Why Shoppers Aren't Fans Of Costco's 3-Pound Flan

Flan on plate
Flan on plate - Bhofack2/Getty Images

Step foot into the bakery section at your local Costco and you'll likely leave with armfuls of dreamy sugary confections in huge serving sizes. Enter the Costco flan! This vanilla-scented dessert weighs in at a whopping 3 pounds, making it perfect for sharing. However, some shoppers aren't fans of this wobbly custard-based dessert, claiming it to be overcooked, burnt and far too big to consume before the expiration date.

So why have customers described the flan as overcooked? Because there are air bubbles visible in the custard upon slicing. A classic flan is supposed to be super-smooth, silky, and free from bubbles, which is why it's strained before it's gently cooked in a water bath, and removed from the oven while still jiggly in the middle. This cooking technique ensures that the custard doesn't bake too fast and, in turn, create those pesky air pockets.

The presence of these bubbles has prompted other shoppers to comment that this caramelly dessert is actually closer to a Venezuelan quesillo or flan de queso than a Spanish-style flan. Quesillo has a spongier and springier texture than a classic flan because it contains only whole eggs. Flan, on the other hand, is often prepared with both whole eggs and egg yolks for that luxuriously creamy texture. Meanwhile, a flan de queso includes cream cheese along with the typical sweetened condensed milk that features in a regular flan, making it more of a crossover between a crème caramel and a cheesecake.

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Costco Flan Might Not Be What You Expect

Spooning out slice of flan
Spooning out slice of flan - FeLopes/Shutterstock

Take a quick look at the packaging and it seems that these shoppers may be right because Costco's flan is labeled as both a caramel flan and a flan de queso. The ingredients list also contains cream cheese and condensed milk.

Customers have found fault in the color of the caramel on the top of the flan too saying it's far too dark, which clearly illustrates a burnt flavor (a perfect caramel sauce should have a nutty aroma and an amber color — surpass that sweet spot by overcooking even slightly and it will taste bitter and unpalatable). Having said that, some shoppers have noted that this slight bitterness is canceled out by the sweetness of the custard beneath it.

Finally, the size of the flan has also proved to be a point of contention and described as a commitment. Suitable for cutting into 16 pieces, it's unlikely that this gargantuan dessert can be polished off before the expiration date, unless it's being served at a party or cook out (a typical homemade flan can last up to four days in the fridge so you'll need to eat more than a daily slice or risk it going off).

Read the original article on Tasting Table