Dusky, spicy, sweet — Instant Pot Cinnamon Creme Brulee is the easy recipe you’ll love to make!
Creme Brûlée is one of my favorite desserts. Silky, creamy custard. A crackly, sugary shell. Thwack! The perfect end to any meal!
Adding bold and unexpected flavors makes it even more special. In this case, a long steep with Saigon Cinnamon creates an unbelievably delicious and unexpected dessert. All that dusky, spicy cinnamon is irresistible!
Cinnamon Creme Brûlée seems complicated and extra fancy. In reality, it’s a simple dessert. A custard, really. That’s whisked together in one bowl. With an Instant Pot, it’s even easier to make at home!
Can I really make Creme Brulee in my Instant Pot?
Yes, you definitely can! An Instant Pot or pressure cooker is the perfect tool to cook custard or pudding. In essence, it “steams” the Cinnamon Creme Brulee to silky perfection.
Traditionally, a creme brulee recipe requires a water bath at low heat (300F) for 30-40 minutes. The water bath ensures a consistent, even cook and silky-smooth texture.
In the Instant Pot, all you’ll need is a steamer trivet (which comes with the Instapot) or slicone sling (which has handles and can be bought separately. Add water and lock into place. That’s it!
I must admit — using the Instant Pot is SO much easier and convenient! And faster. Only 4 minutes! With no water bath to fuss over. I will never go back to using a traditional water bath for this dessert again!
How do I make that crisp, sugary shell?
Without a doubt, one of the best parts of this simple Creme Brulee recipe is the sugary shell on top.
To create a crackly crust that shatters into crisp shards, sprinkle white sugar on top. Then use a kitchen torch to caramelize the tops until hard. The broiler also works if you don’t own a blow torch.
Ultra-fine white sugar works best. The smaller granules melt more evenly into a thick crust. If you don’t have any, simply pulse regular white sugar for 1 minute in a food processor.
- Saigon Cinnamon Sticks. Also known as Vietnamese cinnamon, the flavor is intensely spicy, sweet, and aromatic. A stronger, more potent flavor + aroma than regular ceylon cinnamon.
- Ground Cinnamon. Adds more cinnamon flavor.
- Vanilla. Use the best you can find!
- Egg Yolks + Heavy Cream. The easy combo for a decadently rich creme brûlée recipe.
- Sugar. To lightly sweeten the custard. My recipe is “not-too-sweet.” Also, to create that crisp, sugary shell!
- Steep the cream + cinnamon sticks. For deep cinnamon flavor, steeping is the way to go.
- Temper the egg yolks. Add heated cream in a slow and steady stream to ensure the yolks do not scramble.
- Briefly torch custard before cooking. An easy baker’s trick to remove those pesky air bubbles from the surface. Once cooked, the air bubbles cannot be removed.
- Remove creme brulee IMMEDIATELY! Once the timer rings, release air pressure manually and remove from the Instapot ASAP!
- Chill in the fridge. Minimum 2 hours to chill.
- Use ultra-fine sugar for the top. Regular sugar also works. But ultra-fine sugar melts more evenly into a super crackly shell.
- Blow torch before serving. Otherwise, the shell will melt and dissolve, losing that crackly texture.
- Blow torch recommended, not required. A blow torch is SO much easier. But if you don’t own one, use the oven broiler. The sugary tops will still caramelize and harden.
Watch how to make Instant Pot Cinnamon Creme Brulee recipe:
Other easy desserts you may enjoy:
Instant Pot Cinnamon Creme Brulee
- 6 6-ounce ramekins
- kitchen torch (to brulee sugar)
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 4 saigon cinnamon sticks
- 6 egg yolks (organic, large)
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 Tbsp vanilla
- pinch salt
To brulee sugar:
- 1 tsp ultra-fine sugar (per ramekin)
- In a small saucepan, add heavy cream, sugar, and cinnamon sticks. Heat until slightly steaming and sugar dissolves. Cover and remove from heat. Steep for 1 hour.
- In a large bowl, add egg yolks, ground cinnamon, vanilla, and salt. Whisk until thick and well combined.
- Remove cinnamon sticks from the heavy cream. Briefly reheat until slightly steaming. (Do not boil!)
- Whisking constantly, add heavy cream to the yolk mixture. Make sure to add in a slow and steady stream. This will ensure the yolks do not scramble.
- Transfer to a large measuring cup for easy pouring. (2 cups will be very full; 4 cups is ideal). Divide evenly among 6 ramekins.
- Place a steamer trivet in the instant pot. Add 1 cup of water. Add ramekins in a single layer, slightly touching each other. Depending on ramekin size, you'll be able to fit anywhere from 2-4.
- Lock lid in place. Set Instant Pot to pressure cook at high heat for 4 minutes. Or normal heat for 4 minutes for a slightly creamier, softer creme brulee. Make sure to turn off "Keep Warm" function.
- When the timer beeps, manually release the steam. Do this immediately to prevent overcooking! Remove the lid and transfer ramekins to the kitchen counter. The ramekins will be hot so handle carefully! Rest for 10 minutes at room temperature. Repeat with remaining creme brûlée until all 6 are cooked.
- Chill for at least 2 hours or overnight in the fridge, uncovered.
- To serve: add 1 tsp of ultra-fine sugar to each ramekin. Gently shake and swirl sugar so that the top is evenly coated with sugar granules. Using a kitchen torch, melt sugar until bubbly and caramelized. Wait 5 minutes for the sugar to set into a crispy shell. Enjoy immediately!