Lady Locks

Learn how to make lady locks easily with some frozen puff pastry.

lady locks pastries on parchment paper

Katlyn Moncada

Prep Time:
45 mins
Total Time:
4 hrs 45 mins

Lady locks are light, airy pastry cookies that are filled with sweet pastry cream. It's similar to a cannoli but will have a softer exterior and fluffier interior. The confection originated in Eastern Europe, but became staple Christmas and wedding desserts in Ohio and Pennsylvania. Depending on the area you're from, these cream-filled delights are also known as cream horns or clothespin cookies—which may also have slightly different textures, too.


Lady Locks

  • 2 sheets frozen puff pastry (17.3-ounce package)

  • 1 large egg white

  • 1 tablespoon water

  • 1 to 2 tablespoons granulated sugar

Pastry Cream

  • 1/2 cup sugar

  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

  • 2 cups half and half

  • 4 large egg yolks, beaten

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste or extract

  • 1/3 cup whipping cream


Lady Locks

  1. Prepare Pastry Cream at least 4 hours in advance of making the pastries. Preheat oven to 425°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

  2. On a lightly floured surface unfold and roll one puff pastry sheet into a 12x10-inch rectangle. Cut each sheet crosswise into sixteen 10x3/4-inch strips.

  3. Wrap each strip of dough around a greased cream horn mold or cannoli tube*, overlapping layers slightly. Arrange on prepared pan spacing 1 inch apart. In a small bowl beat together egg white and water. Brush over pastries and sprinkle with sugar.

    Test Kitchen Tip

    If you don't have cannoli or pastry tubes, use the handle of a wooden spoon to get the right shape.

  4. Bake 12 to 15 minutes or until golden. Transfer to a wire rack. While still warm, slightly twist the molds and remove from pastry horns. Cool on a wire rack. Repeat with remaining puff pastry sheet. 

  5. Meanwhile, prepare Pastry Cream. To fill, spoon cream mixture into a pastry bag fitted with a large open star tip. Pipe cream into each pastry. If desired, chill up to 1 hour.

Pastry Cream

  1. In a medium heavy saucepan stir together sugar, flour, and salt. Gradually stir in half-and-half. Cook and stir over medium heat until thickened and bubbly. Cook and stir for 1 minute more. Gradually stir half of the hot mixture into beaten egg yolks. Return all of the egg yolk mixture to saucepan. Bring to a gentle boil; reduce heat. Cook and stir for 2 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla. Transfer to a bowl. Cover surface with plastic wrap. Place bowl of Pastry Cream in a bowl of ice water; chill for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Cover surface with plastic wrap. Chill about 4 hours or until cold; do not stir. In a chilled small mixing bowl beat whipping cream until soft peaks form. Gradually fold whipped cream into cooled pastry cream; chill well before using. Makes 2⅓ cups.

  2. For chocolate pastry cream: Decrease half-and-half to 1½ cups and add 4 ounces chopped semisweet chocolate to the saucepan after adding the half-and-half. Omit vanilla.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

138 Calories
8g Fat
13g Carbs
4g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 16
Calories 137.6
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 8.1g 10%
Saturated Fat 4g 20%
Cholesterol 85.8mg 29%
Sodium 84.7mg 4%
Total Carbohydrate 12.7g 5%
Dietary Fiber 0.1g 0%
Total Sugars 9.3g
Protein 3.7g
Vitamin D 0.4mcg 2%
Vitamin C 0.3mg 2%
Calcium 46.5mg 4%
Iron 0.5mg 3%
Potassium 72.2mg 2%
Fatty acids, total trans 0.2g
Vitamin D 18.8IU
Alanine 0.2g
Arginine 0.2g
Ash 0.5g
Aspartic acid 0.3g
Caffeine 0mg
Carotene, alpha 0.4mcg
Choline, total 61.5mg
Copper, Cu 0mg
Cystine 0.1g
Energy 575.6kJ
Fluoride, F 1.9mcg
Folate, total 15.5mcg
Glutamic acid 0.7g
Glycine 0.1g
Histidine 0.1g
Isoleucine 0.2g
Leucine 0.3g
Lysine 0.2g
Methionine 0.1g
Magnesium, Mg 6.3mg
Manganese, Mn 0mg
Niacin 0.3mg
Phosphorus, P 70.9mg
Pantothenic acid 0.5mg
Phenylalanine 0.2g
Phytosterols 0mg
Proline 0.3g
Retinol 77.6mcg
Selenium, Se 8.1mcg
Serine 0.2g
Theobromine 0mg
Threonine 0.2g
Vitamin E (alpha-tocopherol) 0.3mg
Tryptophan 0.1g
Tyrosine 0.1g
Valine 0.2g
Vitamin A, IU 279IU
Vitamin A, RAE 78.6mcg
Vitamin B-12 0.2mcg
Vitamin B-6 0mg
Vitamin K (phylloquinone) 1.2mcg
Water 41.4g
Zinc, Zn 0.4mg

*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

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