Condensed milk banana pudding is a heavenly dessert made up of layers of sweet bananas, creamy vanilla pudding, and nilla wafers. It’s the classic recipe the famous Magnolia Bakery in New York City uses. This easy no-bake dessert is sure to become a family favorite, perfect for weekend entraining, birthdays, and potlucks.
The best banana pudding with sweetened condensed milk
Let’s talk about the amazingness that is condensed milk banana pudding. It tastes like a fancy treat that includes a lot of steps and ingredients, but this banana pudding recipe is actually one of the easiest desserts you’ll ever make.
The pudding is out of bounds when it comes to flavor, creaminess, and decadence. Sliced bananas, creamy pudding, and Nilla wafers that soften to a scoopable, cake-like texture, full of sweet, dreamy aromas.
The recipe doesn’t take much: just a can of condensed milk, slightly underripe bananas, some instant vanilla pudding, heavy cream, and a box of vanilla wafers.
You can layer the pudding in individual cups or fancy it up in an elegant trifle dish. Or just throw it in a 9×13 baking dish or a big bowl, and you have yourself a creamy no-bake dessert in no time.
It’s the perfect recipe to whip for an after-dinner dessert, a get-together, holidays and family celebration, or just when you’re craving yummy, homemade banana pudding.
We adore banana desserts at our house! Whether that’s Bisquick banana bread, strawberry banana cheesecake salad, or these irresistible banana pudding brownies, you can’t go wrong with these delicious treats!
I love that this condensed milk banana pudding recipe uses only 6 easy-to-find ingredients (one is water!), and the process of making this no-bake dessert is so easy too. Please scroll down to the recipe card below for the exact ingredient measurements.
- Sweetened condensed milk adds a lovely hint of sweetness and makes your banana pudding incredibly creamy. This pantry staple lends the pudding a thick, rich texture that tastes so luxurious. Don’t skimp here, and use full-fat sweetened condensed milk.
- Cold water is needed to dissolve the instant pudding powder.
- Instant vanilla pudding mix: You need a box of instant pudding here, not the cook-and-serve kind. The Jell-O brand works well, but grab whatever you can find.
- Heavy whipping cream gives the pudding lightness. Make sure your cream is very cold, so it whips up fluffy.
- Nilla wafers: You’ll need a 12-oz box. This is one of those times when you should buy “name brand.” Nilla wafers soften beautifully and taste better, whereas some off-brands will stay firm in the pudding.
- Bananas: This isn’t the recipe for spotty overripe bananas (safe those for banana bread). Instead, I recommend barely ripe bananas for this recipe as they won’t brown as quickly. They can even be a bit green.
How to make condensed milk banana pudding
Banana pudding with sweetened condensed milk is extremely easy to make. The hardest part is waiting for the dessert to set.
#1: Prepare pudding
- Pour the sweetened condensed milk and water into a large mixing bowl. Using an electric hand mixer on low speed, mix until combined.
- Add the vanilla instant pudding mix and beat for 2 to 3 minutes, until well incorporated.
- Cover the mixing bowl with plastic wrap. Set in the fridge to chill completely and firm up, for at least 4 hours or overnight.
#2: Add whipped cream
- Add the heavy cream to a chilled mixing bowl. Beat with a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment or a hand mixer until stiff peaks form.
- Gently fold the whipped cream into the pudding with a rubber spatula. Be careful not to deflate the whipped cream too much while ensuring everything gets mixed evenly.
#3: Assemble banana pudding
- Add a small amount of pudding to the bottom of your trifle dish.
- Then add a layer of Nilla wafers and place a row of cookies against the wall of the dish.
- Add a layer of bananas. Top with 1/3 of the pudding mixture and smooth with a spatula.
- Repeat these layers 2 more times and alternate a row of bananas with the wafer cookies.
- Finish with pudding.
#4: Garnish & chill
- For the topping, whip the cream to stiff peaks.
- Pile it on top of the banana pudding and decorate with banana coins and Nilla wafers.
- Chill in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours or up to 6 hours, until set and the wafer cookies have softened. You don’t want to go much longer than 8 hours, or the bananas might start to turn brown. Enjoy!
How do you keep bananas from turning brown?
