How to Make the Best Strawberry Pudding

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This retro strawberry pudding is the most delicious, crowd-pleasing dessert. No one will be able to resist seconds!

There’s a new pudding in town. This quick dessert uses fresh strawberries to make a creamy custard that tastes like a bite of summer. Just like its cousin—the beloved Southern dessert banana pudding—this strawberry pudding has layers of vanilla wafers and clouds of fresh whipped cream.

Thankfully it’s easy to make, because it’s hard to stop eating!

How to Make Strawberry Pudding

Ingredients

Strawberry pudding ingredientsJamie Thrower for Taste of Home

  • 3 cups milk
  • 1 pound strawberries
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup cornstarch
  • Pinch of salt
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Editor’s Tip: This is how to separate egg whites from yolks.

Assembly:

  • 2-1/2 cups heavy whipping cream (or 1 can Reddi-wip)
  • 1-2 tablespoons powdered sugar, depending on taste
  • 1 box vanilla wafers
  • 1/2 pound strawberries

Tools You’ll Need

  • Hand Mixer: You can whip cream by hand, but save your arms with a hand mixer. It will do all the work for you and the whipped cream tastes just as delicious.
  • Mini Whisk: I like having whisks in many different sizes. A small one is perfect for mixing the cornstarch into the milk.
  • Rubber Spatulas: You won’t find me in a kitchen without at least 1-2 rubber spatulas in use. GIR makes a set of silicone utensils with a spatula ideal for spreading out the whipped cream on top of your pudding.

Directions

Step 1: Make the strawberry puree

cuttings Strawberries for strawberry puddingJamie Thrower for Taste of Home

Wash 1 pound of strawberries and remove tops. Puree in a blender until completely smooth with no chunks.

Step 2: Make custard

Strawberry custardJamie Thrower for Taste of Home

In a small bowl, whisk the cornstarch with 1/4 cup of the milk to form a slurry. Set aside.

In a medium saucepan, add the remaining milk, pureed strawberries, sugar and salt. Cook on medium heat, whisking constantly until the milk just comes to simmer, and then remove from heat.

While the milk is heating, beat egg yolks in a separate bowl. Once the milk is heated, slowly pour 1/2 cup of the warm milk mixture into the egg yolks, whisking constantly. Then, slowly pour the egg mixture back into the saucepan with the warm milk. Continue mixing and add in the cornstarch mixture. Whisk constantly while cooking over medium heat until the mixture begins to thicken and comes to a simmer, no more than 5 or 6 minutes.

Remove from heat and add vanilla. Mix well and taste test. Put the pudding in the fridge to chill while you prepare the rest of the dessert.

Step 3: Whip the cream

Strawberry pudding whipped creamJamie Thrower for Taste of Home

Using a hand-held mixer (or stand mixer), beat heavy whipping cream and powdered sugar in a large bowl until stiff peaks begin to form. You’ll know they’re ready when you lift the whisk and the peaks hold their shapes. Watch closely because it will go from stiff to over-whipped very quickly!

Step 4: Assemble the strawberry pudding

Strawberry pudding assemblyJamie Thrower for Taste of Home

In a 13-x-9-inch baking dish, line the bottom with vanilla wafers, getting them as close together as possible. Layer with the strawberry pudding, spreading out over the whole dish, then top with whipped cream. Use a rubber spatula to make wave-like textures with the whipped cream.

Cut the tops off the remaining strawberries and cut them in half. Line them up in rows over the whipped cream.

Step 5: Serve chilled

Strawberry pudding serveJamie Thrower for Taste of Home

Serve immediately or hold in the fridge for a day or two before serving. Use a spoon to scoop each portion out—and enjoy the strawberry explosion! In the unlikely situation that you have leftovers, you can store them in the fridge in an airtight container.

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Risa Lichtman
Risa Lichtman is a chef and writer living in Portland, Oregon. She is the owner/chef of Lepage Food & Drinks, a small food company featuring Jewish seasonal foods, providing takeaway all around Portland. She has previously published poems in Poetica Magazine, the anthology The Art of Bicycling, Maggid: A Journal of Jewish Literature, and The Dos Passos Review. She lives with her wife Jamie, their dog Isaac, and their cat Sylvia. Follow her at @risaexpizza, or find her delicious food offerings on @lepagefoodanddrinks.