This pumpkin custard dessert is a cinch to prepare and will satisfy that pumpkin craving! It’s rich and creamy and full of pumpkin spice with a delicious nutty, crunch topping.
Its creamy, delicious and can be served either warm or cold. If you love pumpkin custard, you’ll also want to check out our pumpkin delight dessert and pumpkin cheesecake bars – all great fall treats!
BEST Pumpkin Custard recipe
I am kind of in love with this pumpkin custard. It’s such a great alternative to making an entire pumpkin pie. You can serve it in little individual dishes with a dollop of whipped cream.
Not only is a great dessert idea for any fall holiday, but it’s great to enjoy anytime during pumpkin season, even though it’s always pumpkin custard time in my book.
I love that this recipe is easy enough to be made on any normal weeknight but also classy enough to make for a large gathering. My favorite way to serve this custard is chilled with a little whipped cream on top. Add that topping of chopped pecans and a sprinkle of cinnamon to give it that extra spice and crunch. You can also serve the custard warm- whatever you prefer!
Pumpkin Custard Water Bath
Custards can be a bit tricky at first if you’ve never made them before since you’ll put them in little bowls or cups and THEN put them in another pan with water to bake – it’s called a water bath. Don’t be nervous though. If you just follow the directions, it turns out just fine. 🙂
What to bake custard in: You’ll need a heat proof baking dish to make this dessert such as custard cups (flared sides) or ramekins (straight sides). If you do not have either of these you can use a smaller wide mouth mason jar.
What does a water bath do? It simply adds moisture to the oven and can be helpful when making cheesecakes or custards to prevent it from cracking or from being overcooked. Without a water bath, the outside of this custard would overcook before the center is done.
To make this easy pumpkin custard, begin by combining the pumpkin puree, eggs, half and half, brown sugar, pumpkin pie spice, and salt. Beat them together until combined.
Pour the batter evenly into 3 greased 10-oz oven safe containers (I like to use little ramekins).
Place the cups into a 9×13 baking pan. Then pour about an inch of hot water around the cups. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 20 minutes. While the custard is baking, combine the brown sugar, melted butter, and pecans in a small bowl.
After the custard has baked for 20 minutes, take them out of the oven and sprinkle the pecan mixture on top. Bake for another 35-40 minutes.
Remember you can serve these warm or chilled! Store them in the refrigerator to keep them fresh.
pumpkin Custard recipe Notes:
- A water bath is also called a bain-marie
- Don’t over check the custard. Each time the oven opens the heat and moisture is lost.
- If you are making several at a time they may cook at different times. So keep an eye on them.
- To avoid spilling hot water: add 1 inch of hot water to the pan after you have placed it on the oven rack, then gently slide the rack into the oven.
How do I know when the custard is done? Since the custard is supposed to be a bit jiggly in the center you can know when the custard is done by inserting a butter knife halfway between the center and the side of the dish. If it comes out clean, it’s done.
Toppings + Storing for pumpkin custard
Which Pumpkin Custard Toppings are best? We were sure to add a few fresh chopped pecans on top along with some whipped cream and a sprinkle of cinnamon. You could also add nutmeg or pumpkin spice, based on what you like most.
You can also STORE the custard in the fridge by covering and storing for up to 3 days.
We hope you enjoy this custard. It’s practically pumpkin pie without the crust but even more flavorful!
This pumpkin custard is going to make your fall season delicious! If you’ve never made a custard then definitely put it on your fall bucket list and don’t be intimidated by it. They’re really quite simple. 🙂
For more great pumpkin desserts, check out:
- No Bake Pumpkin Cheesecakes
- Pumpkin Pudding Parfaits
- Delicious Pumpkin Delight
- Pumpkin Pie Cheesecake Bars
- Pumpkin Lasagna
- Pumpkin Delight
Pumpkin Custard Recipe
- 1 (15 oz) can solid pack pumpkin
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup half and half
- 2/3 cup brown sugar packed
- 1 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 cup brown sugar packed
- 1/4 cup pecans chopped
- 1 TB butter melted
- Whipped cream, ground cinnamon and chopped pecans, optional
- Preheat oven to 350
- In a large bowl, beat together the first six ingredients. Pour into 3 greased 10-oz cups.
- Place cups in a 9x13 baking pan; pour hot water around cups to a depth of 1 in. Bake at 350° for 20 minutes.
- Meanwhile, combine brown sugar, pecans and melted butter. After custard has baked for 20 minutes, sprinkle over the top and bake an additional 35-40 minutes longer or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Serve warm or chilled; top with whipped cream, cinnamon and more chopped pecans if desired. Store in the refrigerator.
- DIFFICULTY: easy
- HOW MANY DOES IT FEED: 3
- ANY CHANGES MADE: added more pecans to top - cooked for a longer amount of time.
- ANY SUGGESTIONS FOR NEXT TIME: none
Adapted from Taste of Home.
This custard was delicious! I used evaporated milk instead of half and half and used a mixture of crushed pecans, almonds, and cashews in the crunch topping. I also used 5 ounce ramekins which made nicely adequate individual servings. I drizzled maple syrup on top of the crunch before topping off with whipped cream. Fantastic! This recipe just made the cut for becoming one of the desserts for our family Christmas dinner.
Mmm sounds delicious! Thanks for sharing what you did. And hooray that it will be used for Christmas dinner. So fun!! Thanks for giving the recipe a try.
I made this incredible recipe this week..ate every one of them! Getting ready to make again!! Fantastic recipe!!! Thank you so much.
You’re welcome! So so happy to hear the custard was a hit!
Worst video ever can’t follow recipe with all the bull crap pop ups!
About 1 hour and 20 minutes of cook time. Geesh. Thought we would eat soup.
I loved this! I made this Non-dairy by subbing the half and half with coconut milk😁 Really yummy!
Turned out silky and delicious. I skipped the pecans as we were looking for a not so sweet dessert.
Delicious! I did make a few changes: I used fresh pumpkin puree, and it was a little runnier than canned pumpkin, so I added another egg. I didn’t have half and half, so subbed in 3/4 cup milk and 1/4 cup heavy cream. I didn’t put the topping on – it was very, very good. I also used smaller ramekins, and got 8 servings. This recipe is simple and versatile, so substitutions work well.
Love the sound of this recipe. Can’t wait to try it.
My mother-in-law said that she wants to be buried with this custard, it’s that good. I did swap out the half & half with a 14 oz can of sweetened condensed milk so that could be why she was hooked. I also cooked it in a 9″ pie dish. I cooked it for 40 minutes before adding the topping, and it took another 40 minutes to complete. I’m surprised this says 3 servings. I was able to serve 6. I must’ve been stingy with my serving sizes.
I made this for my parents for thanksgiving dessert and they loved it! Is there a way to turn this into a pie filling?
I’m so glad that the custard was a hit! I haven’t tried this recipe in a pie shell, but our pumpkin pie filling is quite similar. https://lilluna.com/pumpkin-pie/ We also have a crustless pumpkin pie recipe that might be a good option! https://lilluna.com/crustless-pumpkin-pie/
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