Classic Leche Flan

Classic Leche Flan

Leche Flan

I posted previously a recipe for Coco Flan and Pumpkin Flan but I just realized that I hadn’t posted a recipe for the Classic Leche Flan with just milk and eggs and no additional flavoring. Since I had 8 egg yolks that needed to be used up, I decided to make flan for our Easter dinner dessert. A great way to celebrate the egg.

8 egg yolks (can be reduced to 6)
1 12 oz. can Evaporated Milk
1 14 oz. can Condensed Milk
1/2 cup of Sugar
1/2 can of whole milk (to rinse out the condensed milk can – what can I say, I just hate wasting anything 🙂 )
1 teaspoon pure Vanilla Extract

Whisk all the ingredients together until well blended or you can also use a blender.

Prepare your cooking pans:

I used two 7 inch diameter round baking pans. To make the caramel sauce, put in each pan:
3 Tablespoons Sugar
1 teaspoon Lemon Juice
1 Tablespoon Water

Place the pan over medium heat until sugar is melted and bubbly. Cook just until you get an nice amber color. Don’t leave it too long or the sugar will burn. I used thongs to hold the pan over the heat and to swirl the sugar mixture around to coat the bottom of the pan. Let the caramel cool before pouring in the flan mixture.

Alternatively, you can also put the sugar, lemon juice and water in a small saucepan and caramelize them that way then pour them into the round pans, but I’m always trying to save on the number of dishes I have to wash, ergo, I caramelize the sugar right in the pans. 🙂

Once you have your caramelized sugar ready, you can pour the flan mixture into the pans, dividing equally. Make sure you pour the mixture through a sieve to catch any remaining solids from the egg. This will give you a smoother flan. Cover each pan with foil and place in a large pan with sides. Place the pan in an oven (pre-heat to 350 degrees F) and pour enough hot water in the pan so that the level comes almost half way up the sides of the round pans. Cook at 350 degrees F for one hour or until the center of the flan is no longer jiggly.

You can cook it faster at a higher temp, but if you let the flan mixture come to a boil, you will end up with craters or holes throughout your flan. Some people don’t mind the craters, it certainly doesn’t take away from the flavor, but to others, the sign of a good flan is the absence of craters.

Most flan recipes call for egg yolks rather than whole eggs because that distinct ‘eggy’ flavor and aroma is mainly found on the albumen or whites of the egg. Some people find it unpleasant, but I don’t really mind. I’ve had flans with whole eggs and they weren’t bad at all. I just prefer the Filipino version of flan which uses mainly egg yolks and I think is a bit denser and full flavored than other versions.

To unmold, simply run a knife around the edge cover with your serving dish and turn over. Lift up the pan and it should lift right up, the caramelized sugar flowing to make a nice sauce over the dish.

I think leche flan is best served cold and worth waiting for. 🙂

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39 comments on “Classic Leche Flan
  1. mary says:

    hello jmom
    i baked your recipe in 4 inch ramekins.. my flan looked like swiss cheese.. boo hoo..
    however, i realized i had bake it for 2 hrs like your recipe — but you had a bigger pan..

    was that the reason? how long should i bake it if in 4 in ramekin?

    thank you so much!

    • JMom says:

      Hi Mary, my daughter has been making these in ramekins too and she only bakes them for 45 minutes. As for the bubbles, to eliminate them, add a warm water bath around the ramekins so that they don’t come to a boil. It’s when they get too hot that they develop bubbles. Also, strain your custard mixture prior to pouring them into the ramekins not only to remove any remaining solids but also to deflate the bubbles. Hope it works for you next time 🙂

  2. mhel says:

    hi. thanks for sharing this recipe, try ko siya this christmas, sana ma-perfect ko. favorite ng husband ko ang leche flan, that’s why gusto ko m-perfect ang paggawa.

  3. Romy says:

    I LOVE LECHE FLAN with LOTS AND LOTS of holes, to me, they taste better than the solid ones. What’s the trick to making them with holes? Does anyone know? Thanks.

    • JMom says:

      Romy, the trick to making the holes is to let your flan come to a strong simmer, almost boiling. That means that if you’re going to bake it, you can either go with higher temp or not use the water bath. If you are steaming your flan, then you can let your water boil a little more vigorously. High heat will create bubbles in your flan mixture as it cooks.

  4. olee says:

    hi thanks for this recipe! just wondering, when should i unmold? should i wait for it to cool in the freezer or could i just unmold it right away after i have brought it out of the oven/steamer?

    • Hi olee, you should wait until the flan has cooled completely before unmolding. I think it’s best when it cools at room temp for several hours. However, if you’re in a rush, I suggest cooling it in the refrigerator (NOT FREEZER) for a couple of hours. It’s worth the wait 🙂

  5. hi, thanks for the flan recipe. I’m going to try it, along with the pumpkin one. I’ve never made flan, but always wanted too. Thanks for sharing, and it looks delicious!! Keep up the great work you do here.

  6. Maria says:

    Thanks JMom! I’ll take your tips. 🙂 It’s so sweet that your daughter is the resident flan-maker. We’re all learning every day.. Love your recipe!

