Dessert, Southern

Southern Banana Pudding Recipe

Welcome to another mouthwatering recipe adventure! Today, we’re diving into a timeless classic that never fails to impress—Banana Pudding. This creamy, dreamy dessert is a staple in Southern cuisine, and it’s guaranteed to bring smiles to your table. Whether you’re hosting a family gathering or simply craving something sweet, this Banana Pudding will hit the spot. So, let’s get started on creating this delightful treat that’s as comforting as a warm hug from Grandma.

Banana Pudding is more than just a dessert; it’s a beloved tradition. This luscious treat combines layers of silky vanilla pudding, fresh banana slices, and crispy vanilla wafers, all topped off with a sprinkle of crushed cookies. It’s the perfect blend of textures and flavors that will leave you and your loved ones asking for seconds. Plus, it’s incredibly easy to make, and you can prepare it ahead of time, making it a fantastic option for entertaining. So, if you’re looking to create lasting memories around the dinner table, Banana Pudding is the way to go.

Ingredients Required

Here’s what you’ll need to whip up this delicious Banana Pudding:

  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups milk
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 box vanilla wafers (about 8 oz.)
  • 4 bananas, sliced

Step-by-Step Guide to Preparing Banana Pudding

1. Prepare the Pudding Mixture

  • Combine Dry Ingredients: In a medium saucepan, mix together 3/4 cup sugar, 1/4 cup flour, and 1/4 teaspoon salt.
  • Add Milk: Gradually whisk in 3 cups of milk until smooth.
  • Cook: Place the saucepan over medium heat and cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens and becomes bubbly.
  • Simmer: Reduce the heat to low and continue cooking for an additional 2 minutes. Remove from heat.

2. Incorporate the Eggs

  • Temper the Eggs: In a small bowl, whisk the 3 eggs. Add a small amount of the hot pudding mixture to the eggs, stirring constantly to prevent the eggs from curdling.
  • Combine Mixtures: Pour the egg mixture back into the saucepan with the hot pudding mixture. Return to heat and cook until it reaches a gentle boil, about 2 minutes.
  • Add Vanilla: Stir in 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract and remove from heat. Allow the mixture to cool for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

3. Assemble the Banana Pudding

  • Layer Wafers and Bananas: In an ungreased 8-inch square pan, arrange a layer of about 25 vanilla wafers. Top with half of the sliced bananas.
  • Add Pudding: Pour half of the pudding mixture over the banana and wafer layers.
  • Repeat Layers: Repeat the layers with the remaining wafers, bananas, and pudding mixture, ending with a layer of pudding on top.
  • Chill: Cover the dish with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight.

4. Serve

  • Garnish: Before serving, crush some additional vanilla wafers and sprinkle them on top of the pudding for a delightful crunch.
  • Enjoy: Serve cold and watch the smiles appear!

Expert Tips and Tricks

  1. Banana Ripeness: Use ripe but firm bananas for the best texture and flavor.
  2. Prevent Browning: Toss banana slices in a bit of lemon juice to prevent them from browning.
  3. Smooth Pudding: Stir the pudding continuously while cooking to avoid lumps.
  4. Chilling Time: Letting the pudding chill overnight allows the flavors to meld beautifully.
  5. Layering: Ensure even layers of wafers and bananas for consistent flavor in every bite.
  6. Pudding Skin: Press plastic wrap directly onto the surface of the pudding while it cools to prevent a skin from forming.
  7. Cookie Crunch: Add crushed vanilla wafers just before serving to keep them crunchy.
  8. Personal Touch: Mix in a bit of whipped cream into the pudding for an extra creamy texture.
  9. Pudding Consistency: If the pudding is too thick, whisk in a bit of milk to reach desired consistency.
  10. Quick Cool Down: To cool the pudding mixture faster, place the saucepan in a bowl of ice water, stirring occasionally.

Variations

  1. Chocolate Banana Pudding: Add a layer of chocolate pudding or drizzle melted chocolate between layers.
  2. Peanut Butter Twist: Mix in a few tablespoons of peanut butter into the pudding mixture.
  3. Coconut Banana Pudding: Sprinkle shredded coconut between layers for a tropical flair.
  4. Caramel Banana Pudding: Drizzle caramel sauce over the layers for added decadence.
  5. Berry Banana Pudding: Add fresh strawberries or blueberries to the layers.
  6. Nutty Banana Pudding: Sprinkle chopped nuts, such as pecans or walnuts, between the layers.
  7. Oreo Banana Pudding: Replace vanilla wafers with crushed Oreos for a chocolatey twist.
  8. Spiced Banana Pudding: Add a pinch of cinnamon and nutmeg to the pudding mixture.
  9. Marshmallow Banana Pudding: Top with mini marshmallows before serving and toast lightly for a s’mores-like treat.
  10. Healthier Option: Use whole grain wafers and reduce the sugar for a lighter version.

