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Overhead view of three terracotta ramekins with Crema Catalana

Crema Catalana

  • Author: Vicky Cohen and Ruth Fox
  • Prep Time: 15
  • Cook Time: 20 mins
  • Total Time: 3 hours 20 mins
  • Yield: 6 ramekins 1x
  • Diet: Vegetarian


Crema Catalana is a lemon and cinnamon infused Spanish dessert. It comes together in a creamy custard delight with a crunchy sugar topping.


  • 4 cups unsweetened plant-based milk such as ( almond, cashew, coconut, oat, etc) if you want to make it dairy-free or regular milk, low fat or whole if you want to make it dairy.
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • The peel of one medium-size lemon
  • 4 egg yolks
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 tbsp cornstarch, tapioca starch, or potato starch


  1. Heat almond milk, cinnamon stick, and lemon rind together in a pot at medium-low heat until bubbles start to form on the sides. This can take up to 10 minutes depending on your stove, we want the lemon and cinnamon to have time to infuse their flavor into the milk.  Watch the milk and prevent it from boiling.
  2. In the meantime, in a medium bowl beat eggs yolks, and sugar until pale yellow. Add corn starch and keep beating for another minute or so.
  3. Add vanilla extract and beat until smooth and creamy.
  4. Remove cinnamon stick and lemon rind from milk and discard. Slowly add about ½ cup of warm milk to the egg yolks, and stir constantly to temper the eggs.  It's important to follow this step or you will end up with scrambled eggs instead of custard.
  5. Slowly add the rest of the milk whisking until well incorporated.
  6. Return mixture to the saucepan and cook at medium to low heat, until it thickens slightly and coats the back of a wooden spoon (do not let it boil), it should take 3-4 minutes.
  7. Pour 1/2 cup of custard into each ramekin, refrigerate for a minimum until set.
  8. Before serving, sprinkle each ramekin with 1 tablespoon of sugar and caramelize using a torch or a caramelizing iron.


  1. Calories are calculated using almond milk, if using other milk adjust the calories accordingly.
  2. If you can find wide and low ramekins, you will have more surface for a crunchy sugar topping.
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Spain


  • Serving Size: 1 ramekin
  • Calories: 233
  • Sugar: 37.7
  • Sodium: 130
  • Fat: 4.9
  • Saturated Fat: 1.1
  • Unsaturated Fat: 3.5
  • Trans Fat: 0
  • Carbohydrates: 45
  • Fiber: .6
  • Protein: 2.9
  • Cholesterol: 123