After a lot of Googles and a few attempts, nailed it. This is the easiest creme brûlée you’ll ever make and no one will ever know you didn’t slave over a hot stove.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 8 minutes (not including the time for the Instant Pot to pressurize)
Finish Time: 2 1/2 to 3 hours (includes 20-30 minutes to cool plus 2 hours to chill in refrigerator)
Instant Pot w/flat-bottom trivet
Medium mixing bowl
Spouted measuring cup (2+ cups)
Fine mesh sieve
4-5 large egg yolks
2 cups heavy cream
2/3 cup confectioner’s sugar
1 tsp premium quality vanilla
Granulated white sugar
Separate the eggs, transferring the yolks to a medium bowl.
The easiest method is to just use your hands… don’t forget to wash them first! Crack an egg. While holding your hand over a small bowl, carefully transfer the egg to your palm and let the egg white slip through your fingers into the bowl. You might have to carefully slide the yolk from one palm to another to release all of the egg white. Transfer the yolk to your medium bowl. Don’t worry about any white solids stuck to the yolk. We’ll take care of that shortly.
Add 1/8 to 1/4 cup heavy cream to the yolks and whisk until creamy. Whisk in the rest of the cream, then the vanilla, then the confectioner’s sugar.
Place the sieve over the measuring cup and strain the egg mixture into the measuring cup.
Don’t skip this step. Straining eliminates the need to heat the cream and helps to develop the creamy texture of the custard.
Prepare the Instant Pot with 1-2 cups of water and trivet. Follow the instructions recommended for the size of your pot.
Divide the egg mixture evenly among the ramekins. Do not overfill… no less than 1/2″ from the top edge.
This recipe as written will make 6 servings when using the 8 oz. ramekins in the link at the bottom of this post.
Cover the ramekin with foil.
To avoid disturbing the custard, lay the a piece of foil flat on the counter and place the ramekin in the center of the foil. Pull one side of the foil up and tightly over the ramekin, then do the same with the opposite side of the foil. Fold the remaining two sides up and over the ramekin.
Position the foil-covered ramekins on the trivet. Stack them securely up to the max fill line in your Instant Pot.
Secure the Instant Pot lid and pressure cook on high pressure for 8 minutes with keep warm turned off. Remove the ramekins from the Instant Pot as soon as the cook cycle is complete.
The ramekins will be extremely hot. If you attempt to remove them by lifting the trivet, be careful. But it’s generally easier to firmly grasp a ramekin with tongs and careful lift it out of the pot and onto the counter.
Remove the foil.
The ramekins will still be extremely hot. If you followed the instructions above for wrapping them, you should be able to grasp the foil by a corner and unwrap them without disturbing the custard or burning your fingers. Use your tongs if necessary and be careful to not let any condensation fall into your custard.
Allow to cool completely before transferring to the refrigerator to set for at least 2 hours.
Dump 1 teaspoon of granulated white sugar in the center of each custard. Shake the ramekin slightly to spread the sugar so you have an even layer in the center of the custard.
If you try to spread the sugar over the entire surface, it’ll be too thin and you’ll end up with a clear crust instead of that golden amber which is ideal.
In a location away from flammables, light your torch and adjust it so you have a visible flame 2 1/2 to 3″ long and 1″ wide.
Hold the torch about 3″ from the top of the custard and move the visible tip of the flame across the layer of sugar. You should see liquid sugar bubbles within a few seconds. Continue to caramelize the sugar constantly moving the torch. The force from the torch should spread the liquid sugar around and you should see a nice amber crust develop.
The entire process should only take 8 to 10 seconds. If it’s taking longer, you need to turn up your torch. If your sugar is browning too quickly, your flame is too high or you’re holding the torch too close.
Allow the ramekins to cool for a minute before serving.
My Instant Pot: Instant Pot Ultra 10-in-1 Electric Pressure Cooker
My torch: Iwatani PRO2 Culinary Butane Torch
My ramekins: Brew To A Tea 8 Ounce Porcelain Ramekins (set of 8)