Monday, March 12, 2012

Banana Pudding

Everyone has had banana pudding before… It’s a southern staple (so the hubs tells me…) and is the perfect potluck dessert.

It’s a crowd. pleaser.

Everybody loves it.

Everyone, that is, except me! (GASP) I know I know…

The hubs is a southern boy by blood and banana pudding is one of his all time favorite desserts. He grew up on the stuff.

The problem is, because I have this pesky aversion to bananas… that leaves only one person under our roof to eat a huge trifle dish of banana pudding. Hence why I don’t make it.

Well, we had a Church lunch yesterday at the beach, and I was in charge of bringing a dessert… I KNEW I had to make banana pudding for the hubs!

However, I was determined to make the best daggum banana pudding he’d ever tasted! So off I went in search for the perfect recipe. I stumbled across one by Paula Deen called: “Not yo’ mama’s banana pudding!”

Done and Done.

Now, this aint your traditional Nilla Waffer and Cool Whip Banana puddin… this is so much more than that! It’s IN.CRED.IBLE (minus the banana part haha)

But seriously. The pudding mixture in this is RIDICULOUS. In fact, I plan on replicating this recipe, except with strawberries or raspberries (or BOTH)… OH. BABY.

I made a few tweaks to Paula’s recipe… the main one being that I made my own whipped cream.

Ya’ll, I do not get down with the Cool Whip thing… BLEH. That “Non-Dairy whipped topping” thing seems innocent enough, but when you flip over the label you see that it actually means that it’s made out of OIL… Yes, OIL. grossed out yet? I am. While we’re on that topic… the same goes for those “non-dairy” coffee creamers.

No. Thank. You.

Back to the banana pudding…

Since I’m not the best judge of this dish I WILL tell you that hubs told me “This is THE best flipping banana pudding” he’s ever tasted (and we had numerous Church folks second that).

Don’t believe me? Well friends, the proof is in the pudding (or lack thereof):

Yah, that was totally corny.

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Banana Pudding

Yield: 12 servings

Total Time: 25 minutes

Not your typical Nilla Wafer and Cool Whip Banana Pudding... SO. MUCH. MORE.


2 (3.4 ounce) boxes instant French vanilla pudding
2 1/2 cups cold lowfat milk
16 ounces heavy whipping cream
1/3 cup powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 (8-ounce) package 1/3 less fat cream cheese, softened
1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
2 bags Pepperidge Farm Chessmen cookies
6 to 8 ripe bananas, sliced


In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat together the instant pudding and the milk until well combined. Set aside to thicken. In another bowl, beat the cream until medium to stiff peaks form. Mix in the powdered sugar and vanilla into the whipped cream. In a third bowl, add the softened cream cheese and the sweetened condensed milk and beat until well combined. Fold 2/3 of the whipped cream into the cream cheese/sweetened condensed milk mixture. Then, fold that mixture into the pudding and stir until well combined.

Line the bottom of a trifle dish with some of the cookies (breaking them in half helps them lay better). Top with sliced bananas and then 1/3 of the pudding mixture. Add another layer of cookies topped with bananas and then another 1/3 of the pudding mixture. Add a third layer of cookies topped with bananas and then the final 1/3 of the pudding mixture. Add one last layer of cookies, topped with banana slices. Top with remaining whipped cream and a few slices of banana for garnish. Refrigerate for at least a few hours (or overnight) before serving.

Layering should look like this (when looking at the dish):
Whipped Cream
1/3 of Pudding
1/3 of Pudding
1/3 of Pudding

Adapted from: Paula Deen

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32 Responses to “Banana Pudding”

  1. 1

    Maureen — March 12, 2012 @ 8:29 am

    I thought I saw you post a picture of this on Instagram and I was immediately drooling!! What a great recipe! πŸ™‚

  2. 2

    katie — March 12, 2012 @ 8:57 am

    you know i love you and, as a southern girl, i totally approve of that recipe (i mean really, can you go wrong with Paula?), however i am APPALLED that you didn’t use Nilla wafers. like, it almost hurt my feelings. πŸ™‚ xoxo

    • Tina replied: — March 12th, 2012 @ 9:46 am

      hahahah Katie, you crack me up. If Paula Deen can go without Nilla Wafer… so can you πŸ˜‰ Try it once… you’ll never go back! πŸ™‚

  3. 3

    Madison @ Espresso and Cream — March 12, 2012 @ 12:00 pm

    Banana Pudding is my absolute favorite dessert, too. My southern grandma used to make this for me, and it’s almost impossible for me to show any type of restraint around the stuff. Beautiful recipe!

  4. 4

    Cassie — March 12, 2012 @ 12:05 pm

    I love bananas but banana pudding, I’m not sure about. However, the combination sounds amazing. You can’t go wrong with Nilla wafers. Glad it was a hit!

  5. 5

    Stephanie — March 12, 2012 @ 1:41 pm

    That looks yummy! But I will tell you, before I read this post I had never in my life heard of layered banana pudding πŸ™‚

    • Tina replied: — March 12th, 2012 @ 4:08 pm

      WHAT?!!! for real?!! you must be a northerner… πŸ˜‰

  6. 6

    Jen — March 12, 2012 @ 2:53 pm

    My husband is a HUGE banana pudding fan and I’m pretty… meh… about it. But this sounds seriously delicious and I am definitely making this tonight!! I wonder if there is any getting around the packaged vanilla pudding part, or if it’s even worth it to try… ?

  7. 7

    Chels R. — March 12, 2012 @ 5:25 pm

    I’ve, never had Banana Pudding before because I don’t care for bananas. But looking at your pictures, it makes me wish I did πŸ™‚

  8. 8

    mom — March 12, 2012 @ 5:40 pm

    This looks amazing. I saw the empty dish after the picnic…not a drop left!

