Classic Creme Brûlée

This classic French dessert of crème brûlée is perfect if you want to feel like you’re at a fancy restaurant but in the comfort of your own home! Feel like a real professional and impress yourself with this surprisingly simple dessert.


What Ingredients & Equipment do I Need For This Recipe?

Ingredients:

  • Large Egg Yolks
  • Granulated Sugar
  • Heavy Cream
  • Kosher Salt
  • Vanilla Extract, Bean, or Paste– Depending on your budget and taste. Use whatever you have!
  • Cane Sugar for Tops– This sugar will be used for the “brûlée” part of the recipe. I have found that a thicker sugar isn’t always the best.

Equipment:

  • Set of Measuring Cups and Spoons OR Digital Kitchen Scale if using metric
  • 4 Ramekins– Used for baking the creme brûlée. Whatever size you have can work. I tested both deep round and shallow oval ramekins. I have included the baking specifics in my tips!
  • Small Sauce Pan- For heating the milk and vanilla.
  • Medium Mixing Bowl– Whisking the egg yolks, sugar, and salt together before tempering.
  • Whisk– Use is stated above.
  • 9″x 13″ Ceramic or Glass Baking Dish– This is used for the water bath that the dessert will bake in. I don’t suggest using metal as it doesn’t retain as much heat as glass or ceramic.
  • Aluminum Foil– To cover the top of the custards as they bake so that they can steam.
  • Blowtorch– Used for burning the tops of the cooled custard to make a hard-crack shell on top. If you don’t have one, you can use the highest setting of your broiler for one minute.
creme-brulee

My Kinda Professional Tips for Classic Creme Brûlée

  • When heating up the heavy cream to temper into the egg yolks, don’t get it tooo hot. This will help from actually cooking the yolks as you’re tempering. I always strain the base before placing in the ramekins as well just to make sure that there are no lumps.
  • Don’t cook after you’ve tempered the base. Now, if we were making a creme anglaise then yes you’d continue to cook. But the steam will be doing the cooking for this recipe. Once tempered place straight into the ramekins.
  • Get the water boiling before you add for the steam bath. Using cold water for the steam bath defeats the purpose. I used a tea kettle but can just heat up some water on the stove in a medium pot also.
  • Place the ramekins in the baking dish, then add the hot water. Be sure careful as not to splash any water into the custard base.
  • If you don’t have shallow ramekins, can use 4 ounce deep ramekins. Just make sure to bake another 10-12 minutes and look for the almost set center as you normally would.
  •  Probably the hardest part of this recipe and well, the dessert itself is waiting… Yes, you could eat the custard right out of the oven but, traditionally it needs to set in the fridge for at least 4 hours.
  • Be sure to let the broil get hot before placing on the top rack closest to the top. The custard will get hot before the sugar does and that will result in hot custard.
  • Storing: This dessert will keep in the fridge lightly wrapped for 2-3 days. Make sure to NOT burn the sugar then put in the fridge as it will become soggy.

Classic Creme Brulee

This classic French dessert crème brûlée is perfect if you want to feel like you’re at a fancy restaurant but in the comfort of your own home! Feel like a real professional and impress yourself with this surprisingly simple dessert.
Servings 4 servings
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Resting Time 4 hrs
Total Time 4 hrs 40 mins

Equipment

  • Set of Measuring Cups and Spoons OR Digital Kitchen Scale if using metric
  • 4 Ramekins
  • Small Sauce Pan
  • Medium Mixing Bowl
  • Whisk
  • 9"X13" Ceramic or Glass Baking Dish
  • Aluminum Foil
  • Blowtorch, optional

Ingredients

  • 2 Large Egg Yolks
  • 1/4 Cup Granulated Sugar (50 g)
  • 1 2/3 Cup Heavy Cream (360 ml)
  • pinch Kosher Salt
  • 2 tsp Vanilla Extract or Paste or 1/2 bean
  • 1/4 Cup Cane Sugar for Tops (1 Tbl or 10g Each)

Instructions

  • Place into a small pot the milk and vanilla and bring to a steam and starts show small bubbles.
  • Arrange the baking dishes (I use small ceramic ramekins) into a glass or ceramic 9"x13" pan. Begin boiling some water to create a steam bath for your custard. Make a square big enough to cover the entire pan well with tinfoil.
  • Preheat oven to 325° F (163° C).
  • While the milk is heating up, separate eggs and place the yolks sugar and salt into a medium mixing bowl and whisk together until well combined.
  • Once the milk has come to a steam, begin to temper into the egg yolk mixture. Do this by slowly adding the milk to eggs and whisking very well as you don't want to cook the yolks! Start with 1/4 of the milk and then 1/2. Once 3/4 of the liquid has been tempered in, can add the remaining milk.
  • Strain before placing into a different container to help pour into ramekins if you're not comfortable pouring from a bowl. Place the mixture into the ramekins all the way to the top!
  • Quickly place in to the oven and carefully and slowly add the hot water 1/2 way up the sides of the ramekins (about 2 cups total). Secure the tinfoil, covering completely and tightly over custard.
  • Let bake for 25 minutes. Carefully peel back the tinfoil to check the custard. The outside will be set but the middles slightly jiggly. If it's not, bake another 3-5 minutes depending on doneness.
  • When done, again carefully remove from the oven. If you accidentally get water on the custard, you can gently soak up with the edge a paper towel.
  • Remove from steam bath and let cool about 15 minutes before placing in the fridge for at least 4 hours before serving.
  • Once set, achieve the brûlée, by sprinkling about 1 tablespoon of the cane sugar to each custard, distributing over entire custard (less if you're baking in a deeper ramekin-see notes below). A butane torch is the best way to achieve consistent sugar melting. Broiling on high is the second best option. *Be sure to let the broil warm but before placing as the custard will get hot before the sugar does if not!*
Calories: 474kcal
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: French
Keyword: creme brulee, dessert, gluten-free

Did You Make This Recipe?

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Join the Conversation

  1. I made this last week. My first attempt didn’t turn out too well (forgot the sugar and kosher salt). Helps to read the recipe real well before starting. 🤪. Second attempt turned out fantastic. Need some practice on the brûlée part. But, oh well, what a problem to have.
    Keep up the great recipes
    Pictures look FANTASTIC!,

  2. I’m gonna have to try this creme brulee because it looks off the charts!

    1. Thank you! It’s probably my favorite dessert of all time!

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