An elegant and impressive dessert, no-bake crème brûlée is easy enough to make at home.
Crème Brûlée is typically made by baking individual dishes of custard inside a water bath in the oven. I love crème brûlée as much as the next gal, but even I am not willing to put in all that effort. I’ll leave that to fancy restaurants and pastry chefs. Me? I’m sticking with this super easy, no-bake version.
If you can separate eggs and stand at the stove and stir a pot, you can make this recipe, so don’t be intimidated.
I’ve been playing around with this recipe over the last week, and I think I’ve nailed it. Rich, thick, and creamy. The texture is every bit as smooth as crème brûlée should be, and with half the effort.
If you never thought you could make crème brûlée at home, I hope this recipe will change your mind!
baking tip:How to brulee
You can use either a kitchen torch or your oven broiler to caramelize, but the kitchen torch will produce the best results.
Kitchen Torch— Cover the surface of the chilled custard generously with granulated sugar. Pass a kitchen torch back and forth over the sugar until it melts and caramelizes.
Broiler— Place the oven rack on the highest setting. Put the ramekins directly under the broiler and set it in the “high setting”. Wait for the sugar to melt and caramelize, rotating the ramekins as necessary for even browning. This can take up to 5 minutes.
Easy No-Bake Crème Brûlée
- 1 cup (237 ml) heavy whipping cream
- 1/2 cup (115 ml) whole milk
- 1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated sugar
- 1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
- 4 large egg yolks
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- Granulated sugar, for bruleeing
- In a medium saucepan, combine the cream, milk and sugar. Use a sharp knife to scrape the vanilla beans from the pod. Add both the scraped beans and pod to the saucepan. Place over medium heat and stir to dissolve the sugar. Heat just until bubbles appear at the edges and mixture is steaming (do not bring to a boil). Remove vanilla bean.
- Meanwhile, whisk together the egg yolks and cornstarch in a medium bowl. Add the hot cream mixture in a slow steady stream while whisking constantly.
- Pour mixture back into the saucepan and return to medium heat. Cook, stirring constantly with a spatula to scrap the bottom, until mixture is thickened. This will take 3-5 minutes. Once thickened, cook for an additional 1 minute, while continuing to stir.
- Remove from heat and pass custard through a mesh strainer to remove any lumps. Spoon into individual ramekins. Place in the fridge, uncovered, to set up for at least 2 hours.
- When ready to serve, sprinkle ramekins generously with granulated sugar. Working with one at a time, pass a kitchen torch over the surface until sugar melts and caramelizes. Serve immediately.