Steamed Milk Custard

Bring in the flavours of the Mid-Autumn Festival with this light and silky dessert. Make it extra festive by topping it off with pomelo, pear or taro. Recipe by Brenda Yim @PistachioPicks

Prep Time

10 mins

Cook Time

25 mins

Total Time

35 mins


  • large pot
  • steaming wire rack
  • saucepan
  • whisk or fork
  • fine mesh sieve
  • aluminum foil
  • 4 shallow bowls


  • 1 ½ cups (355 mL) of homogenized milk (3.25% milk fat)
  • ½ cup (120 mL) granulated sugar
  • 4 egg whites


  1. In a large pot, place a steaming wire rack in the centre and pour enough water just below the wire rack.
  2. Heat milk and sugar in a saucepan over low-medium heat until it’s warm and sugar dissolves. Do not boil the milk.
  3. Whisk together egg whites until it foams (around 15 strokes).
  4. While whisking, slowly add milk into egg whites to avoid making scrambled eggs.
  5. Pour the milk custard mixture through a fine mesh sieve and back into the saucepan.
  6. Ladle the custard into 4 shallow bowls and fill it till 80% full.
  7. Tightly cover the top of the bowls with aluminum foil. Make sure the top is sealed well for proper cooking
  8. Place the bowls into the steamer and steam for 10 minutes on low heat.
  9. After 10 minutes, turn off the heat and leave the bowls inside to cook in residual heat.
  10. Take out the bowls and remove the foil. Gently jiggle the bowl to test if there’s any runny milk custard. If there is, you can always put the foil back on and steam for 3-5 more minutes.
  11. Serve the custard hot or pop it in the fridge for 2 hours to enjoy it cold.
  12. You can add toppings like pomelo, pear and taro if you’re eating this dessert during the Mid Autumn Moon Festival!