Single Serve Flan

I love flan. I also lack self control.

So this single serve flan recipe is perfect because it stops me from eating a full flan by myself. 

If you also love flan and also lack self control, this flan recipe was made for you.

A close up of the flan on a white plate.

Video Tutorial

Single serve flan

Let’s quickly talk about flan!

Not every flan recipe is the same, but most of the time I see flan being made with egg yolks, condensed milk and evaporated milk. 

There are other ingredients such as vanilla and salt too, but these are the 3 main ones.

However, the flan I made here is a single serve one, so there are a few changes I wanted to make.

Here are those changes:

  1. A whole egg instead of an egg yolk – I don’t like when single serve recipes have things left over, such as egg whites. So I used the full egg for this.
  2. Granulated sugar instead of condensed milk – since this is a much smaller recipe, if I were to use condensed milk, I would only need a spoon or two. So instead I’m just using granulated sugar, so we don’t have to open a full can of condensed milk.
  3. Whole milk instead of evaporated –  same reasoning as the last one, I didn’t want to open a full can.

Because of these changes, this recipe isn’t the most traditional, I wanted to mention this just in case anyone was looking at the recipe confused.

But this is a great single serve alternative, that taste pretty similar to traditional flan!

The single serve flan on a white plate, with a bite taken out of it.

The caramel

For the caramel, we’re making a dry caramel.

This essentially just means we’re cooking some sugar in a pan on its own until it has melted and turned a golden caramel colour.

It’s pretty easy to make, here are just a few things to remember:

  • Keep the heat on medium/low – the sugar can burn easily, so don’t try increasing the heat to speed up the process. The sugar will burn and then your caramel will taste bitter.
  • Constantly stir – again the sugar can burn easily, so don’t walk away. You want to keep stirring the sugar as it melts. 

Once it has melted, take it off the the and pour it into your ramekin straight away. The caramel will set up in the ramekin, this is fine. It will melt again as it bakes and cools.

Side note, I had a few people on Instagram and TikTok tell me that if I cover about side of the side of my ramekin a little, with the caramel, the flan will come out a lot easier at the end.

They were right, it did help a lot. So I recommend doing this too. I’ve added an image under this, as you can see I didn’t completely cover the sides, just about 1cm up!

The caramel inside of a white ramekin.

The double cream

For the liquid in this recipe, I used 60ml of whole milk and 60ml of double/heavy cream.

I don’t think I’ve ever seen a flan recipe use cream in it, it’s usually not needed.

But for this recipe, like I said, I’m using a whole egg instead of just egg yolk, and then I’m also not using condensed and evaporated milk. So because of these changes, I’m losing some richness.

This is why I added some cream to the recipe, to bring that rich, creaminess back.

If you don’t have cream or don’t want to use it, you can just use 120ml of whole milk. It’ll still work and taste great, but I think the cream makes it tastes much better!

The single serve flan after being baked.

Baking flan in a water bath

If you’ve never baked something in a water bath before, all you are doing is adding your tin (in this case a ramekin) into a larger tin. Then you just fill the larger tin with boiling water.

The reason why flan is baked in a water bath is because the water helps regulate the temperature of the flan in the oven; it stops it from getting too hot.

This prevents the mixture from curdling. So you’ll end up with a much smoother, creamier flan.

Therefore, don’t try skipping this step. It makes a huge difference!

What size ramekin should I use?

I used a 9 cm/3.5 inch ramekin.

Any size ramekin does work though, however the baking time will vary with different size ones.

So just keep an eye on it. The flan is done when the edges look set but the centre is still jiggly. You can also insert the knife into the centre to check the doneness. 

Do I have to leave the flan to chill in the fridge?

Yes….warm flan doesn’t taste as good.

But also the flan needs time to set. It will be too soft at first, if you try taking it out, it will just break.

1 hour in the fridge is great, or you can also just leave it in the fridge overnight.

Here are some more single serve recipes you might like:

Single Serve Flan

Ingredients

  • For the caramel:
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar

  • For the flan:
  • 60ml whole milk

  • 60ml double cream

  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar

  • 1 egg

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions

  • Start by pre-heating your oven to 180c/350f.
  • Making the caramel:
  • In a pot, add the sugar and place this on medium heat. Keep heating this sugar, whiles constantly stirring, until all the sugar has melted and the mixture has turned a golden brown, caramel colour. Take it off the heat immediately.
  • Pour this into a 9 cm/3.5 inch ramekin and swirl the ramekin around so that the caramel covers the base and about 1 cm up the sides. Leave aside.
  • Making the flan:
  • In a pot, add the milk, cream and sugar. Place this over medium heat and heat just until the sugar has dissolved. You don't need this to come to a boil, you just need to heat it enough so the sugar dissolves.
  • In a bowl, add the egg. Whisk this just to break it up.
  • Slowly pour the milk mixture into this, whiles whisking gently. Try not to whisk this mixture aggressively, you don't want to form too many bubbles. Mix in the vanilla at this point too.
  • Pour this through a sieve to get out any lumps and bubbles.
  • Baking the flan:
  • Pour the flan mixture into your ramekin, on top of the set caramel.
  • Cover the top of the ramekin with some tinfoil then place it into a larger tin. Pour some boiling water into this tin until it reaches about halfway up the sides of your ramekin.
  • Gently place this into your oven and bake for around 45 minutes. The baking time will vary depending on the size of your ramekin, just keep an eye on it. It is done when the sides look set but the centre is still jiggly. You can also stick a knife into the centre, if it comes out clean, the flan is done.
  • Once baked, let it cool at room temperature for a bit, then place in your fridge to set up and cool completely for at least an hour, or you could leave it overnight.
  • To take it out of the ramekin, run a knife around the side then flip it over onto a plate, and then you're done, enjoy!
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