5 Homemade Custard Recipes You Can Make with Just a Few Ingredients

There are many ways to make homemade custard: without eggs, with chocolate, with orange and more. Discover some excellent recipes here!
5 Homemade Custard Recipes You Can Make with Just a Few Ingredients
Maria Patricia Pinero Corredor

Reviewed and approved by the nutritionist Maria Patricia Pinero Corredor.

Written by Editorial Team

Last update: 08 February, 2024

Custard is often synonymous with the Christmas holidays. At this time of the year, it’s common to prepare this delicious traditional dessert, which is present in the gastronomic cultures of many countries, including Spain and Latin America.CustardIt is a kind of sweet cream based on milk, sugar, and egg yolk in its classic version, but there are many other variants of delicious homemade custard that are worth trying.

In this article, we’re going to show you 5 recipes to prepare with few ingredients and quickly, with which you will surprise your friends and family. Of course, you can make them at any time of the year, since it’s a versatile dessert perfect to share with the family.

1. Classic homemade custard

Natilla casera clásica.
Traditional custard is made with few ingredients and in a very short time.

Custard was born hundreds of years ago in the Spanish convents, with a simple mixture of milk, sugar, and wheat flour. This tasty recipe has been passed from generation to generation, and today it’s one of the emblematic desserts of this country.

Besides being a favorite of children, homemade custard evokes a certain nostalgia: after all, it’s the typical homemade dessert made by grandmothers around the world. Let’s see how to prepare classic custard quickly and easily.


For 6 people:

  • 6 cookies
  • 1 liter of milk
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 1 vanilla pod
  • Lemon zest
  • 100 grams of sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon powder
  • 40 grams of cornstarch or cornstarch


  • In a saucepan or pot put the milk, the lemon zest, the cinnamon stick, and the vanilla pod previously opened with a knife. Bring to a boil and remove from heat. Then, wait for it to infuse for about 15 minutes.
  • In a bowl, beat the egg yolks and sugar with a whisk. Gradually add the cornstarch and the milk. Make sure there are no lumps and that the texture is homogeneous.
  • Heat the preparation in a bowl in a double boiler. Every now and then, stir with a whisk to prevent the mixture from sticking. It should reach a high temperature until a few seconds before boiling. Remove from the heat once the preparation is thick.
  • Now, it’s time for the presentation: place the preparation in glasses, little trays, or the containers of your choice. Put a cookie on each of the desserts and sprinkle the cinnamon powder over them.
  • Take them to the refrigerator and let them cool for at least two hours before eating them. And enjoy!

Want to learn another recipe? Read this article: Recipe of Panamanian Chocao, a Delicious Dessert Made with Bananas

2. Colombian corn-based custard

Natilla colombiana junto a un plato de buñuelos.
Along with buñuelos, Colombian custard is typical for Christmas in that country.

Colombia is a country that stands out for its gastronomy, and especially for its typical Christmas preparations. On these dates, Colombian homes are filled with delicious preparations such as rice pudding, fritters, brevas con arequipe, and, of course, custard.

Colombian custard differs from traditional Spanish homemade custard in that it contains panela (chancaca, piloncillo), which is an extract of unrefined sugar cane juice and has minerals such as calcium, magnesium, iron, and phosphorus. Also, due to it’s final texture, it’s usually presented in dishes instead of in glasses.


For 6 people:

  • 1 liter of milk
  • Powdered cinnamon
  • 1 vanilla pod
  • Cloves and cinnamon
  • 100 grams of panela
  • ½ cup cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons butter


  • The first thing you’re going to do is to mix in a bowl the cornstarch with half a liter of milk. Pour the rest of the milk into a saucepan over low heat along with the vanilla, cinnamon, cinnamon, and cloves, stirring regularly until it boils and the aromas infuse.
  • Once it comes to a boil, add the cornstarch and milk mixture and add two tablespoons of butter. Turn the heat to the minimum, stirring constantly, and bring the mixture to a boil for ten minutes.
  • Turn off the heat and transfer to individual containers. Let them cool for a few hours before serving.
  • For the final touch, sprinkle cinnamon on top.

3. Orange custard

Natilla de naranja.
A good idea for children to eat fruit is to prepare orange custard.

Orange custard is a sweet dessert and perfect if there are children at home, as it’s a good way to get them to eat fruit. Orange juice has vitamin C, which helps strengthen the immune system, although it’s important that for this it’s fresh and 100% natural.

On the other hand, the orange citrus will make finding the right consistency for the custard very simple, as the milk curdles with these ingredients.


