If making Crème Brûlée has ever seemed daunting to you, don’t worry! This easy recipe simplifies the steps to making this classic dessert. It’s a foolproof recipe that always provides the creamiest sweet custard and crunchiest caramelized topping.
Homemade Crème Brûlée Recipe
There’s no need to go to a nice restaurant to get your crème brûlée fix. Instead of spending upwards of $10 on one serving of this sweet treat at a restaurant, make a whole batch of it at home for a fraction of the price!
Whether you’re making crème brûlée for a dinner party, potluck, or just to treat the family on a weekday night, you’ll be so glad you stumbled upon this recipe. It’s not only delicious, but it really simplifies what you may seem as an intimidating recipe.
Only four ingredients are needed to make this recipe. Crazy, right?! Heavy whipping cream, vanilla bean paste, sugar and egg yolks are all you need to make the BEST creme brûlée!
Why You’ll Love this Easy Crème Brûlée Recipe:
- Classic: Crème brûlée is a restaurant staple for a reason. It’s a delicious dessert that’s maintained its status as a classic for hundreds of years! It dates all the way back to the 1600s.
- Inexpensive: It’s crazy how much some restaurants can charge for a single serving of crème brûlée, especially when you consider that only 4 ingredients are required to make it.
- Delicious: Creamy vanilla custard is topped with crunchy caramelized sugar… need I say more?
How to Make Crème Brûlée
Be sure to see the recipe card below for full ingredients & instructions!
- Mix and heat the vanilla bean paste and heavy whipping cream, then remove from heat and let it cool.
- Mix 1 cup of sugar with the egg yolks.
- Slowly incorporate the egg yolks and vanilla cream.
- Fill the ramekins with the custard mixture.
- Place the filled ramekins in a water bath.
- Bake until the creme has set.
- Cool the ramekins at room temperature.
- Transfer the ramekins to the refrigerator, and allow them to chill for at least 4 hours.
- Sprinkle sugar on top of the custard, then brûlée it with a torch. Enjoy!
Crème brûlée needs about 35-40 minutes to fully cook. If it’s undercooked, the consistency will be a bit liquidy and not quite set. Double-check that your desserts are fully cooked by giving the roasting pan a gentle shake. You’ll know it’s ready when the rème is set in the center and it only slightly jiggles.
A kitchen torch certainly makes things a whole lot easier when making this classic French dessert, but no, you can caramelize the sugar in other ways! You can place the crème brûlées under the broiler to caramelize the sugar, but be sure to keep a close eye on them! A tip I learned a long time ago is to heat a metal spoon over the stove, then once it’s nice and hot, you can heat the sugar with it and it will caramelize. Be careful not to burn your hands!
As it says in the recipe, don’t heat the sugar on top to caramelize it until just before you’re ready to serve it. I’ve found that completed crème brûlée doesn’t keep well in the refrigerator. However, you can keep the custard in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days before adding the caramelized topping and serving. It’s a great make-ahead dessert!
Recipe Tips and Tricks
- Be sure to use vanilla bean paste, not vanilla extract. The paste will provide a stronger vanilla flavor that has more depth.
- As much as I enjoy all kinds of sugar, use plain white granulated sugar for this recipe. No other sugar caramelizes quite the same.
- Avoid getting any water in the pudding! Even a drop of water could mess with the other ingredients and ruin the smooth consistency.
Next time you want to seriously impress people, use this easy creme brûlée recipe! And don’t worry – no one will know just how easy it was to make.
If you make this recipe be sure to leave us a comment or rating. Enjoy!
Easy Crème Brûlée Recipe
- 3 cups heavy whipping cream 681 grams
- 1 tablespoon vanilla bean paste 12 grams
- 1½ cups granulated sugar 300 grams, divided
- 6 large egg yolks 84 grams
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Place 8 ramekins into a large cake or roasting pan. Set aside.
- In a medium saucepan set over medium-high heat, mix the heavy whipping cream and vanilla bean paste together. When the mixture starts to bubble, remove it from the heat and set it aside to cool for 5 minutes.3 cups heavy whipping cream, 1 tablespoon vanilla bean paste
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together 1 cup of sugar with the egg yolks. Whisk until the mixture is smooth and pale yellow in color.1½ cups granulated sugar, 6 large egg yolks
- Slowly drizzle in the cream, stirring continuously, until it is fully incorporated into the egg mixture.
- Divide the mixture between your ramekins, making sure that they are filled until about ¼-inch from the tops.
- Fill the large cake or roasting pan with hot water until the waterline is halfway up the sides of the ramekins.
- Carefully place it in the oven and bake for 35-40 minutes, or until the crème has set in the center. It should jiggle only slightly when shaken.
- Once finished, remove the ramekins from the pan and allow them to cool to room temperature. Then, transfer them to the refrigerator to chill for at least 4 hours.
- When ready to serve, sprinkle about 2 tablespoons of sugar over each ramekin and brûlée it with a kitchen torch. Serve immediately.
- I highly recommend using a kitchen torch– it’s much more effective (and easier to control) than the broiler.
- You must use heavy cream in this recipe! Lower fat milks will not set correctly.
- If you don’t have vanilla bean paste, you can substitute the caviar from two vanilla beans.
- I recommend using ramekins that are no taller than 1-inch. Taller ramekins will take longer to cook and are easier to burn on top— if using taller ramekins, you may need to cook the creme brulee up to 1 hour and cover the tops of the crème brûlées for the second half of baking.
- This recipe can easily be halved or doubled.