Here is a classic dessert with a bit of a twist that will stun your Thanksgiving guests, plus it's a great excuse to buy a kitchen torch if you don't already have one. If the idea of parfaits feels like a bit too much work here, feel free to bake the custard in the traditional way in ramekins, brulee the top, then garnish with the candied pumpkin. You can use a 2-inch round cutter for a round serving dish such as a stemmed champagne coupe. These can be made 2 to 3 days ahead, stored in the freezer. Remove 30 minutes before serving. Serve as-is or with whipped cream or caramel sauce.


Recipe Summary

30 mins
58 mins
1 hr 40 mins
3 hrs 8 mins
9 servings


Original recipe yields 9 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Creme Brulee:
Candied Pumpkin:


Instructions Checklist
  • Preheat oven to 300 degrees F (150 degrees C). Line a 9x13-inch baking pan with parchment paper; coat with cooking spray.

  • Mix 3/4 cup white sugar, egg yolks, egg, vanilla extract, 1 teaspoon cardamom, and 1/2 teaspoon salt together in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment; mix on low speed until well combined.

  • Heat cream in a small saucepan over medium heat, stirring often, until it begins to bubble, about 5 minutes; remove from heat. Add cream to the egg mixture slowly, mixing on low speed. Pour custard into the prepared baking dish.

  • Set the baking pan into a roasting pan; carefully pour enough boiling water into the roasting pan to come halfway up the sides of the baking pan.

  • Bake in the preheated oven until the custard is set when gently shaken, 45 to 50 minutes.

  • Remove baking pan from roasting pan. Cool to room temperature, about 30 minutes. Freeze until firm, at least 1 hour.

  • Melt butter in a skillet over medium heat. Add brown sugar, salt, 1/4 teaspoon cardamom, and cinnamon; stir to combine. Add frozen pumpkin and simmer, stirring often, until reduced, about 8 minutes. Cool candied pumpkin to room temperature, about 10 minutes.

  • Cut custard into 18 squares using a pizza cutter or sharp knife. Place 1 custard square in a serving dish, add a layer of candied pumpkin, and top with another square. Sprinkle each with 1 tablespoon of sugar. Use a kitchen torch to flame tops until deeply caramelized and a crunchy layer has formed.

Cook's Note:

You may substitute butternut squash for pumpkin.

Nutrition Facts

593 calories; protein 4.7g 10% DV; carbohydrates 40.1g 13% DV; fat 47.3g 73% DV; cholesterol 292.9mg 98% DV; sodium 253mg 10% DV. Full Nutrition


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