What to Serve with Banana Pudding

  1. Whipped Cream: A dollop of fresh whipped cream complements the pudding perfectly.
  2. Ice Cream: Serve with a scoop of vanilla or caramel ice cream.
  3. Fresh Berries: Add a side of fresh strawberries or blueberries.
  4. Coffee: A hot cup of coffee pairs wonderfully with the sweetness of the pudding.
  5. Tea: Enjoy with a cup of hot tea for a cozy treat.
  6. Mint Garnish: A sprig of fresh mint adds a refreshing touch.
  7. Caramel Sauce: Drizzle additional caramel sauce over the top.
  8. Chocolate Shavings: Sprinkle some chocolate shavings on top for a gourmet look.
  9. Pecan Pralines: Serve with pecan pralines for a Southern-inspired dessert plate.
  10. Fruit Salad: A side of fresh fruit salad makes for a balanced dessert.

Storage Tips

  • Refrigeration: Store Banana Pudding in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  • Avoid Freezing: Banana Pudding doesn’t freeze well due to the fresh bananas and creamy texture.
  • Cover Well: Always cover the pudding with plastic wrap to prevent it from absorbing other fridge odors.

Making Banana Pudding for Family Gatherings

For family gatherings, plan to make at least double the recipe. A single 8-inch pan typically serves about 6-8 people, so doubling the recipe ensures you have enough for everyone to enjoy seconds.

How Far in Advance Can I Make the Banana Pudding?

Banana Pudding is best when made a day in advance. This allows the flavors to meld and the pudding to set properly. You can prepare it up to 24 hours ahead of time, ensuring it’s perfectly chilled and ready to serve.

Additional Tips

  • Presentation: For a special touch, serve Banana Pudding in individual dessert glasses or mason jars.
  • Layer Depth: Adjust the thickness of the layers to suit your preference. Thicker layers of bananas and wafers create a heartier dessert.
  • Flavor Boost: Add a splash of banana liqueur or rum to the pudding mixture for an adult twist.
  • Decorate: Garnish with banana slices, whole vanilla wafers, and a sprig of mint for a professional presentation.

Southern Banana Pudding Recipe

Difficulty:BeginnerPrep time: 15 minutesCook time: 40 minutesRest time:4 hours Total time:4 hours 15 minutesServings:4 servingsCalories:300 kcal Best Season:Summer

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. In a medium saucepan, mix together 3/4 cup sugar, 1/4 cup flour, and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Gradually whisk in 3 cups of milk until smooth. Place the saucepan over medium heat and cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens and becomes bubbly. Reduce the heat to low and continue cooking for an additional 2 minutes. Remove from heat.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk the 3 eggs. Add a small amount of the hot pudding mixture to the eggs, stirring constantly to prevent the eggs from curdling. Pour the egg mixture back into the saucepan with the hot pudding mixture. Return to heat and cook until it reaches a gentle boil, about 2 minutes. Stir in 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract and remove from heat. Allow the mixture to cool for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. In an ungreased 8-inch square pan, arrange a layer of about 25 vanilla wafers. Top with half of the sliced bananas. Pour half of the pudding mixture over the banana and wafer layers. Repeat the layers with the remaining wafers, bananas, and pudding mixture, ending with a layer of pudding on top. Cover the dish with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight.
  4. Before serving, crush some additional vanilla wafers and sprinkle them on top of the pudding for a delightful crunch. Serve cold and watch the smiles appear!
Keywords:banana dessert, banana pudding, bananas, Classic recipe, Comfort Food, creamy dessert, Easy dessert, family gatherings, holiday dessert, homemade pudding, layered pudding, make-ahead dessert, no-bake dessert, party dessert, pudding recipe, southern cuisine, Southern dessert, summer dessert, vanilla extract, vanilla wafers

Hey family,

My name is Aaron Brown. You can call me “A.B.”

My mission is to help you level up the process of making your favorite mealswith my video tutorials and recipe guides,plus my tried-and-true spices, cookware, and more that make every meal special.

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