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Banana Pudding Recipe

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posted: 03/21/24

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This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy

Banana Pudding is such a delicious and simple dessert recipe. With just a few simple ingredients you have a beautiful layered dessert that everyone will love.

Banana Pudding with bananas beside

If you are hosting and need a delicious dessert, this easy banana pudding recipe is the perfect solution. This recipe is easy enough to make that you could even hand it off to one of your kiddos. With my fool-proof instructions, you will want to make it year after year.

Banana Pudding Ingredients

Here are the simple ingredients that combine in this homemade banana pudding. For the full list of ingredients and their measurements, see the recipe card at the bottom of the post.

  • Milk: Whatever milk you have on hand will work.
  • Instant vanilla pudding mix: When mixed with milk, it creates a creamy vanilla pudding with a hint of sweetness. Make sure it is labeled “instant pudding mix” and not “cook and serve”.
  • Vanilla extract: Adds a sweet flavor profile and enhances the vanilla flavor of the pudding.
  • Sweetened condensed milk: Adds sweetness and a velvety consistency to the pudding. Double-check the label for “sweetened condensed milk” which is not the same as evaporated milk.
  • Stabilized whipped cream: Maintains its texture for a longer period of time. Make your own or buy frozen whipped topping and allow it to thaw.
  • Bananas: See my tips for choosing bananas below. Slice them thinly for even distribution throughout the pudding.
  • Vanilla wafers: These cookies add a delightful crunch.

Stabilized Whipped Cream

Stabilized Whipped Cream is easy to throw together with just three ingredients. This recipe is perfect for topping cakes, piping, or using as a replacement for Cool Whip!
mason jar full of stabilized whipped cream frosting that has been pipped into it
Overhead view of Banana Pudding with bananas beside

Buying Bananas

When making banana bread, ripe bananas that are brown, soft, and have naturally sweetened are best. The ideal bananas for banana pudding are ripe but not overly soft or mushy. Look for bananas with a vibrant yellow color and some brown speckles on the peel. Bananas at this stage are sweet and will blend well into the pudding without being too overpowering or turning to mush. While the bananas should be ripe, they should still be firm to the touch. Inspect the banana peel for any major bruising or damage. While small brown spots are normal and are a sign of ripeness, large bruises can affect the texture and taste of the banana.

If you plan to make banana pudding in a day or two and are buying bananas in advance, choose bananas that are slightly less ripe since they will ripen over time. Store bananas at room temperature until they reach the desired ripeness.

Overhead view mixing bowl of ingredients with whisk for Banana Pudding recipe

How to Make Banana Pudding

Here is a brief overview of this no bake banana pudding with vanilla wafers comes together. For the full banana pudding recipe including the full list of ingredients and measurements, scroll to the recipe card at the bottom of the post.

  1. Make the filling. Stir together the milk and pudding mix until smooth, then whisk in the vanilla extract and sweetened condensed milk. Fold in the stabilized whipped cream.
  2. Layer the ingredients. Layer the ingredients starting with a layer of the pudding mixture, then banana slices, then Nilla wafers. Repeat two times.  
  3. Add the wafers. Finish with a final layer of pudding and crushed wafers. Use extra vanilla wafers to round the top of the trifle bowl. Enjoy right away or cover and chill until you are ready to serve.

Serving

I love to make this recipe in a trifle dish like you see in the photos to show off the layers. If you go with a trifle dish, you will want to make sure it is at least 116 ounces. You can also make it in a large bowl or baking dish. If you aren’t serving it right away, be sure to keep it covered and in the refrigerator.

TOP PICK

Trifle Dish

This simple trifle dish makes for such a beautiful dessert.
Product Image

Making Ahead and Storing Banana Pudding

Keep banana pudding tightly covered with plastic wrap in the refrigerator. I don’t recommend making it more than a day in advance. Eat any leftovers within two days of making it.

Side view of Banana Pudding recipe

FAQ

What keeps bananas from turning brown in banana pudding?

The pudding mixture helps to coat the bananas and prevent them from browning. Additionally, keep it tightly covered and make it fresh. Bananas brown quickly when exposed to air.

Can I make this ahead of time?

You can make this recipe for banana pudding one day in advance and keep it in the refrigerator, covered. I do not recommend making it sooner than that because the bananas will brown.

Can I use something else instead of vanilla wafers?

Graham crackers, animal crackers, or shortbread cookies could be used instead.

How long is banana pudding good for?

When kept covered in the refrigerator, it is good for 2-3 days.

Banana Pudding

Other No Bake Recipes

Part of what makes this easy banana pudding recipe a great go-to is that no baking is required, so you can skip turning on your oven during those warm seasons. Here are some of my other favorite no bake dessert recipes.

If you make this homemade banana pudding recipe or any of my other recipes, please let me know what you think by leaving a comment. It makes my day to hear from you!

Banana Pudding
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Banana Pudding Recipe

Serves: 15 servings
(tap # to scale)
Prep: 15 minutes
Total: 15 minutes
Banana Pudding is such a delicious and simple dessert recipe. With just a few simple ingredients you have a beautiful layered dessert that everyone will love.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups cold milk (use what you have on hand)
  • 5.1 ounces instant vanilla pudding mix (be sure that it is labeled instant)
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 14 ounces sweetened condensed milk
  • 16 ounces stabilized whipped cream or 16 ounces frozen whipped topping, thawed
  • 16 ounces vanilla wafers (7 1/2 cups)
  • 10 bananas sliced

Instructions

  • Mix together the cold milk and pudding mix until smooth.
    2 cups cold milk, 5.1 ounces instant vanilla pudding mix
  • Then whisk in the vanilla extract and sweetened condensed milk.
    14 ounces sweetened condensed milk, 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • Fold in the stabilized whipped cream.
    16 ounces stabilized whipped cream
  • In a large trifle bowl, layer the pudding mixture (you will need about 1.5 cups per layer), then bananas (about 2 cups per layer), then wafers (about 2.5 cups per layer). Repeat 2 times. Finish with a final layer of pudding and crushed wafers. (Please note that there will be 4 layers of the pudding mixture, and 2 layers each of the bananas and vanilla wafers.)
    10 bananas, 16 ounces vanilla wafers
  • Use extra vanilla wafers to round the top of the trifle bowl. Enjoy right away or cover and chill until you are ready to serve.
Author: Lisa Longley
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Banana Pudding

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Banana Pudding Recipe

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Hi! I'm Lisa Longley, and I am committed to giving you simple dinner ideas and recipes that are easy to make; recipes that will fill your home with joy. I am the owner and author of SimpleJoy.com and I'm so glad that you are here.

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