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Rosa's Flan

TODAY Illustration / Getty Images
Cook Time:
35 mins
Prep Time:
20 mins

Chef notes

Flan is a staple in Cuban cuisine. The simple ingredients remind me of the "using what you have" mantra, which many people on the island have been forced to do for quite some time. I made this dish with Rosa, my abuela who's not actually my abuela. She's used to eyeballing all of the ingredients, tweaking things along the way that don't look quite right, but we were able to put all of this golden-delicious information into a tangible recipe to be shared and enjoyed.

Technique tips: You'll want the caramel to be a nice golden color; if it cooks too long and has a dark hue, it will be bitter. If you don't have a pressure cooker (or Instant Pot), you can place water in a dish, place the flan in the water and cook in the oven for about an hour.


  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 splash water, to thin
  • 5 eggs
  • 3 tablespoons vanilla extract
  • 1 pinch salt
  • (14-ounce) cans sweetened condensed milk
  • 12-ounce cans evaporated milk


For the caramel:

Pour sugar into a pan over medium-low heat and melt until golden-brown, using a splash of water to thin out the caramel, if needed.

Pour hot caramel into a heat-proof baking dish and gently rotate to cover all of the sides and bottom of the dish. You'll want a caramel shell around all sides of the bowl. Set aside to cool.

For the flan:


Put eggs, vanilla extract and salt into the blender and blend until combined.


Add condensed milk to blender and blend until combined.


Add evaporated milk to the blender and blend until combined, about 10 seconds.


Pour mixture from blender into your baking dish with the hardened caramel coating.


Cover the baking dish completely with aluminum foil, making sure there are no entryways for water to get in.


Place the covered dish into the stovetop pressure cooker. With the flan already in the pot, fill with water about 3/4 of the way up the flan.


Shut the pressure cooker and put on high heat for 10 minutes to build up pressure.


Once pressure builds up for 10 minutes, lower the heat a bit to medium-high and cook for 20 to 25 minutes.


After 20 to 25 minutes, remove the flan from the heat and allow to cool completely for several hours. You can put the flan in the fridge overnight, too.


Once cooled and set, loosen the edges of the flan with a knife and flip it onto a plate to serve. Enjoy!