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Luxury Orange, Vanilla, and Nutmeg-Kissed Burnt Honey Creme Caramel

Elevate your Christmas dessert game with this Luxury Orange, Vanilla, and Nutmeg-Kissed Burnt Honey Creme Caramel, where each velvety spoonful is a symphony of flavours.

Burnt Honey Creme Caramel

Global Inspiration

This Luxury Orange, Vanilla, and Nutmeg-Kissed Burnt Honey Creme Caramel recipe is inspired by Japanese purin, Mexican flan, and traditional Western-style creme caramel. The result is a wonderfully smooth custard that holds its shape once slid from its ramekin.

Flan with Flair

Indulge in a dessert that combines the richness of burnt honey, the warmth of nutmeg, the zest of orange, and the silky smoothness of vanilla. Luxury Orange, Vanilla, and Nutmeg-Kissed Burnt Honey Creme Caramel is a globally inspired recipe that blends flavors and techniques to create a truly unforgettable sweet treat.

Flan, or creme caramel, also known as poor man’s creme brulee, is a velvety and indulgent dessert with a luxurious texture and rich flavour. This version combines the traditional egg custard base of creme caramel but adds cream cheese, an ingredient often found in Mexican flan. This addition yields a slight tang to the base, and a perfectly creamy, yet stable texture and finish to the custard. Paired with the burnt honey caramel topping, contrasting against the gentle spice of the nutmeg and the freshness of the orange, this is a dessert you will crave well past Christmas. When inverted for serving, a glossy, amber-hued crown atop the creamy custard is revealed, nestling a pool of luscious caramel sauce. Whether enjoyed on its own or with a sprinkle of nuts, it is a timeless classic with a twist, offering a taste of sublime delight in every bite

Ceramic vs Non-Stick Metal Ramekin

The choice between baking the Luxury Orange, Vanilla, and Nutmeg-Kissed Burnt Honey Creme Caramel in a ceramic or non-stick metal ramekin can influence the cooking process and the final outcome of your custard. We used ceramic ramekins because they heat more slowly and allow for an even bake. 

These are the basic differences of baking custard in ceramic vs non-stick metal ramekins.

Heat Conductivity

  • Ceramic Ramekin: Ceramic is generally a poor conductor of heat compared to metal. It takes longer for ceramic to heat up, and once hot, it retains heat for a more extended period. This can result in a slower and more even cooking process for the custard.
  • Non-Stick Metal Ramekin: Metal, being a better conductor of heat, heats up quickly and loses heat rapidly. This can lead to a faster cooking time and may require more careful monitoring to prevent overcooking.

Heat Retention

  • Ceramic Ramekin: Ceramic retains heat well, which can be advantageous for keeping the custard warm after it comes out of the oven. However, it can also mean that the custard continues to cook slightly even after removal from the oven.
  • Non-Stick Metal Ramekin: Metal cools down faster, reducing the risk of carryover cooking after removal from the oven. This can be beneficial in preventing overcooking, but it may result in a custard that cools more rapidly.

Appearance and Presentation

  • Ceramic Ramekin: Ceramic ramekins often have a more traditional and aesthetic appeal, making them suitable for presentation when serving directly from the dish.
  • Non-Stick Metal Ramekin: Metal ramekins may have a more modern or minimalist appearance. They are often chosen when the custard is intended to be unmolded onto a plate for a more refined presentation.

Coating and release

  • Ceramic Ramekin: Custards may have a tendency to stick to the surface of ceramic, especially if not properly greased or coated. This can affect the ease of unmolding.
  • Non-Stick Metal Ramekin: The non-stick coating on metal ramekins facilitates easy release, making it simpler to unmold the custard without it sticking to the sides.

Gentle Heat, Perfect Treat: How Bain-Marie Transforms Custard Creation

This Luxury Orange, Vanilla, and Nutmeg-Kissed Burnt Honey Creme Caramel is baked in a water bath, or bain-marie, to ensure gentle and even cooking, resulting in a velvety texture.

The purpose of the bain marie is to ensure the heat is distributed evenly around the ramekins, preventing the custard from cooking too quickly or at too high a temperature.

Once set, the flan is chilled and then inverted onto a serving dish, revealing a luscious layer of caramel on top.

Don’t be intimidated by baking in a bain-marie. Follow our simple recipe to bring a touch of gourmet sophistication to your dessert table.

Nutmeg-Kissed Burnt Honey Creme Caramel

Rate This Luxury Orange, Vanilla, and Nutmeg-Kissed Burnt Honey Creme Caramel

Did you try out this wonderful Christmas dessert? Please leave me a comment, give this recipe a rating, and remember to tag your photo #theculinarycartel on Instagram so we can see what you come up with.

Loved this recipe? Here are a few more, that are easy to make and fit for a celebration. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Can this recipe be made vegan?

Unfortunately, this recipe isn’t suitable for vegans and can’t be made by substituting vegan ingredients.

Can the milk, cream, and cream cheese be substituted with something else for people who are lactose intolerant?

No, the ingredients in this recipe are essential to ensure a smooth textured custard that holds its shape when removed from the ramekin. 

Is it possible to use sugar subsitutes?

To achive a balance rich, burnt-honey glaze. 

Can this dessert be made in advance?

Yes! You can make it the day before and refrigerate it until you’re ready to serve.  

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Burnt Honey Creme Caramel

Luxury Orange, Vanilla, and Nutmeg-Kissed Burnt Honey Creme Caramel

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  • Author: Jess Bunn
  • Total Time: 54 minutes
  • Yield: 8 portions


Indulge in a Christmas dessert that harmonises the opulent flavours of burnt honey, nutmeg, orange, and vanilla.



For the custard:

  • 160 ml (2/3 cup) milk
  • 300 ml (1 1/4 cups) double cream (or Heavy Cream)
  • 1/2 cup (100 g) light muscovado sugar or light brown sugar
  • Zest of 1 clementine or orange
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg (or 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated)
  • Pinch of flaked sea salt
  • 4 large eggs
  • 165 g (6 oz) package cream cheese, softened
  • Roasted and salted pecans, roughly chopped for serving (optional)

For the caramel:

  • 1/3 cup (100 ml) honey
  • 1/2 cup (100 g) granulated sugar


  1. Preheat your oven to 150°C.
  2. Make the caramel: In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the sugar with a splash of water (about 40ml). Cook, swirling the pan until the sugar has dissolved and the mixture has turned a deep amber colour.
  3. Add the honey to the caramel, and cook for 1-2 minutes longer until the mixture reduces again and turns syrupy.
  4. Pour the caramel into eight 200ml ovenproof ramekins, swirling to coat the bottom and sides evenly.
  5. Make the custard: Warm the cream and milk on a medium-low heat. Whisk in the sugar, orange zest, nutmeg, salt and vanilla. Stir until the sugar has dissolved, then remove from the heat.
  6. Crack the eggs into a mixing bowl and whisk. Slowly whisk in the hot cream mixture.
  7. Add the cream cheese and blend until smooth with a stick blender.
  8. Alternatively, use a blender: Add the eggs and cream cheese to the blender jug. Remove the stopper from the blender lid, and with the blender running on low, slowly pour in the warm milk mixture.
  9. Pour the custard mixture over the caramel.
  10. Place the ramekins in a baking tray filled with hot water to come halfway up the sides of the dish (this is called a bain-marie).
  11. Bake for 18-24 minutes or until the custard is set and a knife inserted into the centre comes out clean.
  12. Remove the custard from the oven and let it cool completely before refrigerating for at least 4 hours.
  13. To serve, run a knife around the edge of the custard to loosen it from the dish. Invert the dish onto a serving plate and gently shake to release the creme caramel.
  14. Scatter over the pecan pieces and serve.
  • Prep Time: 30 min
  • Cook Time: 24 min
  • Category: Desserts
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