What are CrêPes Suzette?

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  • Written By: Malcolm Tatum
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 15 October 2019
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As one of the single most recognizable imports of French cuisine, Crêpes Suzette is a deliciously thinly layered dessert that is not only appealing to the palate but also a nice treat for the eyes. Here are some of the characteristics that make this wonderful creation of dessert crêpes so popular.

Crêpes Suzette use crêpes as the basic ingredient. The crêpe is simply a very thin, flat cake that resembles a pancake. There is not really anything out of the ordinary about the crêpes themselves. They can actually be made with packaged pancake mix by simply thinning out the batter a little.

What really creates the sensation with Crêpes Suzette is the sauce that is drizzled over the crêpes before and after they are rolled. Usually referred to as an orange sauce, the mixture contains orange and lemon zest, butter, sugar, and orange juice. Along with these basic ingredients, brandy is often added, giving the crêpe sauce a little extra zing. If brandy is not available, any type of liqueur will work as well.

Before rolling the crêpes, drizzle a little of the sauce onto them. Roll the crepes and position them on the dessert plate. Depending on the size of the crêpes, there may be one to three crêpes as part of a single dessert. Once the crêpes are positioned, drizzle more sauce over the top. The Crêpes Suzette is now ready for serving.


As the Crêpes Suzette are served, it is traditional to ignite the sauce. The alcohol used in the orange sauce provides the fuel for the flames. Don’t be concerned about damaging the crêpes in the dessert; the alcohol will burn out quickly. The crêpes themselves will still have a delicious coating on the exterior, while the interior of the dessert will be warm and moist.

While there are some variations of Crêpes Suzette that call for using brandied cherries as filler in the rolled crêpes, this appears to be a later innovation. The original recipe for Crêpes Suzette was meant to provide a light but filling dessert after a multi-course dinner, with the added bonus of the lemon and orange zest leaving a fresh clean taste in the mouth. Today, most people still prefer the simple Crêpes Suzette with the crêpes and orange sauce.

As a flaming dessert option, Crêpes Suzette has remained a popular choice for many years. Not only does the dessert have a wonderful taste, it also appeals to diners who want a little excitement with the meal. Whether served as the compliment to a celebration dinner or as the cap to an intimate dinner for two, Crêpes Suzette is a great way to wrap up the meal.


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