Salted Caramel Custard


These easy pots de crèmes are just sweet enough, just salty enough, and just drop-dead gorgeous enough to be my favorite dessert. This salted caramel pudding recipe is beautifully balanced.

Prep Time:
10 mins
Cook Time:
1 hrs
Additional Time:
1 hrs
Total Time:
2 hrs 10 mins


  • 9 large egg yolks

  • cup white sugar

  • 2 cups heavy cream

  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt

  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

  • 1 cup whole milk

  • Flaky sea salt (such as Maldon®), to garnish


  1. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F (150 degrees C). Place 6 (6.5-ounce) ramekins in a baking dish.

  2. Place sugar evenly in a heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat. Without stirring, allow sugar to slowly melt around the edges of the pan, about 5 minutes, adjusting heat as necessary. When edges start to bubble, shake and swirl the pan to dissolve remaining sugar but without stirring it. Keep pan moving until you have a clear, dark caramel, about 10 minutes. When sugar is completely dissolved, whisk in cream; caramel will cool into a lump; this is normal. Keep stirring over medium heat until caramel melts and mixture comes up to temperature and sugar has dissolved. Remove from heat

  3. Stir in kosher salt, vanilla, and cold milk; mix well.

  4. Place egg yolks in a large mixing bowl. Whisk in a ladleful of caramel-milk mixture to the yolks. Add 2 more ladlefuls, one at a time. Then mix in the remainder of the caramel-milk mixture to the yolks, whisking until thoroughly blended.

  5. Divide the custard mixture evenly among the ramekins. Carefully pour into the baking dish enough water so that it comes halfway up the sides of the filled ramekins.

  6. Bake in the preheated oven until custard is set and the top of custard jiggles evenly across the surface, 45 to 60 minutes (depending on the size of your ramekins and how full they are). If the center seems looser than the edges, continue to bake another minute or so.

  7. Transfer ramekins to a cooling rack; cool to room temperature. Cover ramekins with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 1 hour until they are very cold.

  8. Serve topped with a pinch of light, flaky sea salt.

    close up view of Salted Caramel Custard garnished with sea salt, in a white ramekin on a white plate
    Chef John

Cook's Note:

If kosher salt isn't available, use 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt in place of the 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

467 Calories
37g Fat
27g Carbs
7g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 6
Calories 467
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 37g 48%
Saturated Fat 21g 107%
Cholesterol 420mg 140%
Sodium 272mg 12%
Total Carbohydrate 27g 10%
Total Sugars 24g
Protein 7g
Vitamin C 1mg 3%
Calcium 130mg 10%
Iron 1mg 8%
Potassium 148mg 3%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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