Pot de Creme
Decadent chocolate pot de creme recipe: So rich & creamy! Nobody has to know just how easy it is to make. You’ll look like a superstar!
Today’s recipe is a true French classic: pot de creme!
But unlike a lot of other French recipes, it couldn’t be easier to make. You’ll only need about 15 minutes of active time!
And it satisfies a chocolate craving like nothing else.
It bakes up luxuriously creamy, just sweet enough, and so decadently chocolate-y!
Table of Contents
- What are pot de creme?
- Why this is the best pot de crem recipe
- What does pot de creme taste like?
- Special equipment
- How to make this pot de creme recipe
- How to serve
- Expert tips
- Frequently asked questions
- A few more of my favorite chocolate recipes
What are pot de creme?
Think of these like individual pudding cups, but all grown up!
They are a silky chocolate custard made with just 6 simple ingredients. Then, they’re gently baked to creamy-dreamy perfection.
The result is velvety-smooth and uber-chocolate-y.
They are a little bit fancy, but you’d never know it by how easy they are to make!
Why this is the best pot de crem recipe
- Tastes amazing: These bake up with just the right balance of sweetness and rich chocolate flavor.
- Few ingredients: You’ll only need 6 pantry staples to make it.
- Easy to make: It takes 15 minutes or less of active time.
- Impressive: Pot de creme just feels special! It’s a fancy French dessert that’s wonderfully approachable.
What does pot de creme taste like?
The predominant flavor here is CHOCOLATE!
If you like chocolate, you are going to love pot de creme.
It’s creamy, velvety, just sweet enough, and very chocolate-y. The perfect ending to a meal!
Cream: Heavy whipping cream gives the richest flavor. But I’ve used other types of dairy to cut calories, and they’ve all worked!
Chocolate: I prefer baking bars, broken into pieces. Chips will work in a pinch, but make sure they’re premium-quality. Otherwise, they might not melt smoothly. I’ve used semi-sweet chocolate here, but any kind will work. Milk chocolate, white chocolate, bittersweet chocolate, etc.
Egg yolks: The yolks from 4 large eggs, preferably at room temperature (although I don’t find this to be critical). These will add richness to the custard and help it to set up.
Sugar: Regular white sugar is fine, or sub for another type of sweetener if you like. As long as it swaps 1:1 for granulated sugar it should work.
Salt: Salt carries the flavors and intensifies them. The end result won’t taste salty, but it will make everything so much more flavorful! I like kosher salt best because it doesn’t have any additives (table salt usually contains iodine which can leave a bitter taste), so the flavor is pure. It’s also inexpensive and easy to find in a regular grocery store.
Vanilla: Vanilla extract compliments the chocolate and adds a subtly sweet flavor without being at all sugary.
- Measuring cups and spoons: For accurate measuring; follow this guide: How to Measure Ingredients for Baking.
- Small pot: Or microwave safe bowl, to heat the cream and chocolate.
- Whisk: Gets everything luxuriously smooth.
- Spouted vessel: For pouring the custard into the ramekins.
- Silicone spatula: Helps get out every last drop!
- Ramekins: Or small, heat-safe jars (I’ve re-purposed glass yogurt pots).
- Larger baking dish: To create the water bath.
How to make this pot de creme recipe
This easy dessert recipe comes together in just 5 simple steps.
Step 1: Heat cream and chocolate
This step can be done in the microwave or in a small pot over low heat.
Just heat the cream and chocolate together until steamy.
Then give the mixture a whisk to blend the melted chocolate with the cream.
Step 2: Whisk eggs, sugar, and salt
While the cream mixture is getting hot, measure your egg yolks, sugar, and salt into a large spouted bowl.
Whisk together until smooth.
It’s not necessary to whip a lot of air into this mixture. It’s not chocolate mousse!
Step 3: Temper
Now we need to gently warm the egg yolk mixture, so it doesn’t seize up and scramble when it goes into the hot oven.
This is as easy as whisking a little of the hot cream mixture into the yolks. Just add a little at a time, and whisk vigorously after each addition.
Once the chocolate and egg yolk mixtures have been combined, whisk in the vanilla and that’s basically your pot de creme made!
Step 4: Transfer
Pour the mixture into individual serving dishes, sat in a larger baking dish.
Step 5: Bake
These are going to bake very gently in a water bath, or bain Marie.
Pour hot water into the larger baking dish, so that it comes about halfway up the sides of the serving dishes.
Then slide everything into the oven to bake.
You’ll know your pot de creme are ready when they’re set around the sides but still wobbly in the center. Remember they’ll continue to firm up a lot as they cool.
How to serve
I like to spoon a dollop of sweetened, soft whipped cream on top for contrast, and add a dusting of cocoa powder for garnish.
Pot de creme are meant to be enjoyed as a dessert, at room temperature or chilled.
Don’t boil: When heating the cream, you don’t want to boil it or you could end up with a weird skin. Just get it to where it’s steamy and hot enough to melt down the chocolate.
Don’t over-whip: You don’t want to incorporate a lot of air into this dessert. It’s meant to be somewhat dense, not foamy.
Strain: For the most incredibly silky baked custards, pour the mixture through a fine-mesh strainer before baking.
Don’t over-bake: If you overbake your pots de creme, you risk them becoming rubbery. You’re looking for a silky texture similar to lemon curd.
Frequently asked questions
Chocolate pot de creme can and should be made ahead, to give them a chance to cool down and fully set.
These are ok out at room temperature for a few hours, but after that they should go into the fridge. They’ll keep there for several days.
Or you can freeze them! They will last a few months in the freezer, and can be thawed in the fridge.
This recipe makes 4 servings. They are very rich! (I can only eat half in a sitting.)
The nutritional info in the recipe card below reflects a serving size of 1/4th the whole batch. It does not include the whipped cream garnish.
A few more of my favorite chocolate recipes
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Pot de Creme
- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
- Place the cream and chocolate in a small vessel and gently heat, whisking, until steamy and melted (in the microwave or in a small pot on the stove).
- Whisk the egg yolks, sugar and salt together until combined.
- Whisk the hot cream/chocolate mixture into the egg yolk mixture, a little at a time to genty warm the yolks.
- When all the chocolate/cream has been added, whisk in the vanilla and transfer the mixture to individual heat-safe serving dishes.
- Place the serving dishes in a larger oven-safe dish, and fill the larger dish with hot water.
- Bake until set around the edges but still wobbly in the center (approx. 30 to 40 minutes).
- Cool completely before serving, then top with whipped cream and dust with cocoa.