Best No Bake Banana Pudding Recipe with Cream Cheese

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Best No Bake Banana Pudding Recipe with Cream Cheese.

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Southern classic No-Bake Banana Pudding Recipe with Cream Cheese is a combination of the best banana pudding recipes I’ve made over the years including the famous recipe from Paula Deen. This perfect dessert incorporates the ease of instant pudding mix, store-bought frozen cool whip, the rich creaminess of cream cheese, real whipped cream, and fresh ripe bananas.

Three pieces of the best no-bake banana pudding recipe with cream cheese on a clear plate with a orange patterned towel.

All this goodness is topped with beautiful, buttery, and delicious Pepperidge Farm Chessmen Cookies and an extra layer of sliced almonds tucked inside. Yep, this is an absolutely delicious dessert and worth every single calorie!

Why You’ll Love This No-Bake Banana Pudding

  • Easy Dessert for Large Parties and Events: This creamy dessert is an excellent choice for large family gatherings, barbeques, or sharing with friends. This recipe makes enough to split into two 9″x 13″ pans.  
  • Easy Make-Ahead Convenience: Actually, for best results make this easy banana pudding recipe ahead of time and store it in the refrigerator until chilled, about 4 hours or overnight.
  • Refreshing and Light: Creamy homemade banana pudding is an instant win with both kids and adults.  It’s a refreshing and light dessert, perfect for warmer weather or when you’re craving something sweet but not overly heavy. The combination of creamy pudding, fresh bananas, and light whipped cream or other toppings creates a delightful, not-too-sweet treat.
Finished Banana Pudding with Chessman Cookies on top.

What You’ll Need for Homemade Banana Pudding

  • Fresh Bananas: there is no substitute for fresh bananas in this recipe. They should be ripe, a little soft. Try to use bananas with bright yellow skin without bruises. 
  • Instant Vanilla Pudding Mix: I use French vanilla pudding mix when I can find it in the grocery store. Regular instant vanilla pudding, banana pudding, or even white chocolate pudding would super in this recipe.
  • Dairy: room temperature, soft cream cheese, heavy whipping cream, and frozen creamy whipped topping make this a super fluffy banana pudding.
  • Extract: I love the almond extract in this recipe. It adds a distinct slightly sweet, nutty flavor. Vanilla is delicious too and is most commonly used in almost all banana puddings.
  • Buttery Shortbread Cookies: I like chessmen cookies in this recipe. They make this homemade pudding beautiful, are richer in buttery taste, and have a soft crunch that is perfect with the soft bananas and all the creamy textures. In my opinion vanilla wafer cookies tend to get mushy especially if you’re going to make this a day ahead.
  • Lemon Juice: Lemon juice prevents the bananas from turning brown prematurely and it adds a bright essence to the sweetness of the pudding.

Best No Bake Banana Pudding Recipe with Cream Cheese ingredients on a bamboo placemat.

What You’ll Need To Make Homemade Banana Pudding

  • 2 small French vanilla instant pudding boxes. Regular vanilla instant pudding mix can also be used
  • 1.5 cup cold milk
  • 6-8 ripe yellow bananas
  • 8 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 16 oz creamy cool whip
  • 1 tsp almond extract, optional
  • 3 packs Pepperidge Farm Chessmen Cookies, vanilla wafers, or any buttery shortbread cookies
  • 1 cup sliced almonds, lightly toasted
  • nutmeg – sprinkled on top of banana layer, optional
  • lemon juice – prevents bananas from turning brown

How To Make the Best No-Bake Banana Pudding

  • STEP ONE: In a large bowl, mix both boxes of the vanilla instant pudding mix and milk with a hand mixer. 
Milk and French vanilla pudding mix in a white bowl with hand mixer beaters.

  • STEP TWO: Add the soft cream cheese, almond extract, and whipping cream to the pudding-milk mixture. Mix until thick and creamy and you can form stiff peaks with the mixture. This might take about 5 minutes.
  • STEP THREE: Fold in thawed Cool Whip into pudding mixture.
Pudding and cream cheese mixture with cool whip folded in.
  • STEP FOUR: Toast sliced almonds in a nonstick skillet until they begin to turn tan. Let cool. Crush 3 or 4 chessmen cookies in a plastic bag. Add the cooled, toasted almond slices to the bag and shake to mix.
Toasted almond slices and cookie crumbs in a black non stick skillet.

