Hibiscus-Vanilla Bean Pots de Creme – #BakeTogether

by Kate on February 18, 2013

Post image for Hibiscus-Vanilla Bean Pots de Creme – #BakeTogether

This month for BakeTogether, Abby created wonderful pots de creme for us to put our own spin on. Pots de creme are smooth, creamy, lightly set custard that is baked in a water bath then chilled. Over the summer I tried my hand at making pots de creme for the very first time when I made Basil Pot de Creme with Balsamic Strawberry Reduction and I was completely hooked on this elegant treat. I’ve seen both chocolate and vanilla versions before. Abby made a lovely vanilla bean version with instructions to get creative but make sure that vanilla remained the star of this creamy dessert.

When I set out to create my version I had the idea of making Abby’s version and changing the sauce. I also thought about adding spices to the pots de creme. In the end though, my thoughts turned to tea. As I peered through my cabinets I saw that I had a box of hibiscus tea and knew I’d found my ingredient to pair with the vanilla bean yet not outshine it.

Hibiscus Vanila Bean Pots de Creme 3 - Food Babbles

I had hoped for a delicate light pink color from the redness of the hibiscus leaves. The custard ended up being more of a light brown with flecks of pink as well as the vanilla bean flecks. I think I’ll call it a dusty rose. Not exactly the color I was hoping for but the taste is spot on. It is smooth and the flavor of the vanilla bean definitely hits your taste buds first then it is followed by the slight tartness of the hibiscus. The two pair nicely together and the hibiscus definitely doesn’t take over despite how many bags I used. It all balances well leaving you with an easy to make, elegant dessert that’s sure to impress.

Hibiscus Vanila Bean Pots de Creme 1 - Food Babbles

We’d love to see your spin on Vanilla Bean Pots de Creme! Join us in the BakeTogether kitchen and share your creation.



One Year Ago: Lemon Chocolate Chip Cheesecake Muffins

Two Years Ago: Cannoli Pancakes

Hibiscus-Vanilla Bean Pots de Creme

Prep Time: 2 hours, 20 minutes

Cook Time: 40 minutes

Yield: 4 servings

Hibiscus-Vanilla Bean Pots de Creme

Smooth, creamy hibiscus and vanilla bean infused baked custards.


  • 1 vanilla bean split and seeds scraped
  • 4 hibiscus tea bags
  • 1 3/4 cup half & half
  • 5 large egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup (1 3/4 ounces) granulated sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon table salt


  1. In a small saucepan, combine the vanilla bean pod, scraped seeds, tea bags and half and half. Bring the half and half to a simmer, stirring occasionally. Cover and remove from heat. Steep for 2 hours.
  2. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Arrange four (6 ounce) ramekins in a baking dish with 2-inch sides.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, granulated sugar and salt.
  4. Uncover the half and half, add the egg mixture to the half and half mixture. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly until the mixture thickens and coats the back of a spoon or heat-proof spatula.
  5. Strain the mixture into a large 2-cup measuring cup through a fine mesh sieve, gently pressing the tea bags against the mesh to extract as much of the custard as possible taking care to not break the bags.
  6. Evenly distribute the custard among the 4 ramekins. Fill the baking dish with very hot water halfway up the sides of the ramekins. Cover the dish loosely with foil and bake 35-45 minutes, until the pots de creme just jiggle slightly in the center, like jello.
  7. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely then refrigerate at least 4 hours and up to 2 days.
  8. Enjoy!


Adapted from Abby Dodge


{ 34 comments… read them below or add one }

suzanne February 18, 2013 at 8:13 am

Oh wow!!! love hibiscus, how delicious these must be and so pretty, the palest pink. Brilliant!!


Kate February 18, 2013 at 9:59 pm

Thank you Suzanne! They turned out fabulous and the flavor was perfect with the vanilla bean.


Kristina February 18, 2013 at 11:24 am

I love cooking with hibiscus, mostly for the beautiful color it brings! I imagine these taste fantastic – well done!


Kate February 18, 2013 at 9:59 pm

This was actually my first time cooking with hibiscus and I loved the experience. Now I want to see other ways I can use it!


Kim Bee February 18, 2013 at 11:41 am

Oh my gosh Kate, this is outstanding. Just love this dish. I must try this one.


Kate February 18, 2013 at 10:00 pm

Aww! Thanks so much Kim! I’m so happy you think so. I was really pleased with the way they turned out. The flavor was amazing!


Simplee Sue February 18, 2013 at 11:08 pm

I never heard of cooking with hibiscus. This is such a beautiful presentation. Thank you for sharing.

We may have met by chance…but we become friends by choice.


Kate February 19, 2013 at 6:11 pm

Thank you Sue! I’m so happy to hear that you like this.


