Lemon Pots

pressure cooker custard pudding
Chilled, delectable portions of a creamy lemon custard are the perfect canvas for your favorite fruit garnish.

Pot de Creme, is the little-known cousin of Creme Caramel (which is a flan made with whole eggs and milk and cooked in a caramelized form) and Creme Brulee’ (which is made with cream and egg yolks and caramelized at the end).  The slight difference of ingredients and balance of milk and cream results in a soft  custard that is not too heavy to enjoy after a meal. Although the original uses vanilla instead of lemon peel to infuse flavor in the custard, I made my version to taste fresh and tarty and contrast with the sweet blackberries and blackberry syrup garnish.But you could garnish these cuties with any fresh fruit you like, or even fancy things up by macerating the fruit in red wine and sugar, or caramellize it  under the grill or… with fruit syrup made in the pressure cooker, like in this recipe!


Pressure Cooker Accessories Pr. Cook Time Pr. Level Open
5 L or larger steamer basket, heat-proof bowl/ramekins 5-10 min. High (2) Natural

5.0 from 4 reviews
French Lemon Creme (Pots de Cremè au Citron) - pressure cooker recipe
Recipe type: pressure cooker
Cuisine: Frenc
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
This recipe can make 10 Espresso cups or 6 Ramekins.
  • 1 cup (250 ml) Whole Milk
  • 1 cup (250 ml) Fresh Cream
  • 6 Egg Yolks
  • 1 Lemon
  • ⅔ cup or 150g White Sugar
  1. Peel the skin of the lemon with the potato peeler to get wide strips of zest. Then, in a heavy-bottomed sauce-pan, on medium heat, add the milk, cream and lemon zest. Stir occasionally until the mixture begins to bubble. Turn off the heat and let cool (about 20-30 minutes).
  2. While the mixture is cooling prepare your pressure cooker by adding the minimum amount of water and set it aside.
  3. In a mixing bowl, add the egg yolks and sugar, whisk until the sugar is dissolved. Then, when the cream & milk mixture has cooled a bit, pour it slowly and incorporate it into the yolks. Stir with your whisk just enough to get everything mixed together well (do not whip).
  4. Next, pour the mixture slowly through a strainer into a spouted container (if you have one, it will make pouring the mixture into the cups or ramekins, easy).
  5. Pour into cups or ramekins, cover with foil and arrange in steamer basket so that all are sitting straight (otherwise you will get a crooked diagonal creme). Lower the basket into the pressure cooker carefully, and if you still have some vertical space and extra cups, you can stack the additional cups on top in a second layer.
  6. Close and lock the pressure cooker. Turn the heat up to high and calculate 10 minutes cooking time for ramekins and only 5 minutes cooking time for espresso cups at HIGH pressure.
  7. When time is up, open the pressure cooker using the Natural Release method - move the cooker to cold burner and don't do anything and wait for the pressure to come down naturally (about 10 minutes).
  8. Open the pressure cooker and carefully lift out the custards. Open the first and jiggle it a bit. It should be nearly solid, but not liquid - they will solidify further when chilled. Remove the custards and leave to cool uncovered for about 30-45 minutes.
  9. Once the custards are cooled, cover them in plastic wrap and place them in the fridge to chill - for easy toting, I put them back in the steamer basket.
  10. Serve with fresh fruit and fruit syrup drizzled on top.

pots de creme step-by-step photos in the Fissler Vitavit Edition pressure cooker


Similar Posts


  1. This looks amazing.
    Funny that I never realised that a custard could be done in a pressure cooker…
    I will give it a try asap.
    Thanks for the great ideas

  2. JeBouffe, any dessert or dish that needs to be cooked Bain Marie or steamed comes out even better in the pressure cooker! Check out my Creme Caramel recipe.

    This winter… I will also publish Creme Brulee’ recipe.

    Happy Custard Making!!



  3. I have several friends who can’t (or won’t) eat dairy. Have you tried any pot de creme with coconut milk or other types of milk? As for me, bring on the heavy cream! Thanks!

