Spiced maple pumpkin flan is a complete winner! Super easy to make, economical, and downright delicious. Think of the texture of creme caramel, made with pumpkin and spices, swimming in a maple flavoured caramel moat.
The recipe comes from the American doyenne of cooking Ina Garten, who’s recipes are tried and true.
how to make maple pumpkin flan
Essentially you are making a caramel and pouring that into the base of a cake tin and allowing it to cool, and set. Next up you’re whipping together mascarpone, pumpkin, condensed milk and eggs and give it all a good mix.
Now add the evaporated milk, zest, spices and vanilla and give it all a good mix. The mixture is very runny, which is how it should be.
Pour the mixture into your tin with the caramel on the base and pop it into a large baking tin. Pour boiling water until it comes half way up the side of the tin and carefully lift onto the middle shelf of the oven.
Bake for 70-75 minutes until a skewer comes away clean. The flan will have a slight jiggle in the centre which is how it should be.
Remove tin from the water bath and allow to cool on a rack for a couple of hours. Cover flan and refrigerate for at least 3 hours until it is completely cold.
Run a knife around the sides of the tin and place a large plate with a slight lip over the tin and flip them, turning the flan out onto the plate. The caramel should run out over the flan. Decorate if desired, and cut into wedges with some of the caramel spooned over the wedge.
Pumpkin desserts for Thanksgiving reign supreme, and invariably are the first choice for the holiday feast.
Americans love their pumpkin desserts and usually use canned pumpkin that is readily available. However, here in Australia canned pumpkin is really only available from online sites, not supermarkets.
So for this recipe we’ve baked a small half of orange coloured butternut pumpkin (butternut squash) till tender, and then pureed the flesh till smooth.
the maple caramel
Once you invert the plate the caramel at the base becomes the top of the flan and the excess caramel creates a moat of caramel sauce.
Usually when making caramel for a creme caramel we gauge the colour of the caramel to indicate the colour of the sauce, however, using dark coloured maple syrup renders this method ‘tricky’.
It should take about 6-7 minutes to get the caramel the right colour but the trick is to keep lifting the pan from the heat and let the bubbles subside so you can gauge the colour.
Once you’re happy with the colour pour the caramel into the base of your pan and allow it to cool.
If you make and serve this flan on the same day the caramel will not have time to ‘melt’ creating more sauce. By making the flan 2 days ahead the caramel will dissolve and release more caramel.
Watch How to Make Spiced Maple Pumpkin Flan
check out some more winning desserts
Pear and ginger upside down cake is a little winner of a recipe. It’s oh so moist, gingery, studded with pecan nuts and topped with sweet, caramel pears.
This is a light as a feather sponge cake with a mixture of butter, brown sugar, eggs and flour. The genius of this dessert is the dates which add a rich, sticky sweetness without making it heavy.
This is a dessert that everyone seems to thoroughly enjoy. It’s incredibly moist, filled with softly whipped cream that has some of the butterscotch sauce folded through, then topped with the remaining heavenly rich butterscotch sauce. Delicious!
We would love to hear from you in the comments below when you make this easy, but delicious maple pumpkin flan.
This Ina Garten recipe for maple pumpkin flan is a winner. It's easy to prepare and can be made a couple of days in advance. Perfect for your Thanksgiving menu.
- 3/4 cup caster sugar
- 1/3 cup maple syrup
- 1/3 cup water
- 1 x 395g (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
- 1 x 375ml (14 ounce) can creamy evaporated milk
- 1 cup pumpkin puree (not pie filling) - see pumpkin notes above
- 1/2 cup mascarpone
- 5 large eggs - lightly whisked
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons grated orange zest - from 2 large oranges
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- preheat oven to 175c (350f) on bake, not fan
- have ready a 20cm x 5cm (8 inch x 2 inch) round cake tin (not springform)
- place sugar, maple syrup and water in a small pot
- bring to a boil swirling the pan (don't stir) to dissolve the sugar
- cook at a low boil without stirring until the mixture turns a golden brown - 110c (230f) if using a thermometer
- keep lifting the pan off the heat and let the bubbles subside to gauge the colour of the caramel if you don't have a thermometer
- watch it carefully so it doesn't burn then when you have the colour of caramel you want immediately pour into the cake tin and swirl so the caramel covers the base of the tin
- set tin aside for 30 minutes to cool
- in a large bowl add the mascarpone, pumpkin, eggs and condensed milk and give it a good mix
- add evaporated milk, zest, cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla and again give it all a good mix
- pour mixture into the cake tin over the caramel (mixture will come to the top of the tin)
- place tin in a baking dish large enough to hold the cake tin
- pour hot water into the baking dish to come halfway up the sides of the cake tin
- carefully lift the baking dish onto the centre shelf of your oven and bake for 70-75 minutes or until a skewer, or toothppick comes away clean
- remove the flan from the water bath and place on a cooling rack and cool completely
- cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 3 hours
- run a knife around the edge of the flan
- place a large serving plate with a slight lip (to accomodate the caramel) over the cake tin
- flip the plate turning the flan onto the plate (the caramel should run over the flan)
- cut into wedges and serve
- we recommend making this flan at least a day or 2 before serving to allow the caramel to dissolve creating more sauce to serve