This blueberry Danish recipe combines a flaky (store-bought) puff pastry topped with a creamy custard filling – for a delicious, simple, and quick to prepare breakfast, snack, or dessert! Best of all, this puff pastry Danish is 100% dairy-free, vegan, and can be made gluten-free, too!
Quick Vegan Puff Pastry Danish (Spandauer) With Custard
When made entirely from scratch, ‘Spandauer’-style Danish pastry can be time-consuming and fiddly. However, with this quick and simple ‘cheat’ blueberry Danish pastry recipe (using store-bought puff pastry), you can enjoy delicious Danishes in about 30 minutes – made with just a fraction of effort (yet tons of flavor!).
Even better, the Danish pastry filling is wonderfully versatile, meaning you can easily mix and match to your liking. Custard Danish, Jam Danish, Apricot Danish, or a combination of all – there are tons of ways to enjoy this puff pastry treat.
What is Danish Pastry?
Danish pastries (also referred to simply as a ‘Danish,’ Vienna bread, or ‘Spandauer’-style pastries) are a type of ‘laminated’ sweet Denmark pastry. They are traditionally made with a laminated yeast-leavened variety of puff pastry (made with flour, milk, eggs, sugar, and butter) folded and rolled several times (enough to create 27 layers), then topped with a variety of fillings.
In fact, depending on where in the world you’re enjoying this Spandauer-style pastry, there are different typical Danish pastry filling options (and shapes). For example, Danishes typically have a sweetened cream cheese and/or fruit filling in the US. In Argentina, dulce de leche is used. Meanwhile, there are several varieties in the UK, including custard, jam, fruit, nuts, and even caramelized toffee!
I created the recipe together with my dear friend Bianca, and she made the delicious custard puff pastry with strawberries (see photo below). Making such a simple and quick dessert with your best friend is just perfect and super fun!
The Danish Pastry Ingredients
For this custard pastry, we’ll be substituting regular Danish pastry dough for store-bought vegan puff pastry- to save time and effort. More so, we’re ditching the dairy-heavy filling for a simple, creamy vegan custard topped with blueberries (and optionally jam), then folding them into a simple ‘Danish Pocket’.
For The Custard
- Coconut milk: I used full-fat canned coconut milk. Check the recipe notes in the recipe card for a sub.
- Cornstarch: This is needed to thicken the vegan custard to the correct consistency.
- Water: To make the cornstarch slurry
- Turmeric: All you need is a pinch to give the custard the typical yellow color.
- Sugar: You can use any granulated sugar or sugar-free alternative (like Erythritol).
- Vanilla extract: Use natural vanilla extract for the best flavor.
- Puff pastry: Use ready-made vegan puff pastry, gluten-free if needed.
- Fruit: I used a cup of fresh blueberries, though you could use other berries or fruits, like strawberries, raspberries, cherry preserves, or canned apricot halves.
- Nut butter (optional): Cashew butter, almond butter, or even sunflower seed butter (for a nut-free option) can be used to drizzle over the custard pastry.
- Jam (optional): Use your choice of jam; raspberry, blackcurrant, strawberry, apricot, etc. Alternatively, you could use a fruit compote.
Read the recipe card below for the full ingredients list, measurements, complete recipe method, and nutritional information.
Optional add-ins and Danish pastry filling variations:
- Icing: Combine coconut milk and powdered sugar to the right consistency and drizzle over the blueberry Danishes.
- Apricot glaze: A way to add shine (and flavor) to the puff pastry. All you need is apricot jam and water (around 1/4 cup jam to 1/8 cup water) heated until dissolved. Then strain the mixture and brush onto the pastry with a pastry brush.
- Flavored custard: Add extra flavor to the coconut milk custard with extracts (like almond or an alcohol extract), citrus zest, spices, or a splash of alcohol (reduce the water accordingly).
- Apricot Danish: A classic apricot Danish combines either a sweetened cream cheese or custard filling, topped with canned apricot halves. Optionally with apricot jam and/or an apricot glaze (or icing drizzle).
- Other fillings: Instead of the custard, you can add different fillings like jam or curds (on their own), chocolate spread, vegan dulce de leche, marzipan, or a vegan sweetened cream cheese (like a ‘cheesecake’ filling made by combining dairy-free cream cheese with sugar, a pinch of salt, and vanilla extract). You can even make a savory ‘pizza’ Danish with marinara and dairy-free cheese.
- Other toppings: Raisins, chopped nuts, chocolate chips, coconut flakes, and powdered sugar make great Spandauer Danish pastry toppings.
How to Make Blueberry Puff Pastry Danish?
Step 1: Prepare the vegan custard
- Add 2/3 cup of the canned coconut milk to a medium saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat.
- Meanwhile, fill a glass or bowl with 1/3 cup water, add the cornstarch and turmeric, then whisk until there are no lumps.
- Pour the cornstarch slurry into the saucepan and constantly whisk while it thickens.
- Add the sugar and vanilla, then allow the custard to simmer for 30-60 seconds, stirring frequently. Then remove from the heat, set aside, and cover with plastic wrap.
Step 2: Prepare the puff pastry
- Preheat the oven to 425°F (220°C) and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Then set aside.
