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Classic Vanilla Slice

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Classic Vanilla Slice is one of those desserts that makes you really appreciate how simple desserts can be absolute stunners! This dessert is all about two things. A thick layer of vanilla bean speckled custard sandwiched between two buttery puff pastry layers. Dusted with powdered sugar and ready for you to dig into. Classic never tasted so good!

Neatly sliced Classic Vanilla Slice.
Close up shot of Classic Vanilla Slice.

Nick’s favourite thing…

Where do I even start? I mean just look at the photos! Those vanilla bean specs in the custard? Divine! The best ever vanilla dessert and one of my personal favourites!

Top down shot of Classic Vanilla Slice in tin.Sorry about the out-of-sharpness of this photo! Still getting used to my new camera! haha

What does Classic Vanilla Slice taste like?

Let me break it down. And there are only 2 big main elements in this dessert.

Pastry – it’s flaky, butter and crispy. And it stays crispy! I used the Pampas brand butter puff pastry. Nothing beats it. Those crispy layers of pastry on top and bottom contrast to the silky smooth custard!

Vanilla Custard – the custard is silky smooth. My absolute favourite thing about it is the egg that sets it. There’s a lot of egg yolks in this recipe. If you’re looking for ideas on ways to use the egg whites, why not try my macarons? Or this pavlova recipe!

What are the ingredients I need?

Ingredients image for Classic Vanilla Slice.

Butter puff pastry – I used the pampas brand one from Coles and Safeway and I used the butter puff pastry. I found it had a much nicer texture. It went more evenly golden and tasted nicer. But you can use regular puff pastry sheets. I wouldn’t recommend using the low fat ones.

Caster Sugar – Sometimes also known as superfine sugar.

Corn starch – This will help thicken up and set the custard in the recipe.

Egg yolks – This will also help thicken up the custard, but it will help add flavour as well.

Whole milk – I used regular whole milk for this recipe. You can use skim if you like.

Vanilla bean paste – Make sure you use really good quality vanilla in this recipe. This recipe is all about the vanilla! I used a very small amount, but because it’s good quality, a little goes a long way. In it place you can use regular vanilla extract or even real vanilla beans which will also give you that nice, speckled vanilla bean look which is what I love about this recipe visually.

Unsalted butter – Make sure you’re using chilled butter. Chilled butter will allow the butter to melt into the custard more slowly while it’s hot and prevent it from melting too quickly which can result in it splitting or just becoming a pool of melted butter that creates a mess.

Powdered sugar – also known as icing sugar.

Classic Vanilla Slice with powdered sugar being dusted on.What can I do with my leftover egg whites?

Can I suggest making a delicious meringue? Or maybe a pavlova? I have a delicious one here that you can try!

Piece of Classic Vanilla Slice with fork full taken out.

Let’s go through each step.

Pastry

Instructional image for Classic Vanilla Slice 01
  1. Add the frozen puff pastry on two baking trays lined with baking paper.
  2. Allow to thaw before using a fork to prick holes on top.
Instructional image for Classic Vanilla Slice 02
  1. Place another sheet of baking paper on top and another baking tray on top of that. Bake for 20 minutes or until golden. Once baked allow to cool down completely.
  2. Gently place a 9-inch baking tin on top of one of the baked sheets. Use a serrated knife to gently score and cut down the pastry to the size of the bottom of the baking tray. Do the same with the other pastry sheet and the top of the baking tray. Sometimes baking trays can be a different size on the bottom and top.

Vanilla Custard

Instructional image for Classic Vanilla Slice 03
  1. Add the sugar and corn starch to a large heat proof bowl. Use a whisk to combine.
  2. Add the egg yolks and whisk to combine.
Instructional image for Classic Vanilla Slice 04
  1. Add 1/2 cup of the hot milk and whisk to combine. Then add the remaining milk and vanilla bean paste and whisk.
  2. Pour the mixture into a large saucepan.
Instructional image for Classic Vanilla Slice 05
  1. Whisk on medium high heat until it thickens. About 5-6 minutes.
  2. Once thickened, take off the heat and add the butter.
Instructional image for Classic Vanilla Slice 06
  1. Whisk until the butter is melted and well combined.

Let’s put it together!

