How to Make the Best Banana Pudding with Nilla Wafers: Step-by-Step Guide

How to Make the Best Banana Pudding with Nilla Wafers: Step-by-Step Guide

Are you a fan of classic desserts? Well, look no further because today we have a treat for you! We’re diving into the world of nostalgia with the original banana pudding recipe found right on the back of the Nilla Wafer box. That’s right, this beloved dessert has been enjoyed by generations, and now it’s your turn to whip up a batch of this timeless favorite. Get ready to savor the creamy layers of pudding, fresh bananas, and the irresistible crunch of those golden Nilla Wafers. Let’s get started on this delicious journey down memory lane!

If you’re like me, you love discovering hidden gems, especially when it comes to recipes. And let me tell you, the original banana pudding recipe on the Nilla Wafer box is a true hidden gem! This iconic dessert has been a staple at family gatherings, potlucks, and picnics for years. It’s a simple yet satisfying combination of flavors and textures that never fails to impress. So, grab your apron and prepare to create a dessert that will transport you back to simpler times.

The History of Banana Pudding

If you’re a fan of desserts, chances are you’ve heard of banana pudding. This classic treat has been enjoyed by generations and is a beloved staple at potlucks, family gatherings, and picnics. But have you ever wondered about the origins of this delicious dessert? Let’s take a trip back in time and explore the history of banana pudding.

Banana pudding can trace its roots back to the Southern United States, where it became popular in the late 19th century. The original recipe for banana pudding can be found on the back of the Nilla Wafer box, adding to its nostalgic charm. This simple yet satisfying dessert quickly became a household favorite, thanks to its combination of creamy custard, ripe bananas, and crunchy vanilla wafers.

The beauty of banana pudding lies in its versatility. While the classic recipe calls for layering sliced bananas, vanilla custard, and Nilla Wafers, many variations have emerged over the years. Some people add whipped cream or meringue on top, while others experiment with different flavors by incorporating chocolate or peanut butter. Regardless of the variations, one thing remains constant – the delightful combination of sweet, creamy, and fruity flavors.

Banana pudding not only satisfies your taste buds but also brings a sense of nostalgia. It evokes memories of childhood and simpler times, reminding us of family gatherings and holiday celebrations. It’s a dessert that brings people together, sparking conversations and creating lasting memories.

So, the next time you’re in the mood for a classic dessert, why not give banana pudding a try? Whether you stick to the original recipe or put your own spin on it, you’re sure to enjoy every creamy and flavorful bite. And as you savor the taste, remember that you’re indulging in a dessert with a rich history that has stood the test of time.

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Nilla Wafers: The Perfect Base

When it comes to making the perfect banana pudding, one of the key ingredients is the humble Nilla Wafer. These crisp, vanilla-flavored cookies have been a staple in American households for decades, and for good reason. They provide the perfect base for creating a delicious and nostalgic dessert.


Nilla Wafers are not just any ordinary cookie. They have a unique texture and flavor that perfectly complements the creamy pudding and fresh bananas in a banana pudding recipe. Whether you choose to layer them whole or crush them to create a crumbly crust, Nilla Wafers add a delightful crunch and sweetness to every bite.


One of the best things about using Nilla Wafers as the base for banana pudding is their simplicity. The original banana pudding recipe on the back of the Nilla Wafer box is a testament to this. With just a few ingredients and minimal effort, you can create a dessert that is sure to impress.


Nilla Wafers have been a pantry staple for generations, and many of us have fond memories of enjoying them as children. Using Nilla Wafers in your banana pudding can evoke a sense of nostalgia and bring back those cherished moments. It’s a dessert that not only tastes amazing but also brings people together and creates lasting memories.


Nilla Wafers truly are the perfect base for banana pudding. Their versatility, simplicity, and ability to evoke nostalgia make them an ideal choice for creating this classic dessert. So next time you’re in the mood for a sweet treat, grab a box of Nilla Wafers and get ready to indulge in a slice of banana pudding heaven.

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Gathering the Ingredients

Now that you’re ready to embark on your banana pudding journey, it’s time to gather the essential ingredients that will make this dessert a true delight. The original banana pudding recipe on the Nilla Wafer box calls for just a few simple ingredients that you may already have in your pantry. Here’s what you’ll need:

  1. Nilla Wafers: These golden, vanilla-flavored cookies are the star of the show. They provide the perfect crunchy base for your banana pudding. Make sure to grab a box of these nostalgic treats.
  2. Bananas: Choose ripe bananas that are firm but not too soft. You want them to hold their shape when layered in the pudding. The natural sweetness and creamy texture of bananas will elevate the flavor of your dessert.
  3. Vanilla Pudding: The smooth, velvety pudding is what brings everything together. Opt for the instant vanilla pudding mix for convenience and ease of preparation. It’ll save you time and still deliver that classic flavor.
  4. Milk: You’ll need milk to prepare the vanilla pudding according to the instructions on the box. Whole milk is recommended for a rich and creamy texture, but you can use any milk you have on hand.
  5. Whipped Cream: This optional ingredient adds a fluffy and indulgent touch to your banana pudding. If you’re a fan of extra creaminess, don’t forget to grab a can of whipped cream or whip up your own from scratch.
  6. Optional Toppings: If you want to take your banana pudding to the next level, consider adding some optional toppings. These can include a sprinkle of cinnamon, a drizzle of caramel sauce, or even a handful of chopped nuts for added crunch.

