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Sous Vide Salted Butterscotch Pudding with Irish Whiskey

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Sous Vide Salted Butterscotch Pudding with Irish Whiskey

Butterscotch Pudding? Butterscotch Pot de Creme? Butterscotch Custard? Or Butterscotch Budino?

In trying to figure out what to name this dessert I considered butterscotch pudding, butterscotch custard, butterscotch pot de creme and butterscotch budino. Butterscotch pudding won out, although this recipe is technically more of a custard. Puddings are typically thickened with cornstarch and this dessert is not. Custards are more egg-rich than puddings as is this dessert. Pot de Creme is a French custard and budino is an Italian pudding.   So why did I chose to name this recipe butterscotch pudding? I developed this recipe for St. Patrick's Day and while this is not a traditional Irish recipe, I wanted to honor all my Irish friends. So I added a nip of Irish Whiskey to the butterscotch pudding to give it a bit of depth, balance the sweet and honor the Irish. I could not name it St. Patrick's Pot de Creme (way too French) or Paddy Budino (way to Italian).  I considered Irish Pudding, but in the end, I chose Butterscotch Pudding because when I did an SEO analysis, I learned more people would see this recipe if I called it Butterscotch Pudding.   So now you know a little of what we food bloggers go through when we develop a recipe, beyond making something delicious, writing the recipe so it is easy to understand, editing the recipe, naming it so readers can discover it, photographing the food to make it a desirable, editing the photos and posting to social media to get out the word. There's more to it than meets the eye.   That said, my butterscotch pudding is very similar to the Butterscotch Budino served at Mozza, although the method for making it is very different. My brother-in-law Ray, who is a big Mozza butterscotch budino fan, kindly told me he liked my version best, which is enormous praise. I'll leave it to you to be the judge.

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Sous Vide Custards

Sous vide does a great job on custards. I cook them in these North Mountain 8-ounce straight-sided mason jars. Cooking these custards in a sous vide bath is much easier than baking them in a water bath in the oven where you have to juggle a shallow pan of hot water to pull them out of the oven. The sous vide texture is creamy and consistent all the way through the jar.
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Finish These Butterscotch Puddings with a Sprinkling of Flakey Sea Salt

A little flakey salt tones down the sweetness, emphasizes the butterscotch flavor and adds a bit of crunch. When ready to serve, open up the butterscotch pudding jars and garnish each pudding with some flakey sea salt. I like Maldon sea salt for its flavor and large crisp flakes. A dollop of whipped cream, chocolate shavings or a chocolate sea salt almond all make fine garnishes for this pudding.

More Custard Desserts

If you like this Butterscotch pudding you may also like our Sous Vide Salted Pot de Creme with Espresso and Bourbon or our traditional Chocolate Espresso Pot de Creme that is baked in the oven. Print

Sous Vide Salted Butterscotch Pudding with Irish Whiskey

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This rich and decadent butterscotch pudding is cooked sous vide for a creamy and smooth texture that melts on the mouth. A splash of Irish Whiskey gives it depth. I finish it with a sprinkling of Maldon sea salt and a salted chocolate covered almond. Oh my!

  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hours 45 minutes
  • Total Time: 4 hours 55 minutes
  • Yield: 8 Servings 1x
  • Category: Dessert
  • Cuisine: New American


  • 4 cups cream
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 t kosher salt
  • 1 vanilla bean
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 9 egg yolks
  • 2 T Irish whiskey
  • Maldon sea salt
  • Garnish of your choice. I used salted chocolate almonds from Trader Joes. 


  1. In a small heavy saucepan put cream, brown sugar and salt. Slice the vanilla bean in half and scoop out the seeds into the cream along with the pod. Heat over medium heat until the cream around the edges of the pan begins to bubble and the sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and set aside.
  2. In a separate larger saucepan bring 1 cup of water and the granulated sugar to a boil. Watch the sugar and water carefully, stirring frequently. The sugar will dissolve, bubble and gradually darken to a golden brown. This will take about 10 minutes. Take care not to burn. Remove from heat.
  3. Remove the vanilla pod from the cream mixture and gradually whisk the cream mixture into the hot sugar mixture, pouring the cream in a fine stream and whisking to incorporate.
  4. Whisk the egg yolks into the cream and sugar mixture one or two at a time, whisking completely after each yolk addition. Add the Irish Whiskey and whisk again.
  5. Pour the mixture into a large measuring cup with a good pouring spout. Pour six ounces of the butterscotch mixture into eight 8-ounce mason jars, leaving about 3/4″ of air space at the top of each jar.  Do not fill to the top.
  6. Screw the lids on to the jars using your fingers only, screwing until the jars are finger-tight. Do not overtighten as air needs to escape from the jars during the cooking process.
  7. Fill a large pot or a 12-quart Rubbermaid storage container with room temperature water and secure your sous vide circulator to the pot or container. Place the jars into the room temperature water bath and set the circulator to 176 degrees Fahrenheit. When the water reaches 176 degrees set the timer to one hour.
  8. When the timer goes off, turn off the circulator and remove the jars with tongs (they will be hot). Set the jars on a dry kitchen towel and allow to cool for a few minutes. Store in the fridge for 3 – 4 hours and up to several days before serving.
  9. When you are ready to serve, open the jars and sprinkle a little Maldon sea salt over the top of each pudding. Garnish as you please. Whipped cream, chocolate shavings or a salted chocolate almond all work well. 


  1. Allow approximately 30 minutes for your sous vide bath to come to temperature. Actual time will depend on the type of circulator you use as well as the size pot or container you are using for your water bath.
  2. When you open up the jars to serve the puddings a little condensation may have developed between the pudding and the lid. No problem, just tilt the jars over the sink to drain out any excess moisture. There should not be more than a few drops. 


  1. Corey says:

    FYI, Ireland is not part of the United Kingdom. In fact, it’s celebrating the centenary of its independence from the UK.

    But I look forward to trying the recipe. Thanks!

    1. Kim Pawell says:

      Hi Corey, Thank you for the geography correction. I am first to admit geography is not my expertise. Fortunately my geographical ignorance doesn’t impact the quality of this recipe. I do hope you give it a chance. Thanks for writing in!

  2. Dave says:

    I think the author is from Northern Ireland ….

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