one hand while firming up the other sides to even out the square. Gently hammer on the square of dough with a rolling pin to stretch the dough and the butter in it.
Roll the dough into a 9 by 18-inch rectangle. Fold the rectangle into thirds as though it were a letter. Starting with a narrow end, fold the bottom third up and fold the opposite end down. If the dough is difficult to roll, refrigerate for 30 minutes. When the dough is easy to work, turn it so that the large single fold, like the spine of a book, is on your left, roll it out into another rectangle, about the same size, and fold it in the same way. Make two imprints with your fingers to indicate that it's had two "turns". Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
Continue in this way until you have given the dough 4 turns total.
The dough is now ready to roll out for making croissants, pains au chocolat, or Danish pastry.

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