Russian Custard (best substitute for dairy cream)

by Sarah Pope MGA | Affiliate linksComments: 33

russian custard
When my husband and I were on the (temporary) GAPS Diet to improve our gut health, one of our favorite treats hands down was Russian Custard. It is an excellent substitute for dairy cream and works well for any recipe which uses it. Coconut cream is also a good sub, but not everyone enjoys the flavor of coconut.

Cream, if you recall, is not permitted on the GAPS Diet as it is high in lactose (milk sugar), which is a disaccharide (double sugar) which cannot be digested in a compromised gut environment.  Once the gut heals, of course, lactose can be digested easily so the avoidance of cream is only a temporary measure. In addition to fruit, Russian Custard can be served on its own or with a handful of chopped raw nuts soaked in salt water and dehydrated, to vastly improve digestibility.  You can also use sprouted nuts if you are short on time (sources).

Never soaked nuts before?  It’s a snap. Just mix 1 TBL sea salt in enough filtered water to cover 4 cups of raw nuts of choice. Drain salt water after 8 -12 hours (except for cashews which should only be soaked for 6 hours) and then dry in a warm, 150 F/ 66 C degree oven (dry cashews a little higher at 200 F/ 93 C). You will be AMAZED at how much easier nuts are to digest and how much tastier they are when you do this.

Back to the Russian Custard  ….

The key to Russian Custard is the quality of the eggs you use. Egg yolks are extremely nutritious and easily digested (can you believe some misinformed people still throw them out and make egg white omelets???).

Deep yellow to orange colored egg yolks are one of the highest food sources of choline, a critical nutrient that protects the liver from overconsumption of sugar, refined carbohydrates, and polyunsaturated vegetable oils.

Use of good quality, egg yolks in the diet is a very wise investment of your food budget dollars.

Make sure to buy the best quality eggs you can afford to make your Russian Custard and purchase them locally so that you are supporting small, local farms in your area.

Russian Custard Recipe

Recipe for Russian custard that is a delicious substitute for dairy cream in all your dessert recipes. It is also delish on its own with nuts or fruit!

Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Servings 4
Author Sarah Pope MGA



  1. Wash eggs gently in warm, soapy water and then dry.  

  2. Separate egg whites from yolks and set whites aside. In a glass bowl, add the honey to the egg yolks and whip until the mixture thickens and the color lightens to a pale yellow.

  3. Serve immediately with fruit or nuts or add to recipe of choice in place of cream.

  4. Be sure to refrigerate any Russian custard leftovers, which will last several days.

Recipe Notes

This recipe is adapted from Gut and Psychology Syndrome by Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride MD.

If keto or ultra low carb, reduce or substitute the honey with a few drops of stevia extract.

What to Do with Leftover Egg Whites

Use up those egg whites from making this cream substitute by making protein cookies or grain free angel food cake!

More Healthy Pudding Recipes

Love pudding? Try these other recipes too!

Egg Custard Pudding
Vanilla Pudding Recipe
Bread and Butter Pudding
Jello Pudding
Macademia Nut Pudding
Coconut Milk Pudding
Thai Custard
Homemade Chocolate Pudding

Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist

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