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+ servings
finished flan de coco or coconut flan with carmel
5 from 3 votes

Coconut Flan Recipe Card

Flan is a light custard that is baked, cooled and eaten cold. This particular version is flavored with coconut flakes and coconut milk.
Course Dessert
Cuisine Latin American
Keyword baking, coconut, custard, flan, postre
Prep Time 45 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Chill time 2 hours
Total Time 3 hours 45 minutes
Servings: Change to adjust-> 12 people
Calories 231 kcal



  1. Preheat your oven to 350°F. Toss ¼ teaspoon of the cinnamon with the coconut flakes in a bowl until they are coated and lightly toast in the oven (about 5 minutes). Remove and set aside.

  2. In a small saucepan on medium heat slowly melt the sugar stirring constantly with a silicon spatula or a wooden spoon. The sugar should achieve a golden brown caramel color. Once the sugar begins to melt, do not walk away or you might risk burning it. Once caramelized, pour into the flan/pie pan and tilt to cover.
  3. In a separate saucepan, combine the evaporated milk and coconut milk and slowly bring to a simmer.
  4. In a mixing bowl, whisk the eggs for about 1 minute. Add the sugar, cinnamon, salt and vanilla and mix well. Now comes the tricky part: when you temper the hot milk mixture into the cold eggs. This step needs to be done slowly and carefully or your egg mixture will certainly curdle.

  5. Pour your hot milk mixture into a Pyrex cup with a spout. Slowly, very slowly, pour in small amounts of the milk mixture into the egg mixture and whisk until it is fully incorporated. Repeat the process slowly, each time adding small amounts of your hot mixture into the eggs.
  6. When all ingredients are combined, use a strainer to transfer the mixture into the pan you will be baking your flan in. Place the flan pan inside a roaster pan and slowly add warm water. The water level should come up about half ways up the flan pan. Bake until the center sets. Check at 30 minutes and about every 10 minutes after. You can use a cake tester to check for doneness. Flan should giggle slightly like jello when set.

  7. *One important tip: Pull oven rack out and fill pan, this way you won’t have to transport it to the oven and risk dropping it.
  8. When custard is done, remove from oven and allow it to cool at room temperature in the water bath. This will allow for cooling to take place gradually. You will notice small dark flecks, don’t be alarmed, the flecks are from the cinnamon.

  9. Once flan is at room temperature place in the refrigerator for a couple of hours. To serve your flan, carefully invert onto a larger plate and sprinkle with the coconut flakes.

Recipe Notes

Here are some tips on making a great flan dessert.

  • The first step is to make that caramel and get it onto the flan pan while it is still running before it hardens.
  • Use only a good quality vanilla extract. The difference is huge.

  • You will need a round roaster pan to do the water bath in. I normally use a disposable one. It can last up to three or four uses.

  • I normally use a flan pan which can also be used for crème caramel (The French’s version of flan). If you do not have a flan pan, a conventional pie plate will be adequate.

  • Get all your items ready before you start melting the sugar. Once the sugar starts to melt in the pan you need to keep stirring so it won't burn.  As soon as you get that nice golden brown color you are ready to pour it into your flan pan.
  • Tilt the pan every direction and get a nice coating of caramel around the pan but work fast because it hardens quickly. Once the pan is coated you can set it aside and start working on the coconut custard.
  • To determine if the flan is set while baking, carefully jiggle the roasting pan, the flan it should jiggle like jello with a firmness when it has set. If you see waves or ripples on the surface, (like when you toss a stone into a pond) it has not set and needs more time.  Once it has set remove it from the oven and let it come to room temperature.
  • The water bath is critical for a really slow bake and keeps you from getting that scrambled egg texture.  You can use a cake tester to check when it is done but I also like to use the jiggle test above to see if it has set.  The jiggle test has never failed me!

Frequently Asked Questions:

  • How long can I keep the flan? The coconut flan will keep nicely stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 5-6 days.
  • Can I freeze the coconut flan? No, since this contain dairy it will not freeze well and will split and have a bad texture when thawed.
Nutrition Facts
Coconut Flan Recipe Card
Amount Per Serving
Calories 231 Calories from Fat 108
% Daily Value*
Fat 12g18%
Saturated Fat 9g56%
Cholesterol 76mg25%
Sodium 158mg7%
Potassium 201mg6%
Carbohydrates 25g8%
Sugar 23g26%
Protein 5g10%
Vitamin A 165IU3%
Vitamin C 0.9mg1%
Calcium 92mg9%
Iron 1.6mg9%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.