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Mexican Flan on a red plate

Pressure Cooker Mexican Flan with Caramel (Flan de Cajeta)

  • Author: Mike Vrobel
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 6 Flans 1x


Pressure Cooker Mexican Flan with Caramel (Flan de Cajeta) - a fantastic make-ahead dessert from the Instant Pot or pressure cooker.


  • 12 tablespoons Mexican cajeta (or caramel sauce)
  • 3 large eggs
  • 12-ounce can evaporated milk
  • 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  1. Prepare custard cups for cooking: Put 2 tablespoons of cajeta in the bottom of each custard cup or ramekin. In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs. (I use a 2 quart Pyrex with a spout, to make pouring easier.) Add the evaporated milk, sweetened condensed milk, and vanilla, and whisk until smooth. Divide the custard between the prepared custard cups - this recipe will fill 6 (6-ounce) cups or ramekins, with about 1/2 inch of headspace at the top of each cup. Cover each cup with a piece of aluminum foil, and crimp the edges.
  2. Pressure cook the cups for 5 minutes with a natural pressure release: Put 1 cup of water and the cooking rack in the pressure cooker pot. Stack the prepared cups in the pressure cooker. I do this in two layers of 3 cups each, with the second layer balanced on top of the first layer. Lock the lid on the cooker. Cook at high pressure for 5 minutes (“manual” or “pressure cook” mode in my Instant Pot), then let the pressure come down naturally, about 15 minutes more, to gently finish the cooking.
  3. Cool the flans: Remove the cups from the pressure cooker and let rest at room temperature for an hour. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours to set the custard. (You can refrigerate for longer - up to 3 days - but wrap tightly with plastic wrap to keep out fridge odors.)
  4. Serve: Run a paring knife around the edge of the cup to loosen the custard. Set a plate on top of the cup (like a lid), grab both the cup and the plate, and flip them together. Lift the cup off of the flan - tap gently on the plate to unmold if it sticks. Spoon the cajeta left in the cup over the top of the flan, serve, and enjoy!


  • Cooking time is the same for both electric and stovetop pressure cookers.
  • Can’t find cajeta? Use caramel sauce. Authentic cajeta is made with goat’s milk, not cow’s milk, so it has a slightly different taste. But regular caramel is close enough.


  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Category: Appetizers and Drinks
  • Method: Pressure Cooker
  • Cuisine: Mexican