Passion Fruit Flan: Latin Twist Recipe


Passion fruit flan 1The feel of sun on my face, the sound of waves against the shore and palm leaves clapping in unison, the salt-filled air gently hugging….this is what passion fruit brings to me. There’s something about maracuya (passion fruit) that inspires the tropics which, despite my love of fall, seem to call every year at this time. But since I can’t readily get on a plane and go, I’m taking a flavor trip—and inviting you to join me.  And so, my friends, today I bring you one of my favorites: Passion Fruit Flan.

Now, at the risk of contradicting myself, I want to add another feature of one of my favorite flans (oh yes, my friends, I do have several most-loved custards!): comfort. There’s something embracing about the smoothness of the texture, and the taste. One more thing mis amigos: if you’re looking for the ideal drink to serve with your passion fruit flan, I have two that marry quite well. One is a  good port. There’s something about the velvet wine that joins beautifully with the flan. The other, and bubbly wine fans probably already guessed, is a dry-ish prosecco.

Would love to hear about your favorite flans, flavors and more. In the meantime ¡Buen provecho! Enjoy!


Latin Twist: Passion Fruit Flan

Yield: About 16

Latin Twist: Passion Fruit Flan

This three-milk flan is a definite crowd pleaser because of its amazing flavors and its beautiful presentation. If you can get your hands on fresh passion fruit, then by all means, use it! If not, luckily we can find plenty of passion fruit concentrate (thanks to our local Brazilian population) which has that intoxicating aroma, and delicious flavor.


  • 6 eggs
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 fourteen-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 twelve-ounce can evaporated milk
  • 1 fifteen-ounce can coconut milk
  • 1 cup half and half
  • 3/4 to 1 cup passion fruit concentrate
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Fresh fruit for garnish


  1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF.
  2. Place the sugar in a nonstick saucepan and melt it slowly over low heat. (Be careful; the sugar can really burn you if it gets on your skin!)
  3. When the sugar has melted, pour it into individual ramekins (18 depending on size!) or a 3-quart baking dish and try to coat the bottoms evenly.
  4. Set aside.
  5. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, beat the eggs with an electric mixer until smooth. Pour in the milks and vanilla. Mix until well blended. Add the passion fruit and continue mixing for about 2 minutes.
  6. Pour the mixture over the sugar in the ramekins or pan.
  7. Place the ramekins or pan inside a larger dish and fill the outer pan with about a 1-inch deep water bath.
  8. Bake the flan for about 1 hour, or until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean.
  9. Remove the flan from the water bath, and refrigerate until cold, about 4 hours to overnight.
  10. Prior to serving, run a knife around the edge of the dish to loosen, then invert into a serving dish. Pour any of the caramelized sugar (if it’s runny enough!) on top before serving.
  11. Plate with fresh fruit!




About Author

Maybe it was the dinner parties my mom always threw—or the hours I spent prepping and cooking alongside her (and then on my own!). Or maybe it was array of fabulous dishes that my family sampled in New York City’s richly diverse restaurants, but I’ve loved creating, savoring, and sharing food for as long as I can remember. Living in Spain, and later in Peru, also greatly influenced my life. These years abroad taught me Spanish—and about living in different countries--but also introduced me to teaching English as a second language, which I’ve done—mostly in the US-- for the past 20-plus (yikes!) years. I’ve authored two cocktail/tapas books, Mambo Mixers and Calypso Coolers, coauthored more than 15 others (mostly food related!), and raised two children. Now I'm chef and owner of my own restaurant, Mambo 64 in Tuckahoe, New York. My message is the same, whether I'm teaching, writing, running the restaurant or being a regular guest on the Spanish-language network Telemundo (on the morning show, Buenos Días Nueva York!). My belief in food—and the power of food—is far reaching, and is married with another one: the power of stories. I’m sure that if we could all sit down and have meals together, sharing both tastes and tales, we’d have peace on earth. Enjoy!

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