The Genius Boxed Pudding Hack For Simple Crème Brûlée At Home

When was the last time you made crème brûlée at home? For the most part, people reserve ordering this dessert at restaurants, but it's actually simpler to make than you might think. Still, maintaining the right temperature for egg yolks while making your custard and having to set up a water bath means the treat is a slightly heavier lift than a basic chocolate cookie.

But thankfully, there are a lot of hacks to make crème brulée at home, and you can enjoy all of its decadent without ordering a fancy meal. We've created a simple three-ingredient crème brûlée recipe, and the secret to this recipe is using vanilla ice cream to make the custardy base. But if you don't have ice cream on hand, there's another shelf-stable pantry item that could come in handy for a homemade version of the dessert.

Chefs use instant pudding in plenty of desserts, especially cake, for extra moisture and flavor, and it turns out that a box of pudding is also the perfect tool for a quick and straightforward crème brûlée.

How to use boxed pudding to make crème brûlée

If you don't want to go through the trouble of setting up a water bath, then using boxed pudding to make crème brûlée is the best technique for you. All you need to do is mix the instant pudding powder with milk and heavy cream before letting them firm up in the fridge. Once the custard filling is set, you can add some sugar and use a blowtorch to get that caramelized crust. A blowtorch isn't the most common appliance for home cooks, so try Ina Garten's tip for finishing off a crème brûlée: Pop it in the broiler. You just need to keep an eye on the tops to be sure they get an even crust.

Although vanilla is the typical flavor, you can switch up the flavors with this pudding hack. Try changing it up with a chocolate or a banana cream boxed pudding mix. Need more creative dessert ideas? You can turn any dessert into an inspired treat, and people have been incredibly innovative when it comes to transforming sweets. Crème brûlée donuts were a big hit on TikTok, and you can also combine crème brûlée and crêpes into one delicious hybrid breakfast.