Making Old Fashioned Banana Pudding

Who doesn’t appreciate a good, old fashioned banana pudding?

Between the creamy custard filling, the crunch of the vanilla wafers, and the light, airy whipped topping, there’s plenty about it to love.

Banana pudding is delicious served either warm or cold, and it’s perfect for parties or for dessert after a family dinner.

If you’ve always wanted to try your hand at making your own banana pudding from scratch, then you’re in the right place!

Follow this recipe and you’ll be on your way to whipping up the perfect dessert in no time.

What are the biggest highlights of a good old fashioned banana pudding?

The texture variation in this dessert is one of the best things about it! The crunch of the vanilla wafers is just delightful in contrast with the creaminess of the pudding, so make sure to bring out the best in both by getting high-quality ingredients. Make sure you look for a good brand of vanilla wafers and check the date on the package to make sure that they’re the freshest ones you can find!

Additionally, pay careful attention to the temperature and consistency of your pudding once you start cooking: Overheating it will compromise not only the texture but the flavor as well. The pudding is the centerpiece of the dessert so it’s important to give it the dedication that it needs.

Before anything else, show me the ingredients list!

Old Fashioned Banana Pudding ingredients you’ll need

¼ cup flour (all-purpose)
Pinch of salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 box Vanilla Wafers
8 bananas, sliced ¼ – ½ inch thick
2 cups whole milk
6 eggs, separated
1 ¼ cups sugar

This recipe features two handmade components: The pudding and the whipped topping. Make sure you save both the egg yolks and the egg whites once you separate them from each other! You’ll need both.

For the pudding mixture you’ll need:

2 cups whole milk
6 egg yolks
¾ cup sugar
¼ cup flour (all-purpose)
Pinch of salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

First, preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Start your delicious creation by bringing your milk to a simmer in a small to medium-sized saucepan over medium heat.

While your milk rises to temperature, start whisking your egg yolks and ¾ cups of your sugar together in a second medium saucepan. Set the rest of your sugar aside to use in the whipped topping later! Keep whisking the yolks and sugar together until the texture is somewhat thick.

Add the flour and salt to your egg yolk and sugar mixture. Whisk everything together until there are no clumps to be found. By now your milk should have come to a gentle boil. Pour the warm, scalded milk into your smooth egg mixture and blend it thoroughly.

Place the saucepan with your pudding mixture on the heat once more, and continue whisking it constantly while it warms up. You don’t want to see any clumps by the time your pudding is brought to a simmer! Keeping your mixture moving is key to preventing lumps from forming against the warm bottom of the pan.

Once it reaches a boil, stir it constantly while it cooks for around 2 minutes to ensure that it doesn’t burn. By the time you’re done, the texture of your pudding should be thick, creamy, and smooth.

Once the consistency looks good, thoroughly stir in your vanilla extract and then strain the pudding into a bowl to ensure that there are absolutely no clumps. A wire mesh strainer is ideal for this step. Set the pudding aside for later–and don’t forget to let your spoonful of pudding cool down enough before you taste test!

For the whipped topping you’ll need:

6 egg whites
½ cup sugar

Now that the pudding mixture is all done, it’s time to make that light, fluffy whipped topping that puts the finishing touch on any old-fashioned banana pudding.

Take your 6 egg whites and add them to a mixing bowl. Use either a stand or hand mixer on a high speed setting to whip the egg whites until they become whiter and foamier and begin to form visible, soft peaks.

Add your remaining ½ cup of sugar, a bit at a time, until the whipped topping firms up and forms stiff peaks.

Now it’s time to combine!

Pull out your favorite 9×13-inch baking dish and grab those vanilla wafers and sliced bananas. Line the bottom of the dish with the wafers. Then, take your pudding and spoon around half of it on top of the wafer layer. Make sure that you get pudding all the way to the edges of the dish while you spread the layer.

Now, put down a layer of sliced bananas on top of the pudding. Arrange a second layer of vanilla wafers on top of the bananas, and then spoon the rest of the pudding on top of the wafer layer.

Finally, add your whipped topping. You can use a spatula or spoon to make decorative swirls, waves, or peaks on the top. These will brown nicely in the oven and give your dessert a beautiful finishing touch!

Pop your pudding dish into the oven and bake it for around 15-20 minutes. The peaks of your whipped topping should be lightly browned, lending a very pretty visual depth to the decorative shapes you created.

Any extra important tips or things to watch out for?

It might not seem like it, but one of the most important steps in this recipe is straining your pudding mixture! No matter how carefully you separate your eggs and no matter how vigilantly you stir your pudding mixture while it cooks, clumps may still form here and there. It’s well worth it to take this extra step to make sure that your masterpiece comes out smooth and creamy!

Another thing to keep an eye on is the whipped topping toward the end of the baking time. Once those peaks start to brown, they brown fast! On top of checking on it now and then throughout the baking time, it’s worth turning on the oven light and watching your dessert for the last few minutes to make sure the color looks how you want.

What are some other things I can do to make my old fashioned banana pudding look its best?

Do you happen to have any banana slices left over after layering your pudding in the baking dish? Save any of the slices that you can resist snacking on and cut them in half. When your pudding is all done and you pull it out of the oven, you can arrange the banana semicircles into a very pretty flower shape to improve the presentation. If you happen to have over-toasted any of the whipped topping peaks on your pudding, then this technique can be a great save, too!

If you’re looking for a way to truly make this pudding your own, you can spice things up with a light caramel drizzle or a sprinkling of chopped nuts, too. When in doubt, just think of things that you’d enjoy on a banana split sundae–those will probably be a delicious fit here, too!

Remember:

By taking the time to familiarize yourself with a recipe beforehand, you’ll make things easier on yourself later when timing is of the essence! Peeling and chopping your bananas and measuring out your other ingredients ahead of time also helps to lay the foundation for a much smoother process.

Prep work aside, thoroughness is important as well! Make sure you get the smooth, creamy texture that you want before moving on to the next steps so that your pudding’s texture will be just right. Taking the time to look after all the details is what will help you whip your dessert into perfection!