Crème Caramel

A classic French restaurant dessert menu item. The caramel turns to a sauce as the custard cooks and, when inverted onto a plate, yields a beautiful golden color.
Based on a recipe from The Good Housekeeping Illustrated Cookbook, Zoe Coulson, Hearst Books, New York, 1980, p. 359.
Prep Time30 minutes
Cook Time1 hour
Total Time1 hour 30 minutes
Course: Desserts - Other
Servings: 8 servings
Author: Catherine Christiano



  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar


  • 5 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 cups milk
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla


  • Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Butter eight 6-ounce custard cups very well. Gather a rimmed baking pan to fit custard cups.


  • In small saucepan, over medium heat, add 1/2 cup granulated sugar. Stir with a whisk continually, until sugar melts and turns to a light brown syrup. Distribute evenly into prepared custard cups. Place cups in rimmed baking pan.


  • In large bowl of a stand mixer, beat eggs and 1/2 cup granulated sugar on low speed, until lemon colored. Beat in milk and vanilla. Distribute evenly on top of caramel in custard cups.
  • Put hot water in rimmed pan to just within one inch of top of cups. Bake 1 hour or until when a knife inserted in center comes out clean.
  • Cool on wire rack, then refrigerate until cold. To serve, run a knife around edge of custard cup, place dessert plate on top and invert. Caramel should flow over edges of custard, forming a pool of sauce around it. 


Prepare a day in advance or early in the morning.
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