Pumpkin Creme Brûlée is a wonderful way to enjoy pumpkins when they are in season and it tastes like the custard of a pumpkin pie but with the bonus of that delicious hard sugar creme brûlée crust. This creme brûlée recipe is so easy and I will walk you threw all of the steps to make this easy and delicious Fall and Winter dessert.
About this Pumpkin Creme Brûlée
Making Creme brûlée is actually a lot easier than you may think. The only part of the recipe that requires you to do something beyond mixing is when you make a water bath which is essentially just pouring hot water into a large roasting pan that your ramekins are sitting in. I will walk you through how to do that and I promise it is really easy.
The base of this pumpkin creme brûlée recipe is my tried and true recipe for vanilla creme brûlée. I have adjusted the sugar only a little bit so if you are interested in a classic vanilla version just omit the pumpkin.
Ingredients Needed for this Pumpkin Creme Brûlée
- Canned pumpkin (or fresh pumpkin puree). Do not use pumpkin pie filling/puree.
- Heavy cream.
- Egg Yolks
- Granulated Sugar
- Demerara Sugar (this is for the topping and I will go into more detail about this below).
- Vanilla extract
- Cinnamon (ground)
- Nutmeg (ground)
Notes about the ingredients
When choosing your ingredients for this recipe, make sure you use the best quality you can find, especially with the eggs. Since there are a lot of egg yolks in this recipe, the higher the quality, the better the recipe will taste.
The same holds true for the type of vanilla extract you use. Try to find a good quality vanilla extract and do not use imitation vanilla.
There are two types of sugar in this recipe. Granulated sugar which is your everyday sugar, is used for the custard portion of the recipe.
Demerara sugar is used for the crust topping. After years of having issues getting a nice crust on my creme brûlée when using superfine sugar, I decided to switch to demerara which is a more raw form of sugar.
The demerara sugar always produces a nice beautiful crust in seconds. So, if you have struggled with making a crust on your creme brûlée in the past, this sugar will fix that.
How to make:
- Step 1: Here you are just mixing all of the ingredients in a large bowl and then you pour it into your ramekins. Place the ramekins first inside your roasting pan before you pour in the custard.
- Step 2: Place the roasting pan with the ramekins in the oven. Now pour hot water (I use a kettle for this) into the roasting pan until the water comes halfway up the sides of the ramekins. Close the oven door and cook.
- Step 3: Just let the custards that came out of the oven cool completely on the counter before refrigerating them.
- Step 4: Right before serving, remove the custards from the fridge and sprinkle on your demerara sugar. Use a creme brûlée torch to burn the sugar which creates a nice crust.
To make a vanilla creme brûlée:
Just omit the pumpkin portion of the recipe.
To make other creme brûlée flavors:
You can omit the pumpkin and vanilla in this recipe to make other delicious creme brûlée variations.
Some ideas are:
- Orange creme brûlée by using orange extract in place of vanilla.
- Snickerdoodle creme brûlée. Just omit the pumpkin in this recipe and keep the cinnamon and nutmeg for a delicious snickerdoodle flavor.
What if I do not have a creme brûlée torch?
If you do not have a creme brûlée torch, you can easily use a long grill lighter and use the flame of the lighter to make contact with the sugar to burn it into a crust.
Alternatively, you can use the broiler method where you place the creme brûlée on to a sheet pan and place under a broiler on high until the sugar starts to melt and brown. Watch them carefully when doing this so they do not burn.
More Pumpkin Recipes:
Pumpkin Creme Brûlée Recipe
- 6 Ramekins: 3.5 wide x 1.5 deep
- 2 cups Heavy cream
- ⅓ cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- ½ cup pumpkin puree
- ¼ cup demerara sugar for the crust
- 8 egg yolks
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- Pre-heat your oven to 325 degrees.
- In a large bowl, add your granulated sugar and egg yolks and mix until it becomes a pale yellow color.
- Now add in your heavy cream, pumpkin puree, cinnamon and nutmeg and mix well.
- Grab 6 ramekins. I use ramekins that are 3 ½ inches wide and 1 ½ inches high and holds about 5 ½ ounces.
- Place your ramekins inside a large roasting dish.
- Fill a tea kettle or pot with water and bring to a boil.
- Place the roasting pan with ramekins inside your oven.
- Pour the hot water inside the roasting pan while it is in the oven making sure to fill with enough water so the water comes half way up the sides of the ramekins.
- Cook the custards for 40-50 minutes or until the very center of the custards jiggles just a very little bit.
- Once they are ready, carefully remove the roasting pan from the oven and place on the counter.
- Allow the custards to cool inside the water bath.
- Once the custards are completely cool, remove them from the water bath and place in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours to chill.
Making the sugar crust
- Sprinkle 1 heaping teaspoon of your demerara sugar evenly over the top of your custard.
- Using a creme brûlée torch, torch the tops by using a back and forthe motion with the flame until the sugar strats to brown and bubble.
- Do this until all the sugar is melted.
- Serve immediately after making the crust.