    1. Oh, we’ve only just skimmed the surface of possible flans. There are some traditional flans that use BOTH condensed and coconut milk. I haven’t done any alternative flans myself, put almond milk sounds like a good flavor/texture substitution!!



  4. Laura, do you have a recipe for just plain ole vanilla pudding? Chocolate pudding?

    1. You can just replace the lemon zest with the contents of a vanilla pod. : )



  5. I see this recipe is in your book The Everything Healthy Pressure Cooker cookbook, too. So glad to have an online version, too, because it’s often easier to use an iPad in the kitchen instead of a book.

    I have one question, though. The directions make no mention of removing/straining out the lemon zest after the milk & cream mixture is heated. Are the wide strips of zest really meant to be left in?

  6. Never mind my earlier comment. I just reread the online version and finally saw that step 4 involves straining. The book version skips this step. I’ll make a note in my book.

  7. Gorgeous. Have done plain vanilla and pandan ones by mixing pandan essence and vanilla extract with the milk and cream mixture. Just lovely and smooth, sweet and simple.

  8. Made this tonight with the blackberry syrup and it was amazing! Absolutely delicious! If I ordered it in a restaurant I would be going back!

    Thank you, most all of the recipes from this site are spot on!

    1. Welcome Judy! If something doesn’t work out, please leave a comment under that recipe to let me know. I try to write the recipe for any pressure cooker type and situation but I don’t test them in more than two or three types of pressure cookers so if there is a sticking point somewhere I want to know about it so I can warn other readers in the recipe or make the approriate adjustments.



      P.S. So glad to read you enjoyed the flan!

  9. Are there any substitutes I could use instead of cow’s milk? Love custards and creme brûlée but can’t use any milk.

    1. Jonilyn, you can use almond milk or coconut milk – in the same amounts.



  10. Is the steamer pot sitting directly on the bottom of the pressure cooker, in the water? Or is it on a riser of some kind?

    1. Hi Laura, in order to steam in the pressure cooker you need to have the minimum amount of liquid in the base and the steamer rack on top. Take a look at my pressure cooking lesson, and read the one about steaming (you can also get there from clicking on the “tips & info” menu and choosing “learn”:

      See you there!



    2. I just use the trivet in the bottom, and follow the recipe exactly. Perfect every time. I can’t see using a basket.

  11. What is the butterfat content you used for the cream?

    1. Nicola, I don’t have the package in front of me but Cream is generally 30% fat (aka single cream) . If I remember to check at the store today I’ll come back and post the exact amount. : )



      1. I did make it using whipping cream (35% milk fat) a few days ago, and it was fantastic. Thanks for the wonderful recipe!

  12. I use “Half & Half”, the creamer I use in my coffee, instead of equal parts milk and cream. I have an allergy to carrageenan which is in heavy cream. There is no butterfat content listed on the carton. Keeper recipe! Delicious!

    1. Thanks. That’s a great idea. I’m in Canada, and labelling is a bit different here. Looking it up, it is our ‘blend cream’ which is 10% milk fat. I bought this instead of coffee cream to miss additives, which are also is our whipping cream.

  13. Hi Laura, this is a delectable recipe. I have made Creme brûlée and Creme caramel in the oven in the past but this one surpasses all the others.
    Not only in speed which is a great bonus but in taste also. The lemon taste is so refreshing and it it so light that you don’t feel weighted down after eating it.
    My husband and son in law love Creme brûlée but they have just been converted. I topped it with your fruit and syrup from your blackberry syrup recipe(which I substituted with mixed berries and added some honey to the fruit) and it was just heavenly.
    Thanks again.

  14. Any low-fat ideas – 2% milk only? Thank you.

    1. jaymart, you can use any milk you like – even dairy-free milk. BTW, did you know that “whole” milk is only 3.5% milkfat? Check the nutrition info label next time you’re in the grocery store. ; )



  15. I’m eager to try this recipe, but would like to make it in one larger dish, instead of individual dishes. How do you recommend that?

    1. This can absolutely work – you’ll have to increase the pressure cooking time, tho. Try increasing it to 15 minutes.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Rate this recipe: