Crème brûlée is a favorite dessert in our house and our go-to-treat after a steak dinner. Even though the result is show-stopping thanks to a caramelized “sugar” topping, making keto creme brulee is actually pretty easy and you’ll never know it’s made with alternative sweeteners! Similar to my keto flan, keto crème brûlée starts with a silky custard base and then is finished off by using a torch (or broiler, but the torch is so much more fun!) to create a hardened sweet shell on top.
I like to use the freshest possible eggs for this – I get mine at my local farmer’s market – because good eggs (pun intended) results in a rich and flavorful custard. If you want to really kick it up a notch, instead of using vanilla extract, you can split a whole vanilla bean and let it simmer in the cream mixture while it’s heating up for a rich vanilla flavor! I use two different sweeteners for this – Allulose for the custard and Monkfruit for the toppings. Allulose is typically my go-to sweetener for baking however it doesn’t produce the satisfying, crisp topping that you want for keto creme brulee, so that’s why I use Monkfruit in that step, but you can use your preferred sweetener!
You will have to prep this somewhat in advance – the custard needs to set in the fridge for at least four hours (and preferably overnight) however the wait is well worth it!
Keto Creme Brulee
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 1 tsp Vanilla extract
- 1/4 tsp salt I use Himalayan Pink Salt
- 5 egg yolks
- 1/2 cup sweetener I like Allulose (plus extra sweetener for the topping)
- Preheat oven to 350℉
- In a heavy saucepan over low heat, warm up the heavy cream, vanilla, and salt. Stirring occasionally.
- Remove from heat when it just starts to steam, don't let it boil. About 5 – 7 minutes.
- In a medium mixing bowl, beat the egg yolks and sweetener (I prefer Allulose) until light and fluffy, about 3 – 5 minutes.
- Slowly add the cream mixture to the egg mixture, beating constantly. Make sure to add the cream a little at a time so the eggs don't "cook" from the heat of the cream. If you slowly incorporate it, you'll get the silky, creamy texture we're going for.
- In a baking dish, arrange 4 – 8 ramekins (as you'll see in the video, I used a round cake pan which only fit four ramekins, so I make this in two batches).
- Fill the ramekins with your custard mixture.
- Then, add boiling water to the pan, making sure not to get any water in the ramekins, so the water reaches about halfway up the sides of the ramekins.
- Gently place the baking dish in the oven and bake for 40 – 45 minutes.
- When done, the tops of the creme brulee will be golden brown but the centers will still be jiggly.
- Place the baking dish on a wire rack and cool completely.
- Remove the ramekins from the dish when cooled and place in the fridge to finish setting – at least four hours, preferably overnight.
- When set, remove the ramekins from the fridge and sprinkle 1 – 2 teaspoons of sweetener (for this I prefer Swerve or Monkfruit because they get crisper than Allulose).
- Using a kitchen torch, make a few passes over the tops with the sweetener until caramelized and crisp. If you don't have a kitchen torch, you can place them under the broiler for a few minutes.