Easy Vegan Crème Brûlée is creamy and decadent, delicately infused with vanilla, and takes only minutes to prepare. Topped with a caramelized sugar crust, it’s a luscious plant-based twist on a classic dessert, satisfying your cravings for a rich dessert without a lot of work. This no cook method makes a delicious dessert!
What is Crème Brûlée?
Crème brûlée is a classic French dessert. It has a creamy custard base and caramelized sugar topping. The name “crème brûlée” means “burnt cream” in English. The traditional version consists of a rich custard made from ingredients like cream, egg yolks, sugar, and vanilla, which is then baked until set. After baking, the custard is chilled and just before serving, a layer of granulated sugar is sprinkled on top and caramelized using a culinary torch or broiler to create a brittle, golden-brown crust. The contrast between the creamy custard, and the crisp caramelized sugar that’s broken into shards with a tap of the spoon, is a hallmark of this elegant dessert.
Can Crème Brûlée Be Made Vegan?
Yes! Crème Brûlée can be made vegan. It’s simple! There are a couple of ways to do it, and in this post I’m going to show you the easy and possibly downright lazy way to do it. It only takes a few minutes of preparation, some brief chilling time, and then a little torching. Vegan Crème Brûlée can also be made in a more traditional way using plant-based substitutes for cream and eggs. This recipe is very close to the same it’s just both a lot quicker and a lot easier.
What is a Culinary Torch?
A culinary torch, also known as a kitchen torch or chef’s torch, is a handy little kitchen tool that emits a flame much like a controlled welding torch. It’s filled with butane as fuel and is used for caramelizing sugar, browning meringues, and adding finishing touches to dishes like this crème brûlée, providing a crispy, golden exterior that is so fun to crack with the tap of the back of your spoon before diving in.
I love the torch I have. My husband gave it to me as a birthday gift and I think it’s going to be an interesting addition to my kitchen. Start with a lower flame and gently heat the sugar on the top until it liquifies and turns slightly brown. A slow and gradual technique works best here. And take care filling the torch with butane … if you spill it in the sink (or anywhere else) it can catch on fire. Which is exactly what happened here (wish I had a pic lol). But I still love the tool.
What’s the Difference Between Pudding and Custard?
Pudding is a general term for creamy, dessert-like dishes, often thickened with starch. Custard is a specific type of pudding made from a mixture of eggs, cream, and sugar, baked until set. Crème Brûlée, traditionally, is a custard. And I’ve got a recipe for a custard type recipe
Why Is This Recipe So Easy?
This is a mostly no-cook method to get a reasonable plant-based facsimile of a non-vegan classic. It’s easy because it doesn’t have to be cooked and fussed over and because the ingredients start out cold from the fridge, the cooling time is decreased considerably. The custard is pureed in a blender and chilled until the sugar topping goes on just before serving.
This recipe is also ideal for guests because the custard can be made and put in dishes up to a couple days ahead and the sugar topping added and torched when ready to serve.
Simple Ingredients in Easy Vegan Crème Brûlée
The ingredients in this recipe are simple and chosen for a no-cook method.
Silken Tofu is a soft and delicate type of tofu with a smooth and custard-like texture. It’s often used in both sweet and savory dishes, making it versatile for creamy vegan desserts.
Sugar adds sweetness. Use your favorite brand. I used white sugar but raw sugar or even light brown sugar would work here.
Jello Instant Vanilla Pudding Mix is, surprisingly, vegan. The vanilla flavor, used here, is both plant-based and delicious.
Vegan Butter this is for a bit of the creamy butter flavor and to add a bit of richness.
Vanilla is a delicious flavoring extracted from the beans of vanilla orchid pods. It adds a rich, aromatic, and sweet note to various dishes, desserts, and beverages. Extract or paste or powder will work here equally well.
Salt is always useful to balance out the sweet.
Easy Vegan Crème Brûlée RECIPE
- 12 oz extra-firm silken tofu
- 3.4 oz Jello Instant Pudding Mix, Vanilla
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (or 1/2 teaspoon powder or paste)
- 1 tablespoon vegan butter
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup sugar
- In a high-speed blender, puree all the custard ingredients until very smooth and creamy. This will take about a minute.
- Pour the custard into your desired dishes. Four ramekins worked well for me. One larger dish that would hold it all would be good as well.
- Let the dished up custards chill in the refrigerator for about 10 minutes or longer.
- Sprinkle about a tablespoon of sugar evenly over each custard.
- Using a culinary torch, gently caramelize the sugar on the top.
- The prepared custards can be stored covered for up to a few days in the refrigerator without their sugar topping, but once the sugar is on top and caramelized these really need to be enjoyed right away.
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Vitamix E310 Explorian Blender, Professional-Grade, 48 Oz. Container, Black
Jo Chef Kitchen Torch With Butane
Mori-Nu Silken Tofu Extra Firm
Jell-O Vanilla Instant Pudding & Pie Filling, 3.4 ounce (96g) (3 Packs)
Kirkland Signature Pure Vanilla, 16 Ounce
Nielsen-Massey Pure Vanilla Bean Paste for Baking and Cooking, 4 Ounce Jar with Gift Box
Native Vanilla Powder – Premium Gourmet 100% Pure Ground Vanilla Bean Powder – For Chefs and Homemade Baking, Ice Cream, Coffee (0.5 Ounce (Pack of 2))
Organic Cane Sugar Crystals
Hello! I’m Lisa, a vegan artist, photographer, author, Vegan Life Coach Educator, and RYT 200 yoga teacher. I love showing others how simple and delicious a plant-based diet can be. I draw and paint, cook, write, take lots of pics, eat lots of chocolate, and practice gratitude daily.