Pumpkin flan is a dessert even your abuela would approve! Just the right amount of pumpkin and spices with that classic flan flavor.
This pumpkin flan is quite possibly the most basic flan recipe to hit the internet this week. And I don’t mean basic in the simple sense (although it’s not complicated), I mean basic basic. Because isn’t that the joke around all pumpkin things? Yet, we still NEED this pumpkin flan recipe because it’s that pumpkin dessert for your inner Floridian. Or because just about every Spanish-speaking country plus a few more have a version of flan, for your inner that. The point is, as far as pumpkin desserts go, this is one your abuela might approve.
A couple years back, I posted a more classic flan recipe. While that recipe (made with Grand Marnier or Kahlua) is my usual, I came across a pumpkin flan in an old recipe book and stopped everything to make it! Darlings, it was so worth it. With a few tweaks, the recipe is equally flan and pumpkin perfection.
The thing with flavored flans is that you want to be careful not to lose that amazing burnt sugar custard taste that is the dessert’s signature. So anything added must compliment and not overpower, and pumpkin is perfect. Not only do pumpkin and caramel go together perfectly, the resulting flavor combo is “autumn in Miami” without the travel expense. You are welcome.
Flan is meant to be served chilled, so go ahead and make it a day or even two in advance from when you plan to serve. At a minimum you’ll need a few hours. Keep it refrigerated in the baking pan, with a piece of plastic wrap pressed along the top of the custard. Flip just before serving. As with any custard or pudding type dessert, flan is prone to developing a skin if left uncovered for too long in the refrigerator.
Don’t forget to serve the flan on a platter with a rim. Flan is a self saucing dessert, creating its own sauce as it bakes. The sugar coating in the pan creates the sauce. 😉 This sauce is good and you don’t want to lose it!
I hope you enjoy this pumpkin flan recipe!
- 3/4 cups granulated sugar
- For the custard:
- 2 cups milk
- 1 cup pumpkin puree
- 6 large eggs
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/3 cup brandy (a spiced rum would work as well)
- Preheat your oven to 325 F and place a 9" round baking dish or flan mold in the oven to warm.
- Melt the 3/4 cup of sugar in a heavy-bottomed sauce pan or skillet over medium heat. Swirl the pan occasionally (don't stir!) until all the sugar has melted into a golden syrup. Immediately pour into your warm baking dish or flan mold (use an oven mitt!), and quickly swirl the dish so the syrup covers the bottom and sides completely. Set aside to cool.
- In a medium saucepan, combine the milk and pumpkin puree. Heat over medium low heat, stirring frequently, until small bubbles appear at the edges of the pan.
- In a large heat-proof mixing bowl, whisk the 6 eggs together with the sugar, salt, pumpkin spice, and vanilla extract.
- Slowly pour the hot pumpkin mixture into the eggs, whisking constantly until all the pumpkin mixture has been incorporated. Stir in the brandy, then pour the custard into your prepared baking dish
- Place the flan dish into a larger baking dish, and fill the larger dish with hot water to halfway up the outside of the flan dish.
- Bake the flan in the water bath for 50-60 minutes until a tester inserted inserted into the center of the flan comes out clean. The enter should still jiggle slightly.
- Remove from the oven and water bath and allow to cool to room temperature on a wire rack. Chill at least 3-4 hours before serving, preferably overnight.
- To invert onto a serving platter, run a clean, warm butter knife around the edge of the flan to loosen. Place the serving plate upside down over the top of the flan, then firmly hold both the flan dish and the serving plate together while you flip. The flan (and all the sauce) will unmold onto the plate.
- Slice, serve, and enjoy!