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Old Fashioned Honey Custard Recipe

Simple and delicious with only a few ingredients, let’s make an old fashioned honey custard recipe.

Jump to Recipe

Baked honey custard is delicious and very simple to make. My favorite part about this recipe is every ingredient, save for the spices, could easily be grown or raised even on a very small acreage. You can’t get more local than fresh from your backyard!

bright yellow honey custard in cups with a honey dipper

Ingredients

The ingredients for this custard are surprisingly few. It still tastes rich and delicious. 

  • 1/4 tsp Salt
  • 3 Eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/4 Cup Honey
  • 2 Cups Scalded milk
  • 1 Tsp Cinnamon
  • 1/2 Tsp Vanilla

Supplies

  • Cake pan
  • Large Bowl
  • Small Mixing Bowl
  • Tea Kettle or pot for heating water
  • Custard Cups
  • Fine Mesh Strainer (Optional)
  • Rubber Spatula
  • Small Pot

How to Scald Milk

In order to scald milk you have to heat it to about 170 degrees F. This is likely the same time a skin might form on the top. Heat it slowly over medium heat and stir very often, swiping your spatula on the bottom of the pan to keep the milk from scorching. 

Scalding in the past served two purposes. First, it resulted in pasteurized milk when pasteurization wasn’t always common. Additionally, recipes for baked goods sometimes still call for scalding milk. The heating process breaks down the proteins in the flour, making it easier for the yeast to digest them and make really great gluten strands. This gives you a really nice loaf of bread!

pouring milk rough and tumble farmhouse

Honey as a Sweetener

In terms of calories, honey actually has slightly more calories than sugar. Source. However, honey is generally sweeter than sugar so you won’t need to use as much of it to get the sweetness you want.

One of the great things about honey is it can be produced just about anywhere and purchased locally from beekeepers. I love to source our food locally whenever I can, so honey (along with maple syrup) is a sweetener I turn to often. 

Lastly, honey can be consumed straight out of the hive, ready to go. Every other sweetener, including maple syrup, has to go through processing to be ready for your table. 

baking with raw honey rough and tumble farmhouse

How to Make Old Fashioned Honey Custard

Preheat your oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.

First, prepare your hot water. I like to just start a full tea kettle of water. You can also do a pot of water on the stove. You want it piping hot.

Begin by cracking your eggs and beating them lightly, until the yolks and whites are well combined.

Sprinkle in 1/4 tsp of salt and beat that in.

In a separate bowl, combine two cups of scalded milk and the honey.

Slowly pour the honey and hot milk into the egg mixture. Do this very slowly, beating constantly as you do so. This will keep the warm mixture from cooking your eggs.

Stir in the cinnamon and vanilla.

If you find the mixture has gotten lumpy at all, run it through a fine mesh sieve. For best results and a super smooth custard, it’s good to do this no matter what. I am guilty of skipping it though from time to time.  

Place the custard cups into a square cake pan. 

Pour the mixture into the individual custard cups, leaving about 1/4 inch space at the top. This recipe will make five standard custard cups.

honey custard in crocks

Sprinkle very lightly with cinnamon

Baking

Place the pan in the oven. 

Very carefully so you don’t burn yourself, pour hot water into the pan. You need enough water so it comes up to about 3/4 up the sides of the custard cups.

This can be tricky so take your time! It might be easier if you are heating a pot of water to pour it in the pan BEFORE you add your custard cups to the pan of water. Then you just have to carry it carefully to the oven. 

Bake for 40 minutes, or until the custard is set in the middle but still a touch wobbly.

Remove from the oven and place the custard cups on a wire rack to cool. Once they have cooled to room temperature, you can eat them or store them in the fridge. Cover with plastic wrap, beeswax wrap, or lids. 

They are best if eaten within 1-2 days. 

honey custard in crock with honey dipper rough and tumble farmhouse

Raw Honey vs. Pasteurized

For this recipe, it really doesn’t matter if you use raw or pasteurized honey. Honey only stays raw so long as it is under 160 degrees Fahrenheit. This recipe has a long slow bake in the oven at 325 degrees Fahrenheit, so if you use raw it still comes out as being pasteurized. 

Try Different Honey Varieties

You can change the flavor profile very easily by switching out what kind of honey you use. Basswood will give a different taste than a floral honey that comes primarily from wildflower nectar. You could even try something like buckwheat honey!

Infuse Florals

While scalding the milk, herbs and florals make a delicious addition.

Experiment with lavender blossoms, scraped vanilla bean, a packet of chai tea, rosemary, etc. to get some really great flavors.

Simply add the herbs into the milk after a few minutes of heating. Scoop or strain the herbs out before adding in the honey.

honey custard pinterest graphic

Topping Ideas for Honey Custard

I like to eat this custard plain but it’s also yummy with another drizzle of honey across the top, sprinkle of cinnamon, fresh fruit, whipped cream, or shaved chocolate. There is no end to the fun additions you can try!

More from the Farmhouse Kitchen

honey custard in crock with honey dipper rough and tumble farmhouse

Old Fashioned Honey Custard

Servings 5 People

Equipment

  • Cake pan
  • Large Bowl
  • Small Mixing Bowl
  • Tea Kettle or pot for heating water
  • Custard Cups
  • Fine Mesh Strainer (Optional)
  • Rubber Spatula
  • Small pot

Ingredients
  

  • 1/4 tsp Salt
  • 3 Eggs lightly beaten
  • 1/4 Cup Honey
  • 2 Cups Scalded milk
  • 1 Tsp Cinnamon
  • 1/2 Tsp Vanilla

Instructions
 

  • Preheat your oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Boil one tea kettle's worth or a 2-quart pot of water.
  • Crack eggs and beat them lightly, until the yolks and whites are well combined.
  • Sprinkle in 1/4 tsp of salt and beat that in.
  • In a separate bowl, combine two cups of scalded milk and the honey.
  • Slowly pour the honey and hot milk into the egg mixture. Do this very slowly, beating constantly as you do so. This will keep the warm mixture from cooking your eggs.
  • Stir in the cinnamon and vanilla.
  • If you find the mixture has gotten lumpy at all, run it through a fine mesh sieve.
  • Place the custard cups into a square cake pan.
  • Pour the mixture into the individual custard cups, leaving about 1/4 inch space at the top.
  • Sprinkle very lightly with cinnamon
  • Place the pan in the oven.
  • Very carefully so you don’t burn yourself, pour hot water into the pan. You need enough water so it comes up to about 3/4 up the sides of the custard cups.
  • This can be tricky so take your time! It might be easier if you are heating a pot of water to pour it in the pan BEFORE you add your custard cups to the pan of water. Then you just have to carry it carefully to the oven.
  • Bake for 40 minutes, or until the custard is set in the middle but still a touch wobbly.
  • Remove from the oven and place the custard cups on a wire rack to cool.
  • Once they have cooled to room temperature, you can eat them or store them in the fridge. Cover with plastic wrap, beeswax wrap, or lids.
  • They are best if eaten within 1-2 days.

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