Natillas (Spanish Custard) Dessert Recipe

Natillas (Spanish Custard) Dessert Recipe

Natillas are warm and creamy custard desserts; they’re the perfect way to wrap up a dinner party with friends, especially when it’s chilly outside. Sweet and comfy but also sophisticated, this is the Spanish answer to the famous crème brulée, and it’s just as good — if not better!

Servings: 6

Prep time: 10 minutes plus 3 hours in the refrigerator

Cooking time: 35 minutes

Total time: 3 hours 45 minutes


  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 4 cups whole milk
  • 1 2-inch strip of lemon peel
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 8 large egg yolks
  • 1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • Ground cinnamon (for garnish)


  1. Dissolve the cornstarch in 1/4 cup of water and set aside. 
  2. In a large saucepan, add the milk, lemon peel, cinnamon stick and salt. Bring to a simmer (do not let it boil). 
  3. In a mixing bowl, combine the eggs and sugar with a hand mixer for 3-5 minutes until fluffy. Add the cornstarch and incorporate.
  4. Add half of the milk mixture into the egg-sugar mixture and combine. Transfer into the saucepan, mix with the rest of the milk and cook on medium heat for approximately 20 minutes. Whisk until thick.
  5. Remove from the heat, whisk in the vanilla extract and transfer the mixture into a mixing bowl. Remove the cinnamon stick and lemon peel.
  6. Cover the mixture with film and cool in the fridge for 3 hours. 
  7. Divide the mix into six ramekins or bowls, garnish with ground cinnamon and serve. 


Skip the lemon peel or substitute it with orange peel for a variation.
Skip the recipe and save time by ordering this Natillas mix by Carmencita!

Nutritional information:

Calories: 349

Fat 11.3 gr

Carbs 55.1 gr

Protein 8.9 gr

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