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How to Thicken Custard After Cooked?

Last Updated on February 26, 2024 by Lauren Beck

I understand – you have made custard, but it has ended up being thinner than you expected.

But don’t worry, I’ve got your back with some simple tricks to thicken it up.

One of the most common methods to thicken custard after it’s cooked is by using cornstarch or flour, which helps soak up the excess liquid.

Other Ways to Thicken Custard After Cooked

If you don’t have cornstarch or flour on hand, you can still thicken custard after cooking.

Simply bring the custard to a simmer and let it cook for an additional 5-10 minutes until it reaches the desired consistency. The liquid will slowly evaporate, leaving behind a thicker mixture.

You can also add powdered sugar to your custard for additional thickening. Simply whisk in the desired amount of sugar until it is fully dissolved and has reached your desired consistency.

If you find that your custard is still too runny after these methods, add a bit of cream or butter to help thicken it up.

Whisk together equal parts of cream and butter until fully blended, then slowly add it to your custard while stirring continuously.

This method will help to make a rich and creamy custard that is perfect for any dessert!

What Is Custard?

Custard is a type of cooked dessert made with milk or cream, egg yolks, and sugar.

It can be served both hot or cold depending on how it is prepared. There are many variations to this classic recipe, including vanilla, chocolate, lemon curd, and even pumpkin custard.

Custards usually require the mixture to be heated slowly while stirring continuously, thus preventing the eggs from scrambling and creating a smooth, creamy texture.

How to Make a Custard?

homemade custard on a white bowl


  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  1. Whisk together the milk, egg yolks, and sugar in a medium saucepan until fully blended.
  2. Place the saucepan over low heat and cook the mixture, stirring continuously, until it thickens and coats the back of a spoon.
  3. Remove the saucepan from heat and stir in the vanilla extract.
  4. Pour the custard into individual dishes or a single serving dish and chill for at least 2 hours before serving.

Why Is My Custard Watery?

Here are a few reasons why your custard may be watery:

  • You did not cook the mixture long enough, allowing too much liquid to remain.
  • You did not whisk the mixture constantly while it was cooking, causing lumps of egg to form.
  • The heat was too high, resulting in scrambled eggs instead of a creamy texture.
  • You added too much liquid, resulting in a thin custard.

What Consistency Should Custard Be?

The custard should be thick enough to coat the back of a spoon and hold its shape when scooped onto a plate.

It should not be watery or lumpy but rather have a smooth, creamy texture. If your custard is too thin, you can use one of the methods outlined in this article to thicken it up.

Why Does Custard Go Watery In the Fridge?

Once the custard is chilled in the refrigerator, it may become watery as a result of condensation.

This is because the proteins in egg yolks solidify when cooled, releasing excess liquid.

To prevent this, you can reduce the amount of liquid used when making the custard or gently reheat the custard on the stove before serving.

What Temperature Does Egg Custard Set At?

Egg custard should be cooked slowly over low heat until it reaches a temperature of 170-180°F (77-82°C).

This is when the proteins in the egg yolks will coagulate and thicken, resulting in a creamy custard [1].

It is important to remove the custard from heat as soon as it reaches this temperature in order to prevent the eggs from scrambling.

How Do You Store Custard?

Store custard in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. To reheat, heat it gently on the stove over low heat until it is just warmed through. Do not boil or overcook!

Can You Freeze Custard?

Yes, you can freeze custard. Place the custard in a freezer-safe bag or container and store it in the freezer for up to 3 months.

To thaw, place the frozen custard in the refrigerator overnight before reheating it gently over low heat on the stove.

Can I Thicken Ready Made Custard?

To thicken ready-made custard, you can add cornstarch or flour, custard powder, or egg yolk.

Heat the custard gently while stirring to achieve the desired thickness.


No worries if your custard is too thin! To thicken it, try adding equal parts of cream and butter while stirring constantly.

Another option is gently reheating the custard on low heat. Store it in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months.

With these tips, your custard will be creamy and delicious every time! Enjoy the versatility of this delightful dessert.


Lauren Beck
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