Classic Creme Brulee

Total Time

Prep: 30 min. Bake: 25 min. + chilling

Makes

8 servings

Updated: Sep. 22, 2023
My favorite dessert is this creme brulee recipe. Recently I was at a party where the guests finished preparing their own desserts by "broiling" the sugar on their portions with a small torch. What a great idea! —Joylyn Trickel, Helendale, California
Classic Creme Brulee Recipe photo by Taste of Home

Ingredients

  • 4 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 9 large egg yolks
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Brown sugar

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 325°. In a small saucepan, heat cream until bubbles form around sides of pan; remove from heat. In a large bowl, whisk egg yolks and sugar until blended but not foamy. Slowly stir in hot cream. Stir in vanilla.
  2. Place eight 6-oz. broiler-safe ramekins in a baking pan large enough to hold them without touching. Pour egg mixture into ramekins. Place pan on oven rack; add very hot water to pan to within 1/2 in. of top of ramekins. Bake until centers are just set (egg mixture will jiggle), 25-30 minutes. Immediately remove ramekins from water bath to a wire rack; cool 10 minutes. Refrigerate until cold.
  3. Place ramekins on a baking sheet; let stand at room temperature 15 minutes. Preheat broiler. Sprinkle custards evenly with 1-2 teaspoons brown sugar each. Broil 8 in. from heat until sugar is caramelized, 4-7 minutes. Refrigerate leftovers.

Creme Brulee Tips

How can you avoid scrambling the eggs when making the custard?

To avoid scrambling the eggs in this recipe (or any recipe that combines cold eggs with hot liquids), it's super important to learn how to temper eggs. Once you get the hang of it, you'll have the perfect texture in custards, ice cream, pudding and sauces.

Can you use a blowtorch instead of the broiler to caramelize the sugar?

Of course! Feel free to use a blowtorch instead. We suggest working slowly, as well as keeping the ramekins on a baking sheet to protect your countertops. For an even more simplified take, try this easy creme brulee recipe that caramelizes the sugar over the stovetop.

Can you make this creme brulee recipe ahead of time?

Yes! You can make this creme brulee recipe ahead, since it needs time to chill and firm up before finishing. Just keep baked, cooled ramekins covered in the refrigerator for 1-2 days. Top with sugar and caramelize right before serving. (There are plenty of other desserts you can make ahead, too.)

Shannon Norris, Taste of Home Senior Food Stylist

Nutrition Facts

1 serving: 551 calories, 50g fat (29g saturated fat), 402mg cholesterol, 53mg sodium, 22g carbohydrate (22g sugars, 0 fiber), 6g protein.