The Original Banana Pudding Recipe

If you’re a fan of classic desserts, then you’re in for a treat with the original banana pudding recipe that you can find on the Nilla Wafer box. This timeless recipe has been enjoyed by generations and continues to be a favorite among dessert lovers. So, let’s dive into the delicious world of banana pudding and discover how to recreate this nostalgic dessert.

To make the original banana pudding, you’ll need just a few simple ingredients that you probably already have in your pantry. The star of the show is, of course, the Nilla Wafers. These crisp and subtly sweet cookies are the perfect base for building layers of creamy pudding and fresh bananas. Their unique texture adds a delightful crunch to every bite.

Next, you’ll need ripe bananas. Make sure they are perfectly ripe, with just the right amount of sweetness. This will ensure that your banana pudding is bursting with flavor. Slice the bananas into thin rounds to layer them evenly throughout the pudding.

For the creamy pudding, you’ll need vanilla pudding mix and milk. Follow the instructions on the pudding mix package to prepare the pudding. Once it’s thickened, you’re ready to start assembling.

Begin by arranging a layer of Nilla Wafers on the bottom of a serving dish. Top it with a layer of sliced bananas, and then pour a generous amount of the prepared vanilla pudding over the bananas. Repeat this layering process until you’ve used up all the ingredients, ending with a layer of pudding on top.

Once you’ve assembled your banana pudding, it’s time to let it chill in the refrigerator for a few hours. This will allow the flavors to meld together and the cookies to soften slightly, creating a luscious and creamy dessert.

When you’re ready to serve, you can get creative with optional toppings. Sprinkle a dash of cinnamon over the top for a warm and cozy flavor, drizzle some caramel sauce for an extra touch of sweetness, or sprinkle some chopped nuts for added crunch.

Step-by-Step Instructions

Making the original banana pudding recipe on the Nilla Wafer box is a breeze. Just follow these simple steps and you’ll have a delicious dessert in no time!

  1. Gather your ingredients: You’ll need ripe bananas, Nilla Wafers, sugar, flour, salt, milk, eggs, and vanilla extract.
  2. Slice the bananas: Start by slicing the bananas into thin rounds. You’ll need about 4-5 bananas, depending on their size.
  3. Layer the Nilla Wafers: Take a 9×9-inch baking dish and place a layer of Nilla Wafers on the bottom. Make sure they cover the entire surface.
  4. Add the sliced bananas: Arrange a layer of sliced bananas on top of the Nilla Wafers. Spread them out evenly.
  5. Prepare the pudding mixture: In a saucepan, combine the sugar, flour, and salt. Gradually whisk in the milk and cook over medium heat until the mixture thickens.
  6. Temper the eggs: In a separate bowl, beat the eggs. Gradually add a small amount of the hot pudding mixture to the beaten eggs, whisking constantly. This will prevent the eggs from curdling.
  7. Combine the pudding mixture: Pour the tempered egg mixture back into the saucepan with the remaining pudding mixture. Cook over low heat for another 2 minutes, stirring constantly.
  8. Add vanilla extract: Remove the pudding mixture from the heat and stir in the vanilla extract. Mix well.
  9. Layer the pudding: Pour half of the pudding mixture over the sliced bananas and Nilla Wafers in the baking dish. Add another layer of Nilla Wafers on top, followed by the remaining pudding mixture.
  10. Chill and serve: Cover the dish with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight. This will allow the flavors to meld together and the pudding to set. Serve chilled and enjoy!

Tips and Tricks for Success

When it comes to making the original banana pudding recipe using Nilla Wafers, there are a few tips and tricks that can help you achieve success. Whether you’re a seasoned chef or a beginner in the kitchen, these tips will ensure that your banana pudding turns out absolutely delicious every time.

1. Choose Ripe Bananas: The key to a flavorful banana pudding lies in the bananas you use. Look for bananas that are fully ripe with a vibrant yellow peel and a few brown spots. These bananas will be sweet, creamy, and perfect for mashing into the pudding mixture.

2. Layer Wisely: The layering of the ingredients is crucial in creating a balanced and visually appealing banana pudding. Start with a layer of Nilla Wafers at the bottom of your dish, followed by a layer of sliced bananas, and then a layer of pudding. Repeat these layers until all the ingredients are used, ending with a layer of pudding on top. This will ensure that every bite is filled with the perfect combination of flavors and textures.

3. Chill for Maximum Flavor: While it may be tempting to dig into your banana pudding right away, it’s best to let it chill in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours, or even overnight. This allows the flavors to meld together, the wafers to soften slightly, and the pudding to set, resulting in a luscious and creamy dessert.