Instructional image for Classic Vanilla Slice 07
  1. Line the bottom and sides of the baking tray with baking paper.
  2. Place the smaller pastry sheet in the bottom.
Instructional image for Classic Vanilla Slice 08
  1. Run the custard through a sieve on top of the pastry.
  2. Use a spatula to smoothen out flat.
Instructional image for Classic Vanilla Slice 09
  1. Place the second pastry sheet on top. Place in the fridge to chill for 2 hours or overnight.

How to cut it!

Instructional image for Classic Vanilla Slice 10
  1. Gently lift the vanilla slice out of the baking tin. Place on a chopping board.
  2. You want to use a sharp serrated knife. That’s important. Gently score the pastry by running it on top of the vanilla slice.
Instructional image for Classic Vanilla Slice 11
  1. Once you score through the top pastry layer cut the rest of the slice in one motion all the way to the bottom.
  2. Carefully wipe the knife clean before making the next cut. Finish with a dusting of powdered sugar and serve.

My Top Tips!

  • When slicing the vanilla slice, make sure you do it slowly. Gently score the pastry with a serrated knife. Then make the full slice in one go.
  • Dust with powdered sugar after the vanilla slices have been cut. I just feel it results in a much nicer looking and neater vanilla slice.

Other Recipes You Might Like! 

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I hope you guys enjoyed this simple but delicious Classic Vanilla Slice recipe with me. Please comment in the comments section below, or feel free to share with your family and friends on social media.

I’ll see you all on the following recipe. Happy baking!

N x

Vanilla Slice Pinterest image
Vanilla Slice that has been neatly sliced - square image 24

Classic Vanilla Slice

Classic never tasted so good! vanilla bean speckled custard sandwiched between two buttery puff pastry layers and dusted with powdered sugar!

Serves 9

4.5 from 164 votes
Author: Nick Makrides
Print Recipe Pin Recipe
Prep: 20 minutes
Cook: 40 minutes
Chill: 4 hours
Total: 4 hours
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Calories: 581kcal

Ingredients

Pastry

  • 2 sheets butter puff pastry, frozen (see notes)

Vanilla Custard

  • 110 g caster sugar
  • 40 g corn starch, corn flour
  • 8 egg yolks, room temperature
  • 750 ml whole milk, warmed
  • 2 tsp vanilla bean paste
  • 125 g unsalted butter, chilled and cubed
  • 50 g powdered sugar

Learn How To Make it! [VIDEO]


Instructions

Pastry

  • Preheat a fan forced oven to 180C / 355F (200C / 435F for no fan). Line two flat baking trays with baking paper.
  • To prepare the pastry – Lay your frozen butter puff pastry on top of your baking trays and allow to thaw slightly. Use a fork to prick holes in both sheets of pastry. Cover with another sheet of baking paper and cover with another flat baking tray.
  • To bake the pastry – If using a fan forced oven bake for 40 minutes, if using no fan, bake for 50 minutes or until golden and crispy. Once baked, take out of the oven and allow to cool completely at room temperature.
  • Cutting the pastry to size – Gently place a 8-inch baking tin on top of one of the baked sheets. Use a serrated knife to gently score and cut down the pastry to the size of the bottom of the baking tray. Do the same with the other pastry sheet and the top of the baking tray. Sometimes baking trays can be a different size on the bottom and top. If you want to be extra, you can use a ruler to measure out and cut to size that way.

Vanilla Custard

  • Combine the dry ingredients – Add the sugar and corn starch into a large heat proof bowl and whisk to combine. Then add the egg yolks and whisk until smooth. Set aside.
  • Heat the milk – Place the milk into a non-stick large pot and begin heating on low heat, stirring occasionally. As soon as you see bubbles forming around the sides, take it off the heat.
  • Combine hot milk and egg mixture – Add about 1/4 cup of the hot milk to the egg mixture while whisking. You want to slowly heat the egg mixture with the hot milk so that the eggs don’t heat too quickly and curdle. Add a little more milk and whisk. Once about half the milk has been added, you can add all of the milk. Whisk until combined.
  • Cook the custard – Add the mixture back into the pot and begin stirring on medium heat. The mixture will begin to thicken after about 3-4 minutes. Once it’s completely thickened, continue stirring until it begins to bubble and steam. When it bubbles, stir for 2 minutes, then take off the heat and add the vanilla bean paste. Stir until combined.
  • Adding the butter – While the mixture is hot, add the cold butter in 4 batches, stirring each time. You want to add the butter slowly so that it has time to mix and melt into the custard without splitting it. This is also why we use cold butter. It melts slower.

