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Easy eclairs – 4 ingredients away from chocolate clouds of happiness

September 7, 2010

Ok, I have no doubt in my mind that Pierre Herme’s recipe, which has been used and quoted by many, is fantastic. Fortunately however, when my friend Ro came over for baking, she was rather intent on following the recipe from the Edmonds cookbook, which was simpler (muuccch simpler) and used fewer ingredients. It also doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan. We also made some chocolate dipped orange almond cookies, which will feature next…but one baking feat at a time!

Ro piped most of them, but then we discovered they puff up a whole lot more if you just spoon them onto the tray. If you want them a consistent shape though, piping is still the way to go.

Crunchy and chocolatey on the outside; soft, feathery and springgy on the inside. You could fill them with cream, but we ate them quite happily just as they were. A lot of them…!

Easy chocolate eclairs, adapted from the Edmonds cookbook

makes about 1.5 trays

  • 100g butter
  • 1 cup plain flour
  • 3 eggs
  • 150g chocolate (preferably around 50% cocoa, or the eclairs won’t be sweet enough)

Preheat oven to 200C (400F), with a rack centered. Bring butter and 1c of water to a rapid boil in a medium sized saucepan. Remove from heat and beat in flour with a wooden spoon until the mixture leaves the side of the saucepan. Cool a few minutes, then beat in eggs, one at a time, until mixture is uniform.


  • Pipe 7 cm strips onto greased oven trays, about 3cm (just over 1″) apart
  • Using two spoons (hehe!), place consistently sized balls of dough onto greased oven trays, about 3cm (just over 1″) apart – I find they puff more this way

Bake 20 mins or until puffy and lightly golden. Lower heat to 120C (250F) and bake for another 15 mins or so until golden brown. Cool on racks.

Melt chocolate on lowest heat possible in a small saucepan, stirring constantly until mixture is uniform. Dip one side of the cooled eclairs into the chocolate and let chocolate set on a rack. If piping in cream, cut a slit and pipe in sweetened whipped cream after the chocolate is totally set, or before dipping in chocolate. Alternatively, check out A Sticky Affair for a reasonably easy vanilla custardy filling. Enjoy!

25 Comments leave one →
  1. Kyra permalink
    November 13, 2010 11:31 pm

    Hey I’ve baked chocolate eclairs many times. But I always make the same mistake. My eclairs get stuck onto my grease paper on my baking tray. I try to remove them as carefully as possible but they always tear since they’re stuck. Can you give me advice on how to solve this horrible problem?

    Thanks so much :))

  2. November 14, 2010 10:20 am

    Hi Kyra, I very rarely use baking paper, and I think if they always stick then actually it would be easier to remove them with a knife or metal spatula directly off the baking tray. As long as you grease the baking tray well (be very generous, and use butter or margarine rather than oil they shouldn’t stick. Good luck, and let me know how your next batch goes :)

  3. Lamize permalink
    April 30, 2011 3:58 am

    I made the eclairs as per the below and wonderful…real easy got about 19 eclairs made by spoon tip as didn’t have a pipe…thanks this is going into my recipe book under faves…

  4. Lamize permalink
    April 30, 2011 3:58 am

    I made the eclairs as per the above and wonderful…real easy got about 19 eclairs made by spoon tip as didn’t have a pipe…thanks this is going into my recipe book under faves…

  5. April 30, 2011 10:48 am

    L: Glad you like them :) I did promise they were easy!

  6. May 22, 2012 7:34 am

    Invited to dinner tonight, quite last minute and asked to bring dessert. No ingredients on hand and its a couple of days until the groceries get flown in, but you know what? I can make these! Eggs are cheap and available here, and there is even chocolate floating around our house from the last tenants – the sweeter stuff that I’m less inclined to pick at – which will make for a perfect icing! I knew Zo could solve my dessert dilemma!

  7. permalink
    May 31, 2012 10:10 pm

    Just made these for my daughters birthday party. Easy to follow recipe and they look fab. Thank you

  8. September 9, 2012 12:38 pm

    Help !! i just attempted my 1st time ever chocolate eclairs from your simple recipe.They have shrunk cooling down,is this meant to happen ?

  9. September 9, 2012 4:21 pm

    J: No, are they quite pale? It might be that they were still undercooked. Do they still taste ok?

  10. September 9, 2012 4:33 pm

    Thanks for your reply,i figured it out and yes you are right they werent baked long enough.My oven temperature wasnt correct,i threw out the 1st batch but the 2x lot were yum :) thanks.

  11. meea permalink
    October 27, 2012 11:16 am

    This is the best recipe ever!! first time my éclairs have risen, crisped up and not burnt lol…thanks!!

    • October 28, 2012 8:24 pm

      No problem Meea, thank the Edmonds’ cookbook ;)

  12. Krysia permalink
    April 30, 2013 6:54 pm

    Thanks for the recipe!!! First time at cooking eclairs and these worked a treat!! (and were easy!!!) :D

  13. rosie keenan permalink
    June 30, 2013 10:36 am

    They are taking forever to cook :( been in there for like 40 minutes nice and golden and risen but when i put a cake tester in its still al gooey.. :( PLEASE HELP :( <3

    • June 30, 2013 10:55 am

      Hmm that doesn’t sound right. Although I have never tried testing them with a skewer before so not sure if they would be a little gooey. 40mins sounds like the oven is either too cold or the mixture was very wet. Any more details?

  14. July 8, 2013 4:35 am

    What is Bring butter and 1c of water to a rapid boil in a medium sized saucepan means? I’m not so sure

  15. Awdur permalink
    August 20, 2013 12:20 am

    Is there any advantage to piping the eclairs rather than using spoons?

  16. August 20, 2013 8:09 am

    Awdur: Unless you want a perfect consistent shape, then no. I think they are puffier and yummier when just quenelled with two spoons :)

  17. Jacqui permalink
    January 3, 2016 5:08 pm

    Very happy with the recipe, very quick and easy, taste delicious and great colour etc but mine have turned out quite heavy and bread-like in the middle rather than light and puffy. Any suggestions??

    • January 3, 2016 10:30 pm

      Hi Jacqui, I’m not 100% on this but maybe the oven temperature isn’t high enough initially? Have you got an oven thermometer to double check your oven temp?

  18. denise permalink
    March 29, 2016 8:33 pm

    Hi, made these this weekend for Easter. Wow I was very impressed. They came out perfect. I did cut down the baking time to 15 minutes on 200 and 10 on 120 as I baked them in a thermofan oven.

  19. alison hemopo permalink
    February 3, 2018 6:54 am

    I have been using your recipe for over a year now and my family cant get enough. Thank you so much


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