I have a couple of tips to make your banana slices look nice and fresh. Check them out below!
- Select underripe bananas: Slightly underripe bananas don’t brown as quickly once you slice them compared to fully ripe bananas. In fact, bananas that are a little green will hold up best in banana pudding.
- Limit exposure to oxygen: The oxidation of the fruit causes bananas to turn brown. You can slow this process by limiting the exposure to oxygen. I like to seal the bananas off from the air by covering them completely with pudding.
- Brush with lemon juice: Another trick is to brush or drizzle your banana coins with lemon juice. The acidic nature of lemon juice will prevent the browning. It will also add a subtle lemon aroma. You can also use non-tonic club soda, which will not alter the taste.
- Garnish right before serving: In case you plan to decorate the top of your creamy banana pudding with fresh banana slices, wait to add those until before eating.
- Container size: You can use whatever type and size of container you want. You can assemble the pudding in a large trifle dish or divide it between 6 to 12 smaller mason jars or dessert bowls. A 9×13-inch casserole dish is also a good option.
- Use underripe bananas:
- Chill your bowl and beaters: I recommend putting the mixing bowl and beaters into the refrigerator to keep the heavy cream cold as you whip it.
- Let it set up: I know it’s hard to wait, but your banana pudding will be so much better if you chill it for at least 4 hours.
- Fewer servings: This banana pudding with condensed milk serves a group and is best eaten within 1 to 2 days. If you’re cooking for less than 5 people, you can halve the recipe. You can do this by simply cutting the ingredients in half and assembling them in an 8×8-inch pan.
- Mix and match the fruit: I love making this recipe with a mix of sliced bananas and strawberries. Blueberries and raspberries are also delicious.
- Swap the pudding flavor: Instead of vanilla, try it with instant white chocolate pudding, French vanilla pudding, cheesecake pudding, butterscotch, caramel, or chocolate pudding mix for a chocolate version.
- Try other cookies: The recipe works with all kinds of cookies. Be creative and try chocolate chip cookies, Oreos, gingersnaps, Bischoff cookies, or shortbread.
- Use cake: Prepare the condensed milk banana pudding with vanilla cake, chocolate cake, carrot cake, or banana cake.
- Add chocolate chips: Add a generous sprinkle of mini chocolate chips to the layers for a tasty touch of chocolate.
- Add a sauce: When assembling the pudding, drizzle in a little caramel sauce of hot fudge sauce.
- Season with cozy spices: For a festive twist, add 1 to 2 teaspoon ground cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice to the pudding mixture.
Storage & make-ahead instructions
Make condensed milk banana pudding ahead of time
Banana pudding with condensed milk doesn’t hold up too long, but you can still make it a day in advance since it needs time to thicken up anyway.
If I’m hosting a holiday dinner or family gathering, I like to make the instant pudding mixture the night before and refrigerate it until the next day.
You can also prepare the pudding mixture 2 to 3 days before your event and store it in the fridge. However, I would not recommend assembling the dish 4 to 8 hours before you plan to serve it.
How long does banana pudding with sweetened condensed milk last?
Once the pudding is assembled with the banana and Nilla slices, it should be enjoyed within 4 to 8 hours.
You could eat it right after assembling, but to get that perfect cakey texture of the Nilla wafers, it’s best to wait at least 4 hours so the pudding can soften them.
After 8 hours, the bananas start to brown and the Nilla wafers will become more of a soggy consistency than a cake-like texture.
How to store condensed milk banana pudding
Leftover banana pudding will stay fresh in the fridge for only one day, maybe two at the very most. Be sure to keep your pudding well-covered.
Can your freeze condensed milk banana pudding?
No, this creamy banana pudding recipe isn’t suitable for freezing. If you were to freeze it, you would end up with black, mushy banana, watery pudding, and soggy wafers.
- 1 can (14 oz / 400 g) sweetened condensed milk
- 1 1/2 cups / 350 ml / 12 fl oz cold water
- 1 box (3.4 oz / 96 g) vanilla instant pudding mix
- 3 cups / 700 ml / 24 fl oz heavy cream
- 4 cups / 600 g / 21 oz sliced barley ripe bananas
- 1 12-oz / 340 g box Nilla Wafers
- 1/2 cup / 120 ml / 4 fl oz heavy cream
- banana slices
- Nilla wafers
- Beat sweetened condensed milk and water. Pour the sweetened condensed milk and water into a large mixing bowl. Using an electric hand mixer on low speed, mix until combined. Add the vanilla instant pudding mix and beat for 2 to 3 minutes, until well incorporated.
