Easy Ham and Cheese Croissants
These Ham and Cheese Croissants are an easy-to-make, foolproof, bakery-style breakfast or lunch dish that may remind you of your favorite coffee shop. If you have 5 minutes to prep, 20 minutes to bake, and a handful of ready-made ingredients, this beautifully flakey, delicious puff pastry treat can be assembled and baked in your oven in no time.
Mmm, can you smell the coffee? Hear the jazz music? Me too. And I’m ready for caffeine and a crispy, delicious and warm croissant right about now.
Lucky for me, I have a few in the freezer and either coffee or tea is always on hand in my kitchen.
Working with ready-made puff pastry is one of the simplest ways to make treats everyone loves. And believe me, I love to make use of this effortless ingredient!
If you also love working with puff pastry, you may enjoy equally simple treats of Petit Pain au Chocolat (Chocolate Croissants) or Easy French Apple Hand Pies. For summer picnics, or holidays, I love to make Berry Pinwheel Pastries.
For Christmas, the savory Spinach Puff Pastry Christmas Tree is such a crowd pleaser!
But back to ham and cheese, a combination that’s irresistible! Especially when encased in warm from the oven pastry.
3 Things to Love About Easy Ham and Cheese Croissants
- Store-bought ingredients assembled in about 5 minutes
- Crispy, flaky, tender on the inside
- Perfect for breakfast or lunch… or snacking :)!
Ingredients You Will Need for Ham and Cheese Croissants
Specific ingredient measurements are in the recipe card below. Here is what you need:
- Frozen puff pastry, thawed
- Whole grain mustard: I love to use a German stone ground mustard but any whole grain mustard works well. The brand I often pick up at the deli is Inglehoffer.
- Grated cheese: I love freshly grated Gruyere, but Swiss and Red Leicester are delicious too. Cheddar cheese is often the most popular. I would suggest a mature cheddar with a bit of sharpness that beautifully complements a sweeter ham.
- Deli ham: thin sliced is best. As to variety, a smoked ham is really nice, but Black Forest or even a thin sliced honey ham can be wonderful too.
- Egg Wash for beautiful browning
- Poppy Seeds: absolutely optional but I love the added crunch it gives to the croissant. You could also use sesame seeds or caraway seeds too.
How to Make Ham and Cheese Croissants
Remember when I told you these pastries were easy? Here’s how simple they are… step-by-step instructions are in the recipe card below.
Carefully unfold 1 thawed puff pastry onto parchment and lightly brush with egg wash. Place 9 dollops of mustard over 9 squares and top with shredded cheese.
Next, top pastry with ham and gently press into the cheese and mustard.
Then, gently unfold the second pastry and place it over the bottom layer. With your fingers, press the two layers together, pressing carefully around the filling to remove any trapped air.
Cut pastry into 9 equal squares and transfer to a baking sheet. Chill while the oven preheats to 400 degrees F.
Just before baking, brush the remaining egg wash over the unbaked croissants and sprinkle seeds over the top. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until puffed and golden.
Tips for the Best Ham and Cheese Croissants
- Use completely thawed puff pastry. It’s easiest to thaw overnight in the refrigerator. If yo you need it sooner than that, thaw at room temperature for a couple of hours until its still chilled but the pastry is workable.
- Unfold thawed pastry onto a sheet of parchment or lightly floured surface so it won’t stick.
- Maintain the pastry fold lines. This makes cutting 9 even squares super easy.
- Chill the unbaked, filled croissants while the oven preheats for a beautiful rise.
Ham and Cheese Croissant Questions
Absolutely. You can freeze the croissants before or after baking. If freezing before baking, eliminate the egg wash step and save until you’re ready to bake in a 400 degree F oven. Add an additional 5 minutes or so to the baking time.
If freezing baked croissants, toast gently in a 300 degree F oven until toasty and warm; about 12 to 14 minutes.
When stored in an airtight container or freezer bag, the croissants will last up to a month.
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Ham and Cheese Croissants
- 2 sheets puff pastry thawed
- 1 large egg beaten
- 4 tablespoons whole grain mustard
- 2/3 cup grated cheese like Gruyere, Swiss or any Italian cheese you prefer
- 5 slices deli ham halved and folded
- poppy seeds for garnish optional
- Combine egg with 1 teaspoon of water and whisk together, this is the egg wash.
- Unfold thawed puff pastry onto a sheet of parchment. Lightly brush with egg wash (remaining egg wash will be used just before baking).
- Using the fold lines as a guide to create 9 squares (3 across and 3 down), add a dollop of mustard to the center of each square. (Puff pastry will be cut just before baking).
- Top the mustard with heaping tablespoons of grated cheese followed by a folded half slice of ham.
- Carefully add the second puff pastry and line of up the outer edges. Using your fingers, press the edges of the pastry together and press out any air surrounding the ham and filling.
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F and line a baking sheet with parchment.
- Using a sharp knife or a pizza cutter, cut the pastry into 9 squares (I like to also square the outer edges too); transfer to the prepared baking sheet. Chill the prepared and unbaked croissants in the refrigerator while the oven is heating. Chilling helps the croissants puff beautifully.
- Once the oven comes to temperature, place the croissants 2-inch apart and brush with remaining egg wash. Sprinkle with poppy seeds (or any seed you prefer).
- Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until puffed and golden brown. Remove from the oven and let cool for a few minutes.
Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.
All the recipies looks so good. I am definitely going to make the ham and cheese croissants.
Sorry this is a bit long.
We had the afternoon tea baby shower I wrote in a previous post and it was wonderful. I think everyone enjoyed it.
It was a lot of work for 27 guests but I had a lot of help. Thank you for your advices, information and recipes you shared on 31 Daily.
The tea bags for the loose leave teas worked beautifully. I made bags in advance and set them close by. We had 4 types of tea. We had a few expecting and nursing moms that are watching caffeine so I had decaf Irish breakfast and peppermint tea. The other 2 pots were black teas.
One thing I learned, never plug 3 electric kettles on the same side of the kitchen! Yes, I trip the fuse! 🤭 I placed milk, honey, lemon slices and sugar cubes on each table. The tea pots were on the kitchen counter.
I served the first round of tea and then let the guests help themselves. We had sandwiches, scones, and lots of sweet treats.
I used all the English teacups I have collected and a few from my China. I did not have a 3 tier server stead I use all the pedestal cake platters on hand. I had a few and inherited a few from my mother-in-law.
It all worked out. Because of the number of people, we decided to use nice party wear. Home Goods had some.
For a big party, remember to enlist a few helpers for clean up.
Even with all the work, I am glad we had as close to an English afternoon tea party as it was practical.
Have a great week everyone and plan a tea party soon!
Hi Grace. I absolutely LOVE long comments. And I know all the readers do too. Your baby shower sounds incredible, and you are so sweet to share your tips and things you learned. Teas can be a tremendous amount of work, but they are so special and make forever memories, especially when celebrating a new baby, but are definitely worth it.
I love your tip regarding fuses! I also have had that happen so many times– I’m not sure why I keep repeating myself. It’s easy to get in a hurry and not think about “practical” things like fuses.
I so wish there was a way to share photos. I’m sure it was beautiful and I know memorable. I’ve long promised our readers I would do both a baby shower and wedding shower post soon. You may be hearing from me again about that! Take care and thank you so much for taking your time to share with us! Have a great evening.