Gluten Free Brioche au Chocolat (Chocolate Custard Rolls)

Gluten free brioche au chocolat are decadent sweet rolls filled with pastry cream and chocolate, and they’re the most delectable rolls ever!

gluten free brioche au chocolat

I’m sure you’ve heard me talk about Bluprint, the online craft subscription service that was once Craftsy? I’ve taken SO many classes on Bluprint that I’ve lost count at this point!

The owner of Flour Bakery in Boston, Joanne Chang, teaches a class on Bluprint all about brioche. She makes traditional brioche, brioche au raisins (which is just what it sounds like), sugar brioche buns, and sticky buns to name just a few.

I adapted her recipe for brioche au chocolat to suit my gluten free needs. You’ll get brownie points for sure when you give these to your gluten free Valentine💖

What is Brioche au Chocolat?

Have you ever heard of pain au chocolat? Pain au chocolat is the same as chocolate croissants. But then what is brioche au chocolat? Brioche au chocolat is brioche dough that’s stuffed with pastry cream and chocolate, and it is HEAVEN on a plate!!

These pastries are usually made by folding the dough over onto itself. This creates a long narrow pastry that’s stuffed with custard and chocolate. I chose to roll up the dough into individual cinnamon roll-style buns so there’s a good dose of filling in every bite!

peeling apart a brioche au chocolat

Making the Easiest and Best Ever Pastry Cream

This pastry cream is seriously the easiest I’ve ever made, but it’s also the thickest and best tasting!! It takes only minutes to prepare and it can be made into any flavor combo.

In a small saucepan, heat equal amounts of cream and milk over medium heat until they come to a simmer. While they’re heating, in a large bowl whisk egg yolks with sugar, cornstarch, and vanilla extract or seeds. Whisk until mixture thickens and becomes ribbon like, just a few minutes.

Slowly pour the milk/cream mixture into the egg yolk mixture while whisking vigorously. Add a little more, and a little more, until the whole thing is combined.

Pour the entire mixture back into the small saucepan and heat over medium heat, whisking constantly. Don’t use a wooden spoon for this. Whisk until the pastry cream resembles thick mayonnaise. Remove it from the heat and add the butter. Pour it into a sieve set over a small bowl to remove all bits of cooked egg yolk.

Cover the pastry cream with plastic wrap right on the surface (to prevent a skin from forming). Refrigerate it for a couple of hours, or until cool.

pastry cream in the saucepan with whisk

What’s the Best Kind of Chocolate to Use?

I find chopped semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate is the best, but you can also use semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate chips. I wouldn’t use milk chocolate as I think that would be too sweet.

How to Make This Pastry Gluten Free

Making this wonderful pastry is surprisingly easier than you would think. It all starts with my gluten free sweet dough, which is the perfect substitute for regular brioche.

After making the dough and refrigerating it, roll it out to a rectangle about 10 inches by 14 inches. Spread it with the pastry cream and then sprinkle it with the chopped chocolate. If desired, sprinkle it with about 1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon. It’s not enough to make it a cinnamon roll, but just gives it a hint of cinnamon, which I love.

dough spread with pastry cream and sprinkled with chopped chocolate

Begin rolling the pastry up like you would when making cinnamon rolls. Roll it as tightly as possible. The dough needs to be nice and cold to do this. If you haven’t refrigerated it enough, you’ll have a hard time working with it.

At this point, what I like to do is elongate the log of dough a little bit. That way I can get taller rolls and they’ll be equal in both filling and dough. Just gently pull it from the middle, stretching out to the ends.

If your dough is getting too warm, carefully transfer it to a parchment-lined baking sheet, cover it, and let it chill for about 30 minutes.

log of chocolate brioche transferred to parchment-lined baking sheet

Slice the log into eight equal pieces using a sharp knife or bench scraper. The best way to make them equal is to slice it in half, then each half in half, and then each quarter in half again. Place the slices in a baking dish (I used an 11 by 7-inch one like this).

cutting the rolls
rolls in baking dish before rising

The rolls will now need to rise once before baking. Cover them with plastic wrap and allow the rolls to rise in a warm, draft-free area until almost doubled in size, about 30 minutes to an hour.

risen rolls ready for baking

Baking the Brioche au Chocolat

After the rolls have risen to almost doubled in size, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Bake them for about 30-35 minutes or until golden brown.

freshly baked brioche au chocolat

How Long Will Brioche au Chocolat Last?