- Chill pudding. Cover the mixing bowl with plastic wrap. Set in the fridge to chill completely and firm up, for at least 4 hours or overnight.
- Whip heavy cream. Add the heavy cream to a chilled mixing bowl. Beat with a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment or a hand mixer until stiff peaks form.
- Fold pudding and whipped cream. Gently fold the whipped cream into the pudding with a rubber spatula. Be careful not to deflate the whipped cream too much while ensuring everything gets mixed evenly.
- Assemble. Add a small amount of pudding to the bottom of your trifle dish. Then add a layer of Nilla wafers and place a row of cookies against the wall of the dish. Add a layer of bananas. Top with 1/3 of the pudding mixture and smooth with a spatula. Repeat these layers 2 more times and alternate a row of bananas with the wafer cookies. Finish with pudding.
Tip: If you don't have a trifle dish, assemble the banana pudding in a big glass bowl, a 9x13-inch pan, or individual serving cups.
- Garnish. For the topping, whip the cream to stiff peaks. Pile it on top of the banana pudding and decorate with banana coins and Nilla wafers.
- Chill and serve. Chill in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours or up to 6 hours, until set and the wafer cookies have softened. You don't want to go much longer than 8 hours, or the bananas might start to turn brown. Enjoy!
Nutrition Information:Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 426Total Fat: 27gSaturated Fat: 16gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 69mgSodium: 170mgCarbohydrates: 43gFiber: 3gSugar: 14gProtein: 5g
Does condensed milk banana pudding need to be refrigerated?
Yes, you should refrigerate banana pudding until it’s time to serve since it’s made with dairy and fresh fruit. It tastes delicious cold from the fridge.
Of course, you can leave it on the counter to warm up for 20 to 30 minutes if you prefer your banana pudding at room temperature.
Can you use cook pudding mix to make condensed milk banana pudding?
No, only instant pudding mix will deliver the results you are looking for.
Can I use Cool Whip instead of homemade whipped cream?
Yes, can use thawed Cool Whip in place of whipped cream. Just remember that Cool Whip is sweetened, which means your banana pudding will turn out sweeter overall.
Do I have to use bananas?
Not a banana fan? You can absolutely substitute them for the fruit of your choice. The recipe works well with sliced strawberries., blueberries, raspberries, etc., all can be used here!
Is condensed milk banana pudding baked?
No, banana pudding is a no-bake dessert, so no baking or cooking is required. Instant pudding and pre-made cookies allow you to enjoy delicious banana pudding without ever cranking up the oven.
Reasons to love condensed milk banana pudding
- 6 ingredients: You’ll have no issue finding all the easy ingredients needed to make this banana pudding with condensed milk from scratch. As long as you have bananas, the others are essentially pantry staples.
- Banana pudding with condensed milk: Condensed milk is not traditional, but it really makes this treat so delicious, full of classic banana pudding flavor.
- Beautiful perfection: Unlike layer cake or other desserts, sweetened condensed milk banana pudding is super simple to assemble. The slightly messy appearance is part of the charm of this treat and makes you wanna grab a spoon and dig in!
- Large size: This dessert feeds at least 8 people and it’s a great to make for holidays, parties, and special occasions.
Other banana pudding recipes
We also have a toasted meringue banana pudding on our site that I like to serve when it’s warm, which is quite different from this condensed milk version.
And in case you don’t have canned milk, try this old-fashioned banana pudding without condensed milk. It’s uber delicious!
My red velvet banana pudding consists of creamy layers of pudding, bananas, and red velvet cake. It’s a lovely dessert for Christmas and Valentine’s Day.
More condensed milk desserts
Looking for more delicious condensed milk recipes? I’ve got you covered with more treats that are so delicious and easy to whip up. Your family and friends will be coming back for more! Need more inspo? Find our full list of condensed milk desserts here!