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Pumpkin Flan (Flan de Calabaza)

Pumpkin flan is the only dessert you need this fall! Pumpkin pie, cheesecake and flan combine in one epic dessert!

Slice of Pumpkin Flan on a plate

Pumpkin Flan

Note to regular readers: I’m back! I had to take an unplanned break to deal with some personal matters. I have several recipes I wasn’t able to post during that time but they’ll be up shortly. Some are out of season now, but good food is good anytime! 

Ever since I posted Flan de Queso (cream cheese flan) on my blog it has firmly held the title for Most Popular Dessert. There something about the rich, tangy cream cheese that makes flan even better. 

It’s only fitting then that this Flan de Calabaza (pumpkin flan) contains cream cheese as well. It gives it a velvety texture similar to cheesecake – like two desserts in one!

If you’d rather not add the cream cheese that’s perfectly okay. You’ll have a traditional flan with a silkier texture. If leaving out the cream cheese, go ahead and add another egg (like Flan de Coco).

This pumpkin flan is taking over as my favorite fall dessert! Bye bye to pumpkin pie! Plus, it looks so impressive, yet it’s easy (as pie) to make!

If you’ve never made flan before, continue reading for all my tips and tricks for the perfect flan every time.

Whole Pumpkin Flan with cinnamon and cream cheee

How to make Puerto Rican Flan de Calabaza

Firstly, start a kettle of water to boil, preheat your oven and set out 2 pans for the flan. One should be an 8- or 9-inch cake pan with 2-inch sides.

The other should be a larger pan that the cake pan can fit inside, such as a 13×9 or small roasting pan.

Next, you’ll need to prepare the caramelized sugar syrup. This is what glazes the flan once you unmold it from the pan.

Wedge of Pumpkin Flan on a plate

The process of melting sugar takes time, so don’t rush it. Go low and slow so it doesn’t burn and allow at least 10 minutes for results.

It can be tempting, but try not to touch the melting sugar with any utensils until it’s liquefied. To stir, gently swirl the pan around.

The sugar will be a dark amber color when it’s finished cooking. The important part here is that all of the granules have melted and there are no clumps.

Pour the syrup into your cake pan right away and tilt the pan around to coat. Work quickly before the sugar hardens, but take care since the pan will get hot.

Pumpkin flan in the pan before unmolding

Set that aside while you prepare the custard. Simply place all the ingredients in a blender and process until smooth.

Don’t over-mix, however, since that will add extra air bubbles into the batter. We want a smooth, silky flan.

To remove air bubbles and any little bits that didn’t get blended, pour the mixture through a sieve as you add it to the cake pan (which is nestled inside the larger pan).

Add enough boiling water to the larger pan to come halfway up the sides of the cake pan. The flan will cook in a water bath also known as a baño de María or bain marie.

This gives it a more even temperature as it cooks and prevents it from curdling or forming crusty edges.

Slice of Flan de Calabaza y Queso on a plate

It takes about an hour to cook, but every oven is different. You can tell it’s done when the outside is completely set and the very center has a slight jiggle. It will continue to set all the way as it cools.

You can also stick a fork or knife in the center to test just how firm it is.

Before serving, pumpkin flan needs to be thoroughly chilled. It will take several hours to cool down and then chill in the refrigerator, so plan on making this dessert ahead of time.

When ready to serve, run a knife around the edge of the pan. Place a plate over the cake pan and flip the whole thing upside down. Slowly remove the pan and let the syrup drip down.

To make it extra fancy, garnish with cinnamon sticks, pumpkin seeds and/or swirls of whipped cream!

Slice of Flan de Calabaza y Queso on a plate

Pumpkin Flan

Yield: 12 servings
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Chill Time: 4 hours
Total Time: 5 hours 20 minutes

A cross between pumpkin pie and traditional flan, this impressive dessert is easier to make than it looks!


  • 1 cup Granulated Sugar
  • 8 ounces Cream Cheese
  • 1 14 ounce can Sweetened Condensed Milk
  • 1 12 ounce can Evaporated Milk
  • 1 cup Canned Pumpkin
  • 4 large Eggs
  • 1 teaspoon Pure Vanilla Extract
  • 1 teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon Grated Nutmeg

For Garnish:

  • Cinnamon Sticks
  • Pumpkin Seeds


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F degrees. Set a kettle of water to boil. Place an 8- or 9-inch cake pan with 2-inch high sides inside of a larger baking pan (such as a 13x9).
  2. In a medium sauce pan over low heat, melt sugar until completely dissolved. Watch carefully so it does not burn. You may swirl the pan to stir. Remove from heat when it is a dark golden, amber color.
  3. Immediately pour the melted sugar into the bottom of the cake pan. Working quickly before it hardens, tilt the pan to coat the bottom. Caution: pan will get hot. Place pan back in larger baking dish.
  4. In a blender beat the cream cheese, sweetened condensed milk, evaporated milk, pumpkin, eggs, vanilla, cinnamon and nutmeg. Mix until well combined.
  5. Strain the custard through a fine-mesh sieve to ensure there are no lumps and to remove excess air bubbles. Pour the strained custard into the cake pan over the sugar caramel.
  6. Next, add boiling water to the larger pan until it reaches halfway up the sides of the cake pan. Bake for 60-75 minutes, or until the flan is set around the edges with a slight jiggle in the very middle.
  7. Remove from oven and let the flan cool in the water bath, about an hour. Once cool, cover and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled. Overnight is best.
  8. When ready to serve, run a knife around the edges to loosen. Set a plate over the flan and flip upside-down to invert. If desired, garnish with cinnamon sticks and pumpkin seeds. Slice into wedges and serve.

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 372Total Fat: 15gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 105mgSodium: 175mgCarbohydrates: 50gFiber: 2gSugar: 46gProtein: 10g

Nutritional information provided is an estimate only. Please consult the labels of ingredients you use for more accurate results.

Did you make this recipe?

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You may also enjoy…

Easy Flan Cake (Flancocho) – another crazy good Puerto Rican recipe that combines two desserts in one!

Puerto Rican Flancocho - easy flan cake recipe!

And if you love alternative pumpkin desserts this Pumpkin Brownie Trifle is AMAZING!

Layers of fudgy chocolate brownies, pumpkin cheesecake pudding and warm pumpkin spice combine in this festive dessert. Pumpkin brownie trifle is an easy yet stunning dessert to make this holiday season!

Lourdes Colon

Tuesday 25th of January 2022

There we go! That's my favorite flan. I don't like any flan that has creme cheese. Love calabaza or punkin and use it fresh from our farm. Thanks for sharing thus wonderful recipes.


Wednesday 3rd of November 2021

Made this flan de calabaza y el de queso and they’re both a hit. Would you by chance have a flan de guayaba y queso recipe?? Thank you so much for sharing all your yummy recipes. They’ve never failed to please the palette. Xoxo


Wednesday 3rd of November 2021

I've never tried de guayaba y queso! Two of my faves so I might have to do some experimenting.

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