Banana Pudding

Total Time:
40 min
15 min
15 min
10 min

8 to 10 servings

  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 3 cups milk
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 ounces (1/2 stick) butter
  • 3 medium bananas, sliced
  • 1 (12-ounce box) vanilla wafers
  • For the meringue topping, optional:
  • 3 egg whites
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1/4 cup sugar
For the meringue topping, optional:

Mix together sugar and cornstarch and slowly add milk. This should be cooked in the top of a double boiler, but you can cook it over low to medium heat, stirring constantly until it thickens--do not leave it unattended. Slightly beat egg yolks and temper with a small amount of the hot custard; stir well. Add egg mixture to custard pot and cook 2 more minutes. Remove from heat and add vanilla and butter. Let cool. In a 9 by 9-inch oven proof baking dish, alternate pudding, bananas, and wafers, beginning with pudding and ending with pudding. Add topping, if desired.

For the meringue topping, if using:

Beat egg whites and cream of tartar until soft peaks form. Gradually add sugar until stiff peaks form, then spread onto top of pudding mixture. Bake until golden brown.

View All

Cooking Tips
Loading review filters...

    105 Reviews
    0/1000 characters
    Your Rating:
    Sort by: 
    I don't get the 4 star overall rating for a poorly written/executed recipe that requires major modifications from how it appears here. Thanks to those who have offered fixes. Move on from Paula
    Recipe says "For the Meringue Topping (optional) where it should say, "For the Pudding"
    great i thought it would be hard because i never made meringue or banana pudding
    Just like my mom used to make. I was worried about it being soupy but she said it should be so that it soaks into the wafers. I will add more cornstarch though to make it a little thicker.
    Lordy, Lordy ...... it looked better than it tasted. I even doubled the amount of cornstarch and it was still soupy. OK, maybe not as soupy as it would have been if I did not double the amount of cornstartch. lol. And it got sweeter each day. I finally had to dump it. (I rarely dump food!)
    This was my first time ever making banana pudding and it was a success! I did read the reviews before I decided to use this recipe, overall I chose this recipe because it seem simple but tasty. So I did what a lot of people here recommended and double the cornstarch and I also used lactose free milk and it was delicious! I also cooked this on the stove top, first from medium high then to low heat until it thickens, which takes about 5-10 minutes. It was great!!
    This would have been great had I read more than the first few reviews. I doubled the cornstarch like others recommended, warmed it slowly on the stove in a pot until it looked thick... but it still turned out too soupy. I think if I had of brought it to a slow boil and cooked it longer, it probably would have come out thicker. The recipe needs to state to bring it to a slow boil until pudding consistency. Now I have this huge banana soup dessert that I cant bring to my family gathering today. What a waste. Luckily I have boys that will eat anything. 
    I might try the recipe again at some point, but Ive found other recipes out there that are easier and just as good, and dont leave out important details in the recipe. Sheesh!
    the trick to thickening is not to use a double boiler. thickens right up on the stovetop.
    Okay, my 2cents worth. I followed the recipe but cooked directly on the stove top. I treated this recipe like making creme brulee (thank you Chef Travis, low to medium heat. It did take twice as long eventually thickening up. Heavy cream in place of milk and using less than 1/2 cup sugar would solve that problem right off. The taste is there...
    HOW TO MAKE THIS RECIPE WORK: I prepared this recipe as is and all I had after 40 mins. was 40 mins of my life I'd never get back and vanilla custard soup. I put that batch to the side and tried again, same result. I then decided to read some reviews (I really should do this before I start cooking and discovered that others had the same issue. I quickly ran back to my soup and doubled the cornstarch. Still soup. I then decided to put both batches and back on the stove, but this time I ditched the double boiler. Voila! Within minutes I had wonderfully think custard. My advice: double the cornstarch and ditch the double broiler from the start. It tastes delish! This recipe, as is, is definitely not going to work though!
    Taste was really good but I had to add more cornstarch to thicken the pudding. And I think I could use more pudding in this recipe. I also substituted graham crackers instead of Nilla Wafers! Banana Soup is what this recipe is. Sorry, something is wrong with the measurements here.
