Everyone loves good banana pudding, with its layers of warm, gooey custard, sweet wafers, and fresh slices of bananas evoking memories of our childhood. A family favorite, the traditional Southern dessert is a staple for any potluck, picnic, holiday dinner, or special celebration.
The classic banana pudding starts with a layer of Nilla wafers, sliced bananas, vanilla pudding, and is topped with piles of meringue. It is a simple, but when it is done right tastes like a bit of South in your mouth.
While the classic is great, we have some other unique ideas to add some fun flair to the traditional! From boozy to healthy to modern, we have compiled some crazy takes on banana pudding. The sweet dessert can be made vegan, as well! Keep an eye out for a couple of indulgent, dairy-free recipes. We challenge you to get through these 14 twists to the Southern classic without drooling.
1. Jamaican Banana Pudding
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 3 hours 30 minutes
- 2 (3-oz.) packages instant vanilla pudding
- 3 c. milk
- 1/3 c. rum
- 1 tbsp. fresh lime juice, plus zest for garnish
- 1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
- Pinch ground allspice
- Pinch ground cloves
- 2 c. heavy cream
- 1/4 c. powdered sugar
- 1/2 box vanilla wafer cookies
- 4 bananas, sliced into coins
- 1 1/2 c. toasted sweetened coconut flakes, plus more for garnish
- In a large bowl, whisk together vanilla pudding mix, milk, rum, lime juice, nutmeg, allspice, and cloves.
- In another large bowl, beat the heavy cream and powdered sugar 2 to 3 minutes.
- Spoon 1/3 of pudding into a 4-quart trifle dish or glass bowl.
- Layer half the cookies with slight overlapping, half the bananas, then half of the toasted coconut.
- Spread half the whipped cream over the toasted coconut, then repeat with pudding, cookie, banana, and coconut layers. Spread remaining pudding over
- Add whipped cream.
- Refrigerate at least 3 hours.
- Sprinkle with coconut and lime zest.