• Coconut and pandan crème brûlée (Chris Middleton)Source: Chris Middleton

Pandan extract is available from Asian grocery stores. The strength can vary between brands, so add it gradually. You can prepare the crèmes the day before serving – they need to be well chilled before you brûlée the top. You will need a kitchen blow torch for this task. Don’t be tempted to add too much syrup to the top of each crème – it will take too long to caramelise.






Skill level

Average: 3.4 (345 votes)


  • 400 ml (13½ fl oz) tin coconut milk
  • 250 ml (8½ fl oz/1 cup) thickened (double/heavy) cream
  • ½–1 tsp pandan extract
  • 2 eggs plus 4 egg yolks
  • 2 tbsp rice malt syrup, plus extra to drizzle
  • tropical fruit, to serve (optional)

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Chilling time: 3½ hours

Preheat the oven to 150°C/300°F (fan-forced). Fold a clean dish towel into the base a large, deep baking dish and place six 125 ml (4 fl oz/½ cup) capacity ramekins on top of the towel.

Heat the coconut milk, cream and pandan extract in a saucepan over medium–low heat. Cook, stirring occasionally until the mixture almost comes to the boil, about 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, gently whisk the egg, egg yolks and rice malt syrup in a large heatproof bowl until well combined. Gradually whisk in the coconut mixture and then strain into a large heatproof jug. Stand for 5 minutes and, using a large spoon, remove and discard any foam from the top of the mixture.

Divide the coconut mixture evenly between the ramekins. Place the baking dish on the shelf of the oven and carefully add enough boiling water to come halfway up the sides of the ramekins, ensuring that the dish towel is completely submerged. (This is easier than trying to transport a dish full of water from the bench
to the oven).

Bake for 20–25 minutes or until set with a slight wobble in the centre. Cool for 30 minutes and then refrigerate for at least 3 hours until firm.

Working one at a time, drizzle about 1 teaspoon of rice malt syrup over the surface of each crème. Caramelise the syrup carefully with a kitchen blow torch, swirling the syrup over the surface as you go. Set aside to cool and harden, and then repeat with the remaining brûlées. Serve with tropical fruit, if desired.


Recipe and image from Incredible Bakes That Just Happen to be Refined-Sugar Free by Caroline Griffiths (Smith Street Books, $39.99 hbk).

View more refined sugar-free recipes from Incredible Bakes here.

View our Readable feasts review and more recipes from the book here.