Flan de Naranja: Orange Flan

Orange flan recipe

​The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

Prep: 30 mins
Cook: 60 mins
Total: 90 mins
Servings: 6 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
298 Calories
11g Fat
48g Carbs
7g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6
Amount per serving
Calories 298
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 11g 14%
Saturated Fat 7g 33%
Cholesterol 121mg 40%
Sodium 88mg 4%
Total Carbohydrate 48g 17%
Dietary Fiber 4g 14%
Total Sugars 37g
Protein 7g
Vitamin C 96mg 479%
Calcium 143mg 11%
Iron 1mg 7%
Potassium 435mg 9%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Orange flan, or Flan de Naranja, is a variation of the standard Spanish flan, a vanilla custard topped with caramel sauce. This variation is lighter but has an intense orange flavor that refreshes the palate as well as satisfies a sweet tooth. It is a simple custard recipe that can be made ahead of time and makes an elegant finish to any dinner or celebration.


For the Sauce:

  • 1/2 cup sugar

  • 1/2 cup orange juice

For the Custard:

  • 1/2 largeorange, zested

  • 1/2lemon, zested

  • 1/2 cup orange juice

  • 2 cups half-and-half, or heavy cream for a richer, denser custard

  • 3 large eggs

  • 1/4 cup sugar

Steps to Make It

Make the Sauce

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for sauce
    ​The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck
  2. Put a heavy saucepan over medium heat for 30 seconds. Add 1/2 cup sugar and 1/2 cup orange juice.

    Put in saucepan
    ​The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck
  3. With a long-handled wooden spoon, keep stirring sugar and juice mixture constantly in the pan until sauce is reduced and thickened. It should be a rich medium brown color (caramelized). This will take 3 to 5 minutes or so on medium-to-low heat.

    ​The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck
  4. Remove from heat and quickly spoon caramelized sugar sauce into 6 ramekins or a large baking dish. (If you wait, sugar will cool and harden.) Set aside.

    Put in ramekins
    ​The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

Make the Custard

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for custard
    ​The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck
  2. Grate peel of half of a large orange and half of a lemon into a mixing bowl.

    Grate orange
    ​The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck
  3. Pour about 1/2 inch of warm water into a 9 x 13-inch baking dish for boiling water bath if using ramekins. If using one large open baking dish, be sure that the dish is tall enough to accommodate the water necessary to cover 3/4 or the height of the dish.

    ​The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck
  4. Add 1/2 cup orange juice, the half-and-half, and citrus zest to a heavy-bottomed saucepan and stir. Scald 2 cups of half-and-half in the saucepan and remove from heat. Keep a close eye on the pan, so the cream does not boil over.

    Add orange juice
    ​The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck
  5. Meanwhile in a medium mixing bowl, beat slightly 3 eggs.

    Beat eggs
    ​The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck
  6. Mix in 1/4 cup sugar.

    Add sugar
    ​The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck
  7. Stirring constantly, gradually add hot cream to egg yolk mixture. Stir until the sugar is dissolved.

    Add cream
    ​The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck
  8. Pour the mixture slowly into another mixing bowl, straining it using cheesecloth to line the strainer. This should catch all the citrus zest. Discard cheesecloth.

    Pour mixture slowly
    ​The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck
  9. Ladle mixture into ramekins.

    Ladle mixture
    ​The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

Bake the Flan

  1. Place each of the ramekins in the baking dish with water. If the water level does not reach 3/4 of the way up the sides of the ramekins, carefully pour more water in.

    Put in baking dish
    ​The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck
  2. Bake uncovered in a water bath at 325 F for 50 to 60 minutes, or until a knife comes out clean when inserted halfway between center and the edge of dish.

    ​The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck
  3. Carefully remove each ramekin from the water bath. Set on a cooling rack until lukewarm, then chill flan thoroughly in the refrigerator—at least 1 hour.

    Put on rack
    ​The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck
  4. When ready to serve, unmold the flan by running a knife around the inside edge of the dish.

    ​The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck
  5. Place a small dessert plate on the top of the ramekin.

    ​The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck
  6. With one hand under the ramekin and the other on top of the place, turn over.

    Put on plate
    ​The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck 
  7. Tap the ramekin and the flan should drop onto the plate. If it does not, carefully “prod” the flan out of the ramekin with a small paring knife. It should slide out of the ramekin onto the plate and the sauce will surround it.

    ​The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck
  8. Garnish with orange peel or a slice of orange, if desired.

    ​The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck
  9. Serve and enjoy!

    Flan on plate
    ​The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck 


  • To ensure the custard does not overcook, check doneness after 45 minutes, then every 5 minutes or so.