Lilikoi (Passion Fruit) Crème Brulee

Lilikoi Creme Brûlée

July 27: National Crème Brulee Day

Our favorite dessert at Kona Grill is its passion fruit crème brulee. The mainland-based chain restaurant tries to add a tropical taste to its menu. Islander loves lilikoi (Hawaiian word for passion fruit) and indulges once in awhile in the custard with a crust of crackly burnt sugar on top.

Now that she has learned how to make lilikoi crème brulee in her own kitchen, she makes these for fellow Hawaii expatriates. The passion fruit flavor reminds them of home. For a tropical twist to traditional crème brulee, infuse some passion fruit flavor and see why locals love the lilikoi in this delicious dessert.

Make lilikoi crème brulee for a summer social or luau and especially for National Crème Brulee Day!


(Adapted from NBC Connecticut)


  • 1 ¾ cups heavy whipping cream
  • 1-2 teaspoons vanilla paste
  • 6 egg yolks
  • ½ cup sugar, divided use
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ – 1/3 cup passion fruit puree/pulp/juice


In a microwavable cup or small bowl, stir the cream with the vanilla paste. Heat until hot (about 1-2 minutes). Let cool for about 10 minutes to infuse the flavoring. Boil a quart of water and set aside. In a bowl, whisk the egg yolks with ¼ cup sugar and salt. Gradually add the cream mixture and continue whisking.

Lilikoi Creme Brûlée

Add the passion fruit liquid. Strain this mixture, if necessary. Put the mixture into custard cups or ramekins. Pour the boiled water halfway up the sides of the custard cups or ramekins to make a water bath. Bake in a preheated oven at 325 degrees F for 30-45 minutes, testing for doneness with a toothpick (it should wiggle gently).

Lilikoi Creme Brûlée

Remove from the oven and carefully transfer the ramekins to a wire rack. Cool for about 30 minutes then cover and refrigerate overnight. Before serving, sprinkle a thin layer of the remaining sugar on top. Carefully use a crème brulee torch in a back and forth or circular motion to caramelize the sugar to a crisp. Serve immediately while the custard is still cold and the sugar top hardens.

Lilikoi Creme Brûlée


  • Mahalo nui loa (thank you very much) to Phyllis S. for ribbon lei for the final food photo above. Mahalo also to Olga W. for gifting Islander with the crème brulee blow torch.
  • Search our blog for other recipes containing lilikoi (passion fruit) as an ingredient.