Chocolate Chai Crème Brulee

4 servings
1 hr

A twist on a classic, this chocolate chai crème Brulee recipe is made with an easy creamy custard base and finished with a caramelized sugar topping.

Crème Brulee is one of those recipes that I think people are intimidated by because of it's fancy name but really it’s pretty easy to make if you have the right tools.

Much like homemade caramel…I remember the first time I made it in culinary school I was mind blown. “That’s it?! Why have I waited all this time to make this?”.

Classic crème Brulee is made with just a few simple ingredients; it’s basically just a custard that’s baked until set, topped with a little granulated sugar & torched until caramelized and hardened.

You can use a kitchen torch or simply make the creme brulee without a kitchen torch by using the broiler setting on your oven!

Simply easy yet sooooo delicious.

This crème Brulee recipe is made with that classic creamy custard base with a hint of dark chocolate and warm chai spices. It’s silky smooth with a little oomph .

I know my obsession with crème Brulee is the contrasting textures: that hard and crispy sugar topping that breaks with every spoonful paired with that velvety creamy center (oh yeah, talk to me baby!).

Chocolate Chai Creme Brulee Ingredients:

  • Egg yolks
  • Granulated sugar
  • Vanilla extract
  • Heavy cream
  • Semisweet (or dark) chocolate chips
  • Salt
  • Chai Spice (cardamom, clove, nutmeg, allspice, ginger, cinnamon)
How to make easy chocolate chai creme brulee?

  1. Mix egg yolks with sugar in a large mixing bowl until pale yellow and slightly thickened. Set aside.
  2. Heat cream and chai spices in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat until cream is hot. Remove from heat; add vanilla and chocolate chips, stir until smooth and melted.
  3. Slowly and gradually pour ¼ cup of the cream mixture into the egg mixture making sure to whisk while you pour it in. Add a little more of the cream, while still whisking, then pour remaining cream and whisk to combine (skim off foam layer).
  4. Divide custard filling into your ramekins, then place ramekins in a glass or oven proof baking dish.
  5. Carefully pour boiling water into the baking dish until it's about ½ way up the sides of the ramekins.
  6. Bake 35-45 minutes or until center is set (it should be slightly jiggly).
  7. Carefully remove baking dish from oven and remove ramekins to a cooling rack. Cool to room temperature then transfer to refrigerator for 4 hours or overnight.
  8. Once chilled, blot tops of each ramekin of excess moisture with a paper towel or napkin.
  9. Evenly spread a thin layer of granulated sugar over the tops (swirl around to evenly cover). Using a kitchen torch, heat the sugar until it slightly bubbles and caramelizes. Cool about 2 minutes until hardened and serve.
What You need to make creme brulee:

  • Ramekins (affiliate link)

    • I used 4, 6 ounce ramekins but if you're using 4 ounce ramekins it will make about 6.

  • Kitchen Torch (affiliate link)

    • You could also use your broiler setting on the oven to caramelize the sugar topping, but I find a kitchen torch easier (and cooler!) to use because you can control the heat and be sure not to burn the sugar.

  • Tea Kettle

    • Not 100% mandatory but it does make it MUCH easier when pouring the boiling water into the baking dish because of the spout!

Looking for more chocolate desserts?

  • Chocolate Red Wine Cupcakes with Raspberry Whipped Cream
  • Chocolate Cake with Mocha Swiss Meringue Buttercream
  • Chocolate Coconut Cream Pie
Chocolate Chai Crème Brulee
Recipe details
  • 4  servings
  • Prep time: 20 Minutes Cook time: 40 Minutes Total time: 1 hr
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  • 6 egg yolks
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • ¼ tsp ground clove
  • ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp allspice
  • ½ tsp ground ginger
  • ½ tsp ground cardamom
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • ⅓ cup semisweet or dark chocolate chips
  • 2 tbsp granulated sugar (for the topping)

Preheat oven to 325°F. Place a large pot of water or tea kettle on the stove to boil. Once boiling, set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and ⅓ cup of sugar until pale yellow and slightly thickened. Set aside.
Place heavy whipping cream and spices in a medium-sized saucepan and heat over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until the cream is warm and just starting to slightly bubble (not boiling!). Remove the cream from the heat and stir in the vanilla extract and chocolate chips until smooth.
Slowly and gradually pour about ¼ cup of the warm cream into the egg and sugar mixture making sure to whisk as you're pouring it in. Slowly pour in a little more cream, and whisk again. Then, pour remaining cream and continue whisking until fully combined. Skim the foam layer off using a spoon or spatula.
Evenly distribute the custard mixture into your ramekins (see recipe notes). Place ramekins in your baking dish, then carefully pour hot water into the dish so that it's about ½ way up the sides of the ramekins. Again, carefully place in the middle rack in your oven and bake for 35-40 minutes or until edges are set and center is slightly jiggly.
Remove from the oven and carefully remove the ramekins from the pan using tongs or pot holders and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Once cooled to room temperature, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight.
Once ramekins have chilled, blot the tops of each custard with a paper towel to remove any excess moisture. Sprinkle 1 and ½ teaspoons of sugar on top of each custard, swirling it around into one even layer, then use a small kitchen torch to carefully caramelize the sugar. Allow the sugar to harden for 1-2 minutes, then serve.
  • *I used four, 6 ounce ramekins, however if you have smaller, 4 ounce ramekins it will make about 6 servings.
  • *If you don't have a kitchen torch, set your broiler setting on your oven.  Place ramekins on a baking sheet and transfer to the rack closest to the top of the oven.  Broil for 4-5 minutes checking every so often so not to burn until sugar is melted and caramelized.
Wine a Little Cook a Lot
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