Sweet Potato Creme Brulee

I’ve been itching to share this recipe with you but didn’t want to post it too close to my Sweet Potato Swirled Cheesecake with Pecan Crust.  I think it’s been long enough!  Sweet potato creme brulee was what got me started on my sweet potato kick.  I was dining at Vic’s On The River in Savannah and despite the fact that my friend Jess and I were so full we were close to unbuttoning our pants in the dining room, we saw it on the dessert menu and couldn’t say no.  And I’m glad we didn’t, because that was some seriously tasty creme brulee.  Here’s a recipe so you can try it at home!

2 cups heavy cream
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup + 4 tsp sugar
8 egg yolks
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp nutmeg
1 cup mashed cooked sweet potatoes

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.  Arrange 6 4-oz ramekins in a 9×13 baking dish.

In a saucepan, combine the cream, brown sugar, and 1/4 cup sugar.  Bring to a simmer over medium high, and stir to make sure the sugar dissolves.  Take the pan off the heat once that sugar has dissolved.

In a large bowl, whisk the egg yolks until they get frothy and light yellow:
Okay, time to temper.  Whisking constantly so the eggs don’t scramble, add 3/4 cup of the hot cream to the frothy eggs. Now add the egg mixture to the remaining hot cream, and keep whisking constantly.  Add the vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, and sweet potatoes, and whisk until smooth and combined.

Set a fine mesh sieve over a large bowl and strain the creme brulee mixture.  Quick note: there will be some fibers in the sweet potatoes that won’t want to go through the sieve.  If you want somewhat of a silky smooth custardy texture, don’t force the sweet potato through the sieve.  Believe me, it will already impart plenty of sweet potato flavor, even with some of those fibers left behind.  Pour the custard into the ramekins:

Create a bain marie by pouring boiling water halfway up the sides of the ramekins.  We always cook custards in a water bath to moderate the cooking temperature and ensure that the custard never reaches a temperature higher than 212.  Bake until the custards are barely set in the center, but still jiggly, about 45 minutes.  Remove from the water bath and refrigerate for at least 3 hours, until thoroughly chilled.

Sprinkle each custard with 1/2 tsp sugar, and caramelize it with a blow torch, the broiler in your oven, or an iron.  Enjoy!

I will be out of town for the holiday on Monday so I’ll be back with a new post on Tuesday.  Have a fantastic weekend!!!

Click here for the printable recipe.

Recipe adapted from Emeril Lagasse.

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17 Responses to Sweet Potato Creme Brulee

  1. You’ve gone and done it again!! Creme brulee is my favorite dessert! I’m not a fan of sweet potato, but I’m willing to give it a try!

  2. Charlie says:

    Hello Joanne!

    This looks so very good.

    A must try!

    I wanted to share a trick that I use when caramelizing.

    I use one of those butane bbq starters…… being careful of course not to hold it too close.


  3. This looks beautiful! I love creme brulee and I love the sweet potato addition!

  4. Ohhhh…really??? Sweet Potato for a Cream Brulee…??? You are amazing, it is something I have to try.

  5. Meg says:

    Oh. My. God. I feel like I say that every time I open one of your dessert posts, but this is just amazing-looking! Going in my “to be baked” file!

  6. Ann says:

    Amazing! I spent an entire summer working on creme brulee and sweet potato is one I didn’t get to! Wonderful!

  7. I love creme brulee and combining i with sweet potato is wonderful. I made pumpking creme brulee which is very similar to this

  8. rebecca says:

    this looks amazing and so cool you made it later at home :-0

  9. Laurie says:

    This is on our must cook list. Creme Brulee is one of our favorite desserts and using sweet potatoes is ingenious.

  10. anna says:

    ohmygaw. think i just passed out looking at this. sweet potatoes are my favorite, and creme brulee is my favorite, but i never would have though to combine them. what a fabulous, fabulous idea.

  11. Wok with Ray says:

    Wow Joanne, this is a good-looking creme brulee! With the vanilla and cinnamon combined — I’m in heaven. First time in your site – Nice!

  12. kath says:

    I am heading to whole foods to buy sweet potatoes right now – sweet potatoes and creme brulee are 2 of my most favorite of foods – !

  13. Apron Appeal says:

    uhmmmm I need to get me some ramekins STAT! you caught me at sweet potato but then as I kept looking through the recipe the more I knew this needed a place in my tummy right away.

  14. Yum! This looks really excellent! Love the idea of using sweet potatoes (I’ve noticed how much you love them!).

  15. I’m definitely going to try this! Never would have thought of it, though I love sweet potato cheesecake. Thanks!

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