Not to be confused with pudding, custard is a comforting old-fashioned treat that’s commonly seen on a restaurant dessert menu or in a bakery.
But you don’t have to trek to a fancy restaurant for a spoonful of this silky-smooth dessert. Custard is way easier to make than you think! The recipe only calls for three basic ingredients (plus a couple spices) that you likely already have in your kitchen.
FAQ: Does custard have eggs?
Yes, a custard is any liquid that is thickened with egg (even liquids other than milk or cream like lemon curd). This differs from custard’s dessert cousin, pudding, which uses a gelatinized starch as a thickening agent. More in a pudding mood? Take a look at how to make pudding the old-fashioned way.
How to Make Custard
- 2 eggs
- 2 cups whole milk
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- Dash ground cinnamon
- Dash ground nutmeg
- Four 8 oz. custard cups. Purchase our favorites here ($18).
- 13×9-in. baking pan
Step 1: Mix the Custard
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In a small bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, sugar and salt until fully combined.
Test Kitchen Tip: Mix the ingredients in a bowl with a spout or a measuring cup so that it can be poured into the cups more easily.
Step 2: Prepare the Custard Cups
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Divide the custard mixture evenly between four lightly greased 8 oz. custard cups. Then, sprinkle some cinnamon and nutmeg on top of the custard.
Test Kitchen Tip: For a silky-smooth custard, pour the mixture through a fine mesh strainer before adding to the cups.
Step 3: Set-up a Water Bath
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Transfer the custard cups to a 13×9-in. baking pan. Slowly pour hot, but not boiling, water into the pan until it is 3/4 in. deep.
Test Kitchen Tip: To prevent any water splashing on the custard (or all over your kitchen floor) add the water to the pan while it sits on the oven rack. Then, just push the rack in and close the oven door. Here are 15 more kitchen tips that will make you feel like a pro.
Step 4: Bake
Bake the custard, uncovered, at 350° for about 50-55 minutes. You’ll know the custard is done when a toothpick or knife inserted in the middle of the cup comes out clean.
Once the custard has set, remove them from the oven and immediately transfer the cups to a cooling rack. This will prevent the custard from overcooking in the water bath’s residual heat.
Step 5: Enjoy!
Allow the custard to cool until the cups can be handled, then dig in! You can serve this custard either warm or chilled, on its own or topped with fresh fruit.
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