4. Garnish Creatively: Don’t be afraid to get creative with your garnishes. While whipped cream and a sprinkle of crushed Nilla Wafers are classic choices, you can also try topping your banana pudding with fresh berries, toasted coconut flakes, or even a drizzle of caramel sauce. These additions not only add visual appeal but also enhance the overall taste of the dessert.

5. Store Properly: If you have any leftovers (which is rare because it’s just that good!), make sure to store your banana pudding in an airtight container in the refrigerator. It will stay fresh for up to 3 days, but trust me, it probably won’t last that long.

Alternatives and Variations

If you’re feeling adventurous and want to put your own spin on the classic banana pudding recipe, there are plenty of alternatives and variations you can try. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

  1. Chocolate Banana Pudding: For all the chocoholics out there, why not add a touch of cocoa to your banana pudding? Simply mix in some unsweetened cocoa powder with the pudding mix before layering it with the bananas and Nilla Wafers. This twist will give your dessert a rich and velvety flavor that chocolate lovers won’t be able to resist.
  2. Caramelized Banana Pudding: Take your banana pudding to the next level by caramelizing the bananas before layering them in the dish. To do this, simply melt some butter in a skillet, add sliced bananas, and sprinkle them with brown sugar. Cook them until they’re golden and slightly caramelized, then layer them in between the pudding and Nilla Wafers. This adds a delicious caramel flavor and adds a hint of sweetness to the dessert.
  3. Peanut Butter Banana Pudding: If you’re a fan of the classic combination of peanut butter and bananas, this variation is for you. Simply mix some creamy peanut butter into the pudding mixture before assembling the dessert. The creamy peanut butter adds a rich and nutty flavor that pairs perfectly with the sweetness of the bananas and the crunch of the Nilla Wafers.
  4. Berry Banana Pudding: For a burst of fruity freshness, consider adding some berries to your banana pudding. You can use fresh strawberries, blueberries, or raspberries, or even a combination of all three. Simply layer the berries in between the pudding and Nilla Wafers for a colorful and flavorful twist on the original recipe.

Serving and Enjoying the Banana Pudding

Now that you have prepared the delicious original banana pudding using the recipe on the Nilla Wafer box, it’s time to serve and enjoy this delightful dessert. Here are a few tips to make the most of your banana pudding experience:

1. Presentation is key: When serving your banana pudding, take a moment to make it look visually appealing. You can do this by layering the pudding and Nilla Wafers in a glass trifle dish or individual serving cups. This not only adds a touch of elegance to your dessert but also allows everyone to see the beautiful layers of creamy pudding, ripe bananas, and crunchy wafers.

2. Garnish creatively: Enhance the flavor and visual appeal of your banana pudding by adding a creative garnish. Consider topping each serving with a dollop of whipped cream, a sprinkle of crushed Nilla Wafers, or a few slices of fresh banana. You can even drizzle some caramel sauce or sprinkle a dash of cinnamon for an extra burst of flavor.

3. Serve chilled: Banana pudding tastes best when it’s chilled. After assembling the layers, cover the dish or cups with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours, or preferably overnight. This allows the flavors to meld together and the pudding to set perfectly, resulting in a creamy and luscious dessert that is worth the wait.

4. Get creative with variations: While the original banana pudding recipe is a classic, don’t be afraid to experiment with different variations. Try adding a layer of chocolate ganache between the pudding and wafers for a decadent twist. You can also caramelize the bananas for a rich and indulgent flavor. For peanut butter lovers, mix some creamy peanut butter into the pudding for a deliciously nutty taste. Or, for a fruity twist, add some fresh berries like strawberries or blueberries to the layers.

Remember, banana pudding is a versatile dessert that can be enjoyed on its own or as a delightful accompaniment to other dishes. Whether you’re serving it at a casual gathering or a fancy dinner party, these tips will help you create a visually stunning and delicious dessert that will impress your guests.


Now that you have all the necessary information, you’re ready to create your own delicious batch of banana pudding using the original recipe found on the Nilla Wafer box. Remember to follow the step-by-step instructions and take note of the helpful tips provided in this article. Chilling the dessert for at least 4 hours will ensure that the flavors meld together perfectly, resulting in a delightful treat.

If you’re feeling adventurous, don’t be afraid to try out some of the alternative variations mentioned in the article. From chocolate banana pudding to caramelized banana pudding, there are plenty of ways to put your own unique twist on this classic recipe. The possibilities are endless, so feel free to get creative and experiment with different flavors.

When it comes to serving and enjoying your banana pudding, presentation is key. Take some time to garnish your dessert creatively and consider adding a personal touch. Remember to serve it chilled for the best taste experience. Whether you’re enjoying it on your own or sharing it with friends and family, this creamy and flavorful dessert is sure to be a hit.

So go ahead, grab your Nilla Wafers and ripe bananas, and get ready to indulge in a scrumptious bowl of homemade banana pudding.