This Paleo pumpkin custard is the perfect dessert for fall because it’s super simple, creamy, and just the right amount of sweetness!

Close up photo of three paleo pumpkin custards topped with whipped coconut cream and toasted coconut flakes.

Individual crustless pumpkin pies!

Love traditional pumpkin pie but don’t want the hassle of making a pie crust? Look no further—here’s a mini crust-less version where the silky spiced pumpkin pudding and crunchy coconut topping hits the spot! This easy pumpkin custard recipe is perfect for parties because you can bake them ahead of time and you can feed a crowd. It’s like pumpkin pie filling in a cup!

Why bake the pumpkin custards in a water bath?

I know it’s kind of a pain to bake these pumpkin custard cups in a water bath (also known as a bain marie) but it’s essential for the silky texture! A water bath helps pumpkin custard cups cook slowly and evenly. It protects them from the oven’s direct heat, which can make them overcooked, cracked, or rubbery. The water stays at 212°F, while the oven air is 325°F .

Ingredients

An overhead shot of the raw ingredients to make paleo pumpkin custard.
  • Canned pumpkin puree: My favorite brand of canned pumpkin puree is Libby’s.
  • Full fat coconut milk: To keep these treats dairy-free, I replace the heavy cream with full-fat canned coconut milk. I use a lot of different brands interchangeably, namely Whole365 brand, Native Forest, and Aroy-D.
  • Large eggs
  • Maple syrup: I love using maple syrup in this recipe, but I’m sure you can substitute honey or liquid allulose (for keto).
  • Pumpkin spice blend: If you don’t have pumpkin spice blend, feel free make your own by combining ground cinnamon, ground ginger, ground cloves, and/or ground nutmeg.
  • Vanilla extract
  • Diamond Crystal brand kosher salt
  • Toasted coconut flakes: optional topping that gives a crunchy contrast to the smooth custard filing. You can easily make them at home by baking raw unsweetened coconut flakes in a single layer at 300°F for 3 to 5 minutes until golden brown.
  • Whipped coconut cream or whipped cream(optional topping)

How to make pumpkin custard

Heat the oven to 325°F with the rack in the middle and boil a full kettle of water.

While the oven is heating, grab two 9″ x 13” glass baking dishes and lay a small towel on the bottom of each baking dish (the towel will keep the ramekins from slipping around). Divide eight 6-ounce ramekins into the two casserole dishes.

A hand is placing a ramekin into a casserole dish lined with a blue cloth.

Heat the coconut milk in a small saucepan over low heat until it’s steaming but not boiling.

Stirring coconut milk simmering in a small saucepan with a red spatula.

Crack the eggs into a large bowl, add the maple syrup, and whisk well.

Four sequential shots that show a person whisking together 4 raw eggs with maple syrup in a large measuring cup.

In a slow and constant stream, add the warmed coconut milk to the egg and syrup mixture, a little bit at a time, and mix vigorously. Don’t be impatient and add the hot coconut milk all at once or you’ll end up with scrambled eggs!

Pouring hot coconut milk into a measuring cup with whisked eggs and maple syrup.

Add the pumpkin puree, pumpkin spice baked, vanilla, and salt to the egg mixture…

Four sequential shot that show someone in an apron adding pumpkin puree, pumpkin spice and vanilla extract to measuring cup filled with whisked raw eggs, coconut milk, and coconut milk.

…and whisk until evenly combined.

Whisking the ingredients for pumpkin custard in a large measuring cup.

Evenly divide the pumpkin mixture into the ramekins in the casserole dishes.

Pouring the pumpkin custard mixture into white ramekins in a casserole dish lined with a blue and white towel.

Carefully transfer the two casserole pans to the hot oven.

Two white casserole dishes each filled with four ramekins of pumpkin custard are in an open oven.

Pour boiling water into the baking dishes until it reaches halfway up the ramekins and shut the oven door.

Pouring boiling water from a kettle into a casserole with ramekins of pumpkin custard in an open oven.

Bake custard cups for about 30 minutes. The custards are ready when a knife inserted into them comes out clean and they’re still slightly jiggly in the middle.

Taking a casserole pan filled with four cooked pumpkin custards out of the oven.

Cool the custards on a wire rack until they’re room temperature.

An overhead shot of freshly cooked pumpkin custards in ramekins cooling on a wire rack.

If desired, top the pumpkin custards with whipped coconut cream and toasted coconut flakes!

Close up photo of a paleo pumpkin custards in a white ramekin topped with whipped coconut cream and toasted coconut flakes.

How to store pumpkin custard cups

These custards can be made ahead because they taste great chilled. Refrigerate the ramekins for up to four days and top with whipped coconut cream and toasted coconut right before you devour them.

An overhead shot of four pumpkin custards and a hand grabbing one of them.

Looking for more recipe ideas? Head on over to my Recipe Index. You’ll also find exclusive recipes in my cookbooks, Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans (Andrews McMeel Publishing 2013), Ready or Not! (Andrews McMeel Publishing 2017), and Nom Nom Paleo: Let’s Go! (Andrews McMeel Publishing 2022).


Pumpkin Custard

4.81 from 21 votes
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time45 minutes
Total Time1 hour 55 minutes
Servings 8 servings
This Paleo pumpkin and coconut custard is the perfect dessert for your Halloween and Thanksgiving parties! You can make them ahead, too!

Ingredients 
 

  • cup full-fat coconut milk 
  • 4 large eggs
  • ½ cup maple syrup
  • ¾ cup canned pumpkin purée I use Libby’s
  • teaspoons pumpkin spice blend
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon Diamon Crystal brand kosher salt
  • whipped coconut cream optional topping
  • ½ cup toasted coconut flakes optional topping

Instructions 

  • Heat the oven to 325°F with the rack in the middle and boil a full kettle of water.
  • While the oven is heating, grab two 9" x 13” glass baking dishes and lay a small towel on the bottom of each baking dish (the towel will keep the ramekins from slipping around). Divide eight 6-ounce ramekins into the two casserole dishes.
  • Heat the coconut milk in a small saucepan over low heat until it’s steaming but not boiling.
  • Crack the eggs into a large bowl, add the maple syrup, and whisk well.
  • In a slow and constant stream, add the warmed coconut milk to the egg and syrup mixture, a little bit at a time, and mix vigorously. Don’t be impatient and add the hot coconut milk all at once or you’ll end up with scrambled eggs!
  • Add the pumpkin puree, pumpkin spice blend, vanilla, and salt to the egg mixture and whisk until evenly combined.
  • Evenly divide the pumpkin mixture into the ramekins in the casserole dishes before carefully move the two casserole dishes to the hot oven.
  • Pour boiling water into the baking dishes until it reaches halfway up the ramekins and shut the oven door.
  • Bake custard cups for about 30 minutes. The custards are ready when a knife inserted into them comes out clean and they’re still slightly jiggly in the middle.
  • Cool the custards on a wire rack until they’re room temperature.
    If desired, top the pumpkin custards with whipped coconut cream and toasted coconut flakes!

Video

Notes

These custards can be made ahead because they taste great chilled. Refrigerate the ramekins for up to four days and top with whipped coconut cream and toasted coconut right before you devour them.

Nutrition

Calories: 165kcal | Carbohydrates: 17g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 10g | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 13g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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About Michelle Tam

Hello! My name is Michelle Tam, and I love to eat. I think about food all the time. It borders on obsession. I’ve always loved the sights and smells of the kitchen. My mother was (and is) an excellent cook, and as a kid, I was her little shadow as she prepared supper each night. From her, I gained a deep, abiding love for magically transforming pantry items into mouth-watering family meals.

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