Crème brûlée has always been one of my favorite desserts. The first time I had it I was probably 12 or 13. My best friend’s mom worked in DC, and sometimes we were fortunate enough to tag along. Her boss at the time was a lobbyist, so he knew all the good spots in town, and enjoyed taking “the girls” out to a nice lunch. We always chose McCormick & Schmicks, for the fist-sized fried shrimp – and, the crème brûlée. There’s just something about that sweet, cold custard underneath a crunchy layer of caramelized sugar. I was young, but even at that tender age, I recognized.

No matter how many times I’ve indulged in it since those days of yore, I never tired of it. It’s relatively easy to make at home (you don’t even need a torch!), and is super impressive. There are also about a million different ways you can “spin” it – seems like I’m always finding a new flavor combo for this decadent dessert.

The coconut was just perfect! It wasn’t overwhelming, but it was definitely present. I came across a couple recipes, but settled on this one because it used coconut milk. Several recipes called for adding shredded coconut to the custard, and I didn’t like the sound of that. I like the custard to be smooth, and the coconut milk kept that smoothness, but also added a ton of coconut flavor. I also felt like it was a bit lighter than a traditional custard since it uses less heavy cream than most recipes call for. I hope you enjoy this tropical twist on a classic as much as we did.


  1. Posted April 13, 2012 at 9:54 PM | Permalink

    Looks delicious!!

  2. Posted April 14, 2012 at 4:15 PM | Permalink funny! I made coconut creme brûlée for Easter dinner! I suppose I need to post it soon I totally forgot about them. they were soooooooo good.

  3. Elise
    Posted February 18, 2013 at 11:22 PM | Permalink

    I love everything coconut and I love creme brulee so this seemed like the perfect way to combine these two loves. Unfortunately I was disappointed with the results. This dessert was not sweet enough to bring out the coconut flavor and the texture at the bottom was strange. It was pretty bland and no one at the table cared to finish theirs. I think it could be improved with the addition of a vanilla bean. It’s also possible that the can of coconut milk I had wasn’t a very good brand or something. I’ve had great luck with several of your other recipes. I’m not sure what went wrong with this one.

    • Posted February 19, 2013 at 5:34 AM | Permalink

      Sorry it didn’t turn out for you, Elise. I actually liked this creme brulee because it wasn’t cloyingly sweet – I liked the natural sweetness from the coconut. Feel free to add more sugar. Or, you could also add cream of coconut – which is sweeter, and more intensely flavored than coconut water. A bit of coconut extract would always be another option, to “up” the coconut flavor. I think vanilla bean would be a great addition as well!

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