Instant Pot Creamy Vanilla Flan Recipe

March 1, 2019Van
Blog post

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 23 minutes

Serves: 4

My Vanilla Flan recipe creates a silky smooth, rich & creamy flan – there’s just enough eggs to act as a binder, so the custard doesn’t have a eggy flavor – it’s a firmer version of creme brulee. It’s one of the quickest desserts to make & cooks perfectly in the Instant Pot.

Use a 4-Cup Pyrex Bowl for this recipe

Be sure to click on the accessories list below to get the most out of your Instant Pot.
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Instant Pot Creamy Vanilla Flan Recipe

  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 23 minutes
  • Serves: 4


  • 1¼ Cup Whole Milk
  • ½ Cup Heavy Cream
  • ¾ Cup Sweetened Condensed Milk
  • 3 Large Eggs
  • 1 Tablespoon Vanilla Extract
  • ½ Cup Granulated Sugar
  • 2½ Tablespoons Water
  • 4-Cup Pyrex Bowl


  • 1)

    Pour ½ Cup of Sugar + 2½ Tablespoons of water into a saucepan. Turn the heat on medium low heat and wait until the sugar liquefies & turns into a golden amber color (do not stir the sugar) – turn off the heat and swirl the pan a few times to help dissolve most of the bubbles in the syrup and immediately pour it into a 4-Cup Pyrex bowl and set aside to cool and harden.

  • 2)

    In a large bowl, add 3 Eggs and ¾ Cup of Sweetened Condensed Milk. Use a whisk and gently stir until the mixture is smooth and the eggs are completely mixed in. (Don’t whisk or incorporate too much air, this can cause bubbles in the flan).

  • 3)

    Add 1 Tablespoon of Vanilla Extract, 1¼ Cup Milk and ½ Cup of Heavy Cream – stir until the mixture is combined.

  • 4)

    Strain the flan mixture through a fine mesh sieve and discard the bits of egg whites. Don’t skip this step or your flan will not be silky smooth. Pour the custard into the Pyrex bowl and wrap it with foil.

  • 5)

    Pour 1½ Cups of Water into the Instant Pot, place the trivet inside the pot and place the Pyrex bowl on top. Seal the Instant Pot lid & set it for STEAM (High) for 23 Minutes. Once it’s done, wait an additional 10 minutes while it does a natural pressure release, then switch the knob to venting & open the lid.

    *The flan should be jiggly, but set – if the center looks like liquid put it back in and cook for an additional 5 Minutes with a 10 Minute NPR.

    *You can also make this in 4 oz ceramic ramekins, cook for 6 Minutes on High Pressure and 10 minute NPR.

  • 6)

    Carefully take out the bowl and remove the foil. Let it cool on the counter for 60-90 minutes. Cover and refrigerate for at least 6 hours or overnight.

  • 7)

    Before serving, take a sharp pairing knife and run it along the edge of the bowl to loosen the flan from the sides. Place your serving plate on top of the bowl then flip it over. Shake firmly up and down so the flan releases onto the plate, then gently lift up the bowl. Each slice should be served with some of the caramel sauce. For an extra punch of flavor – drizzle a small amount of brandy, marsala or espresso. Enjoy!

    *It’s normal to have some caramelized sugar stuck on the Pyrex bowl after you remove the flan, just soak it in hot water to remove it.

↓ Supplies to make this recipe ↓



  • Tricia Wetta

    June 9, 2019 at 10:46 am

    Looking to make this flan but I do have a question regarding the tip of using 4 ounce ceramic ramekins. Could I not use the mini molds that come with the Hatrigo Push Pan? I know I have read about Pyrex not being the same as it used to be and afraid it won’t hold up under the pressure. Also concerned about the ceramic ramekins as well. Thank you.

    1. Van

      June 17, 2019 at 11:14 pm

      Hi Tricia, the Hatrigo molds would work, I just don’t know what the timing would be. Pyrex and ramekins both work fine in the Instant Pot, I have used both several times.

  • Debra A Hunt

    September 13, 2019 at 2:14 pm

    How many ramekins will this recipe make?

    1. Van

      February 27, 2020 at 7:04 am

      You can fill 6 – 4oz ramekins. Pour 1 Cup of Water into the Instant Pot and place the trivet inside the pot. Stack the ramekins on top of the trivet & seal the Instant Pot lid. Set it for High Pressure / Manual for 6 Minutes. Once it’s done, wait an additional 10 minutes while it does a natural pressure release, then switch the knob to venting.

