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The Best Banana Pudding Has a Secret Ingredient

Grits Banana Pudding

Sure, you can make banana pudding with store-bought vanilla wafers, instant pudding mix, and cool whip, but if you want to try something extraordinary and you are willing to spend a little extra time, I encourage you to try my new favorite banana pudding.  This banana pudding has a surprising secret ingredient that is as southern as banana pudding itself  – grits!

Grits Banana Pudding

This banana pudding recipe begins with a grits pudding base.  Think of grits pudding as a cross between bread pudding, vanilla pudding, chilled custard, and a bowl of grits.    The grits pudding is topped with a layer of thinly sliced ripe bananas and the whole thing is covered in a mix of whipped cream, sweetened condensed milk, and cream cheese.

This banana pudding recipe may be a tough sell for banana pudding purists – but the proof is literally in the pudding!  Taste it and see if you’re sold.  I sure am!

Products Related to This Banana Pudding Recipe

While I made my banana pudding in King Arthur Flour’s silicone baking cups, you can prepare them in any ramekin.  Wouldn’t these yellow ones be so cute? (View on Amazon)

These are the grits that I used.  Bob’s Red Mill actually has two different products that they call grits.  I went with the ones that they call “Southern-style”. (View on Amazon)

This is not a product that I use, but this banana slicer has the funniest reviews of any Amazon product I’ve ever seen.  Go read them! (View on Amazon)

Grits Banana Pudding Recipe

My grits pudding base is a slight adaption of a recipe on Bella Online.  I significantly upped the quantity of vanilla and decreased the cooking time to make the resulting pudding less solid.  The topping comes from Paula Deen’s Not Yo’ Mama’s Banana Pudding.  Lastly, I owe the whole concept of a grits banana pudding to a restaurant in Hilton Head called A Lowcounty Backyard.

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Grits Banana Pudding
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5 from 1 vote

Grits Banana Pudding

This banana pudding has a surprising secret ingredient that is as southern as banana pudding itself  - grits!
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword banana grits, banana grits pudding recipe, banana pudding
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 10 ramekins of banana pudding
Calories 481kcal
Author Stef


Grits Pudding Ingredients

  • 1 cup cooked grits
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter melted
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • 2 cups hot milk

Topping Ingredients

  • 4 ripe bananas thinly sliced
  • 12 ounces heavy whipping cream
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 8 ounces cream cheese room temperature
  • 14 ounces sweetened condensed milk


Grits Pudding Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350 F.
  • In a medium-sized mixing bowl, whisk together grits, butter, sugar, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and eggs.
  • Stir in the vanilla and hot milk.
  • Fill ramekins 1/3 full.
  • Bake for thirty minutes or until the pudding just begins to set.
  • Remove from oven and cool to room temperature.

Topping Instructions

  • Top baked pudding with a layer of banana slices. Reserve a few slices to place on top of the whipped topping.
  • Whip heavy whipping cream until it looks like whipped cream.
  • Mix in sugar.
  • In a separate bowl, mix in cream cheese and sweetened condensed milk.
  • Gently fold cream cheese mixture into whipped cream.
  • Scoop whipped topping over banana layer.
  • Top with a few extra banana slices.
  • Refrigerate for at least an hour or until ready to serve.


Nutrition Facts
Grits Banana Pudding
Amount Per Serving
Calories 481 Calories from Fat 252
% Daily Value*
Fat 28g43%
Saturated Fat 16g80%
Cholesterol 142mg47%
Sodium 235mg10%
Potassium 460mg13%
Carbohydrates 50g17%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 40g44%
Protein 9g18%
Vitamin A 1125IU23%
Vitamin C 5.4mg7%
Calcium 222mg22%
Iron 0.6mg3%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Have you tried this recipe?Click here to leave a comment and rating!

There’s more banana pudding fun coming soon (and yes, there will be a cupcake in the mix).

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