STEP FIVE: Layers

 1: Place a single layer of chessman cookies, flat side up, on the bottom of the 9″x13″ rectangle panche.

Layer of chessmen cookies in a glass pyrex casserole dish.

 

2: Slice and layer bananas on top of the cookie layer. Sprinkle the layer of bananas with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice to prevent premature browning. 

3: Spread 1/2 of the pudding mixture on top of the banana slices. Smooth out with a rubber spatula. Shake nutmeg in a thin layer on top of the pudding layer. (optional)

Layer of No Bake Banana Pudding filling.

4: Sprinkle all of the toasted almond – cookie mixture on top of the pudding. Note: This step is optional, but it adds a delicious nutty cookie crunch in the middle of a delicious bite. You could add another layer of chessmen cookies instead of the almond cookie layer.

Layer of almond-cookie mixture on top of banana pudding filling.

5: Add a final layer of sliced bananas, the remaining pudding mixture, and then top with a final layer of cookies.

Layer of banana slices on top of almond-cookie mixture.
Banana pudding mixture layer.
Final layer of chessmen cookies on top of Best No Bake Banana Pudding Recipe with Cream Cheese.
  • STEP SIX… Cover with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for about 4 hours.

The amount of fluff the ingredients create is enough to fill one very large trifle dish or a deep 9′ x 13″ rectangle casserole dish. This recipe makes so much it’s almost a doubled recipe. It’s perfect for a large party or split into two dishes and gift one to a friend.

Recipe Variations and Tips

Banana Pudding is one of those dishes where you can get creative. Here are a few extra ideas for making ordinary Banana Pudding into an exceptional, memory-making event!

  • Add toasted coconut to the almond cookie mixture.
  • Try adding a layer of marshmallows!
  • Beat in some marshmallow fluff to the whipped ingredients.
  • Add or Substitute blueberries, strawberries, or peaches for the banana slices. Or use a mix of all four.
  • Chessmen Pepperidge Farm Cookies can be replaced by traditional Vanilla Wafers, animal crackers, or your favorite butter cookies. You could also use graham crackers, a thin sugar cookie, or even a chocolate cookie wafer.

FAQ

Q: How long does homemade banana pudding last?

A: When properly stored in the refrigerator, homemade banana pudding can last for about 2-3 days. However, the texture of the bananas and cookies might change slightly over time.

Q: Can I make banana pudding ahead of time?

A: Yes, you can make banana pudding ahead of time. It’s best to let it sit in the refrigerator for a few hours (or overnight) before serving for the flavors to meld together and the cookies to soften slightly.

Q: How can I prevent the bananas from browning in banana pudding?

A: To prevent bananas from browning, toss them in a bit of lemon juice before layering them in the pudding. This helps slow down the oxidation process.

Q: Can I freeze banana pudding?

A: No, freezing can change the texture and consistency of the pudding, bananas, and cookies. It’s best enjoyed fresh or stored in the refrigerator for a few days.

Single serving of the best banana pudding on a clear plate.


How To Store No-Bake Banana Pudding Recipe with Cream Cheese

The best way to store banana pudding is in the refrigerator covered securely with plastic wrap. Make sure the plastic wrap is secure on all sides of the dish.

To store leftovers, use an airtight container such as a Rubbermaid plastic container with a tight-fitting lid.

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Three pieces of Best No Bake Banana Pudding Recipe with Cream Cheese on a clear plate.