  9. 9

    Stephanie — March 12, 2012 @ 7:05 pm

    I can’t reply to your reply πŸ™

    But yes, I am a northener. Probably even more of one than you are thinking. I live in Manitoba, Canada. I believe that is just a little bit north of you πŸ˜‰

  10. 10

    Jenn — March 12, 2012 @ 7:17 pm

    You are not the only one who doesn’t like banana’s. I can do without them too lol My husband however, loves them. I will tolerate banana bread but it must have chocolate chips in it πŸ˜‰
    I think this would be great with strawberries for sure!

  11. 11

    Jessica @ How Sweet — March 12, 2012 @ 9:13 pm

    Someone give me a spoon!

  12. 12

    Alaina@ fabtasticeats — March 13, 2012 @ 8:51 am

    haha someone mentioned never hearing of this before..neither have I! hah Layered banana pudding is news to me! Totally something Ill have to think about now…

    And yes..Im a Northerner..Maine to be exact! πŸ˜›

  13. 13

    Jennifer @ Peanut Butter and Peppersj — March 13, 2012 @ 9:54 am

    What gorgeous pictures! YUM!!!

  14. 14

    Natalie @ Cooking for My Kids — March 13, 2012 @ 10:11 am

    My husband does not like bananas, either. But, the rest of us do, and I have to make this banana pudding for the good of the household. Bananas are good for you, after all. And, I totally agree with making homemade whipped cream. πŸ™‚

  15. 15

    natalie (the sweets life) — March 14, 2012 @ 9:32 am

    we looooooooove banana pudding in our house! I’ve made it with homemade pudding as well–I highly recommend that! (also have banana pudding ice cream on my blog which your hubs probably needs :))

  16. 16

    Jen — March 14, 2012 @ 12:38 pm

    I made this the other night…. It is very, very good! My husband (the banana pudding connoisseur) said that it was the best banana pudding ever and ended up eating it for breakfast the next day. Thanks Tina!

  17. 17

    Tara W. — March 15, 2012 @ 1:54 pm

    My mom has always made her banana pudding from scratch. But when she does, if my sister and I hear about it, she has to make 3! Well, one big (normal size) one and two little ones. I don’t like the Nilla wafers and my sis doesn’t like the bananas. So we each get what we want. You could always try that if you make it again. Just make a little one for yourself without the bananas.

  18. 18

    Tara W. — March 15, 2012 @ 1:56 pm

    Oh… and one m thing… if you do make it without the bananas, try adding some kind chocolate covered shortbread type cookies!

  19. 19

    Raquel — March 26, 2012 @ 2:34 pm

    I always wanted to try and make this, but never have a crowd who is up to it! I guess I will just have to make an individual serving for me! πŸ™‚

  20. 20

    Lauren — March 29, 2012 @ 10:26 am

    My grandma always made it nilla wafers. I might have to substitute them (!) but cool whip? No way! Thanks!

  21. 21

    Jennifer — April 4, 2012 @ 7:15 pm

    I found this recipe on your blog and made it for a party… it was a hit!! Everyone loved it and it was gone really fast! Thanks so much for sharing. The home-made whipped cream was the best part πŸ˜‰

  22. 22

    Michelle — May 14, 2012 @ 8:29 pm

    I am a Yankee.. an upper midwestern Yankee (MN) and I have heard of vanilla pudding. I have always seen it made with Nilla wafers. I like bananas but not a fan of banana pudding, but hubs LOVES banana pudding. This looks really good. I can make a bowl and send it to work with him. The guys would love it!!

  23. 23

    Mandy — August 9, 2012 @ 11:36 am

    Another twist on this is to use girl scout shortbread, aka trefoils, as the cookies. It is amazing!

  24. 24

    Melissa — September 11, 2012 @ 1:50 am

    Delicious!! Everyone loved it! Thank you for a great recipe!

  25. 25

    heather — April 28, 2013 @ 1:21 am

    I just made this today for my cooking club this evening. Our theme this month: Southern Food Ya’ll (we’re Yankees). No words to describe how delish this was – totally worth the effort. I would say even if you are iffy on the banana part – go for it because you wont be disapppointed. I added homemade salted caramel saice drizzled among the layers and on top for part of the garnish. There are six of us, so I cut the recipe in half and out in a pretty glass bowl! Thankfully I had just enough left over for breakfast tomorrow! Sooooo good!!!

  26. 26

    Rebekah — June 24, 2013 @ 9:58 am

    I found this page through Pinterest and made your banana pudding for my friends immediately! Everyone loved it so much I started making it a lot more often for family gatherings, etc. I have heard nothing but amazing things every time I make it. It’s now a staple in my recipe book. SO. DELICIOUS! Thanks a lot!

  27. 27

    Max Rush — April 20, 2014 @ 10:04 pm

    Made this today for Easter dinner. The word amazing is often overused, but this dish is AMAZING! Next time, I’ll let it sit a bit longer, so the Chessmens will get a bit softer. Thanks for sharing!

  28. 28

    Lucy Newby — August 29, 2014 @ 1:39 pm

    I never really liked banana pudding because everyone I know used the instant banana pudding and I’m just not a fan of that. This changed my mind! This is the best banana pudding I’ve ever had! I’ll be making this with strawberries added to it for my fiancΓ©s family reunion. They have a dessert contest!

  29. 29

    Ginger Wroot — October 30, 2016 @ 5:05 pm

    Made this the other day, and it turned out sooo well! The only thing I changed is using vanilla wafers instead of the chessmen cookies. You can see my photos at Thanks for a great recipe–everyone loved this at the potluck! –G

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