Putting it together

  • Line the bottom and sides of the baking tray with baking paper or double layers of plastic wrap, leaving some overhang and place the smaller pastry sheet in the bottom. Run the custard through a sieve on top of the pastry. Use a spatula to smoothen out flat. Place the second pastry sheet on top and cover with the baking paper or plastic wrap. Place in the fridge to chill for 4 hours or overnight.

How to cut it

  • Gently lift the vanilla slice out of the baking tin using the overhang. Place on a chopping board.
  • You want to use a sharp serrated knife. That’s important. Gently score the pastry by running it on top of the vanilla slice. You can use a metal ruler to help guide where to cut. Once you score through the top pastry layer cut the rest of the slice in one motion all the way to the bottom. Carefully wipe the knife clean before making the next cut. Finish with a light dusting of powdered sugar and serve.

Notes

Butter Puff Pastry – this is like puff pastry, but a little richer and made using real butter. It will give you a much flakier and richer pastry. If you can’t find this, you can use regular puff pastry. You want to make sure your puff pastry is larger in size than your baking tin. If it isn’t just cut some pastry and overlap it on your large pastry sheet, then sprinkle a light amount of flour and roll until flat and even.
Storage – Vanilla Slice can be stored in an airtight container, in the fridge for up to three days.
Nutrition – is an approximate and is based on per slice.
A note on measurements – this recipe is offered in weight measurements. This is in an effort to offer the most accurate way to get the best results. Cup measurements simply aren’t accurate enough for a recipe that needs precision and cup sizes differ depending on where you are in the world. To learn more about how to measure ingredients using digital kitchen scales, click here!

Nutrition

Calories : 581kcal
Carbonhydrates: 41g
Protein: 9g
Fat: 39g
Saturated Fat: 16g
Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g
Monounsaturated Fat : 17g
Trans Fat : 0.5g
Cholesterol: 213mg
Sodium: 179mg
Potassium : 201mg
Fiber: 1g
Sugar : 12g
Vitamin A: 718IU
Calcium: 137mg
Iron: 2mg
Nutrition Disclosure
Gave this recipe a go?Mention @thescranline or tag #thescranline!

56 comments

Cara September 5, 2021 - 4:26 pm

Hi Nick, attempting this today. Do we follow your instructions for the baking of puff pastry or the box instructions? I’m using Pepperidge farm product. Thanks

Reply
Nick Makrides September 19, 2021 - 2:21 am

Hi Cara, my instructions will work for most puff pastry’s. I’ve never used that brand but I don’t see why it would be different. Hope that helps! N x

Reply
Cherry October 14, 2021 - 10:29 pm

5 stars
Hey Nick! Thanks for the lovely simple recipe. It was really delicious. I have your Sugar Rebels book and my 4 year old son just loves flipping through it. He has requested for me to make all of it and I am just hoping he forgets about it or forgives his mother for not making it look awesome like your work. Your chocolate cake recipe is now my go-to chocolate cake/cupcake recipe. Thanks so much and keep up the fantastic work.

Reply
Nick Makrides November 1, 2022 - 5:06 am

Aww, thanks so much Cherry! THat’s such a lovely thing! N x

Reply
Kate December 9, 2021 - 3:59 am

Can you tell me more about the sieve step? What should I be trying to achieve?

Reply
Nick Makrides September 13, 2022 - 11:35 am

Hi Kate! Sure! It’s to get rid of any potential lumps. N x

Reply
Rachel C January 27, 2022 - 10:49 pm

Can I use duck eggs instead of chicken?

Reply
Nick Makrides September 9, 2022 - 11:26 am

Hi Rachel! I’m not sure that would be a good idea as I think Duck eggs are larger than chicken eggs so it may throw off the end result. Hope that helps! N x

Reply
Sheila Boleyn February 21, 2022 - 6:10 pm

Thank you for all your amazing recipes!!!!!

Reply
Nick Makrides August 2, 2022 - 10:43 am

Hi Sheila! Thanks so much for your lovely comment! N x

Reply
Jalana Azevedo March 1, 2022 - 11:17 pm

5 stars
Hey great recipe. Super scrummy.. just so you know Puff Pastry is super easy to make. And so satisfying. Best trick to remember is that if/ when😜 a hole arises put some flour on it and carry on.
Cheers

Reply
Nick Makrides August 2, 2022 - 10:08 am

Thanks Jalena! I’ll give it a go! N x

Reply
Trevor Allen March 13, 2022 - 7:23 am

Hey Nick, I’m giving this a go but using hot cross buns obviously cut in half, instead of pastry.Hopefully turns out ok

Reply
Nick Makrides April 28, 2022 - 3:20 am

Oh my goodness that sounds amazing Trevor! I’d love to hear how it went! N x

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Joey May 22, 2022 - 8:10 pm

Hi! Is this like the Hungarian pastry, they called Sisi Cake?

Reply
Nick Makrides May 28, 2022 - 7:06 am

Hmm, not sure about that one Joey, I’ve never heard of that cake! N x

Reply
Amanda July 5, 2022 - 12:31 pm

5 stars
This was a HUGE hit! And so much simpler to make than it looks when finished. Thank you for sharing the recipe!

Reply
Nick Makrides July 11, 2022 - 1:49 am

Thanks Amanda! N x

Reply
Silvana July 10, 2022 - 8:45 pm

Hi Nick…my husband is Australian and loves vanilla slice. We tried a recipe last week, and it was horrible. I made your recipe today…all by myself ( I don’t bake ever!)
So easy! It’s in the fridge cooling now!
Can’t wait to dive in and taste this baby!

Reply
Nick Makrides July 11, 2022 - 1:52 am

Thanks so much Silvana! How’d it go? N x

Reply
Silvana July 14, 2022 - 7:09 pm

It was AMAZING Nick!!!
Thank you for the recipe…following you on Instagram…looking forward to more.

Reply
Nick Makrides August 1, 2022 - 5:35 am

Thanks so much Silvana! N x

Reply
Kaye July 18, 2022 - 11:48 am

5 stars
I made this for guests that we had over for dinner. I made it exactly as the recipe. Turned out perfectly and was a big hit, I will be using this recipe from now on. Thanks Nick. Easy to make also.

Reply
Nick Makrides August 1, 2022 - 4:19 am

Thanks so much Kaye! N x

Reply
Branka August 3, 2022 - 2:58 am

Hi Nick
Do you cool custard completely before you pour it on the pastry sheets?
Thanks
Branka

Reply
Nick Makrides August 4, 2022 - 11:09 am

Hi Branka! Great question, it goes on warm and sets with the pastry sheets underneath and on top. Hope that helps! N x

Reply
Azra Tutsch August 20, 2022 - 7:50 pm

5 stars
This one is my family favorite! Make it twice in a couple weeks! Nice and light perfect for summer dessert!

Reply
Nick Makrides August 23, 2022 - 1:25 am

Aww thanks so much! Glad to see you loving my recipes! N x

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Mitzi September 5, 2022 - 4:16 am

Hey Nick, made this recently for a cafe and after 2 days in display fridge the custard started to shrink and crack slightly.. any thoughts on why that would happen?

Reply
Nick Makrides September 9, 2022 - 11:01 am

Hi Mitzi! It started to shrink and crack? I’m sorry to hear that! I’ve never experienced that so I’m unable to help! Sorry! N x

Reply
Lucas October 22, 2022 - 9:21 pm

4 stars
Made yesterday taste is great just my custard didn’t set 100%

Reply
Nick Makrides October 24, 2022 - 2:15 am

Glad you enjoyed them Lucas! N x

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Van October 30, 2022 - 7:23 pm

I made this yesterday and even though it is delicious the custard didn’t congeal like in your pictures even though it did thicken considerably on the stove. Do you have an idea of why it didn’t come together? Will attempt again though.

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Nick Makrides October 31, 2022 - 6:37 am

That’s so strange. Let me come back to you, revisiting this recipe this weekend! N x

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Jenny March 4, 2023 - 11:13 pm

What size is that Silpat mat you used?
Thank you

Reply
Nick Makrides June 24, 2023 - 3:05 am

Hi Jenny! Hmm, I think it’s known as the medium sized one on amazon.

Reply
Jenny March 9, 2023 - 9:55 pm

5 stars
Hi Nick
Could you please tell me what size the silo pay mat you used in this video and where you biught it?
Also is it possible to add xantham gum to the custard , mine didn’t turn out as form as yours.