- Carefully unroll the thawed puff pastry and cut it into six even-sized squares with a sharp knife or pizza wheel. To shape each Danish square, bring the four corners towards the center of the pastry, pressing firmly to seal (see images/video – or read below for more ideas for Danish pastry shapes).
Step 3: Assemble the Danishes
- Brush each pastry with soy milk, then add around 1 tbsp of the custard to the center of each pastry (don’t overfill them!). Optionally, add around 2 tsp of jam and sprinkle each with a little coconut sugar/brown sugar.
- Transfer to the prepared baking sheet and bake on the lowest rack for around 17 minutes, or until golden brown. Then remove the custard Danishes from the oven and allow to cool.
- Meanwhile, wash and dry the blueberries, then, before serving, add a few berries to each pastry and optionally drizzle with nut/seed butter – then enjoy!
More Danish Pastry Shapes
If you want to shape your pastries in several different ways, then look no further. While Danish pastry shapes are plentiful, here are my top two (each starts with the six flat pastry squares).
Cylinders: First, pipe the custard in a diagonal line across the pastry square, leaving around a cm in the two corners (if using, add jam over this). Then fold one side over the filling and seal. Repeat with the other corner, folding it over the middle to seal.
Pinwheels: These look complicated but are surprisingly simple. Make cuts from each corner of the square into the center, leaving an inch (2.5 cm) in the center un-cut. Then, similarly to how we’ve created our Danish ‘pockets’ for this recipe, fold each corner (the left side of each slice from the edge) into the center, pressing firmly to seal. Add the topping to the center.
How to Store?
Make ahead: You can fully assemble the pastries up to a day in advance and store them in the refrigerator until you’re ready to bake.
Store: For the best flavor, enjoy the blueberry Danishes on the same day that they’re baked. However, you can store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
Freeze: To freeze the pastries, omit the blueberry/nut-butter topping. Lay the Danishes on a large baking tray and freeze until solid. Then, transfer the pastries to a large Ziplock bag or freezer-safe container and freeze for up to three months. Allow the Danish pastries to thaw in the fridge, then top and serve!
Recipe Notes and FAQs
- For better filling ‘control’: You can use a piping bag to top your pastries. This is more important if you plan on making several shapes, as the simple square shape used above is simple to top.
- Make sure the pastry is cold: The puff pastry needs to be thawed but should be ‘just out of the fridge’ when you’re ready to cut and shape the custard pastry. Colder dough will hold its’ shape better.
- Use a sharp knife: To make sure that it cuts cleanly through the pastry without pulling it out of shape.
- When to add the fruit: You can add the fruit before or after baking, depending on which you use.
- Can I make the Danishes gluten-free? Yes, if you use gluten-free puff pastry, the recipe will be 100% gluten-free.
More Simple Vegan Desserts
- Gluten-Free Vegan Crepes
- Pineapple Bread
- Strawberry Parfait
- Chocolate Mousse
- Lemon Cheesecake Bars
- Simple No-Bake Brownies
- 2-Ingredient Condensed Milk Truffles
If you try this simple puff pastry Danish recipe, I’d love a comment and ★★★★★ recipe rating below. Also, please don’t forget to tag me in re-creations on Instagram or Facebook with @elavegan #elavegan – I love seeing them.
- 1 sheet of vegan puff pastry thawed (GF if needed)
- 1 cup of fresh blueberries or fruit of choice (see notes)
- Cashew butter or almond butter to drizzle (optional)
- Jam (optional)
- You can watch the video in the post for visual instructions.In a medium saucepan, bring the 2/3 cup of canned coconut milk to a simmer.
- Meanwhile, fill a glass or bowl with 1/3 cup of water and add the cornstarch and a pinch of turmeric. Whisk well until there are no lumps.
- Immediately pour the cornstarch water slurry into the saucepan, stirring constantly with a whisk.
- Add the sugar and vanilla extract and let the custard simmer for about 30-60 seconds, stirring frequently.
- Turn off the heat, set the saucepan aside, and cover the custard with plastic wrap.Later, right before using the custard, I recommend mixing it again with an immersion blender.
- Preheat the oven to 425°F (220°C) and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
- Carefully roll up the thawed puff pastry roll and cut into 6 equal squares with a sharp knife or pizza wheel. Fold the 4 corners of each square toward the center and press firmly (check the step-by-step photos or video in the post).
- Brush each pastry with a little soy (or coconut) milk and place about 1 tablespoon of the custard in the center (don't add too much). Optionally, add 2 teaspoons of jam and sprinkle each pastry with a little coconut sugar or brown sugar.
- Transfer to the baking sheet and bake the pastries on the lowest rack for about 17 minutes, or until they are golden brown. Take them out of the oven and let them cool.
- Wash the blueberries and place them on the Danish pastry. Optionally, drizzle with cashew butter or almond butter. Enjoy!
- Canned coconut milk: You can replace the canned coconut milk AND water with 1 cup (240 ml) dairy-free milk of choice (e.g. almond, soy, etc.). Then simply mix the cornstarch with 1/3 cup of the milk (80 ml).
- You can also top each pastry with canned apricot halves before baking, which is also very popular!
Nutrition information is an estimate and has been calculated automatically