The thickest, creamiest, most luscious no-bake dessert has to be southern banana pudding. Sweetie Pie banana pudding is often regarded as the best because it is seriously sweet. But, how do you make it?
Sweetie Pies Bakery has this recipe down. It is the recipe that helped the bakery take off in popularity. This even lead to a TV show about the franchise!
Southern banana pudding usually consists of vanilla wafers, banana pudding, bananas, and whipped cream or topping. The pudding layer can be homemade or store-bought instant mix.
Here are three Sweetie Pie Banana Pudding-inspired recipes that use similar ingredients in many different ways. Each recipe is deliciously decadent.
The Sweetie Pie Banana Pudding Recipes
The first recipe is a nod to Miss Robbie, the original creator of Sweetie Pie Banana Pudding. This is her recipe, using instant banana pudding and whipped topping.
1.The Original Sweetie Pie’s Banana Pudding
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 box instant French vanilla pudding
- 1 cup whole milk
- ¼ cup heavy whipping cream
- 2 tablespoons vanilla extract
- 16 oz. whipped topping, thawed, and divided
- 1 box vanilla wafers
- 5 bananas, sliced into ¼-inch rounds
- In a medium-sized bowl, add the sugar, banana pudding mix, whole milk, heavy whipping cream, and vanilla extract. Mix with a whisk or hand mixer until well combined and thick. Fold in about ¼ of the whipped topping using a spatula until no white spots remain.
- To a trifle bowl or 9×12-inch baking pan, add a bottom layer of vanilla wafers. Top with about ⅓ of the cut bananas, then lay a thick layer of the pudding mixture over top. Continue with this pattern until all pudding, bananas, and wafers have been used.
- Top with the remaining whipped topping. Chill for about 2-4 hours and serve.
The next banana pudding recipe uses a homemade pudding instead of an instant mix. The taste is truly fantastic and the pudding can be served warm!
2.Southern Homemade Banana Pudding
You will likely see this recipe on any potluck table in the south. A homemade brown sugar banana pudding is layered with wafers and topped with freshly whipped meringue.
- 3 cups whole milk, divided
- 1 ¼ cups light brown sugar, lightly packed
- ¼ cup cornstarch
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 4 large eggs, separated, yolks lightly beaten, whites reserved
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 3 ripe medium bananas, mashed
- 3 ripe medium bananas, thinly sliced
- 50 vanilla wafers
- 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
- In a saucepan, heat 2½ cups of the milk over medium heat until it is steaming. In a separate bowl, whisk together the brown sugar, cornstarch, and salt. Also, whisk in the egg yolks and the remaining ½ cup of milk. This will become a thick, gritty paste.
- Temper the egg mixture by mixing in ½ of the scalding milk into the sugar mixture. Whisk vigorously so that the yolks do not scramble. Then pour the entire mixture into the saucepan with the remaining hot milk.
- Whisk this mixture constantly over medium heat until it boils. Reduce the heat to medium-low and allow it to come back up to a simmer. Continue whisking constantly for 4 minutes until the mixture thickens like pudding. Remove from the heat and beat in the butter and vanilla extract. Also, beat in the mashed bananas.
- To a 9×12-inch glass baking dish, layer ⅓ of the pudding, half the banana slices, and half of the vanilla wafers. Next, add another ⅓ of pudding, the remaining bananas, and wafers. Top with the remaining pudding and cover with plastic wrap directly onto the pudding.
- Refrigerate for at least 4 hours before serving.
Lastly, we have a banana pudding recipe derived from Savannah, GA native, Paula Deen. She uses a special cookie to create her banana pudding.
3.Not Yo Mama’s Banana Pudding
Paula Deen, the mother of southern cooking, developed this original recipe. Unlike the others, it uses sweetened condensed milk and cream cheese.
- 14.5 oz. (2 bags) chessmen cookies
- 8 bananas, sliced thin
- 2 cups whole milk
- 1 5 oz. box instant vanilla pudding mix
- 1 14 oz. can of sweetened condensed milk
- 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
- 12 oz. whipped topping, thawed
- To a 9×12-inch glass baking dish, layer 1 bag of cookies. Top the cookies with the bananas in an even layer.
- Using a hand mixer, combine the whole milk and instant vanilla pudding until thick and creamy, about 2-3 minutes. In another bowl, combine the sweetened condensed milk and softened cream cheese until completely smooth. Fold the whipped topping into the cream cheese mixture. Then, fold the cream cheese mixture into the pudding.
- Top the bananas and cookies with the entirety of the pudding mixture, then layer the last bag of cookies on top. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2-4 hours before serving.
