I used to have a very nice set of matching ramekins. Then, one by one, they broke. Why are ramekins so fragile?!
I have yet to buy new ramekins mainly because I am afraid they will just break again. However, I often need a set of ramekins to make some of my favorite individual dessert recipes.
I have had to get a little resourceful, using ramekin substitutes to hold my puddings, creme brulees and custards.
If you are missing ramekins and in need of a ramekin substitute, my scrappy baking solutions can help! I know exactly what to use in place of a ramekin.
The best ramekin substitute is a good ceramic mug. A mug can be baked in the oven, is about the same size as a large ramekin and most of us already have mugs at home.
A muffin tin is another good ramekin substitute especially for baking cakes. Use a ceramic bowl in place of a ramekin to make your favorite French onion soup recipe. Recycled jelly jars are useful as a ramekin substitute as well.
- Ramekin Substitutes
- Quick Ramekin Substitute Guide
- What Is A Ramekin?
- What to Consider in a Ramekin Substitute
- Easy Lava Cake Recipe
- Final Words
The type of ramekin substitute you need will largely depend on what you are making. If you are making a simple pudding, you may not need a heat proof or oven safe ramekin.
But if you are making a classic crème brulee, you might want a ramekin replacement that is the same size and shape as a traditional crème brulee ramekin.
Take a look at all the different things you can use if you do not have ramekins on hand. Your baking projects will be saved!
Muffin pans are a great substitute for ramekins when you need a small, individually sided dessert.
Look for a muffin pan that is non stick for the best results. You can also grease your muffin pan with butter or oil to ensure your food pops right out!
A muffin pan is a good ramekin substitute for lava cakes or other individual cakes. You can scoop the batter right into the muffin tin, bake as directed in your recipe and have beautiful, individual desserts.
Muffin pans are safe to use in -40 degrees to 446 degree ovens.
Try using this lava cake recipe from Preppy Kitchen. You can make it in a muffin pan or in ramekins.
You may be wondering if a muffin pan and a cupcake pan are the same thing. While they are very close, they are slightly different. Both are great ramekin substitutes.
A cupcake pan is a little more shallow than a muffin pan. Cupcake pans have sides that angle outwards while muffin pan sides are straight and more like a ramekin. Muffin pan cups are spaced further apart and cupcake pans are close together.
A standard cupcake pan is safe for oven temperatures up to 475 degrees F. Try baking individual bread puddings in a well greased cupcake pan. Pop them out and plate the perfect little desserts to wow your guests.
3)Pyrex Custard Cups
When comparing custard cups vs ramekins, you may think that they are pretty identical.
So what is the difference between a custard cup and a ramekin? Usually it is the material they are made from.
Ramekins are typically ceramic while custard cups are made from glass. Pyrex custard cups are designed to be used in the oven up to 475 degrees. They are great for making baked puddings.
However, they are not always freezer safe. Check your custard cups before sticking them in the freezer. You don’t want the thick glass to crack!
Custard cups come in all shapes and sizes. They are a great ramekin substitute for pudding, soufflé or individual cakes.
Since custard cups are glass, they are see through which can add a lot of visual appeal to your recipes.
4)Glass Ball Jars
Ball canning jars have been quite popular in the last few years. Not only are they used for canning and preserving food, but people love using them to hold smoothies and drinks. Why not use them as a ramekin substitute, too!
Glass canning jars are completely oven safe and can withstand very high heats, up to 375 degrees F.
They are very easy to find in stores and come in all shapes and sizes. I recommend using the short, four ounce Ball jars in place of a ramekin.
Use canning jars to replace ramekins in any baking recipe. They are a perfect vessel for baking lava cakes, muffins and small souffles.
A shallow cake pan can work very well to replace a ramekin. Using a cake pan to replace ramekins will change your food a little bit.
Instead of making individual desserts, you will be making one, larger dessert or baked good.
It can be tricky to convert a recipe that asks for multiple ramekins into one, larger baking dish.
How big should the baking dish be? I can help you with this ramekin vs baking dish math!
If your recipe asks for four, 5 ounce ramekins, use one 8 inch round baking pan instead.
The batter will be the same thickness when poured in the cake pan as it would be in separate ramekins.
Cake pans tend to be made of aluminum or stainless steel. They can withstand high heats, up to 500 degrees F.
Metal will bake your foods faster. Reduce your cooking time by a few minutes and start checking your baked goods earlier. They may bake quickly even though they are in one big pan!
Try making a big banana pudding in a cake pan rather than individual ramekins. We have some great recipes here!
6)Wide Casserole Dish
A casserole dish is much like a cake pan. However, casserole dishes are usually made of glass or ceramic.
If you have a ceramic or porcelain casserole dish, great! They can withstand heats in the thousand degree ranges and are the best substitute for ramekins.
Just like a baking dish, casserole dishes are much larger than ramekins. If your recipe makes six 4 ounce ramekins, then a 9×13 casserole dish will work.
You can make a beautiful, large crème brulee using a casserole dish and this easy recipe from Sally’s Baking Addiction.
7)Silicone Baking Molds
Silicone baking molds are fantastic for baking individual desserts. They are oven safe up to 500 degrees F, easy to clean and easy to use. Desserts just pop right out of the flexible mold!
Silicone baking molds come in a wide variety of shapes. Look for a dome shaped mold or shallow muffin shape mold.
Silicone molds are best for baked desserts like mini cakes. You cannot serve food directly from a silicone mold since they often hold multiple serving on one connected tray.
You will need to unmold your foods and plate them instead. However, silicone baking molds are still great individual vessels for replacing ramekins.
8)Empty Jam Jars
Looking for a frugal substitute for ramekins? Try recycling jam jars.
The jam jars you get in the grocery store are typically made of very durable glass. You can reuse those jam jars as make shift ramekins!
Some jam jars will indicate on the bottom if they are oven safe up to 385 degrees F. If your jar isn’t heat resistant, use the jam jars only for non baking needs.
Fill the individual jars with some homemade pudding, scoop some ice cream into a jar or fill it with yogurt and granola. Recycling is always a good idea!
Is a soufflé dish a ramekin? Technically, yes. A soufflé dish is a very specific type of ramekin that is usually used to make, you guessed it, soufflé!
Soufflé dishes have a special shape that are perfect for baking soufflé. The straight sides and rimmed lip are easy for the eggy soufflé to climb up as they bake. Soufflé dishes also have a classic, lined exterior.
Soufflé dishes are usually about six ounces. They are a little bigger than your standard ramekin so keep this in mind when using a soufflé dish as a ramekin substitute. They may not look quite as full as a classic ramekin. However, they will work great!
Soufflé dishes are typically ceramic and can withstand very high temperatures, up to 3,000 degrees F.
You don’t have to worry about them ever getting that hot in your oven! You can also use a pretty soufflé dish to hold sauces or dips.
Most people have mugs already in their home. This make a mug a very convenient substitute for a ramekin.
Mugs are typically ceramic so they are the same material as a classic ramekin. Ceramic is oven safe up to around 400 degrees and also dishwasher safe. Be sure to check your specific mug for an oven safe stamp.
Ramekins tend to be shorter than most mugs so pick your smallest mugs to use in place of ramekins. Shorter mugs are your best bet.
Consider the look of your mug as well. Try to use matching mugs, if possible, and keep in mind that you will most likely be serving your dessert or food right in the mug.
If your mugs have handles, remember that those handles will be very hot when they come out of the oven. Don’t grab the handle by mistake!
A small, ceramic bowl can be almost exactly the same as a ramekin. The only difference between a bowl and a ramekin is the sides.
Bowls curve upward at a rounded slope while ramekins have a 90 degree angle from the bottom to the straight sides.
Ceramic bowls are heat proof, oven safe and often shatter proof. They come in a wide array of colors to match your personality or to reflect the flavors in your dessert. A strawberry soufflé in a red bowl sounds gorgeous!
Bowls tend to work best when you are making a larger serving of food. They are perfect to use for French onion soup or for a bigger serving of cake.
Be sure to grease the sides of your bowl with butter when baking to ensure nothing sticks to the edges.
Quick Ramekin Substitute Guide
You now know all about my favorite ramekin substitutes. Let me give you a quick guide for which ramekin substitutes work best for specific foods.
- Best Ramekin substitute for lava cakes– A muffin pan or silicone mold
- Ramekin substitute for souffle– A tall, ceramic mug, souffle dish or pyrex cups
- Best Ramekin substitute for creme brulee– A cake pan or casserole dish
- Ramekin replacement for puddings– Recycled jam jar or canning jar
- Substitute for ramekins for soups– A ceramic bowl or Pyrex custard cups
- Ramekin substitute for flan– Custard cups, canning jar or cupcake pan
- Ramekin Substitute for Crème Caramel– Canning jars, custard cups or short tea cups
Keep this quick guide handy and check it anytime you need to replace a ramekin in your recipes.
What Is A Ramekin?
A ramekin is a small bowl that is used for cooking and serving food. They are perfect for making single serving portions of desserts and baked goods.
Most ramekins are oven safe and heat proof. They can be baked or chilled. Food can be served directly from the ramekin making for an easy and pretty display.
The average ramekin is about 5 ounces which is a little more than ½ cup. Ramekins can come in all different sizes, though, from small three ounce ramekins to large 7 ounce soufflé ramekins. The size you need may vary based on what you are making.
What to Consider in a Ramekin Substitute
Do you need a ramekin to bake a chocolate lava cake? Or maybe you need a ramekin substitute to make a beautiful creme brulee.
As I mentioned before, what you are using your ramekin for will determine what ramekin substitute will work best.
Here are a few things to consider when you are assessing ramekin substitute options.
How big is the ramekin in your recipe? You will want a similarly sized substitute. For example, a traditional crème brulee is usually made in a 4 ounce ramekin.
Pouring the crème brulee liquid into a big, 12 ounce substitute may not be the best plan. Ramekin sizes matter!
Try to use a substitute that is the same shape as the ramekins in your recipe. Let’s talk about crème brulee again.
It is usually made in a shallow, oblong, oval shaped ramekin. Look for a ramekin substitute that is similarly shaped to get the best results.
On the other hand, if you are making a thick lava cake, you will want a deeper ramekin substitute to ensure your cake is nice and tall. Shape matters when it comes to ramekins!
The material your ramekin substitute is made from is very important. Most ramekins are ceramic or glass.
They are heat proof and shatter resistant. A ceramic substitute will help your foods bake in a similar fashion as they would in a ceramic ramekin.
However, other durable materials will work well. Steel, aluminum, enamel, glass and cast iron all work well to replace a traditional ceramic ramekin.
Are you planning to bake or cook in your ramekin substitute? Then you need to ensure the material of your substitute is heat safe.
Ceramic ramekins can withstand heats up to 3000 degrees. While you don’t necessarily need a ramekin substitute that can get that hot, it should be able to go into a hot oven. Most kitchen pieces will say right on them if they are oven safe so be sure to check!
Easy Lava Cake Recipe
I talked a lot about lava cakes in this guide and now I am really craving one. That gooey chocolate filling and rich warm cake is irresistible!
Here is my easy lava cake recipe for you to try, too. If you don’t have ramekins to use to bake the cakes, scoop the batter into a cupcake pan or muffin tin!
½ cup butter
¾ cup dark chocolate
2 egg yolks
¼ cup sugar
¼ tsp salt
½ tsp vanilla extract
2 Tbsp all purpose flour
1.Preheat your oven to 450 degrees F.
2.Grease and flour four, 6 ounce ramekin cups. (Use one of my ramekin substitutes if needed!)
3.Melt the butter and chocolate over a double boiler, stirring occasionally until fully melted and smooth.
4.In a separate bowl, beat the eggs, egg yolks, sugar and salt until thick and pale.
5.Whisk the melted chocolate and flour into the egg mix until smooth and well blended.
6.Divide the batter between the prepared ramekins.
7.Place the ramekins on a flat baking sheet and bake in the hot oven for 12 minutes.
8.Let the cakes cool slightly before serving right inside the ramekins. You can also flip the ramekins upside down, unmolding the lava cake onto a plate for serving.
Someday I will buy myself a beautiful new set of ramekins. But I am in no rush. I have a lot of great ramekin substitutes to use that all work so well.
So, actually, maybe I won’t buy new ramekins. There really is no need! I have nice mugs, useful muffin tins and some jelly jars I have been saving for just this occasion!
My name is Keren Tayler. I am a stay-at-home mama to three lovely girls, Sarah + Rachel + Hannah. Prior to becoming a mom, I had a successful career in the accounting field, steps away from becoming a CPA. I decided to give up on my career in order to raise my own kids (as opposed to letting a nanny do it, no judgment here :)) I learned a lot and I love sharing it with other moms. Along the way, I also became a Certified Food Handler.