    Like many others, my custard came out runny! I was very disappointed. Looks like I'll have to keep looking for a custard recipe I can use.
    The custard was a little tricky. The first one I made came out a little lumpy because I had to add cornstarch. I made it again a few weeks later and used whole milk with double the cornstarch and it came out perfect! I had perfect creamy custard in less than 20 minutes.
    I have to agree with some of the other raters. The custard never thicken for me. I think less milk and more cornstarch will do the trick. I've made the 'not yo mama banana pudding' and that was a hit!! But this time I wanted to make it from scratch...i'll have to tweak the ingredients a bit and see what happens this second go round. Excuse me as I throw this banana pudding (soup away, sad day :(
    Banana pudding like mom makes! The custard is the hardest part, but that's what makes it so good.
    I had to make two, my brother ate one and my sister ate the other. It was EXCELLENT. I only made one adjustment. For my brother I used one cup of condensed milk and the rest regular. For my sister who has lactose challenges, I used lactaid milk and it still turned out great. 
    Thanks Paula. I will make this often.
    I like the recipe and get rave reviews, but I double the custard and don't bother with the double boiler. Use half and half instead of milk for even richer custard.
    The bananas are the best part of the pudding. the proportion of the bananas is just right. My grand kids love them. I can get my grand kids to eat lot more fresh fruit also.
    I will never make this pudding again. My double boiler is ruined from being on high heat for 4 hours. The stupid thing takes FOREVER to thicken and then there was enough pudding to smear on a piece of toast. I tried again...same results. I'm taking this for Thanksgiving and there are bananas, cookies and a pretty meringue. My legs are so sore from standing all morning that I think I'll cry. Dang.
    I followed the recipe, except I used a regular pot over the stove. It came out perfect and everyone loved it. I added the milk slowly and my custard thicked up. I baked it at 350 degrees for 12 minutes and it all came out just like the picture. I will make this again for my family.
    On first try I had no luck, using a double boiler, getting the pudding to thicken. Second try more than doubled the cornstarch, and used a risotto pan..Much better. The first batch was like banana, 'Nilla wafer soup...
    Fabulous!!! I have been searching for years for a recipe similar to my Mom's--with baked meringue on top! Found it---I cried it was just like Mom's --go figure she was a gal from Georgia too!!
     Thanks Paula
    This was a hit it did not last 4 hours at my house. If you did not like this you did something wrong or your taste buds were out of order 
    I am a novice at cooking and will have to say Paula's Banana Pudding recipe was OUTSTANDING!!!!! I received so many compliments!! I did tweak the recipe a bit I added 2 more spoons of corn starch and cooked it on a Paula Dean Skillet instead but you much watch and keep stirring until it thickens. Your family will LOVE THIS THANKS PAULA I look forward to more of your recipes,
    Thank God for the pies I purchased because this banana pudding would've ruined my Thanksgiving! I should have paid more attention to the reviews about adding more cornstarch or decreasing the amount of milk. It never thickened so I threw it away.
    I wish I had read more than the first 3 reviews before making this. I used this recipe to make banana cream pie (layer custard and bananas in a baked pie crust and had to rethicken it. Increase the cornstarch to 5 TBSP and it works. Cornstarch doesn't thicken until it boils so make sure to bring the milk, sugar, cornstarch mixture to a boil before tempering the eggs. The flavor is really good and once I got the consistency correct, it worked out really well. It will cook in 10 minutes if you cook the milk mixture over direct heat, increase the heat to medium.medium-high, and whisk it the entire time. Great workout for your forearm. Using the increased cornstarch, I'll make this again.
    This banana pudding is absolutely perfect!!!! It was my first time making it from scratch and the family LOVED it!!! Thanks Paula Deen you are awesome!!!!!
    first time i made it; it was amazing!!!!!!!!!!! thanks soooo much Paula Dean you rock!!!!!1
    I follow this recipe exactly, this was my first time making it my fiance love banana pudding any way it came out wonderful Thank you so much Paula I watch and love your show.And this is like the third recipe I followed from you PERFECT O!!!!!!
    It is great for tripple dates !
    Flag as inappropriate

    Thank you! your flag was submitted.

    This recipe is featured in: