How To Make Custard | Best Methods

Custard meal is a very nice tasty and creamy recipe that you can enjoy as a side dish. You will find an endless list of food you can combine with Custard to make a delicious breakfast recipe. Making Custard can be so easy if you know how to do this. However many people find it difficult to make a creamy custard free of lumps. If you encounter similar difficulties while trying to make yourself a nice custard, then you have to carefully read through this page to learn how to make custard without lumps or watery custards. 

Meanwhile, you can add several supplements to your custard to make it very tasty and enjoyable. Some people will add evaporated milk while others also include eggs to their Custard meal. Irrespective of the additive we use to improve the taste of the custard, once we can make a lump-free and thick creamy custard, you will tend not to enjoy it. So, having this consistency is a great feeling to taste. 

Furthermore, due to problems of inconsistencies people experience while making their custard, some people have given up on this necessary breakfast meal. Nevertheless, we encourage you to worry less, you will learn all the tricks of making the perfect Custard right here. 

What Is Custard?

Custard is a mixture of eggs, milk, and sugar, thickened by heat on the stovetop or in the oven. The process involves heat causing egg proteins to coagulate, forming a solid mass, but the custard needs higher temperatures due to dilution by milk and sugar.

However, overheating can turn smooth custard grainy. Some recipes use cornstarch or flour to prevent curdling, but this may affect the custard’s flavor. Western custards typically use cream or milk, but alternatives like bonito, chicken stock, coconut milk, or vegetable broth can be used for variety.

A typical checker’s custard contains corn starch, salt, vanilla flavor, a sunset yellow color, and preservatives like E 110 and tartrazine. Hence has been carefully made to satisfy more than the traditional custard.

What Is the History of Custard?

The history of custard traces back to ancient Romans who acknowledged eggs’ coagulating properties. However, custards, as we recognize them now, likely originated in the Middle Ages, appearing in both Asia and Europe. During Medieval Europe, custards were baked in various ways, including cooling bread ovens, small side ovens, or chafing dishes over coals.

In the nineteenth century, Alfred Bird invented custard powder to make egg-free custard for his allergic wife. This powder consists of corn flour and sugar, to which hot milk is added.

Types of Custard

There are three main types of custard: baked, stirred, and steamed. In Western cuisine, baked custards and stirred custard are common.

#1. Baked Custards:


Baked custard appears firmer and is made with whole eggs. They can be baked in a pie or tart shell or a dish set in a water bath. So a summary of properties of baked custard includes;

  • Baked in a pie or tart shell.
  • Cooked in a baking dish set in a water bath (bain-marie), served in the dish, or unmolded.

#2. Stirred Custards:


Stirred custards appear runnier and often contain only yolks made on the stovetop. Some examples of store Custards include crème Anglaise and crème pâtissière. So a summary of properties of stirred custard includes;

  • Made on the stovetop.
  • Examples include crème Anglaise et crème pâtissière.
  • Vary in consistency from pourable to holding shape at room temperature.

#3. Steamed Custards:


In Asia, steamed custards are more common, using broth or plant-based milk. Examples of steamed custards include Japanese chawanmushi, a savory custard made with dashi, Korean gyeran-jjim, and Chinese steamed eggs. Thai custards utilize a coconut milk base. Each type offers unique characteristics and flavors.

So a summary of properties of stirred custard includes;

  • More common in Asia.
  • Examples include Japanese chawanmushi, Korean gyeran-jjim, Chinese steamed eggs, and Thai custards.
  • Use broth or plant-based milk.
  • Unique flavors and preparation methods.

What you will need to make Custard

  • Custard Powder (Use Checkers Custard)
  • Bowl  and Spoon
  • Water (Hot and Cool)
  • Evaporated Milk (Peak Milk)
  • Sugar (to taste)

How To Make Custard Meal

You can follow these steps for a delicious homemade checkers custard.

#1.  Prepare the Checkers Custard Powder

  • Place checker custard powder in a sufficiently large bowl.
  • As the hacker’s custard rises during preparation, choose a bowl that can accommodate the expanded mixture.

#2. Initial Mixing

  • Pour a small amount of cold water into the bowl.
  • Stir gradually, adding more water until you achieve a medium mix without lumps.

#3. Boil Water

  • Set a kettle of water to boil.
  • Ensure you have enough water; it’s better to boil more than risk having too little.

#4. Pre-Boil Stir

  • Just before the water boils, stir the custard mix thoroughly to prevent settling at the bottom, which can cause lumps.

#5. Pouring Boiling Water

  • When the water boils, pour it slowly into the custard bowl while stirring continuously.
  • Pouring slowly and stirring prevents lumps from forming.

#6. Setting Custard

  • Once the custard starts setting, stop stirring and reduce the water flow until it completely sets.

