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How to make Portuguese Egg Custard

What is Leite Creme?

a bowl Leite Creme Portuguese Egg CustardIndulge in the delightful flavors of Leite Creme, a traditional Portuguese dessert known for its creamy custard texture. This soft and velvety treat combines the richness of milk, eggs, and sugar, topped with a caramelized layer of burnt sugar. Often referred to as Cream Milk, Portuguese Egg Custard, or Portuguese Milk Custard, Leite Creme offers a delectable twist on popular desserts like creme brûlée and Crema Catalana.

If you’ve never experienced the pleasures of this exquisite Portuguese delicacy, prepare to be captivated as we unveil an authentic and fascinating recipe for the renowned Portuguese Egg Custard. Whether it’s the perfect ending to a leisurely lunch or a sweet surprise for your taste buds, Leite Creme promises an unforgettable culinary adventure.

How many calories have a Leite Creme?

Curious about the calorie content of a serving of Leite Creme? Prepare to be enlightened! Each delightful portion of this Portuguese dessert contains approximately 198 kcal Calories. Additionally, you can expect it to contribute 23.52 g of carbohydrates and 6.62 g of proteins to your daily intake. With this information at your fingertips, you can make informed choices about enjoying this delectable treat while managing your overall dietary goals.

Is Leite Creme a pudding?

Contrary to being a pudding, Leite Creme is actually classified as a custard. Unlike pudding, which typically has a thicker consistency achieved through the use of starch, Leite Creme gets its texture from the coagulation of eggs. It is essentially a luscious liquid that transforms into a creamy delight upon cooking. In the accompanying photo, you can observe Riann expertly caramelizing sugar, a crucial step in the preparation of this exquisite Portuguese custard.

a man cooking in a kitchen preparing Leite CremeHow to make a Portuguese Egg Custard

Read here our Authentic Leite Creme Recipe.

INGREDIENT (for eight people)

  • One litter of milk
  • Seven egg yolks
  • 150g of sugar
  • Two tablespoons of cornstarch flour
  • Two lemon peels
  • One cinnamon stick
  • Sugar q. s.


  1. In a bowl, combine the milk (set aside a little to mix the cornstarch) with the lemon peel and the cinnamon stick. Boil and turn off.
  2. Mix the egg yolks well with the cornstarch and the flour with the bit of milk reserved.
  3. Mix everything up.
  4. Bring to the boil, constantly stirring until bubbling begins.
  5. Turn off the heat and remove the lemon peel as soon as it begins to bubble.
  6. Place the cream milk on a platter or tights.
  7. After being cold and serving time, sprinkle it with sugar and burn it with an iron suitable for the purpose.

When it comes to preparing Portuguese Egg Custard, it’s important to note that this delectable dessert does not require the use of a bain-marie, also known as a water bath or “banho Maria” in Portuguese. Unlike some custard recipes that call for this gentle heating method, Portuguese Egg Custard takes a slightly different approach. Instead, it is typically prepared by directly heating the mixture of milk, eggs, and sugar, allowing it to thicken and develop its signature creamy texture without the need for a water bath. This variation in technique sets Portuguese Egg Custard apart, showcasing the unique culinary traditions associated with this delightful treat.

If the caramelized sugar topping of Leite Creme isn’t to your liking, fear not! There’s a delightful alternative. Simply swap out the sugar for a dusting of powdered cinnamon. This aromatic spice adds a warm and flavorful touch to the custard, offering a delightful variation on the traditional presentation. So, if you prefer a different twist to your Leite Creme, consider this scrumptious substitution that will surely satisfy your taste buds.

Portuguese Egg Custard Video

Is Portuguese Egg Custard suitable for vegetarians?

If you’re wondering whether Portuguese Egg Custard is suitable for vegetarians, you’ll be pleased to know that it is indeed a vegetarian-friendly dessert. This delightful treat doesn’t include any meat or fish products in its ingredients, making it a safe and enjoyable option for those following a vegetarian diet. So, whether you’re a vegetarian or planning a meal for someone who is, you can confidently include Portuguese Egg Custard in your menu without any concerns about animal-derived ingredients.

Is Leite Creme suitable for vegans? Can I make this recipe without eggs?

If you’re following a vegan lifestyle and wondering whether Leite Creme is suitable for you, it’s important to note that the traditional recipe for this Portuguese Egg Custard does contain eggs. As such, it may not align with a vegan diet, which avoids all animal-derived products, including eggs. Unfortunately, it is not possible to make the authentic version of Leite Creme without eggs, as they play a fundamental role in creating the custard’s distinctive texture and taste. However, there are alternative vegan custard recipes available that utilize plant-based ingredients to achieve a similar creamy consistency.

Find the recipe for egg custard tarts here.

Is Leite Creme gluten-free?

If you’re wondering whether Leite Creme is gluten-free, you’ll be glad to know that the traditional recipe typically includes cornstarch, which is naturally gluten-free. Cornstarch, derived from corn, is a common ingredient used to thicken custards and desserts like Leite Creme. As long as the cornstarch used is pure and does not contain any additives or cross-contamination with gluten-containing grains, Leite Creme can be enjoyed by individuals following a gluten-free diet. However, it is always advisable to double-check the ingredients and ensure that the cornstarch used is certified gluten-free to guarantee its suitability for those with gluten sensitivities or celiac disease.

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