For 5 people:

  • 45 grams cornstarch
  • 100 grams of brown sugar
  • 30 grams of orange zest
  • 500 milliliters of milk 5 egg yolks
  • 250 milliliters of orange juice (one cup)


  • In a medium saucepan, put the milk over low heat. Meanwhile, in a blender cup or in a bowl, add the egg yolks, cornstarch, and brown sugar. Integrate all the ingredients well.
  • Let the milk boil and out of the heat, add the mixture of egg yolks, cornstarch and sugar together with the orange juice and orange zest. Return the mixture to the heat until it thickens.
  • Remove the mixture from the heat and let it cool a little before putting it in the refrigerator. They should be chilled for at least two hours before serving.

We think you may also like to read this article: The Importance of Incorporating Dessert Into Your Diet

4. Egg-free chocolate custard

Natilla con chocolates.
If you replace the milk and butter with non-animal products, you will get a delicious vegan custard.

Suppose your guests are about to arrive and you just realized that you have not prepared a dessert to entertain them. Imagine: there are no more eggs, the clock is ticking and the supermarket has just closed.

Don’t despair: you can make delicious homemade chocolate custard without adding eggs. Besides, by not including them, we don’t run the risk of the mixture cutting when cooking.

In this case, it’s not a 100% vegan dessert, because it contains milk and cream; however, you can replace those products with others that are not of animal origin if what you want is to eat a vegan dessert.


For 4 people:

  • ½ liter of milk
  • Vanilla extract
  • 60 grams of sugar
  • 30 grams of cornstarch
  • 40 milliliters of liquid cream
  • 50 grams of cocoa powder


  • Put the sugar, cocoa, and cornstarch in a bowl and stir until all the ingredients are well integrated. In a saucepan or small saucepan put the milk, the vanilla extract, and the cream.
  • Then, add the mixture you just made with sugar, cocoa, and cornstarch and let the preparation cook. Important: don’t stop stirring.
  • When it comes to a boil, remove from the heat and serve in small containers or glasses.
  • Let it cool in the refrigerator for two hours before serving.

5. Natillas piuranas

Natillas peruanas.
Peruvian custard is traditional from the departments of Piura and Lambayeque in Peru.

Natillas piuranas is a typical Peruvian dessert. They arrived in this country during the time of the Viceroyalty, and the main difference with other custard recipes is that – at least the traditional version – it’s made with goat’s milk and chancaca or panela.

It can be eaten as a classic custard, directly from a bowl, although it can also be used for fillings.


For 6 people:

  • 100 milliliters of water
  • 15 grams of corn starch
  • 100 grams of brown sugar
  • 1 dash of vanilla essence
  • 1 teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda
  • 1 liter of whole milk (ideal if it’s goat’s milk)
  • 500 grams of panela (chancaca, piloncillo)


  • The first step is to pour the water, sugar, and panela into a pot and heat it over low heat until the ingredients dissolve.
  • Mix the cornstarch and the baking soda in the milk, which must be at room temperature, and add to the preparation in the pot so that all the ingredients continue to cook over low heat.
  • Then, pour the dash of vanilla essence. When you can see the bottom of the pot, it means that the preparation is ready.
  • Let it cool for a couple of hours before consuming.

Like this article? We think you may also like to read: Tofu and Chocolate Mousse, a Healthy Dessert that You’ll Love

Some tricks to make your custard even more delicious

As you can see, both the classic custard and the varieties we have presented follow a similar preparation. Although they vary in some ingredients, they are all delicious. Take note of the following tips so that they are always perfect:

  • It’s not recommended to freeze the custard because sudden changes in temperature can alter its texture and the preparation is likely to be cut.
  • All preparations require that we leave them in the refrigerator for at least two hours before serving. Otherwise, they will not have the right consistency for consumption.
  • This homemade dessert is a perishable product, although you can keep it in the refrigerator for up to three days at the most if it doesn’t have cream. Ideally, it should be kept in a glass, ceramic, or plastic container, enameled, and in an airtight container.
  • The trick to prevent the eggs from curdling is not to add them directly to the saucepan. If you do this, it’s possible that the cream will be cut due to the difference in temperature and coagulation of the eggs. It’s best to add them off the heat so that this does not happen.
  • To obtain the right point of cooking, keep in mind that the preparation must “coat” the spoon, that is, it must cover it in such a way that, if you make a groove with your finger on it, the preparation should not come together again. When this point is reached, the custard is ready to be removed from the heat.

Homemade custard: A true tradition

Custard is present in many countries. Although each gastronomic culture brings its unique touch, there is no doubt that in all territories it’s considered one of “grandmother’s recipes”: a true culinary heritage treasured for generations.

As you can see, custard is a very simple and delicious dessert to make, but the magic of custard goes beyond its flavor: it also lies in the nostalgia it evokes and in the symbolism it projects when eaten at a time as special as Christmas. All in all, its flavor makes it a preparation that can be enjoyed at any time of the year.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.