Not Your Mama’s Banana Pudding

“Not Your Mama’s Banana Pudding” is a decadent twist on the traditional banana pudding, offering layers of creamy delight interspersed with fresh bananas and delicate cookies. This dessert stands out for its ease of preparation and its ability to impress with both its looks and taste. Perfect for any occasion, from family gatherings to potlucks or as a sweet ending to a dinner party, this banana pudding is more than just a dessert; it’s a conversation starter and a memorable treat.

It combines the classic flavors of banana and vanilla with a rich, smooth texture, making each spoonful a delightful experience. Whether you’re a seasoned baker or someone looking for an easy yet impressive dessert, this recipe is sure to win hearts.

Choosing Ingredients and Cooking Tips:

  1. Bananas: Choose ripe but firm bananas. Overripe bananas can become too mushy after refrigeration.
  2. Chessman Cookies: These buttery cookies add a unique flavor and texture. However, you can substitute them with vanilla wafers or graham crackers for a different twist.
  3. Cream Cheese and Whipped Topping: Use full-fat cream cheese for a richer flavor. The whipped topping should be thawed for easy folding.
  4. Pudding Mix: Instant French vanilla pudding mix works best for this recipe, but you can experiment with other flavors like banana cream or classic vanilla.

Making the Dish:

  • Layering: The beauty of this dessert lies in its layers, so take care to neatly arrange the cookies and bananas.
  • Mixing: Ensure that the pudding mix and milk attain the right consistency before combining with the cream cheese mixture to avoid lumps.
  • Chilling: The pudding needs time to set, so refrigeration for at least 4 hours is crucial. Overnight refrigeration can enhance the flavors even more.

Variations and Substitutions:

  • Dairy-Free Version: Use dairy-free cream cheese, whipped topping, and a suitable milk alternative.
  • Healthier Alternatives: For a lighter version, you can use low-fat cream cheese, skimmed milk, and a sugar-free pudding mix.
  • Flavor Variations: Introduce different flavors by adding a layer of caramel or a sprinkle of cinnamon on top of the bananas.
  • Cookie Variations: Besides Chessman cookies, other cookie types like shortbread or even chocolate chip cookies can offer a new flavor profile.

“Not Your Mama’s Banana Pudding” is not just a recipe; it’s a testament to the joy of easy and creative dessert making. Its versatility makes it suitable for various dietary preferences and occasions. Dive into the process of creating this delightful pudding and enjoy the smiles it brings to your table.

Not Your Mama’s Banana Pudding Recipe

Preparation Time: 30 minutes Chilling Time: 4 hours Total Time: Approximately 4 hours 30 minutes


  • 1 can (14 ounces) of sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 container (12 ounces) of frozen whipped topping, thawed
  • 2 packages of Pepperidge Farm Chessman cookies
  • 6 to 8 bananas, sliced
  • 2 cups of milk
  • 1 box (5 ounces) of instant French vanilla pudding mix
  • 1 package (8 ounces) of cream cheese, softened


  1. Begin by taking a 9 x 13-inch pan and arranging one package of Chessman cookies along the bottom. Utilize any broken cookies here.
  2. Over the cookies, evenly distribute the sliced bananas.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, combine the milk with the instant French vanilla pudding mix. Use an electric mixer and blend for approximately 5 minutes, or until the mixture starts to thicken.
  4. In a separate large bowl, blend the softened cream cheese with the sweetened condensed milk using the mixer, until the mixture is smooth and well combined.
  5. Gently fold the thawed whipped topping into the cream cheese and condensed milk mixture.
  6. Merge the cream cheese mixture with the thickened pudding mixture. Stir them together thoroughly, ensuring they are well blended. You can continue to use the electric mixer for this step if preferred.
  7. Pour this combined mixture over the layer of cookies and sliced bananas in the pan, ensuring an even spread.
  8. Arrange the remaining Chessman cookies on top of the mixture.
  9. Cover the pan carefully with plastic wrap and refrigerate. Allow the pudding to set for at least 4 hours, though you can also prepare it a day in advance and let it refrigerate overnight.

This “Not Your Mama’s Banana Pudding” is a decadent and modern twist on the classic banana pudding, featuring layers of creamy, rich pudding and fresh bananas, all nestled between buttery Chessman cookies. It’s a perfect dessert for family gatherings, potlucks, or as a special treat. The ease of preparation, combined with the delightful blend of flavors and textures, makes it a surefire hit for any occasion.

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