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Filipino Flan vs Mexican Flan: What’s the Difference?

Diving into desserts, we’ve all got our picks.

Filipino flan? It’s rich, creamy, and shouts tropical vibes.

Mexican flan? A custardy delight that whispers ‘fiesta’ with every spoonful.

We’re not just talking food; this is culture on a plate. I remember my first bite of each—it was like attending a global carnival from my kitchen.

Filipino flan, with its heavier feel, always takes me back to holidays spent under the sun. Meanwhile, Mexican flan feels like a lively dance in my mouth, lighter but still full of flavor.

What sets them apart isn’t just ingredients; it’s the history, the memories.

Ready? Let’s dig in.

What is Filipino Flan?

Indulge in Filipino flan; this popular dessert is made with milk, egg yolks and caramel.

It has a velvety texture and a sweetness that won’t overwhelm you.

It’s often made with condensed and evaporated milk instead of regular dairy milk.

This gives it an extra creamy texture that’s perfect for treating yourself.

Plus, some versions are cooked on the stove instead of in the oven, making it softer and delicate.

It’s different from Mexican flan; it has a silky mouthfeel and is sweeter.

If you’re looking for a decadent dessert, Filipino flan is it.

What is Mexican Flan?

Mexican Flan is a scrumptious treat from Spain.

Colonization brought it to Latin America.

It’s made with eggs, cream, sugar, and vanilla.

Topped with caramel sauce, it’s a creamy, smooth custard.

Its fame has spread throughout the world in many variations.

Mexican Flan stands out from other flans by using condensed milk instead of cream or whole milk.

This makes it sweeter and thicker.

It’s served at festivities such as Christmas and Easter, and is a part of Mexican cuisine.

Mexican Flan continues to amaze bakers worldwide with its velvety texture and flavorful taste.

It’s suitable for any occasion; appropriate for special dining, yet humble enough for family events.

With inventiveness in the food industry, this delectable dessert will be ever-evolving, yet stay loyal to its origins.

Differences Between Filipino Flan and Mexican Flan

Flan is a popular sweet dessert, found in many countries, including Mexico and the Philippines.

Although the recipe is similar, there are some differences in the Filipino and Mexican versions.

Ingredients Used

When comparing Filipino flan to Mexican flan, the ingredients vary.

Both rely on eggs, milk, and sugar.

Filipino flan uses condensed milk instead of regular milk.

This gives it a sweeter flavor.

Coconut milk or evaporated milk may also be used.

Mexican flan uses whole milk, or even heavy cream, plus vanilla extract or cinnamon for flavor.

Both types of flan are delicious desserts, but the small differences in ingredients make them unique.

Try both to decide which you prefer.

Texture and Consistency

Flan is a popular dessert in Filipino and Mexican cuisines.

Both made with a custard base but are slightly different in texture and consistency.

Filipino flan has a smooth and silky texture due to the use of coconut milk.

It’s also denser, giving it a more substantial feel.

Mexican flan is creamier because of the use of evaporated milk or sweetened condensed milk.

It is typically lighter and airier.

Presentation is another difference between the two.

Mexican flan is usually served in a shallow dish with caramel sauce, while Filipino flan is molded into individual servings and topped with caramelized sugar.

Both versions of flan remain popular for their flavor and creamy texture.

Whether you prefer Filipino flan’s denser, silky consistency or Mexican flan’s creaminess, this classic dessert is a delightful way to end any meal.

Sweetness and Flavorings

Filipino and Mexican flans vary in sweetness and taste.

Filipino flan uses condensed milk, while Mexican flan uses evaporated milk plus a drop of vanilla extract.

Both feature caramelized sugar for extra sweetness.

A special thing about Filipino flan is that cream cheese is added to the mix.

This makes the texture denser than the Mexican variety.

Additionally, some Filipinos like to include coconut milk or pandan leaves for more aroma and flavor.

Cooking Techniques

Filipino and Mexican Flan may look the same, but there are differences in how they are cooked.

Filipino Flan is often steamed, while Mexican Flan is baked with the bain-marie technique.

Steaming results in a light texture, while baking creates a creamier flavour with caramel.

Both versions require attention and precision to get the signature silky-smooth consistency.

For Filipino Flan, it’s important to cover the mold with foil or banana leaves, and cook over low heat.

Avoid overcooking as it could cause curdling and graininess.

For Mexican Flan, more attention needs to be given when making the caramel sauce.

The sugar needs to be melted to a perfect amber color without burning.

Both Filipino and Mexican Flan show the versatility of flans as a dessert.

Whether light and airy or creamy and decadent, no one can deny that they are worth trying at least once.

Similarities Between Filipino Flan and Mexican Flan

Filipino flan and Mexican flan have similarities.

Both are custard-based, have a caramelized sugar topping, and are served cold.

They have their roots in Spanish cuisine.

But they differ.

Filipino flan is delicate and light.

Mexican flan is denser.

Filipinos add cream cheese or condensed milk.

Mexicans use evaporated milk or heavy cream.

Filipinos use fewer eggs.

Leche Flan is a popular Filipino dessert.

Evaporated milk makes it delicate.

Ensaymada Flan is another variation that uses the local pastry Ensalada as its base.

Mexican flan is common in Latin America.

Spaniards likely brought it to Mexico during colonial times.

Cultural Significance and Traditional Occasions

Cultural significance and traditional occasions are key in making a dessert unique.

Filipino Flan and Mexican Flan are two famous delicacies that bring joy to celebratory events.

The creamy texture of flan is often linked to happy moments that make life enjoyable.

Filipino Flan, also known as Leche Flan, has eggs, milk, and sugar.

It gives a soft and silky texture.

It is usually eaten on Christmas Eve, called “Noche Buena”.

In the Philippines, it is important in weddings and other ceremonies.

Mexican Flan, or “Flan de Cajeta”, uses goat milk plus cajeta – a type of caramel sauce.

It is often served on birthdays or Christmas.

Both flans have a creamy texture, but differ in ingredients.

Filipino Flan has a custardy consistency that is different from Mexican Flan.

Cultural variations between the two are seen in the ingredients and the way they are made and enjoyed.

Filipino Flan vs Mexican Flan: Which is Preferred?

Filipino flan and Mexican flan seem alike, however each has its own particular flavor and prep.

Both are much enjoyed in their nations and past their borders.

Filipino flan is creamier and sweeter due to condensed milk usage.

Mexican flan is thicker and denser because of whole or evaporated milk.

Furthermore, Mexican flan usually has caramelized sugar at the base.

Filipino people prefer a version called leche flan that uses corn syrup instead of caramel.

Despite both being delicious, personal taste decides the preference.

Variations and Regional Influences

Flan – a dessert that pleases crowds.

Filipino flan, or leche flan, is light and sweet, made of condensed milk and egg yolks.

It’s often served with caramel syrup for extra sweetness.

Mexican flan has a denser texture and contains cream cheese, or sometimes evaporated milk.

Plus, it carries the special flavor of vanilla or cinnamon.

Preparation of each flan is influenced by regional cultures.

Mexican flan varies across Mexico and leche flans have provincial versions.

No matter which texture and taste you prefer, each version offers something unique.

Yet, what truly sets them apart is their origins and cultural nuances.


Flan looks the same, but the taste is different.

Mexican flan is richer and creamier because they use condensed and evaporated milk.

Philippines flan uses plain milk and more egg yolks, making it lighter and yellower.

Mexican flan is often sweeter because of the caramelized sugar on top.

Filipino flan has a milder sweetness.

Both are served in celebrations such as birthdays and family gatherings.

So, appreciate the unique flavors of both.

Filipino Flan vs Mexican Flan: What’s the Difference?

Andrew Gray
Exploring custard desserts from different cultures? Compare Filipino flan and Mexican flan, analyzing their ingredients, textures, and flavor profiles to appreciate the unique twists each culture brings to this beloved dessert.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course This vs That
Servings 1 Serving



  • Choose between Filipino Flan and Mexican Flan based on your preference for flavor and texture.
  • Follow the cooking directions specific to your chosen flan recipe, ensuring you understand the steps involved.
  • Prepare the ingredients as instructed, taking into account any variations in measurements or additional flavorings.
  • Combine the ingredients according to the recipe, making sure to achieve a smooth and well-mixed custard mixture.
  • Pour the custard mixture into a caramel-coated mold or individual ramekins, distributing it evenly.
  • Set up a water bath by placing the flan-filled mold or ramekins in a larger baking dish partially filled with water.
  • Bake the flan in the oven at the specified temperature and time, ensuring it sets and achieves a smooth and silky texture.
  • Once baked, remove the flan from the oven and allow it to cool before refrigerating.
  • Chill the flan in the refrigerator for several hours or overnight to enhance its flavor and achieve the desired consistency.
  • Prior to serving, carefully invert the flan onto a serving plate, allowing the caramel sauce to drizzle over the custard.
  • Serve and enjoy the delightful sweetness and creamy texture of your chosen Filipino Flan or Mexican Flan.
Keyword Filipino Flan vs Mexican Flan
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5 from 1 vote (1 rating without comment)

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