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It’s a dessert that can seem daunting but it’s really simple to make, even for novices. This Easy Crème Brûlée recipe is creamy with a crunchy caramel topping and it’s a breeze to whip up!

A spoon going into a pot of crème brûlée.
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A crispy caramel topping crowns a rich and velvety custard filling, this Easy Crème Brûlée recipe brings restaurant quality to your dessert options – it’s divinely delectable! Top with some fresh berries for an easy dessert that’s as gorgeous as it is delicious.

Looking for other desserts? Why not also try my Chocolate Chip Cheesecake and my Raspberry Puff Pastry Tart!

Why you’ll love this Easy Crème Brûlée recipe

  • A delicious custard filling. Rich, with a deep and creamy flavor, this dreamy vanilla custard really hits the spot.
  • A crisp caramel topping. The filling is adorned with a layer a sugar that’s quickly torched to create that classic crème brûlée topping. It’s so satisfying when you spoon crashes through!
  • An easy dessert recipe. It may look fancy but it’s so simple to make! Made with only a handful of ingredients.

Ingredients you’ll need

  • Egg Yolks
  • Heavy Cream
  • Vanilla Bean or Vanilla Extract
  • Granulated Sugar
  • Lemon Zest
  • Berries (for topping)
Top down shot of ingredients for crème brûlée.

How to make this Easy Crème Brûlée recipe

  • Make your custard – In a pot, add your cream, vanilla and lemon zest then bring to a boil. Whisk the egg and sure mixture.
  • Cook and pour into ramekins – Once boiling add in your egg/sugar mixture. Once thickened and sieved, pour your custard into the ramekins.
Whisking the custard mixture in a pan.
Straining the custard mixture.
  • Bake – Place your ramekins in a deep pan that’s partially filled with water and bake for around 50 mins. Allow to cool in the fridge.
Before and after photos of custard cooking in ramekins.
  • Top with sugar – Spread a thin layer of sugar onto the custard and torch it to create a caramel topping.
Before and after photos of torching sugar on top of crème brûlée.
  • Garnish with berries, serve and enjoy!

Recipe notes and tips

  • The recipe may make more than 6, but it all depends on what ramekin size you are using.
  • If you don’t have an electric water kettle, start boiling the water on the stove ahead of time so it’s ready before the custard is done.
  • Storing the crème brûlée in the fridge after caramelizing the sugar will cause the sugar topping to soften and lose it’s crunch.
  • After whisking the egg batter and the boiling heavy cream together, you will end up with a foamy layer on top. It’s best to remove the foam layer before pouring the custard into the ramekins.
  • Be sure to preheat the oven.
Easy crème brûlée with a spoonful taken out.

FAQ’s

How to store Crème Brûlée

You can store the crème brûlée in the fridge for up to 3-4 days at the most, covered with saran wrap. If you are keeping the crème brûlée in the fridge for a couple of days, you may have some water on the surface of the custard. Pat it dry a little with a piece of Kleenex to remove the moisture before adding the sugar to torch it.

What can I use for crème brûlée if I don’t have a torch?

If you don’t have a torch, you can caramelize the sugar in the oven by broiling it. Keep an eye on it because you don’t want the custard to get warm or sugar to burn. Best results will be with a torch.

You can also – carefully – heat the end of a spoon and run it over the sugar topping.

Do I need ramekins?

It’s best to serve crème brûlée in individual ramekins. The small ramekins ensure the custard cooks evenly, though you could use a large wide ceramic dish instead, however results may vary.

Top down view of creme brulee in two ramekins.

Other delicious desserts

I hope you enjoy all the recipes I share with you, including this Easy Crème Brûlée recipe. I hope you try it, enjoy it, rate it and share it with your friends and family!

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Crème Brûlée

Easy Crème Brûlée recipe is creamy with a crunchy caramel topping and it's a breeze to whip up! Delicious and simple!
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings: 6 servings

Equipment

  • Ramekins
  • Kitchen Torch

Ingredients 

  • 7 whole egg yolks
  • 3 cups heavy cream
  • 1 pod vanilla bean, preferably, or 2 tsp. of vanilla extract
  • 1 cup fine granulated sugar, divided , 2/3 for custard and 1/3 for topping
  • 1 tsp. lemon zest, or orange zest
  • Berry for topping

Instructions 

  • Preheat the oven to 300 F.
  • Using a water kettle and boil up 1 liter of water, or more depending on the pan you will use.
  • Slice the vanilla stalk in half and scrape out all the beans.
  • In a pot, pour in the heavy cream, vanilla beans, the stalk and lemon zest. Bring to boil on low heat, mixing occasionally.
  • In another bowl, whisk the yolks with the sugar until fluffy and light in color.
  • When the heavy creamy starts to boil, remove from the heat and add the egg mixture slowly to the heavy cream while whisking continuously for a about 30 seconds to create a smooth creamy texture. The custard mixture will start to thicken up a little while doing that.
  • Pour the custard mixture through a fine sieve into a pitcher to remove the vanilla bean pod, the lemon zest and any other unwanted clumps.
  • Pour the custard mixture into the ramekins up 'til the rim line as shown in the photos, not all the way through (about 90% full).
  • Arrange the ramekins in a deep dish. Place the pan in the oven rack and fill the pan with boiling water about 2 inches deep.
  • Baked for 50-60 minutes until it sets, depending on your oven it may take exactly 50 or a few more minutes. It must be giggly but not liquidly. Sides should be set.
  • Remove from the oven, and carefully remove the ramekins from the hot water using thongs or something safe. Let them cool at room temperature then transfer to the fridge to cool for at least 2 hours.
  • When ready to eat, evenly spread a thin layer of granulated sugar and torch it to burn the sugar on top and create a hard caramel shell. Top with some fruits and serve.

Notes

  • If you can’t find vanilla post, which I really recommend, use 2 tbsps. of pure vanilla extract instead. 
  • The recipe may make more than 6, but it all depends on what ramekin size you are using.
  • If you don’t have an electric water kettle, start boiling the water on the stove ahead of time so it’s ready before the custard is done.
  • Storing the crème brûlée in the fridge after caramelizing the sugar will cause the sugar topping to soften and lose it’s crunch.
  • After whisking the egg batter and the boiling heavy cream together, you will end up with a foamy layer on top. It’s best to remove the foam layer before pouring the custard into the ramekins.
  • Be sure to preheat the oven.

Nutrition

Calories: 544kcal | Carbohydrates: 37g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 44g | Saturated Fat: 28g | Cholesterol: 176mg | Sodium: 46mg | Potassium: 89mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 33g | Vitamin A: 1766IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 77mg | Iron: 1mg
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