Brown Butter Banana Pudding
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Cook time: 
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Serves: 6 servings
Nutty brown butter infuses the pudding of this take on classic banana pudding.
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 2¼ cups whole milk
  • 1¼ cups heavy cream, divided
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3 ripe bananas
  • 48 mini vanilla wafers (or about 24 regular wafers)
  1. Melt the brown butter in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Once the butter starts to foam, stir it with a heatproof spatula until the solids turn deep brown and smell fragrant and nutty like toffee. Turn off the heat and pour the butter into a heatproof dish to cool.
  2. In the same saucepan whisk the sugar, kosher salt, and cornstarch. Whisk in the egg yolks until they are completely broken up--add a splash of milk if it's too thick to whisk. Whisk in the milk and ¼ cup of the cream to combine. Heat the mixture over medium heat, constantly stirring, until the pudding thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon (so that when you run a finger over it a clear track is left on the spoon). The pudding will take about 15-20 minutes to thicken. Pour the pudding into a blender (or better yet, use an immersion blender in the saucepan) and blend in the browned butter and vanilla on low speed, just to combine.
  3. Peel the bananas and slice into rounds. Place about 4 mini vanilla wafers into the bottoms of 6 glasses, top the vanilla wafers with about ¼ worth of banana slices per glass, and spoon ¼ cup of the still warm pudding over the top of the bananas and wafers. Repeat by layering 4 mores vanilla wafers over the pudding layer, followed by another ¼ sliced bananas, and ¼ cup pudding. Cover the pudding wit plastic wrap (making sure it directly touches the surface) and chill the puddings for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight, so the vanilla wafers soften and the pudding is thoroughly chilled. Before serving, whip the cream to soft peaks and top each pudding with a generous dollop of cream. Top with additional banana slices and crushed vanilla wafers if you want to get fancy.
This recipe yields about 3 cups of pudding, so you can make six servings with about ½ cup of pudding in each. You can also make this family-style in a baking dish or wide, shallow bowl.

Adapted from this Whiskey Brown Butter Butterscotch Pudding with Ganache and Sea Salt
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