Whip Up Some Sweet Potato Creme Brulee

A tasty alternative to sweet potato pie for a Thanksgiving dessert

During the holidays my mom always made sweet potato pies as opposed to pumpkin pies. I still prefer them over pumpkin.  So, for a little twist on a holiday dessert, try these little pumpkin crème brulees. 

They are easy to prepare and have always been a hit at my house. Instead of using the broiler to caramelize the sugar on top, invest in a chef torch if you plan on making more in the future.  They are easy to use and you can find them at specialty cooking stores and larger hardware stores.

Pumpkin Creme Brulee

1 1/4 cu Heavy Cream
6 lg Egg Yolks
6 tbl Granulated Sugar
1 tsp Nutmeg
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
1 tsp Cinnamon
1/2 cu canned Sweet Potato in Syrup, drained and smashed until smooth
1 tbl Bourbon*
1 tbl Orange Juice
6 Ramekins (3oz – 3.5oz size)
Superfine Sugar
Fresh Berries (optional)
Chef’s Torch

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Heat cream in a heavy saucepan just until boiling. Watch it carefully because it with bubble over right as it starts to boil.  Remove from heat and set aside.

Whisk together egg yolks, granulated sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg. Add mashed sweet potatoes, bourbon and orange juice.  Whisk until smooth.  Slowly pour hot cream mixture into egg mixture, whisking constantly.  Divide custard into ramekins and arrange them in heavy large baking pan.  Add hot water into pan, enough to come halfway up the sides of ramekins. Be careful not to splash any water into the ramekins.  Bake until sides are set but centers move slightly when shaken, about 16-18 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool.  Remove ramekins from water and refrigerate for at least two hours.

Sprinkle about 1-1/2 teaspoons of superfine sugar on top of each ramekin.   Using a chef’s torch, melt the sugar evenly by passing the flame slowly over the sugar and rotating the ramekin in your hand to help the melted sugar spread across the top.  Once you’ve completed the process with all of the ramekins, please each on an individual plate and serve with fresh berries on the side.


If you’d rather not cook with alcohol, eliminate the bourbon and increase the amount of cream by 1 tablespoon.  Also, if you do not have a chef’s torch, place the sugar topped ramekins on a baking sheet and put them under a broiler (about 4 inches from the heat) for about 5 minutes or until the sugar has melted together.  Remove from heat and allow to cool a bit before serving.

If you have any questions, comments or segment suggestions, please send an email to wayne@waynesweekend.com.

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