Banana pudding is an absolute requirement for any Southern dessert table. Whether it’s served after a barbecue, a Sunday dinner or for the finale of a fun family get-together, everyone wants to finish off their meal with a big ole helping of banana pudding. In the South, often, banana pudding has a lovely browned meringue on top. This recipe makes a rich and creamy banana pudding that has pockets of vanilla wafers for texture. It’s also easy to make and only takes a few minutes to assemble.
This recipe is for one large pan of banana pudding, but you can easily make individual servings.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Banana Pudding: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Whisk together the first three ingredients in a heavy-bottomed saucepan.
Add the milk and the egg yolks. Turn the heat to medium and whisk occasionally. Cook until thick and bubbling, which should be about 10 minutes. If it doesn't thicken, turn the heat up a little.
When it is thick, stir in the vanilla and butter.
In a 9 x 13-inch oven-safe dish, cover the bottom with a layer of vanilla wafers. Then, cover the wafers with a layer of bananas. With a spatula, add one third of the pudding over the other layers. Repeat for several more layers, ending with the pudding.
Put the four egg whites into the bowl of a stand mixer. Using the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites on medium speed for 1 minute. Then add the cream of tartar and turn up the speed to medium high. Spoon in the sugar. Turn the mixer up to the second highest speed and watch it closely. In less than 2 minutes, it should have soft peaks. Stop and add the vanilla and continue beating until it has stiff peaks.
Using a spatula, gently spread the meringue over the banana pudding, making peaks and valleys. Be sure to reach all the way to the edge of the pan.
Bake for 15 minutes or until the peaks of the meringue are golden brown.
Let it cool for 15 minutes before serving.
You can crumble a few vanilla wafers over the entire serving dish or over each individual serving if you like.
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