Best No Bake Banana Pudding Recipe with Cream Cheese

Elise Austin
No-Bake Banana Pudding Recipe with Cream Cheese is a perfect dessert incorporates the ease of instant pudding mix, store-bought frozen cool whip, the rich creaminess of cream cheese, real whipped cream, fresh bananas and topped with beautiful, buttery, and delicious Pepperidge Farm Cheesemen Cookies and an extra layer of sliced almonds tucked inside. 
No ratings yet
Prep Time 25 minutes
Refridgeration Time 4 hours
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 25
Calories 200 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 2 small French vanilla instant pudding boxes banana or regular vanilla can be substituted
  • 1.5 cup milk
  • 6-8 ripe bananas
  • 8 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup whipping cream
  • 16 oz creamy cool whip
  • 1 tsp almond extract optional
  • 3 packs Pepperidge Farm Chessman Cookies or vanilla wafers
  • 1 cup almonds, sliced optional
  • nutmeg – sprinkled on top of banana layer optional
  • lemon juice, drizzle prevents bananas from turning brown

Instructions
 

  • STEP ONE: In a large bowl, mix together both boxes of the vanilla instant pudding mix and milk with a hand mixer. 
    2 small French vanilla instant pudding boxes, 1.5 cup milk
  • STEP TWO: Add the soft cream cheese, almond extract, and whipping cream to the pudding-milk mixture. Mix until thick and creamy and you can form stiff peaks with the mixture. This might take about 5 minutes.
    8 oz cream cheese, softened, 1 tsp almond extract, 1/2 cup whipping cream
  • STEP THREE: Fold in thawed Cool Whip into pudding mixture.
    16 oz creamy cool whip
  • STEP FOUR: Toast sliced almonds in a nonstick skillet until they begin to turn tan. Let cool. Crush 3 or 4 chessmen cookies in a plastic bag. Add the cooled, toasted almond slices to the bag and shake to mix.
    1 cup almonds, sliced
  • STEP FIVE: Layers
  • 1: Place a single layer of chessman cookies, flat side up, on the bottom of the 9"x13" rectangle pan.
    2: Slice and layer bananas on top of cookie layer. Sprinkle the layer of bananas with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice to prevent premature browning. 
    3: Spread 1/2 of the pudding mixture on top of the banana slices. Smooth out with a rubber spatula. Shake nutmeg in a thin sparce layer on top of the pudding layer.
    4: Sprinkle all of the toasted almond – cookie mixture on top of the pudding. Note: This step is optional, but it adds a delicious nutty cookie crunch in the middle of a delicious bite. You could add another layer of chessmen cookies instead of the almond-cookie layer.
    5: Add a final layer of sliced bananas, remaining pudding mixture, and then top with a final layer of cookies.
    6-8 ripe bananas, 3 packs Pepperidge Farm Chessman Cookies, lemon juice, drizzle
  • Enjoy!!!

Notes

The amount of fluff the ingredients create is enough to fill one very large trifle dish or a deep 9′ x 13″ rectangle casserole dish. This recipe makes so much it’s almost a doubled recipe. It’s perfect for a large party or split into two dishes and gift one to a friend.

Q: How long does homemade banana pudding last?

A: When properly stored in the refrigerator, homemade banana pudding can last for about 2-3 days. However, the texture of the bananas and cookies might change slightly over time.

Q: Can I make banana pudding ahead of time?

A: Yes, you can make banana pudding ahead of time. It’s actually recommended to let it sit in the refrigerator for a few hours (or overnight) before serving, as it allows the flavors to meld together and the cookies to soften slightly.

 

Q: How can I prevent the bananas from browning in banana pudding?

A: To prevent bananas from browning, toss them in a bit of lemon juice before layering them in the pudding. This helps slow down the oxidation process.

Q: Can I freeze banana pudding?

A: No, freezing can change the texture and consistency of the pudding, bananas, and cookies. It’s best enjoyed fresh or stored in the refrigerator for a few days.

Nutrition

Calories: 200kcalCarbohydrates: 7gProtein: 1gFat: 2gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.1gMonounsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 7mgSodium: 7mgPotassium: 27mgSugar: 1gVitamin A: 94IUVitamin C: 0.03mgCalcium: 21mgIron: 0.005mg
Keyword banana, chessmen cookies, Cool Whip, Cream Cheese, easy, heavy cream, instant pudding, southern
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Kitchen Items You Will Need:

pinterest pin of close banana pudding
easy no bake banana pudding
close up of single piece of banana pudding with a secret layer arrow
easy no bake banana pudding pin

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Speaking from personal experience, this pudding is delicious! Xena did share!

Thank you Gena! We love Miss Xena!

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