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Easy Low-Fat Creme Brulee Recipe - Rich, Creamy & Healthy!

Updated on March 8, 2011

Whether the kitchen is your element or not, this simple recipe for classic creme brulee (with flavorful variations) will send you straight to heaven! So rich your guests will never guess this low-fat recipe is healthy to boot! (For fat-free version, see "Variations & Tips".)

The torch method of caramelization.
The torch method of caramelization.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup skim milk
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 ½ cup canned evaporated fat-free milk
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup fat-free half & half
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon brandy
  • 3 tablespoons sugar, for topping

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In medium saucepan, mix fat-free milk and cornstarch until smooth. Stir in sugar and evaporated fat-free milk, combining well. Place saucepan over medium heat and warm through, stirring regularly, until mixture just begins to boil. Remove from heat and set aside. In a separate bowl, whisk together fat-free half & half with the egg yolks. Add a small amount of hot milk mixture, gently stirring in, then pour egg mixture gradually into saucepan with the rest of the milk mixture, stirring constantly. Add vanilla and brandy and stir to combine.

Place six 1-cup ramekins or dessert dishes in two 13 x 9 baking pans. Divide custard mixture into the 6 ramekins. Pour hot water into the pans, creating a water bath for the ramekins. Place pans in the oven and bake 30 minutes or until custard is set. Remove ramekins from water bath and chill several hours or until completely cold.

Immediately before serving, sprinkle 1 - 2 teaspoons of sugar on top of each dish of custard. Using a small butane-fuel torch, heat sugar until it caramelizes, turning a light brown. (For those that do not own a butane torch, see "Variations & Tips" for instructions to caramelize.)

Variations & Tips

  • Substitute flavored liqueur for brandy to add variety to the standard creme brulee. Examples: Kahlua, Cointreau, Triple Sec, Amaretto, Frangelico, Grand Marnier, Creme de Cacao, Limoncello, Bailey's Irish Cream, etc.
  • Place whole fresh berries or layer sliced fruit in the bottoms of ramekins before pouring custard mixture into them.
  • Spread a thin layer of low-sugar fruit preserves (apricot, raspberry, and orange marmalade are particularly delicious) over the bottom of each ramekin before pouring custard.
  • While the fat in this recipe is already minimal, if a completely fat-free flan is desired, substitute 1/3 cup Egg Beaters or similar textured fat-free egg substitute for egg yolks. Texture, however, may differ slightly from the traditional with this variation.
  • If you do not own a torch and/or do not wish to purchase one, you may caramelize the tops of your custards under the broiler. When using this method, be very careful to watch closely, as they tend to turn rather more quickly than under a torch.

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    • bakingSense profile image

      bakingSense 4 years ago from Vaughan, Canada

      Wow, great idea for making it lower fat and still enjoyable!

    • profile image

      sara 6 years ago

      what if I don't want to buy brandy or any time of alcohol what can I replace it with?

    • profile image

      Hello 8 years ago

      YUMMY!! My creme brulee is probably the most deliciously yet disgustingly fattening dessert in the world - this gives me an alternative to baking Alli (the weight loss pill) into my brulees!! ;)

    • blackjava profile image

      blackjava 9 years ago from Canada

      Creme Brulee is great. I have one I make using coffee. Gives it a wonderful flavor.

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 9 years ago from North America

      Yum- O! :)

    • profile image

      Cheryl Regina 9 years ago

      Wow...yummy! I love this dearie. Thank you so much for sharing. Keep it up!

    • MrMarmalade profile image

      MrMarmalade 9 years ago from Sydney

      Saved and printed for a more festive time

      Do you have a favourite Christmas cake you would like to send me?

      I am writing a book on Christmas Cakes of the World. You will be acknowledged

      If you have 2/ 3 I will not say no

    • Earth Angel profile image

      Earth Angel 9 years ago

      Yummie!! What a GREAT Hub Maddie!! My Minister LOVES Creme Brulee but can't eat it often because of health concerns!! I added your ingredients to my shopping list this very minute!! Thank you for sharing!! Blessings, Earth Angel!!

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