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Homemade Banana Pudding Recipe

Homemade Banana Pudding, with layers of nilla wafer cookies, banana slices, and custard, is a classic southern dessert that kids and adults alike devour.

Banana Pudding in an individual glass serving dish.

 

Banana Pudding, or Nanner Puddin as it is affectionately called, is one of the easiest desserts to make so long as you can make a homemade custard. If you can’t , just use a box of instant vanilla pudding. It won’t have that homemade taste, but it will still be good.

 

A few weeks ago when I published Banana Pudding Pancakes, I realized Spicy Southern Kitchen was lacking a straight up Banana Pudding Recipe. I’ve posted Banana Pudding Cupcakes and Banana Pudding Bars, but no basic Banana Pudding recipe. Well, problem fixed. This recipe will satisfy all your banana pudding cravings.

 

The best part of Banana Pudding is the Nilla Wafers. The way they get soft from the pudding is just so yummy. As a child, I’d just pick out the wafers and eat the whipped cream, completely eating around the bananas. But now I yum up every delicious bite and I love how the banana flavor permeates throughout the whole dessert. Even if you were to pick out all the banana slices before eating, it still tastes of bananas.

Banana Pudding in 2 glasses with vanilla wafers around the glasses.

 

Recipe Tips:

Because the flavor of banana tends to be really strong in banana pudding, especially if made a day in advance, you don’t want to use really ripe bananas. The flavor will be too strong and the banana slices will develop an unappetizing brown color. I like to use bananas that are nice and yellow, but haven’t started to get brown speckles.

Since it is prepared ahead of time, Banana Pudding is a wonderful dessert to serve for picnics, barbecues, and potlucks. I love to serve it during the warmer months as a refreshing treat straight from the refrigerator.

Note: You can use a tub of whipped topping to simplify things, but homemade whipped cream just tastes so much better.

Try These Other Banana Pudding Recipes:

 

Watch the short video below to see how easy this recipe is to make:


Banana Pudding in an individual glass serving dish.

Banana Pudding

A classic southern dessert made of layers of vanilla wafers, banana slices, and custard and topped with whipped cream.
PREP: 25 mins
TOTAL: 25 mins
SERVINGS: 6

Ingredients

  • 2 cups half-and-half
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 3/4 cup sugar, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons butter, cut into 4 pieces
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 box Nilla Wafers, you will use almost the whole box
  • 3 medium bananas, do this last minute so they won't turn brown, cut into slices
  • 1 cup heavy cream, whipped to soft peaks with 1 tablespoon granulated sugar

Instructions

  • Make the pudding. Place half-and-half, milk, 1/2 cup sugar, and salt in a medium saucepan with a heavy bottom.. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring occasionally to help dissolve the sugar.
  • Place egg yolks in a medium bowl and add remaining 1/4 cup sugar. Whisk together well. Whisk in cornstarch until combined well, about 30 seconds.
  • When half-and -half mixture comes to a simmer, use a measuring cup to scoop out about 1 cup of the mixture. (Go ahead and turn the heat down some so it will not go beyond a slow simmer. Very gradually add it to egg mixture while whisking constantly to temper the eggs.
  • Pour egg mixture into saucepan. Stir over medium heat for 2 to 3 minutes, until mixture is thickened. Remove from heat and stir in butter pieces and vanilla extract. If any of the egg curdles, pour the pudding through a fine-mesh strainer, pressing through with the back of a spoon.
  • To assemble, cover the bottom of a 2-quart casserole dish with a thin layer of pudding mixture.
  • Top with a layer of Nilla Wafers and then a layer of banana slices. Repeat layers, until all pudding is used.
  • Spread whipped cream on top. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours before serving.

Notes

Don't use overripe bananas. They will be too stong in flavor and have a tendency to turn brown. The skin on the bananas should be yellow with no black spots.
Cool Whip can be used instead of homemade whipped cream.

Nutrition

Calories: 609kcal
Author: Christin Mahrlig
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Southern
Keyword: banana pudding

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Originally published April 4, 2014

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links.

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41 thoughts on “Homemade Banana Pudding Recipe”

  1. So easy to make. Just like making a pie minus the crust.
    Can’t wait for the cooling process to hurry!
    Thanks for the wonderful recipe.

  2. great recipe but I used Ginger Snap Cookies instead. I couldn’t figure out what you meant by Spicy Banana Pudding other than the Vanilla Wafers so the Ginger Snaps gave it more of a Bite and it was great! I took one of the Cookies and grinded it up and sprinkled on top of the Whip Cream.

  3. I just made this recipe. I used light brown sugar instead, not sure why. I’ve never made banana pudding or any sort of pudding before. I was nervous about the possibility of the eggs curdling, but the directions were clear to follow and it worked out fine. Thanks for sharing this recipe, it was really good!

  4. I agree that this banana pudding looks delicious and because it’s homemade makes it even better. Would it be just as good if I made a meringue out of the egg whites?

  5. Deittra@Bon Appégeechee

    Fantastic tip on using yellow bananas!! I’ve been CRAVING homemade banana pudding, and this post and these pictures have done the trick! Thank you!!
    bonappegeechee.blogspot.com

  6. It doesn’t get much better than this for me! I love banana pudding, and this looks so creamy and delicious. Have a great Sunday, Christin! 🙂

  7. Judit @WineDineDaily

    What a delicious idea Christin! Looks very creamy and decadent…mmm just would like a spoon please 🙂

    1. Christin
      Christin Mahrlig

      Me too! Hope you are having a great weekend Michael. It sure has been warm in our part of the state 🙂

  8. Lindsey @ American Heritage Cooking

    Lol! I used to eat around the bananas too! I always thought they were slimy! This banana pudding looks fabulous! I’m sure I would lick the bowl clean!

  9. Ashley | Spoonful of Flavor

    Banana pudding is one of my favorite classic desserts! Everything about it is perfect!

  10. Kristi @ Inspiration Kitchen

    Looks fabulous Christin! I love banana pudding, but have never made homemade.

  11. Carol at Wild Goose TEa

    I have a friend whose whole potluck reputation is based on her banana pudding. She isn’t allowed to bring anything else, unless it is in addition to her banana pudding. My family loves
    pudding. I normally cheat with Jello cooked pudding. But this has got to have that extra
    creamy richness that will me also the Belle of the Potluck crowd.

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