I wrote a post, I think still on this site, for banana cream pudding using packaged jello pudding mix and Nilla wafers. It was one we used in the school kitchens. So good. So full of preservatives and other unreadable ingredients. Here’s a more fresh, natural and low-cal take on the old favorite.
This is adapted from Food Network Magazine and it originally sparked my interested because it used vanilla unsweetened almond milk which is a staple in my fridge. Less than half the calories of skim milk with just as much calcium and vitamin D (plus the added bonus of Vitamin E), plus it tastes sweet and makes boring healthy cereal taste better. I don’t usually bake or cook with it, so I was interested to see if this would work. It worked! If you don’t have the almond milk just sub for regular milk – there will be no ill effects.
Usually I love a make-ahead recipe but anytime you use fresh bananas, there’s a time limit involved. If you DO have to serve it hours after you put it together, toss the banana slices in lemon or orange juice first.
Light Banana Pudding Parfait
Adapted from Food Network Magazine
1 c. 2% milk
1 c. unsweetened vanilla almond milk
3 tbsp. cornstarch or arrowroot
pinch kosher salt
1/3 c. sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tbsp. butter
2 ripe bananas, sliced
4 almond macaroons or almond biscotti, chopped
1/3 c. slivered or sliced almonds, toasted
1. Combine both milks in a saucepan over medium heat until you see the first bubbles – remove from heat.
2. In a small mixing bowl, whisk cornstarch, sugar and egg until smoothly combined.
3. Using a ladle, scoop milk into sugar mixture while whisking vigorously. Add 1 or two more ladle-fulls and whisk. Pour contents of bowl back to saucepan with remaining milk and place over medium heat.
4. Whisk constantly until thickened and starting to bubble. Remove from heat and add vanilla and butter. Pour mixture into a small bowl and cover with plastic wrap pressed to the surface. Refrigerate until chilled, 1 hour or up to 12.
5. To assemble puddings, alternate layers of crumbled cookie, banana, nuts and pudding. Top with a sprinkle of cinnamon and serve immediately or store in the refrigerator and serve within several hours.