The BEST Banana Pudding

The BEST Banana Pudding you will ever have! So creamy , rich and thick. A classic recipe!

This is the BEST Banana Pudding you will ever have! It’s creamy, rich and almost like mousse. It’s a classic recipe that my Grandma used to make, and I know you’re going to love it!

I have held out on you…and I feel awful about it. This Banana Pudding recipe has been sitting in my Grandmother’s recipe index card holder for years. I don’t know why I haven’t ever shared it here with you. Well, maybe I do… You see, I don’t really love bananas. They’re just not my favorite. So banana pudding is never really front and center in the dessert vortex of my brain.

But my Grandma used to make Banana Pudding Pie when I was little and I really loved it. Which seems weird… like why do I like banana pudding, but not bananas? Maybe it’s the same idea as I hate onions, but love a White Castle Burger with onions.

Also, please forget I just said that I love White Castle. I am ashamed.

Anyhow, this pudding is probably a version of the same Banana Pudding you grew up eating. My Gram was a notorious recipe clipper. So many of her recipes are from 1980’s magazines, or ones that her friends would all share. But I have tried other Banana Pudding recipes and nothing comes close to this one. That is a promise. Whether you think you will like this recipe or not, I URGE you to try it. She made it in a pie crust sometimes and served it like pie, but for sure you could make it in a trifle dish as well. More times than not, we had it in a simple 9×13 pan, like i made it today.

It’s unassuming, innocent, old fashioned and completely perfect.

The BEST Banana Pudding you will ever have! So creamy , rich and thick. A classic recipe!

The ingredients are indulgent and simple…

All you do is mix some cream cheese and sweetened condensed milk together to start. Told you it’s good…

The BEST Banana Pudding you will ever have! So creamy , rich and thick. A classic recipe!

Make sure the cream cheese is room temperature. If it’s cold it won’t mix up smooth, and you’ll probably have little cream cheese lumps.

To that, you will add vanilla pudding mix, milk, and vanilla. Make sure you buy INSTANT pudding.

Beat that on high speed for about 5 minutes. You want the mixture to thicken up nicely.

The BEST Banana Pudding you will ever have! So creamy , rich and thick. A classic recipe!

To that, you need to fold in some Cool Whip. Now, if you don’t love Cool Whip, you can ABSOLUTELY use whipped cream in its place.

The BEST Banana Pudding you will ever have! So creamy , rich and thick. A classic recipe!

It’s smooth and creamy and basically perfection. Also in other news I shared that picture on Instagram this weekend to see if you guys could guess what I was making. I think only one person got it! Good on you!

To assemble the dish, just line the bottom of a baking dish with shortbread cookies. And yes, you can ABSOLUTELY use Nilla Wafers. I just prefer shortbread.

The BEST Banana Pudding you will ever have! So creamy , rich and thick. A classic recipe!

Also, don’t get too hung up on how many cookies you add. I just cover the bottom of the dish. You could really add as many, or as few cookies as you want.

Then slice up some bananas. It is banana pudding after all.

Side note – if you are a real banana lover, you can absolutely use banana pudding mix in place of the vanilla…OR use a a combo of vanilla and banana. My Grandma always used just vanilla, so that’s what I do.

Ok, back to the recipe…layer the banana slices on top of the cookies. Again, you could increase or decrease the amount of bananas you add. It will be fine.

The BEST Banana Pudding you will ever have! So creamy , rich and thick. A classic recipe!

Then spread that glorious pudding on top.

The BEST Banana Pudding you will ever have! So creamy , rich and thick. A classic recipe!

I like to spread a little more Cool Whip on top, but that’s optional! Then if you have some extra cookies lying around, crumble some up and sprinkle the cookie dust on top. Or press some cookies into the pudding as decoration. Or do both like I did. Or not at all. This part is totally loosey goosey.

The BEST Banana Pudding you will ever have! So creamy , rich and thick. A classic recipe!

But then you have to let it chill for a few hours. Totally obnoxious.

It’s worth the wait, though. I swear.

The BEST Banana Pudding you will ever have! So creamy , rich and thick. A classic recipe!

I mean COME ON.

The BEST Banana Pudding you will ever have! So creamy , rich and thick. A classic recipe!

You should definitely dig in. And then go back for seconds.

I hope you love this recipe as much as I do!

The BEST Banana Pudding
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: serves 12
Ingredients
  • 1 (8 ounce) block cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 (5 ounce) package instant vanilla pudding
  • 2½ cups cold milk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 (8 ounce) container Cool Whip, or 8 ounces heavy cream, whipped
  • 4 bananas, sliced
  • 10 ounces shortbread cookies
Instructions
  1. In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment mix the cream cheese and sweetened condensed milk together until smooth, scraping the sides of the bowl as necessary, about 2-3 minutes on medium speed.
  2. Add in the dry pudding mix, milk and vanilla. Begin mixing on low for 30 seconds, slowly turning up the speed until you're on high speed. Mix this for 4-5 minutes until thickened and smooth, again scraping the sides of the bowl as necessary.
  3. Fold 4 ounces (half) of the Cool Whip (or whipped cream) into the pudding until combined.
  4. Line the bottom of a 9x13 dish with as many shortbread cookies as you can fit. Evenly place the banana slices on top of the cookies. Spread the pudding on top of the bananas. Spread the remaining Cool Whip (or whipped cream) on top of the pudding.
  5. Crumble any remaining cookies on top of the Cool Whip and/or place more cookies around the edge of the pan for decoration.
  6. Cover with Cling Wrap and chill at least 3-4 hours.
Notes
You could use a small package of instant vanilla pudding and a small package of banana pudding in place of just the vanilla for a more banana flavored pudding.

You can serve this in any dish you prefer, like a trifle dish, individual dishes etc.

Store airtight for up to 3 days

 

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12 Comments on "The BEST Banana Pudding"

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Teija
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You had me with the cream cheese and sweetened condensed milk….Do your bananas turn brown? Have you ever dunked them in pineapple juice to prevent browning? I have another recipe (a homemade macaroon banana trifle) that calls for this and it helps prevent the brown banana syndrome. Can’t wait to try this recipe – sounds super good!

Ben K
Guest

“2) Add in the dry pudding milk, milk and…”
Mistype; you only need one “milk”.

Gaiv Gill
Guest

Really going to try that thank you for sharing best banana pudding

Tracy
Guest

Here’s a thought, let me know what you think please.
you can use low fat cream cheese
you can use fat free sweetened condensed milk
and instead of milk, use fat free half & half.
I’m going to try this way, and see if I can tell any difference. I’m betting I won’t, that was you have your cake and eat it too without feeling so guilty???
I mean does it sound crazy?

Karen
Guest

You’ll definitely be able to tell the difference, plus low fat and fat free stuff is even worse for you with all the chemicals.

Lindsey
Guest

Would there be much a difference if I only had a 3.5 ounce of pudding mix verses the 5 oz box?

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