Torching the Perfect Crème Brûlée Topping

Mastering the Art of Torching with a Blowtorch

Forget ovens. Blowtorches are the secret weapon for making creme brulee that looks and tastes straight out of a Parisian cafe.

I first fell in love with the crispy burnt sugar topping while backpacking through Europe after college. Every crunchy spoon crackle takes me right back to that little patisserie on the corner with the blue awning.

So when I got home, obviously, I had to learn how to recreate that caramelized magic. Let’s just say my smoke alarm went off…a lot.

But after some trial and error, I’ve nailed down a foolproof method for creme brulee torching glory:

  • Start with 2-3 day old creme brulee cups chilled in the fridge. Freshly baked will get you a soupy mess.
  • Sprinkle on just enough sugar to coat the top. Too much and it burns instead of melting evenly. Less is more here.
  • Keep the torch flame constantly moving in slow circles. consistency is key or you’ll get black spots. My wrist was sore after the first few tries!
  • Let the sugar fully harden after torching before you tap and dig in. Impatience leads to sad drips and crumbs.

It takes some practice, but once you perfect that brulee top, there’s no going back. That first crack and taste is pure magic.

Now who wants to come over for a creme brulee torching party? I’ll bring the ramekins, you bring the butane!

Learn how to create that perfect golden brown crackly crust over the classic dessert in this detailed demonstration using a Butane Torch to caramelize creme brulee. Some recipes recommend putting your creme brulee underneath a broiler, but that will heat up the custard, which you don’t want to do.

See a selection of Culinary Torches

Recommended Culinary Torches

Other Kitchen Torch Reviews

Messermeister FT-912 Cheflamme Culinary Torch

Rosle Kitchen Torch

BonJour Creme Brulee Pro Culinary Torch

This post contains affiliate links. If you use these links to buy something we may earn a commission. Thanks.