Fruit Custard | Easy Healthy Fruit Custard Recipe

9 Min Read

Fresh fruit and a creamy vanilla custard sauce combine forces in this simple Fruit Custard recipe. If you are looking for a healthy, easy dessert that doesn’t require you to turn on the oven, you’ve come to the right place! See how to make this yummy fruit salad with custard sauce by following along with my step-by-step photos and video below.

About Fruit Custard

Fruit custard is one of those desserts that reminds me of childhood. Growing up, we would eat Carrot Halwa, Rice Kheer, Besan Ladoo or a fruit custard like this one for our sweet treat.

Sometimes the fruit custard was served plain, and sometimes my Mom embellished it with fruit jelly. I can still see the labels from the Brown & Polson or the Crown brand custard powders and jars of Rex brand jelly in my mind’s eye! Isn’t it funny how food can take you back in time?

NOTE: While I opted to use boxed custard powder in this recipe for convenience, I also have an eggless recipe for Vanilla Custard on the site.

A fruit custard is basically made by mixing fruits with custard sauce, which is why this delicious dessert is also known as fruit salad with custard. Depending on how you make fruit salad in your house, you can also feel free to add in things like toasted nuts, dried fruits or even vegetarian mini marshmallows.

If you’re in the US, this might also remind you of a version of ambrosia salad known as a 24-Hour Salad. While we eat this yummy fruit salad with custard as a sweet dessert, you can certainly feel free to serve it with your holiday spread – it has fruit in it, after all!

Tips & Tricks for Fruit Custard

  • Fruit custard can be made with dairy milk or plant-based milk. I make it both ways, though if I am going the vegan route I prefer to use almond milk. In the stepwise photos, I have shown the method of making it with dairy milk. The method of making custard with almond milk is explained in the recipe card notes below.
  • To improvise on the sugar content in this fruit salad with custard, you can substitute jaggery when making with almond milk. However with dairy milk, you have to be careful while adding jaggery as the milk can curdle. If you do plan to add jaggery, then add once the custard is warm.
  • Feel free to add your favorite seasonal fruits, but avoid citrus fruits and melons. Both citrus fruits and melons are incompatible with milk and can give you indigestion. You can add your favorite dry fruits and nuts to the fruit custard.
  • How to make fruit custard without custard powder? Replace 3 tablespoons of cornstarch or arrowroot flour or tapioca starch with custard powder and mix it with 3 tablespoons of warm milk as directed in the recipe. Also add 1 teaspoon vanilla extract or ½ teaspoon vanilla essence to this mix when you make the paste or slurry.

How to Make Fruit Custard

Make Custard

1. Take 2.5 cups milk in a thick bottomed pan or saucepan and keep it on the stove top. Bring the milk to a gentle simmer.

2. While the milk is warming up, take 3 tablespoons warm or room temperature milk in a small bowl. Add 3 tablespoons custard powder.

You can take the 3tablespoons warm milk from the milk which is getting heated up or warm 3tablespoons milk separately in a microwave oven or on the stove top.

Out of custard powder? No problem! Check out my recipe for making Vanilla Custard and you’ll be in business.

Or swap custard powder with 3 tablespoons of cornstarch. Don’t forget to add 1 teaspoon vanilla extract or ½ teaspoon of vanilla essence to this mix.

3. With a whisk, stir very well to make a smooth paste or slurry without any lumps.

4. When the milk has come to a gentle heat, add 5 tablespoons sugar or as required. Stir very well so that the sugar dissolves.

5. Keep the flame on a low and then add the custard paste or slurry in parts.

6. As soon as you add the custard mixture, stir quickly so that lumps are not formed. Repeat with the remaining custard paste, working in batches or drizzling it in a slow stream as you whisk constantly.

7. Keep on stirring often while the custard is cooking, so that lumps are not formed. Cook for about 5 to 6 minutes on a low heat.

8. The mixture will thicken slowly and the raw taste of the cornstarch from the custard powder also goes away.

Pour the custard in a bowl and cover the bowl with a kitchen towel. Let it cool at room temperature. If you plan to serve fruit custard cold, place the bowl covered with a lid in the refrigerator.

For a thicker custard, cook for a few more minutes. Keep in mind that as the custard cools, it will thicken more. You can also keep the custard in fridge to chill it before adding the fruits.

Make Fruit Custard

9. Chop the fruits. I always suggest to use seasonal fruits to make fruit custard. Just be sure to avoid citrus fruits, pineapple and melons. The fruits I used are: apples, papaya, banana, strawberries and pomegranate.

10. Once the custard has cooled (at room temperature or in the fridge), add the mixed fruits.

11. Mix well.

12. Serve fruit custard garnished with some more fruits and pomegranate arils. Enjoy!
You could also add some nuts and dry fruits like raisins, cashews, pine nuts, pistachios, almonds, walnuts, pecans.

NOTE: If you store the fruit custard in the fridge, the fruits will release some of their juices and the consistency of the custard can become thin. So add fruits only when you plan to serve this dessert. It is best enjoyed when served straightaway after assembling and mixing.

More Tips for Best Fruit Custard

  • Fruits: I suggest to use seasonal fruits that are ripe and sweet. Do not use tangy citrus fruits, melons and pineapple. Adding pineapple can make the fruit custard taste bitter. You can also enjoy custard as is without adding any fruits.
  • Milk: You can make the custard with both whole milk and almond milk. I have detailed below the method for making a vegan fruit custard in the notes section of recipe card below.
  • Custard consistency: To make a for a smooth lump-free consistency, ensure that when you add the custard powder slurry to the milk it should not be very hot or boiling. This can create lumps in the custard. On the other hand, to make the slurry or paste, always use warm milk or room temperature milk. A paste made with cold milk will also create lumps in the custard.
  • Variations: You can make apple custard by adding apple puree or apple sauce to the custard sauce and later mix with the rest of the fruits. Another interesting variation is mango custard, where you have to mix mango puree with the custard sauce once it cools. Some more options are to add banana puree or strawberry puree. Keep in mind to add less sugar when you mix fruit purees with the custard.
  • Scale: Feeding a crowd? Scale this recipe to make a large batch of fruit custard for kids parties or potlucks.

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