What Is Banana Pudding Exactly?
Banana pudding is a layered dessert. It consists of sweetened whipped cream, vanilla or banana pudding, vanilla wafers or cake, and sliced bananas.
Banana pudding is similar to an English trifle, a cake and cream layered dessert. It is found around the USA, especially in the American south.
There are baked versions and refrigerated recipes for Banana pudding. The refrigerated recipes are similar to how an icebox cake is made.
Icebox cakes are layered desserts with cream and cookies. As the cookies sit with the cream in the fridge, they soften. The result is a cakey texture with creamy layers in between.
Where Did Sweetie Pie Banana Pudding Originate?
Sources are divided about who popularized the banana pudding recipe first. Some day it was Good Housekeeping in 1888. That recipe featured custard, bananas, whipped cream, and sponge cake layered in a dish.
Others say that the New York Times first mentioned banana pudding in 1878. This would have been 10 years before the Good Housekeeping article.
The main difference between the two articles was the use of sponge cake versus wafers. That debate still sparks controversy today.
Who Is Sweetie Pie?
Miss Robbie Montgomery is the owner and proprietor of Sweetie Pies Bakery. She is a soul singer from Mississippi.
Miss Robbie was previously a backup dancer for Ike and Tina Turner! Her music career soared before becoming the franchise owner of Sweetie Pies.
The bakery even had a television show in 2018. The show featured the owner and her employees as they related to Sweetie Pies. Shots of the baked goods commonly showed banana pudding.
The location in Napa Valley, CA still operates today. The original banana pudding is not for sale, but you can order their banana cream pie. The pie has real bananas inside and is made with a graham cracker crust.
Can You Use Other Ingredients In Banana Pudding?
As stated before, the base ingredients to banana pudding are:
- Vanilla or banana pudding
- Wafers or sponge cake
- Whipped cream or topping
You can make variations using several other ingredients. Consider any of these additions when spicing up your southern banana pudding:
- Dark chocolate
- White chocolate
- Salted caramel
- Jam or preserves
- Chia seeds
- Peanut butter
- Pecans or other nuts
How Did Banana Pudding Become Popular?
Before the American Civil War, bananas were not commonly found in the US. Importing took place from the West Indies and bananas were shipped via boat.
Furthermore, American businessmen in the late 1800s wanted to capitalize on bananas. This created a consumer taste for the fruit. Bananas were marketed as exotic fruit and their popularity took off.
Articles such as the aforementioned New York Times and Good Housekeeping articles further heightened their popularity. Then, in 1921, a lady from Bloomington, IL published the first homemade banana pudding recipe.
The National Biscuit Company, or NABISCO, capitalized on banana pudding’s newfound popularity at the time. The company started printing banana pudding recipes directly onto the vanilla wafers packaging. The recipe remains on the packaging to this day.
What About The South?
The connotation of banana pudding and the American South is less clear. The original recipes came from Illinois and the East Coast, yet it is still an adopted southern staple.
Not long after the first banana pudding recipes were published, the south adopted the recipe. Southern publications started developing banana pudding recipes on a mass scale.
Many believe that this happened due to banana pudding’s ability to feed many with few ingredients. Southerners have notoriously gotten by with very little during hard times.
Can You Make Individual Sweetie Pie’s Banana Pudding Portions?
Yes! Most recipes for banana pudding tend to feed a large crowd. Alternatively, you could make individual portions to avoid overindulging. Individual portions of banana pudding can be layered into mason jars. This is smart for quite a few reasons:
- Mason jars are labeled for portion control
- They come with airtight lids
- The jars are clear so the layers are displayed
- You can easily save leftovers for later
If you are making a large amount of banana pudding, save some of the ingredients for a few personal servings.
Sweetie Pies Banana Pudding has set the bar very high for banana pudding recipes. Thankfully, the restaurant has released the recipe to the public.
Any southern banana pudding recipe is a safe bet. Although the origins are unclear, southerners know how to make a great pudding.
Make any of these three southern banana pudding recipes and you will not be disappointed. Banana pudding is the perfect delicious dessert to feed a crowd!
My name is Keren Tayler. I am a stay-at-home mama to three lovely girls, Sarah + Rachel + Hannah. Prior to becoming a mom, I had a successful career in the accounting field, steps away from becoming a CPA. I decided to give up on my career in order to raise my own kids (as opposed to letting a nanny do it, no judgment here :)) I learned a lot and I love sharing it with other moms. Along the way, I also became a Certified Food Handler.