Thank you 😊
Jenny

Reply
Nick Makrides April 7, 2023 - 12:36 am

Hi Jenny! I bought mine from Amazon. Unfortunately I can’t remember what size it is. I’ve since bought larger ones which are half sheet size to suit my half sheet baking trays. These trays looked nice but where horrific to bake with. Always buckled in the oven. I wouldn’t use xantham gum, I would instead allow for an overnight setting time. Hope this helps! N x

Reply
Etevise March 20, 2023 - 10:29 am

5 stars
Thank you for such an easy to follow and absolutely simple yet delicious vanilla slice recipe Nick. Love the video too as this is the first time I made it and it turned out amazing and I agree with you that you MUST let it set overnight…my husband and son got greedy and got into it 1hr after making it and it was a mess, yummy but messy. The next day though it was perfect! Thank you x

Reply
Nick Makrides April 6, 2023 - 11:48 pm

Thanks Etevise! I’m sorry for your husband and sons impatience haha N x

Reply
Katerina April 4, 2023 - 4:39 am

Hi Nick,
I need to make this for a crowd. Do you think it will work in a bigger tray if I cut it to size? Should I just double the recipe? Thank you 🙂

Reply
Nick Makrides April 6, 2023 - 11:41 pm

Hmm, I’m not sure because I havent tried it but my guess would be to double the recipe and use a 9 x 13-inch baking tin. Let me know how you go! N x

Reply
Jenny May 14, 2023 - 8:56 pm

Hi Nick, how could I turn this recipe into a milo or chocolate vanilla slice? Would I just add milo/ cocoa powder to the milk? Or if using chocolate, add it to finished custard? Do I need to change quantities of anything? Thank you
Kindest regards
Jenny

Reply
Nick Makrides June 24, 2023 - 3:09 am

Hi Jenny, sorry, I havent tried flavoring it so I wouldn’t be able to say. N x

Reply
Ang May 22, 2023 - 9:05 am

5 stars
Hi Nick,

Thank you so much for sharing this recipe. I made this a dozen of times for friends and family and they always loved it.
I recently purchased a cafe and made some for sale and they always sold out !!! 🙂 btw whats the difference between Custard slice and Vanilla Slice please?

Thank you 🙂

Reply
Nick Makrides June 24, 2023 - 2:53 am

That’s amazing Ang! I actually don’t know, I would have assumed they were the same thing just different names? N x

Reply
Mae June 2, 2023 - 9:54 am

5 stars
First time making custard from scratch (I normally use the custard powder) and it was the first time I had lump free custard. It was a huge hit with the family and silky smooth. Another one of your recipes I’ve added to my recipe book. Thanks!!

Reply
Nick Makrides June 2, 2023 - 10:35 am

Yay! That’s amazing Mae! I’m so glad to hear this! N x

Reply
Jo June 14, 2023 - 12:39 am

5 stars
Best Recipe I have tried thank you!
I made mine in a Tupperware Square Cake Taker and its the perfect size and means easy to store and transport.

Reply
Nick Makrides June 24, 2023 - 2:14 am

Thanks so much Jo! N x

Reply
Callan February 18, 2024 - 3:06 am

5 stars
Hey ,firstly , thanks for putting up your recipe 🙏🏼. Hey just wondering what your thoughts are on the custard not setting in the fridge ?

Reply
Nick Makrides May 30, 2024 - 8:47 am

Hi Callan! Hmm, this can usually happen if the custard wasn’t cooked long enough for the gluten to develop in the flour. It’s one of the main things that helps set the custard filling.

Reply
MammaRia April 10, 2024 - 3:09 am

5 stars
Amazingly easy recipe (although, don’t do what I did, and put the “finished” slice in the fridge only to discover the nicely measured/cubed butter still sitting in there). I love the hints and video’s, they were very helpful. I’ve made successfully 2 times (and crappily with no butter once), and it has been VERY popular with friends and workmates.

I am assuming though, that the icing sugar/powdered sugar is for dusting on the top, not in the actual custard?

Reply
Nick Makrides April 17, 2024 - 5:58 am

Glad to hear your Vanilla Slice came out delicious MammaRia! And yes, it’s for dusting on top 🙂

Reply
Rita Wood April 10, 2024 - 6:18 am

5 stars
I made this over the weekend- loved it. It was perfection and all my taste testers loved it too. I’ve just shared the recipe with friends. I wish I could show you a photo! I’m very proud of the end result. Thinking next time I might skip the straining part, as it was super smooth and really didn’t look like it needed it – thanks again

Reply
Nick Makrides April 17, 2024 - 5:58 am

That’s so wonderful to hear Rita! Feel free to share a photo with me on Instagram if you have it. I’d love to see your creation! N x

Reply

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