Nothing says Southern like a creamy, decadent homemade banana pudding! This classic dessert is sure to delight with meringue topping and velvety, sweet custard. It’s perfect for a summer barbecue or an after-dinner treat.
Whether you’re a beginner baker or a seasoned pro, this simple recipe will have everyone reaching for seconds! Serve it warm or cold—either way, the meringue topping will take your banana pudding to the next level.
Its creamy custard tastes like a dreamy mash-up of bananas foster and vanilla ice cream when it melts into that sweet whipped topping. But if you’re looking to make your own Southern dessert or whip up something special for an upcoming holiday celebration, consider making banana pudding from scratch instead of opening a box or canister. The results are worth the extra effort!
According to SeriousEats.com, banana pudding has been enjoyed by Americans in some form or another since the 1870s. We can thank Laura Kerley for the idea of using vanilla wafers in the creamy, luscious dessert in the early 1920s.
Banana pudding took on a Southern identity in 1933 thanks to a syndicated column that offered a recipe for “Southern Banana Pudding.”
The best way to top banana pudding is with a layer of lightly sweetened meringue. Once it has been baked, it is ready to be devoured once it has cooled just a bit. Or if you prefer, you can chill it in the refrigerator and enjoy it cold. Better yet – enjoy a bowl while it is still warm and then the next day have a serving of chilled banana pudding.
You probably already have most of the ingredients that are called for in this banana pudding recipe:
- vanilla wafers
How To Make Banana Pudding
Combine sugar, flour, and salt in the top of a double boiler*; stir in milk. Cook over boiling water, stirring until thickened.
Beat egg yolks and gradually stir into the hot mixture. Return to double boiler; cook for 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat, add vanilla.
Line one quart casserole with Bud’s Best Vanilla Wafers and top with sliced bananas. Pour 1/2 portion of custard over bananas. Repeat, ending with custard on top.
Beat egg whites stiff but not dry. Gradually add ¼ cup sugar and beat until the mixture forms stiff peaks. Pile on top of pudding.
Bake in preheated 425-degree oven for 5 minutes. Serve warm or chilled.
*If you don’t have a double boiler, you can place the sugar, egg yolks, flour, milk, and salt in a small pot and then turn the heat to medium. Stir continuously until it starts to thicken. (It took me about 20 minutes to get it to the right stage.)
Don’t feel like cooking but still want banana pudding? Check out my recipe for Easy Banana Pudding.
Southern Banana Pudding
- ⅔ cup sugar
- ¼ cup flour
- ¼ tsp salt
- 2 cups milk
- 2 eggs separated
- 1 teaspoon vanilla flavor
- Bud’s Best Vanilla Wafers
- 6 ripe bananas sliced thin
- Combine sugar, flour and salt in the top of a double boiler, stir in milk. Cook over boiling water, stirring until thickened.
- Beat egg yolks and gradually stir into hot mixture. Return to double boiler; cook 5 minutes, stirring constantly.
- Remove from heat, add vanilla.
- Line one quart casserole with Bud’s Best Vanilla Wafers and top with sliced bananas. Pour 1/2 portion of custard over bananas. Repeat, ending with custard on top.
- Beat egg whites stiff but not dry. Gradually add ¼ cup sugar and beat until mixture forms stiff peaks. Pile on top of pudding.
- Bake in preheated 425 degree oven for 5 minutes. Serve warm or chilled.
No matter how you enjoy banana pudding – hot or cold – this recipe is delicious and so much better than those easy banana pudding recipes that are made from a mix.
Bud’s Best Cookies
Bud’s Best Cookies was very kind to allow me to share their recipe with you. If you are not familiar with Bud’s Best Cookies, here’s a little background information: Headquartered in Birmingham, Alabama, the first Bud’s Best cookies were sold in 1993. Bud’s Best are known for their size – bite size. One thing I love about the different varieties is that a 6 oz. bag at my local grocery store is only $1.
National Banana Pudding Festival
Did you know that there is a National Banana Pudding Festival? The next fest will be October 7-8, 2023 in Centerville, Tennessee. The annual festival began in 2009 as a nonprofit organization to help raise funds. The two-day event includes fun activities for the whole family, along with arts and crafts booths.