A Bit Healthier Banana Pudding (+Video)
This recipe for A Bit Healthier Banana Pudding takes that classic, cooked southern banana pudding and lightens it up just a bit.
A SLIGHTLY LIGHTER VERSION
I decided to test out the recipe for Banana Pudding and it did not disappoint! The key to a really good banana pudding over a so-so one is to use really ripe bananas. There should definitely be brown on the skins. This will give you a lot of naturally added sweetness without adding more sugar! Bananas are also high in potassium, which is important for healthy muscles and blood pressure. Look for whole grain vanilla wafers for an even healthier alternative. The only addition I made to this recipe was to add some light whipped topping on the finished banana pudding.
Basically what you are doing here is making a custard. That’s all banana pudding is. Custard with vanilla wafers and bananas. The idea with custards is they are ridiculously easy to make but you gotta keep a close eye on them. No multitasking is allowed when making custards. They can turn into a lumpy mess if you aren’t careful. So, what you need to make sure to do is have everything at the ready before even starting to make this.
INGREDIENTS NEEDED: (FULL RECIPE AT THE BOTTOM OF THE POST)
- low-fat milk
- vanilla extract
- ripe bananas
- vanilla wafers
- light whipped topping
HOW TO MAKE HEALTHIER BANANA PUDDING:
In a large saucepan, stir together the sugar, cornstarch and salt.
Slowly whisk in the milk. Turn heat on to medium-high. Whisk mixture continuously until it begins to bubble. Remove saucepan from heat.
In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs well. Pour about 1/2 cup of the warm milk mixture into the eggs. Whisk vigorously. This is called “tempering” the eggs. It’s basically slowly bringing the eggs up to a warmer temperature without them scrambling.
Pour egg mixture into milk mixture.
Place saucepan back onto medium-high heat and whisk constantly until the mixture begins to thicken. Seriously, whisk constantly. It may seem tedious but this mixture can quickly turn glumpy – that’s totally a technical cooking term 😉 – if you don’t whisk the entire time!
Transfer mixture out of the saucepan into a bowl and whisk in vanilla extract.
Spread a thin layer of the pudding into a 1 1/2 quart casserole dish (or an 8×8-inch square baking dish).
Arrange half of the vanilla wafers on top of the pudding.
Then layer half of the banana slices over the vanilla wafers.
Layer half of the remaining pudding on top of the bananas.
Then layer the remaining vanilla wafers on top. Followed by the remaining banana slices. Top with the rest of the pudding.
Cover the dish with plastic wrap. Gently press down on top of the plastic wrap so it makes contact with the pudding. This will keep the homemade pudding from forming a slimy “skin” on top. Then pop it into the refrigerator to cool for at least 3 hours. I’m using my Grandma Betty’s old Pyrex dish here. I love having a small piece of her still with me.
When ready to serve, uncover and spread on whipped topping (optional). Then dig in!
CRAVING MORE RECIPES?
A Bit Healthier Banana Pudding (+Video)
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 3 Tablespoons cornstarch
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups low-fat milk
- 4 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 4 ripe, medium bananas (thinly sliced)
- 30 vanilla wafers
- 4 ounces (1/2 tub) light whipped topping (optional)
- In a large saucepan, stir together 1/2 cup sugar, 3 Tablespoons cornstarch and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Slowly whisk in 2 cups low-fat milk. Turn heat on to medium-high. Whisk mixture continuously until it begins to bubble. Remove saucepan from heat.
- In a medium bowl, whisk 4 large eggs. Pour about 1/2 cup of the warm milk mixture slowly into the eggs. Whisk vigorously as you do this. This is called "tempering" the eggs. It's basically slowly brining the eggs up to a warmer temperature without them scrambling.
- Pour egg mixture into milk mixture. Place saucepan back onto medium-high heat and whisk constantly until the mixture begins to thicken. Seriously, whisk constantly. It may seem tedious but this mixture can quickly turn glumpy if you don’t whisk the entire time!
- Transfer mixture out of the saucepan into a bowl and whisk in 2 teaspoons vanilla extract.
- Spread thin layer of the pudding into a 1 1/2 quart casserole dish (or an 8×8 square baking dish). Arrange half of the 30 vanilla wafers on top of the pudding. Then layer half of the 4 ripe, medium bananas (thinly sliced) over the vanilla wafers.
- Layer half of the remaining pudding on top of the bananas. Then layer the remaining vanilla wafers on top. Followed by the remaining banana slices. Top with the rest of the pudding.
- Cover the dish with plastic wrap and gently press down on the plastic wrap so that it is touching the pudding. This will keep a “skin” from forming on top of the pudding. Pop it into the refrigerator to cool for at least 3 hours.
- Then uncover and spread 4 ounces (1/2 tub) light whipped topping on top. Then serve!
“The Country Cook” is not a dietician or nutritionist, and any nutritional information shared is an estimate. If calorie count and other nutritional values are important to you, we recommend running the ingredients through whichever online nutritional calculator you prefer. Calories can vary quite a bit depending on which brands were used.
I’ve been tasked by a diabetic friend to make a sugar free banana pudding. Could I use Splenda as a sugar substitute?
I am a 54 year female that loves to cook. My husband’s favorite dessert is banana pudding. I have never made it from scratch. I followed your recipe to the T. It came out fabulous! Thank you for a healthier recipe!
You are so sweet to come back and leave a comment! Thanks so much Carolyn!!
Do you think almond or coconut milk could be used instead of the lowfat milk??
Hi Trish! That is a good question. I haven’t tested it out yet but it seems to me like it should work!
I have been making it this way for years.
This Banana Pudding looks so yummy,….. but, it should have meringue on it, not cool whip. Sorry, just the way my Momma used to do it. RIP Momma!
I made it for my husband. Came out great! Not really a “baker”, I’m more of a “cooker”. By that I mean I never make desserts and only cook meals. I figured this would be an excellent start to a whole new avenue of cooking. I’m very happy with my results. Thank you for the recipe. I’ve memorized it, and will make it again.
A classic dessert, for sure! My boys would love this.
Looks delicious. I keep meaning to try banana pudding!
Love the layering of the vanilla wafer cookies and fresh banana slices. For convenience I usually make box mixes when I want pudding since I’m really the only one that eats it. This will be sooooo much better!
My fav dessert!
Banana pudding I can eat all the time – yes!
Yum! Love this recipe!
Looks SO GOOD!
I love that you are sharing a from scratch pudding recipe. My mothers family has used a recipe very similar to this that has been passed down for many generations. In my mind, there is just no other way to make banana pudding! I will be giving this version a try for sure!
I love this recipe. Thanks for the tip on the ripe bananas. I love banana pudding!
Wow, this looks great! Normally, I use the pudding boxes but I’d like to try this. 🙂
Let me know if you do Aileen! Hope you love it!