As with most freshly made breads and rolls, these rolls are best eaten within a few hours of making them. However, they can be covered and placed in the refrigerator for a few days (because of the pastry cream).

If reheating all of them at once, place the covered rolls in a 350-degree F oven for about 15 minutes. If reheating only one, cover it with a damp paper towel and place it on a microwave-safe plate. Microwave it for about 30 seconds at a time until heated throughout.

Can I Make the Rolls Ahead of Time?

Yes!!! Unlike my gluten free cinnamon rolls, these brioche au chocolat can’t be placed in the freezer. Pastry cream is not freezable. BUT, you can make them up to the point of cutting them and placing them in the baking dish.

At that point, cover them with plastic wrap and place them in the refrigerator. If left overnight, they will rise some in the refrigerator (called a cool rise). Take them out of the fridge about an hour before you’d like to bake them the next morning.

up close of chocolate brioche buns

If you make your honey these rolls for Valentine’s Day, or any day of the year, they’ll love you forever 💖💖💖

gluten free brioche au chocolat

Gluten Free Brioche au Chocolat


Gluten free brioche au chocolat are decadent sweet rolls filled with pastry cream and chocolate, and they're the most delectable rolls ever!

5 from 5 votes

Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Proofing Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 55 minutes

Course Breakfast, Dessert
Cuisine French

Servings 8 large rolls




  • ½ cup (120 ml) whole milk
  • ½ cup (120 ml) heavy cream
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • ¼ cup (50 g) granulated sugar
  • 2 tbsp (15 g) cornstarch
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract, vanilla bean paste, or 1 vanilla bean
  • 1 tbsp butter, softened



  • Make gluten free cinnamon roll dough per recipe instructions. Refrigerate several hours, but preferably overnight.


  • In a small saucepan, heat whole milk and heavy cream over medium heat until just simmering. Meanwhile, whisk egg yolks, sugar, cornstarch, and vanilla in a medium bowl until thick and ribbon like, just a few minutes.
  • Remove the milk mixture from the heat and slowly pour a little bit into the egg yolk mixture, whisking vigorously. Add a little more, whisking vigorously, and continue adding all of the milk mixture slowly.
  • Pour the entire thing back into the small saucepan and whisk constantly over medium heat until mixture begins to look like thick mayonnaise, about 1-2 minutes.
  • Remove from the heat and whisk in butter. Pour into a sieve set over a small bowl (to catch any cooked egg yolk bits).
  • Place plastic wrap right on top of the pastry cream (touching it to avoid a skin from forming) and place in the refrigerator for a few hours or up to 3 days.


  • Knead dough briefly on well-floured surface until smooth.
  • Roll into a long rectangle about 10 inches by 14 inches in length and about ¼ inch thick. Spread cooled pastry cream all over dough. Sprinkle chopped chocolate on top, followed by cinnamon (if desired).
  • Roll as tightly as possible, jelly roll style. From the middle of the roll out, gently stretch the log until it's a bit longer. This makes the filing and dough more equal.
  • Using a bench scraper or sharp knife, cut into 8 equal pieces (beginning by cutting in half, then into fourths, and then into eighths).
  • Place in a baking dish about 11 by 7-inches in size that's been sprayed with a non-stick spray. Cover loosely with plastic wrap. ( Allow to rise in a warm, draft-free area until about doubled in size, about 30 minutes to an hour.
  • Preheat oven to 350° F. Remove plastic wrap from risen rolls and bake for about 30 minutes, or until golden brown.
  • Serve warm.


Rolls are best served fresh or within 4 hours.  You can bake them one day and serve them the next day after reheating in a 350-degree oven for about 15 minutes.  

They can also be kept in the refrigerator after rolling and slicing, well covered, until ready to bake, up to three days.  When ready to bake, remove them from the fridge about an hour before you’re ready to bake, and allow them to rise until doubled in size.  Bake as instructed.  