  7. JMom says:

    Hi Maria, I am glad you tried the recipe. To cut down on the sweetness, try using only half of the condensed milk since that is the main source of sugar and keep the rest of the ingredients the same proportion. You can also cut down on the number of eggs to cut down some of the richness.

    when making your caramel syrup, you can also add more water to cut down on the concentration of sugar, making a lighter colored syrup.

    Hope those tips help you. 🙂 My daughter is now the resident flan maker at our house and she changes her proportions all the time. Don’t be afraid to play with it.

  8. Marie says:

    my fave dessert

  9. JMom says:

    Hi Anon, you can tell the flan is set by jiggling it. The center should move slightly but not too loosely. When it looks firm, then your flan is set and ready to be taken out. If you’re still not sure, insert a butter knife in the center to feel if the flan is set to your liking.

    If you’re making your flan in individual containers, the cooking time will be shorter. Check halfway through the baking time to see if they are done. If not, then check every 10 minutes after that.

    Hope that helps 🙂

  10. Anonymous says:

    How can you tell if the flan is truly set? I made mine using mini molds made of pyrex glass so they could be individual servings. Does this change the baking time?

  11. jennifer says:

    Wow, that looks delicious!

  12. JMom says:

    Hi Angie, kung wala kang oven, pwede mong i-steam. All you have to do is get a large pot than your leche flan container. Put a rack or a can or another pan into the pot and fill it with water up to near the top of the rack.

    Put your leche flan pan that has been covered with foil on top of the pan, making sure the water level is not touching the bottom of your leche flan pan. Cover and bring to a slow boil. Depending on the size and depth of the pan you’re using for your leche flan, cook if for 30 minutes to an hour, or until the flan is set.

    That’s it! Hope it comes out well for you.

  13. angie says:

    hello po! ask ko lang if ever i don’t have the oven, how can i cook it into a stove?
    thank you po!

  14. I am looking forward to trying out your recipe. I have always made creme caramel which shares similarities of leche flan but doesn’t share the same richness. There is nothing quite like a leche flan to satisfy a sweet tooth such as mine.

  15. JMom says:

    Hi Pook, thanks! 🙂

    Hi Sha, oh that philly cream cheese addition sounds good. I’ll have to try that one out.

  16. sha says:

    I used Stel;s recipe she added philly cheese… really really delish. am still here in florida been too busy

  17. pook says:

    This one looks perfect.

  18. JMom says:

    Dessie, Lalaine, Marvin and Iska, thank you 🙂

    Hi Emer, no difference, really between the steaming and baking. The result is the same. I’ve also tried pressure cooking it (if you dare ;)) and it only takes 15 minutes when you do it this way. The baked method to me, is just easier because I don’t have a steamer big enough for two pans.

  19. JMom says:

    Hi Rowena, I think monkfish would be great in sinigang! heck, I think anything is great in the sour soup 🙂

    Hi tita Stel! thank you 🙂 Asi actually asked me to make some again but I told her to please give my arteries a chance to recover. hehe!

    Hi NDB, sorry about that, I’ve edited the recipe to include the sizes of the canned milk.

  20. emer says:

    Hi there!

    We cook our leche flan steamed and not baked and it only take 45 mins to cook. Just wondering what’s the difference between the two methods.

    Thanks and more power!

  21. iska says:

    naku nami-miss ko na ang leche flan tuloy… that’s looks so yummy!

  22. lalaine says:

    I think my husband’s leche flan has serious competition in yours! Looks so rich, bad and sinful!

  23. Marvin says:

    I’ve made flan with cream and milk before, but have yet to try the more traditional canned condensed and evaporated milks. Your flan looks wonderful.

  24. desie the maybahay says:

    this is such a filipino classic, i won’t ever tire of eating it. your version looks perfect.

  25. NDB says:

    Did you use a small or big can of evaporated milk and what’s the amount of the whole milk you used for the recipe? Kindly specify. Thanks!

  26. stel says:

    ang ganda at ang kinis ng leche flan mo JMommy!!!
    makes me crave for it…

  27. rowena says:

    I haven’t eaten flan in ages…blame it on the gelaterie—there are so many of them that I hardly ever make any dessert that uses vast amounts of milk or eggs!

    RYC: I was wondering if monkfish would go good in sinigang. I’ve got those Mama Sita soup base mixes which are just sitting in the cupboard!

  28. JMom says:

    hi munchkin mommy, yeah, I wish we had more people to share with so my daughter Asi wouldn’t have had to eat it all ourselves. lol!

    With the caramelizing, I found if I take the sugar mixture off the heat before it gets to the color I want, it usually comes out perfect as it continues to melt from the heat of the pan. Also, try not to stir the sugar mixture while your caramelizing it. I found that when stirred, it becomes crystallized.

  29. gimme gimme! 😀 i can’t resist the call of leche flan. hee hee! i will try your version. it’s amazing how there are so many versions of leche flan. my only problem is caramelizing the sugar. i’m never consistent with it. so good luck to me! hahaha!

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