Fruitful Fusion February 19, 2013 at 2:09 am

This looks like a lovely idea! I wonder if I could use dried hibiscus leaves (as I have plenty of that). Do you get some of the tartness from the hibiscus?


Kate February 19, 2013 at 6:12 pm

You do get a slight tartness which pairs nicely with the vanilla bean. I’m sure you could use the dried hibiscus leaves and it would turn out lovely. Hope you like it!


Javelin Warrior February 19, 2013 at 9:31 am

These look so creamy and delicious, Kate! I have seen hibiscus used before to achieve a more vivid pink, but I’ve never tried it myself so I’m not sure how it was achieved. But taste is king and these sound amazing… Thanks so much for sharing!


amy @ fearless homemaker February 19, 2013 at 6:13 pm

What a lovely flavor combination! And how pretty. These would make a perfect spring party dessert!


Kate February 21, 2013 at 1:32 pm

Thank you Amy! I agree, they would be lovely in the spring. I am wishing for spring to arrive already!


Lora @cakeduchess February 19, 2013 at 9:53 pm

Love how delicate and pretty this turned out, Kate. The color is really fun. Flecks of pink are a fun and very girly surprise:)


Kate February 21, 2013 at 1:39 pm

Yes! I was really hoping for more pink. I’ve seen many lovely pink hibiscus treats. But I did get some of the pink color. Next time I think I will find dried hibiscus petals instead of tea bags. I’m thinking perhaps the tea bags had a mixture of other teas in with the hibiscus which is why the color wasn’t quite as pink as I had hoped. It will just give me another excuse to make these lovely pots de creme!


Nina February 19, 2013 at 11:08 pm

Ive never come across hibiscus tea bags….this sounds interesting. Your dessert is very tempting to me:)


Kate February 21, 2013 at 1:39 pm

So happy to have been able to tempt you!


Karen February 20, 2013 at 2:11 pm

This looks delicious!


Kate February 21, 2013 at 1:45 pm

Thank you, Karen!


Holly February 20, 2013 at 4:49 pm

Your spin on this dish is wonderful! What a nice combination with the hibiscus tea. I am baking along this month too but have to do a re-do. My first batch of creme brulee turned out well but the photos didn’t do it justice. I am going to try again this weekend and will enjoy eating the results!


Kate February 21, 2013 at 1:42 pm

Isn’t that the worst? When you make something so tasty and wonderful then the pictures don’t come out the way you had hoped? I can’t stand that! Well, kudos to you for baking twice and retaking the pictures. I’m sure the second batch won’t go to waste and I’ll be looking forward to seeing your creation!


Terra February 20, 2013 at 10:19 pm

What a lovely flavor combo, and who cares it turned brown….it looks gorgeous!!!! I haven’t worked with hibiscus yet, but looking forward to trying it! Hugs, Terra


Kate February 21, 2013 at 1:43 pm

Aww! Thanks! It may not have been as pink as I would have liked but it definitely tasted just the way I had hoped.


Hannah February 21, 2013 at 11:15 pm

Beautiful, Kate! I love your unique twist with hibiscus tea here – tea is a marvelous choice for flavoring. I can imagine the tart and sweet tastes pair well together, and I like the shade of rose you created!


Jamie February 22, 2013 at 12:33 pm

Yes, this is on my schedule to make quite soon. I love pots de creme and I know Abb’y’s recipe must be perfect! I think yours are so pretty – dusty rose indeed – and the flavor sounds beautiful!


Kate February 23, 2013 at 9:12 pm

Thank you Jamie! I can’t wait to see your variation. I know that you’ll come up with something elegant and tempting.


Scott_D February 22, 2013 at 9:29 pm

I love hibiscus tea. I’m sure these were good.


Ruthie February 23, 2013 at 11:31 am

You were Featured at Super Saturday Show & Tell today!! Stop by and grab a Featured Button and party again with me 🙂 xoxo~ Ruthie


Kate February 23, 2013 at 9:06 pm

Thanks Ruthie!! I really appreciate that. I’ll definitely be headed over to party with you.


Robin February 25, 2013 at 11:35 pm

Thanks for sharing at Fluster’s Creative Muster. I’m looking forward to seeing what you link up next week.


Carrie @ poet in the pantry February 28, 2013 at 8:39 pm

What a neat way of making the custard! I like the tea idea and it looks beautiful!


Kate March 1, 2013 at 4:09 pm

Thanks Carrie! This was really so tasty and it’s the first time I’ve used hibiscus to flavor something. It won’t be the last. I think I’d like to us it somehow in a cake.


Chloë May 26, 2013 at 8:50 pm

These look absolutely gorgeous! I love this twist on pots de creme


Kate May 26, 2013 at 10:58 pm

Thanks so much Chloe!! They’re definitely unique and so wonderfully tasty.


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