***DISCLAIMER:  The reason I created my own flour blends is because I could not obtain the results I wanted with flour blends that were available in stores, online, or from other gluten free bloggers.  My recipes have been developed to be used with my own bread flour blend that I created after painstakingly testing for, in some cases, YEARS to develop what I believe to be a superior gluten free bread like no other.  If you do not use my gluten free bread flour blend for this recipe, I cannot speak for the results you will obtain.    While store bought blends may give you a satisfactory result, they may NOT give you the results intended in my recipe. 

Keyword brioche, chocolate, Gluten Free, pastry, pastry cream
Tried this recipe?Tag @letthemeatglutenfreecake on Instagram so we can see!

Inspired by Joanne Chang’s Classic & Creative Brioche Pastries on Bluprint.

Pastry cream adapted from Gesine Bullock-Prado’s Pie it Forward.

11 thoughts on “Gluten Free Brioche au Chocolat (Chocolate Custard Rolls)”

  • Kim, I’m interested in trying these brioche au chocolate, but I’m wondering if there is a way to make them smaller. Also applies to your marvelous cinnamon rolls. I love them so much, but they are on the large size to eat in one sitting. I don’t think the answer is fewer layers in the swirl, because the layers are where so much of the goodness lies. I’m wondering if I were to make per your instructions, but stretch the rolled dough to a much smaller diameter and them maybe cut the dough into shorter lengths? I’m not sure if I’m describing this in an understandable way. Any thoughts? More servings/smaller servings per batch is what I am going for.

    With the cinnamon rolls, I have tried a technique where I stretch the roll longer/smaller. cut the roll into 3 equal shorter lengths. Cut each length in half and twist the two halfs together keeping the cut sides up (Ala Smitten Kitchen). repeating this for each remaining length. Set in a 9×13 baking pan and let rise sufficiently so that the dough fills the space in the pan. Bake per instructions. Actually works well and allows me to cut into smaller servings with each having all of the goodness. Do you think this would work for this recipe…or maybe you have a different better suggestion. Many thanks for your recipes and, in advance, for any thoughts you might have.

    • Yes, I completely understand what you’re asking and I think your solution would work fantastically! I actually do something similar in my cinnamon rolls video, at the very end. The video is attached to the cinnamon rolls post so you should be able to see it there, but it’s also on my YouTube channel if you don’t see it on the recipe post. I hope this helps 😊

  • Hi Kim! I’ve made a few of your other recipes, including the cinnamon roll recipe, and they are AMAZING!! I’m planning on making this recipe soon, and was wondering if it is ok to refrigerate the dough for more than a day or two? Thank you for your help and wealth of knowledge!

    • Yes, you can leave this dough in the fridge for up to 3 days. I wouldn’t go further than that because of the eggs in the dough and it will also start to over ferment.

  • Welp, “user error” here… totally used the AP flour NOT bread flour! They turned out very light and airy and tender 🙂 Making them on thanksgiving with the bread flour

  • These are amazing! This was my first time baking any GF yeast breads. I followed the recipe and they turned out perfect, just like the photos. I filled half with pastry cream/chocolate and half with cinnamon filling, both are absolutely delicious!

  • Kim, the brioche was fantastic. Better than many gluten brioche in my opinion. I made my with chocolate. The pastry cream was perfect luxurious addition to the brioche.

  • So good! I followed the recipe exactly and had no trouble working with the dough. I did find my pastry cream had some tiny lumps, but it was too thick to strain. I think the lumps were starch and not egg, and I wasn’t too worried since it was going in the dough anyway.

    I made a double batch. The first came out beautifully but the pastry was a bit dull and dusty from flour, so I brushed some egg wash on the second and it came out with the most beautiful shine. I wish I could post a picture. This recipe is amazing! I cant believe it’s gluten free. The dough is so easy to work with and the texture is perfect.

    • That’s wonderful, Gerald!! I’m so happy you liked it! And the egg wash is a great idea. I was just lazy, haha!!

      If you follow me on Instagram or Facebook, you can share a picture there 🙂

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