Banana Cream Pudding

banana cream pudding
Photo: Bryan Gardner
Prep Time:
1 hrs
Total Time:
7 hrs

This fabulous version of the favorite Southern dessert boosts the banana flavor by infusing it into the homemade vanilla pudding, in addition to the traditional slices layered throughout.


  • 1 ½ cups granulated sugar

  • 8 large egg yolks

  • ¼ cup cornstarch

  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt

  • 5 cups milk

  • 6 large ripe bananas, peeled

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pieces

  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

  • 2 cups heavy cream

  • 2 tablespoons confectioners' sugar

  • 65 wafer-style vanilla cookies, such as Nilla Wafers (from one 11-ounce box), plus more for crushing on top


  1. Chop one banana and thinly slice the remaining 5 bananas; set aside. Place a fine-mesh sieve over a medium heatproof bowl and set aside.

  2. In a medium saucepan, whisk together 1 1/4 cups sugar, egg yolks, cornstarch, and salt. Whisk milk into egg mixture until combined; stir in chopped banana. Place saucepan over medium-high heat and cook, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens and is bubbling, about 8 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook, whisking, for 1 minute.

  3. Remove pan from heat and pour mixture through prepared sieve into bowl; use a spatula to push any extra liquid through sieve (discard solids). Stir butter and vanilla into pudding until combined.

  4. Cover pudding with plastic wrap, pressing it directly onto surface to prevent a skin from forming; refrigerate until cooled completely, about 2 hours.

  5. To assemble: In a large bowl, beat the heavy cream with remaining 1/4 cup sugar until firm peaks form. Whisk the pudding until smooth. Spoon about a cup of the pudding into the bottom of a large glass bowl. Layer about 1/2 of the cookies over the pudding, slightly overlapping them, followed by about half of the sliced bananas.

  6. Top with about 2 cups of the pudding and half of the whipped cream. Repeat layering with the remaining cookies, sliced bananas, pudding, and cream. Refrigerate until set, at least 4 hours or, covered, up to overnight. Garnish with crushed cookies and serve cold.

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