  • Eman

    October 31, 2019 at 5:37 am

    Hi Van, Food Network Magazine Nov 20019 p72 has a recipe for Creme Brulee. I like it because it does not use canned sweetened milk. It uses heavy whipping cream and maple syrup and 4 egg yolks. It has a couple of tsp of sugar which I am going to omit. I don’t know if I can post the recipe online so that is why I am just giving some general details. It serves four and is cooked for 30 to 40 min at 325. Do you think this recipe would work in the IP with your settings?

    1. Van

      November 9, 2019 at 3:45 pm

      Hi Eman, if you’re using 4oz ramekins, you can do 4 minutes Low Pressure and 25 minute natural pressure release.

  • Patti K

    December 9, 2019 at 8:24 pm

    Hi Van~ I made this recently and it came out delicious. I wanted to ask you, this recipe calls to Steam (High Pressure) for 23 Minutes instead of Manual (High Pressure), what would’ve happened if I pushed Manual instead of Steam? ‘Cause I almost did. LOL I read your other flan related recipes and looks like you are using Manual (High Pressure), can you clarify? Still bit learning about all IP functions. TIA.

    1. Van

      December 26, 2019 at 6:09 am

      Hi Patti, the Steam setting is on full power the entire time, while the High Pressure setting is not, so if you would have used High Pressure instead, it’s likely that the flan would be undercooked.

  • Crystal

    April 27, 2020 at 1:16 am

    Do I have to use whole milk? Will 2% milk make a big difference? I don’t usually buy whole milk. Thanks!

    1. Van

      April 28, 2020 at 11:28 am

      Hi Crystal, you can use 2%, it just won’t be as creamy. Enjoy!

  • Scott

    May 1, 2020 at 4:33 am

    Can this recipe be halved? Just cut everything in half, included the cook time?

    1. Van

      May 1, 2020 at 9:46 am

      Hi, you can make half the recipe, but I can’t suggest an exact cooking time since I haven’t tested it. If I had to take a guess, I would start at 15 mins Steam with 15 min NPR

    2. Chrstine

      May 3, 2020 at 1:10 am

      Hi Van, I cooked the flan on Steam mode for 23 mins and 10 mins NPR but it was undercooked, the middle was still liquid. I aslo used a 4 cup Pyrex. The only modification I made was instead of using condensed milk I used 1/4 cup of sugar. Did I do something wrong?

      1. Van

        May 6, 2020 at 3:54 pm

        Hi Christine, it’s possible that the substitution could effect the texture. Did you use the trivet that came with the Instant Pot? If it’s undercooked, simply put it back in for an additional 5 minutes + 10 minutes NPR

  • Lovelyn

    May 20, 2020 at 10:49 pm

    I want to try the recipe but I don’t have heavy cream? Do you think I can leave it out?

    1. Van

      June 1, 2020 at 11:51 am

      Hi, you can replace it with more milk – the texture will be different though

  • Nicole

    July 22, 2020 at 10:08 am

    Hi!! I want to know if i can change the milk condensed for granulated sugar

    1. Van

      July 23, 2020 at 7:14 am

      Hi Nicole, sorry granulated sugar can’t be used as a substitute for sweetened condensed milk in this recipe.

  • Myly

    October 22, 2020 at 12:10 pm

    I absolutely love this recipe!!! It’s excellent. I want to try doing a pumpkin flan….have you tried that altering this recipe?? Just curious Bc I don’t want to mess up a good thing!

    1. Van

      October 22, 2020 at 3:40 pm

      Hi Myly, so glad you love this recipe. You can try replacing ¼ cup of the milk in the recipe with a ¼ cup of pumpkin puree, then add ¼ Teaspoon of Pumpkin Pie Spice, the cooking time would stay the same. Let me know how it turns out if you try it.

      1. Myly Baker

        October 23, 2020 at 7:31 pm

        Great suggestion. I am going to try it! I’ll report back!

  • Myly Baker

    October 25, 2020 at 8:04 pm

    Van, wanted to report back that it came out really good! I used a little more spice than 1/4 tsp. because it was hard to incorporate it into the mixture without adding too many bubbles. The spices still come out in clumps so I had to sift it through mesh a few times. The outside had some tiny bubbles but inside was very smooth. Thanks for the recommendations!

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