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The Quickest & Easiest Homemade Banana Pudding Recipe… Ever!

This picture is just to show how I used to think of banana pudding... as baby food. It didn't make a good first impression with me.

I’ll be honest, I never even tried banana pudding until my 30’s. I had always envisioned that it would taste like baby food… yuck!

But after trying banana pudding at a Chinese restaurant, I immediately became addicted to this sweet-tasting dessert that is soooooo easy to make.

The texture of this homemade banana pudding recipe is perfect — with just the right amount of crunch (from the Vanilla Wafers) and just the right amount of sweetness (from the Cool Whip and the Bananas).

Maybe you’ve heard there was a Nilla wafer banana pudding recipe and always wanted to try it. Well, you’ve come to the right place!

And here’s a small tip that makes a big difference: Use the mini-sized Nilla wafers instead of the regular-sized ones. (The smaller ones don’t get soggy like the larger ones do.)

This is my favorite recipe for banana pudding with vanilla wafers…

Easiest Homemade Banana Pudding Recipe

This is my all-time favorite way to make a large batch of homemade banana pudding.

It’s often my go-to when I’m taking a dessert to potlucks and parties — because it’s so easy.

Potluck – noun, a social gathering where each guest contributes a different (often homemade) dish of food to be shared with everyone at the party.

Yep, this Nilla wafer banana pudding recipe is super simple AND super quick to make!

Banana Pudding With Vanilla Wafers

Want an easy banana pudding recipe?
I've got the quickest & easiest one ever!
I make this ALL the time because it's so simple – especially for potlucks.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Refrigeration 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 8


  • 1 9×13 Glass Serving Dish


  • 1.5 oz Instant Vanilla Pudding Mix I use sugar free
  • 2 cups Milk very cold
  • 14 oz Sweetened Condensed Milk
  • 1 tbsp Vanilla Extract
  • 16 oz Frozen Whipped Topping – thawed I use LITE Cool Whip, or any store brand
  • 16 oz Vanilla Wafers I like the mini’s, but you can use the regular-sized ones
  • 4 bananas – sliced


  • In a very large bowl, mix the Pudding Mix and the cold Milk for 2 minutes (using an electric mixer).
  • Blend in the Condensed Milk until smooth.
  • Stir in Vanilla Extract.
  • Fold in the Whipped Topping. (TIP: If you forgot to thaw it, you can put it in the microwave on the lowest power level for almost 1 minute.)
  • In a 9×13 glass serving dish, layer bananas.
  • Add the pudding mixture on top.
  • Add some finely crushed wafers (or whole ones, your choice) on top.
  • Chill until serving time – at least 1 hour.
Keyword banana, banana pudding

A Fun Variation: Banana Pudding Cups!

We normally keep the big deep dish pan of banana pudding in the fridge. Hubby and I just scoop out as much as we want, whenever we want.

But I promised my friend — who happens to like Cinnamon on his banana pudding — that I’d make little individual banana pudding cups someday soon and invite him to try it.

This is one example of layering the homemade banana pudding cups.

Basically, I just divvy up my same banana pudding recipe into lots of small plastic containers and glass cups (instead of keeping it in the deep dish pan). The banana pudding in individual cups takes up more space in the fridge — but it’s a great way to serve banana pudding at a party or whenever guests are visiting!

Wondering how to make banana pudding in a cup?

I’ve got a couple of banana pudding cup ideas for you…

You can make homemade banana pudding cups 2 different ways:

  1. Mix up the Pudding & Condensed Milk separately from the Frozen Whipped Cream. Start by dishing out each of those as 2 separate “layers” inside the cups. Top that with a layer of finely crushed Vanilla Wafers. Follow that with 2 more layers of the Pudding & Condensed Milk and the Frozen Whipped Cream. Finally, top that with a handful of Banana slices and sprinkles of Cinnamon.
  2. Mix up the normal banana pudding recipe (above) first. Then, starting the layering process inside small dessert cups with a bunch of finely crushed Vanilla Wafers on the bottom, followed by a thick layer of the Banana Pudding mixture, a couple of Banana slices, and some Cinnamon on top.
Here's another example of layering the homemade banana pudding cups -- with Cinnamon sprinkled on top.

Either way, I really like the individual dessert cups idea for presentation purposes. And, when stored in the refrigerator, the individual layers stay fresher longer. (That means: no soggy wafers.)

Whichever variation you choose, these Nilla banana pudding cups are sure to be a hit!

Fun Facts About Bananas You Might Not Know

Finally, just for fun, here are some interesting things I’ve learned about storing bananas, slicing bananas, eating bananas, and some recipes that specifically call for over-ripe bananas: