This traditional Cuban Pumpkin Flan is so creamy and delicious, combing favorite fall flavors!
Silky. Creamy. Lucious. and decadent
Add some pumpkin to all the above and you get the most delicious Cuban dessert – Pumpkin Flan.
Flan is a beautiful custard dessert, you can find in so many cuisines across the world. From Europe to Asia and all the way to South America. The signature of pretty much every flan recipe is the delicious caramel coating. That excitement and scare in the same time, when you are releasing it from the mold to see that golden brown sauce topping the firm custard…Yum!
I grew up with my mum loving creme caramel and making it any occasion possible. I can still remember the smell of fresh caramel sauce coming from the kitchen, and no matter how big she was making it, was never enough.
I love flan.
I think it was one of my favorite desserts during my childhood, after Hungarian Kürtőskalács (Chimney Cake) and Plum dumplings. At that time, around 30 years ago, creme caramel was the only recipe and ah! we were missing on so many great flavors.
Until a couple of weeks ago, had no clue there is a pumpkin flan recipe out there. I mean…pumpkin flan! That’s the ultimate fall dessert in my books!
Pumpkin flan is one of the most popular desserts in Cuba, made with sugar, evaporated milk, condensed milk, egg yolks, eggs, cream cheese, pumpkin puree and vanilla extract.
The trickiest part of this recipe is to make the caramel. The process is simple, you add sugar, water and some creme of tartar and you watch it like a hawk….don’t walk away from it. There is a very fine line between deliciously caramelized and burnt. When caramel is done it has an even light amber brown color throughout. And it smells fantastic! Once this step is done, the rest of the recipe is a so easy.
What I like the most about this Cuban pumpkin flan? It is not overly sweet. That means you can eat how much you want, right :)?!
Make yourself a favor and save this recipe and try it! Thanksgiving it coming and I guarantee all your guests will be blown away by this amazing dessert!
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- ¼ cup water
- ½ teaspoon creme of tartar
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- 1 can (12oz/ ) evaporated milk
- 1 can (14oz/ 396g) sweetened condensed milk
- 3 tablespoons cream cheese, at room temperature
- 1 cup pumpkin puree
- 5 eggs
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- Boiling water
- Start making your custard mixture first so when the caramel is done, you can just pour it and put in the oven.
- In a large bowl, combine the pumpkin puree, evaporated milk, sweetened condensed milk, cream cheese, sugar, eggs, cornstarch, cinnamon and vanilla essence. Whisk all ingredients until you get a smooth consistency. Strain the custard mixture through a fine sieve into a new, clean bowl and set aside.
- Preheat oven to 300F/ 150C.
- Start making your caramel. In a medium saucepan, add sugar, water and cream of tartar. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until sugar is dissolved, about 2-3 minutes. Increase heat to medium-high, and boil, without stirring, for about 10 minutes, until caramel turns a light amber brown color,
- Remove from heat and quickly pour the caramel in your mold. Swirl it as quickly as you can around it to coat the sides too. Be careful, the pan will get very hot, so you will need pot holders!
- After you finish, pour over the pumpkin custard mixture. Arrange the mold in a large deep roasting pan and pour boiling water into the roasting pan until it comes about halfway up the side of your flan mold. Bake for 50-60 minutes or until knife inserted near center, comes out clean. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for about 30 minutes before putting in the fridge for several hours or overnight.
- To unfold, I usually put the mold in some warm water for a couple of minutes, then remove and invert onto a plate. If you are having trouble, run a sharp knife around the rim of the mold and gently shake to loosen before inverting onto a plate.