Almond Bear Claws

Total Time

Prep: 45 min. + chilling Bake: 15 min.

Makes

1-1/2 dozen

Updated: Jul. 14, 2023
This bear claw pastry recipe is absolutely melt-in-your-mouth delicious! It's impossible to resist the delicate dough, rich almond filling and pretty fanned tops sprinkled with sugar and almonds. I made yummy treats like this when I worked in a bakery years ago. —Aneta Kish, La Crosse, Wisconsin
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Ingredients

  • 1-1/2 cups cold butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 5 cups all-purpose flour, divided
  • 1 package (1/4 ounce) active dry yeast
  • 1-1/4 cups half-and-half cream
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature, divided use
  • 1 large egg white, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 1/2 cup almond paste, cubed
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • Sugar or coarse sugar
  • Sliced almonds

Directions

  1. In a bowl, toss butter with 3 cups flour until well coated; refrigerate. In a large bowl, combine yeast and remaining 2 cups flour.
  2. In a saucepan, heat cream, sugar and salt to 120°-130°. Add to yeast mixture with 1 egg. Beat until smooth. Stir in butter mixture just until moistened.
  3. Place dough onto a well-floured surface; roll into a 21x12-in. rectangle. Starting at a short side, fold dough in thirds, forming a 12x7-in. rectangle. Give dough a quarter turn; roll into a 21x12-in. rectangle. Fold into thirds, starting with a short side. Repeat, flouring surface as needed. (Do not chill dough between each rolling and folding.) Cover and chill until firm, 4-24 hours.
  4. For filling, in a bowl, beat egg white until foamy. Gradually add confectioners' sugar and almond paste; beat until smooth. Cut dough in half widthwise. Roll each portion into a 12-in. square; cut each square into three 12x4-in. strips. Spread about 2 tablespoons filling down center of each strip. Starting with a long side, fold dough over filling; pinch seam to seal. Cut into 3 pieces.
  5. Place 2 in. apart on parchment-lined baking sheets, seam side down. With scissors, cut each piece 4 times along a long side to within 1/2 in. of edge; curve and separate strips slightly. Repeat with remaining dough and filling. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.
  6. Preheat oven to 375°. Lightly beat water and remaining egg; brush over dough. Sprinkle with sugar and almonds. Bake until golden brown, about 15 minutes. Remove from pans to wire racks to cool.
Bear Claws Tips

When can you serve bear claws?

Bear claws can be enjoyed as a sweet snack or dessert, but we also love serving them for breakfast or brunch. Almond recipes like bear claws taste fantastic with coffee or breakfast tea. They also look gorgeous when arranged on a platter next to other breakfast pastries for a special occasion brunch.

Can you make bear claws ahead of time?

To make bear claws ahead of time, prepare the bear claw pastry and filling, and freeze them separately. When you’re ready to serve, thaw the components in the refrigerator overnight, shape the bear claws, and let them rise before baking. You can also make baked bear claws ahead of time and store them in the refrigerator or freezer. When freezing bear claws, use the same technique as freezing doughnuts, layering the bear claws between sheets of wax paper in a freezer-safe bag.

How should you store bear claws?

Bear claws should be stored in a single layer in an airtight container. They will last up to a week in the refrigerator or 2 months in the freezer. Let the bear claws come to room temperature before serving. Because this bear claw recipe does not contain a sugary glaze, you can gently reheat them in the oven before eating, if desired.

Lindsay Mattison, Taste of Home Contributing Writer

Nutrition Facts

1 claw: 352 calories, 19g fat (11g saturated fat), 73mg cholesterol, 207mg sodium, 38g carbohydrate (10g sugars, 1g fiber), 6g protein.