We've replicated this leche flan recipe (a few tweaks are noted) with permission from our friends at Panlasang PinoySalamat po sa inyo!



  • 10 egg yolks, at room temperature

  • 1 small can condensed milk

  • 1 cup evaporated milk (or fresh milk, if you prefer)

  • Lemon (or other citrus like calamansi, orange or lime)

  • Vanilla extract, 1/2 teaspoon

  • 1 cup of sugar. Brown sugar can be used but it's harder to tell when it's fully caramelized since it's already brown. You can tell by the smell :) or so says my mother.

  • 4 tablespoons of water

  • Zester

  • Strainer

  • Mixing bowl and whisk or fork

  • Llanera, a shallow aluminum pan, either oval or round shaped.

  • Steamer. Natalia's steamer made this a lot easier. You can also make a water bath, too.


Bring a good amount of water in the steamer to a rolling boil. Put the lid on.

Mix the egg yolks, vanilla, condensed and evaporated milk. Add lemon zest and a squeeze of lemon juice. Pour the custard mix through a strainer to remove the zest or any egg membranes or chalaza from the custard.

For the caramel, put the llanera right on the stovetop, use medium high heat. Add the sugar and the water. This is very important: Don't use a spoon to mix. Instead, carefully hold the warm llanera pan and swish around the water and sugar until they fully combine. Replace the llanera on the heat and watch the sugar mixture until it turns amber. If the amber coloring is uneven, again carefully hold the pan and swish around the sugar-water mix. 

Once the sugar mix turns amber, swish the pan around to coat the sides. Take the pan off the heat to cool for five minutes. Then slowly pour the custard mix into the llanera. Into the steamer of rolling boiling water goes the llanera for 30 minutes. Place the lid on the steamer, please!

Should you have any doubts about whether the custard is fully cooked, use a toothpick to test the consistency... which should be firm and not runny whatsoever. The real test is coming next.

Remove the llanera from the steamer and place a plate over it like a lid. Then quickly, holding the llanera and plate together securely, flip them over so that the plate is now on the bottom. The moment of truth: pull the llanera off the plate. The flan should hold its shape and stand, and the caramelized sugar will run down the sides of it.