A Sweet Ending: Classic Banana Pudding

Would we really consider ourselves from the South if we did not have a banana pudding recipe in our arsenal of Southern cuisine? Banana Pudding has a strong, genuine Southern identity that stretches back more than half of a century. Originating in the late 1800s, the first banana pudding recipe appeared in fact not in a Southern periodical, but in the Massachusetts-based Good Housekeeping, where it was described as a layered custard and sponge cake and often times baked for as long as 45 minutes. Today, the invention of the vanilla wafer and other modern ingredients has transformed this recipe into the summer picnic staple we all know and love.


  • 3 cups whole milk
  • 2 packages instant vanilla pudding
  • 1 box vanilla wafers
  • 3 bananas, sliced 

For the whipped topping:

  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  1. Beat pudding mixes and milk with wire whisk for 2 minutes. Let stand for 5 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, beat whipping cream, sugar and vanilla in a mixing bowl with whisk attachment until stiff peaks form.
  3. Arrange wafers on bottom of a trifle or casserole dish. Top with layers of pudding and a portion of the sliced bananas. Repeat all layers. Top with whipped cream mixture. Refrigerate until ready to be served.






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