#7. Post-Boil Stir

  • Set the kettle aside and stir the custard well.

#8. Adjusting Thickness

  • If the custard is too thick, cautiously add more hot water.
  • Be careful not to make it too watery, considering you’ll also add evaporated milk.

#9. Final Touch

  • Add peak milk (evaporated) and sugar to taste.
  • Stir until you achieve your preferred consistency.

9 Methods to Prepare Custard

There are various methods to prepare custard, and Western-style custards can be made on the stovetop or in an uncovered baking dish within an oven using a bain-marie (water bath). When making stirred custards, it’s common to mix eggs and sugar first, then gradually add hot cream or milk to speed up the temperature increase without risking curdling.

Custards with added starch can be brought to a full boil, as the starch acts as a buffer around the egg proteins. On the other hand, starch-free custards need to be kept at a lower temperature to prevent curdling and straining can fix any curdling issues. Here are some popular dishes featuring custards:

#1. Quiche:

A quiche is a delectable savory baked custard tart that combines the richness of custard with an array of flavors. It often features a medley of cheese, meats, and vegetables, creating a satisfying and versatile dish suitable for any meal.

#2. Crème Caramel (Flan):

Crème caramel, also known as flan, is a delightful baked sweet custard. What sets it apart is its signature flip, revealing a luscious caramelized-sugar bottom. The contrasting textures of silky custard and the rich caramel layer make this dessert a timeless favorite.

#3. Pastries (Éclairs, Fruit Tarts, Donuts):

Indulgent pastries like éclairs, fruit tarts, and donuts elevate their taste with crème pâtissière, a delectable pastry cream. Whether nestled within a flaky éclair or adorning the center of a fruit tart, this custard filling adds a creamy richness to these delightful treats.

#4. British Trifle:

The British trifle is a delightful dessert constructed with layers of cake, fruit, and stirred custard. This classic combination creates a harmonious blend of textures and flavors, making each spoonful a delightful journey through sweetness and creaminess.

#5. Ice Cream:

The creamy goodness of ice cream is often achieved through a custard base. By incorporating custard into the preparation, ice cream achieves a velvety texture, creating a delightful frozen treat enjoyed in various flavors around the world.

#6. Bavarian Cream:

Bavarian cream stands out as a luscious dessert with its custard base thickened using gelatin. This technique imparts a smooth and luxurious consistency, making Bavarian cream a delightful and elegant dessert often served on its own or as a filling in pastries.

#7. Crème Brûlée:

Crème brûlée is a decadent baked custard featuring a crisp layer of caramelized sugar on top. Initially conceived as a stirred custard in the seventeenth century, it evolved into its commonly baked form in the twentieth century. The contrasting textures of the creamy custard and the brittle sugar crust make it a culinary masterpiece.

#8. Chinese Egg Tarts and Pastéis de Nata:

Chinese egg tarts and Pastéis de Nata, popular in Portugal, showcase the deliciousness of custard. Whether nestled in a flaky crust or a delicate pastry, these treats highlight the versatility and widespread appeal of custard-based desserts.

#9. Steamed Thai Pumpkin Custard:

Steamed Thai pumpkin custard is a unique delight, combining the richness of custard with the tropical flavor of coconut milk. The custard is steamed to perfection inside a pumpkin, creating a harmonious blend of textures and flavors that is both comforting and exotic.

Frequently Asked Questions About How To Make Custard

How do you prevent the custard from curdling?

To prevent curdling, gradually add hot liquid to the egg-sugar mixture, stir well, and avoid overheating. For starch-free custards, keep them at a lower temperature.

Can custard be used as a filling for pastries?

Yes, custard is commonly used as a filling for pastries like éclairs, fruit tarts, donuts, and more.

What’s the purpose of a water bath (bain-marie) when baking custard?

A water bath helps regulate the temperature during baking, preventing the custard from overheating and ensuring a smooth texture.

Can custard be made with alternative liquids?

Yes, custards can be made with various liquids such as coconut milk, chicken stock, or bonito, offering unique flavors and textures.

How do you adjust the thickness of the custard?

Adjust custard thickness by adding hot water gradually. Be cautious not to make it too watery, considering additional ingredients like evaporated milk.

Are there different cultural variations of custard desserts?

Yes, custard-based desserts vary across cultures, such as Crème Brûlée in French cuisine, Chinese Egg Tarts, or Steamed Thai Pumpkin Custard. Each has its own unique preparation and flavor profiles.


If you carefully follow the guidelines highlighted on this page, you should have made yourself a perfect lump-free custard by now. Apart from the regular way of making custard, you can try other custard-making styles like the ones practiced in the Western region. In the meantime, enjoy your custard. 


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