Beyond Chocolate: 14 Mind-Blowing Ways to Make Pudding

Branch out from the usual chocolate and vanilla puddings with these recipes, using unusual flavors and decadent toppings
Chocolate-Hazelnut Pudding Recipe

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Beyond Chocolate: 14 Mind-Blowing Ways to Make Pudding

Beyond Chocolate: 14 Mind-Blowing Ways to Make Pudding

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Next time you're craving that childhood classic, don’t settle for plain vanilla or basic chocolate. Instead, try one of these recipes, all anything but boring. Freeze pudding for an icy cold pudding pop, enjoy spoonfuls of salty caramel on top of fresh banana pudding, trade heavy cream for healthful avocado, add crunchy bacon for a hint of savory, or apply chile oil to chocolate for a spicy kick.

The recipes included in this roundup use both traditional stove-top techniques that require cooling before eating and instant-gratification recipes that require no heat. These tasty deviations from the usual just can’t be packaged, so try your hand at making one of these puddings yourself today.  

For pudding inspiration, check out these 14 pudding recipes, featuring decadent caramel swirls, brûléed marshmallow, and creamy Nutella among other decadent flavor additions.

Almond Avocado Pudding

Almond Avocado Pudding

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This lovely pale green pudding is what I’d call real comfort food, and it's good for you. In this recipe, avocado is a substitute for cream. — Elyse Cromer

For the Almond Avocado Pudding recipe, click here.

Banana-Caramel Pudding

Banana-Caramel Pudding

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Indian food is all about layers of flavor, so I approach these foods with the same agenda. In my version of banana pudding, I layer bananas with an incredibly rich vanilla crème pâtissier, a slightly salty caramel sauce, generous spoonfuls of whipped cream, and the requisite vanilla wafers to create a trifle-like dessert that promises to get even the most Southern of Southerners drooling. I keep the caramel on the soft side so that, even after being refrigerated, it retains a somewhat saucy quality. It goes without saying to use the freshest eggs you can find for the pudding. — Suvir Saran

For the Banana-Caramel Pudding recipe, click here.

Bittersweet Pudding Pops

Bittersweet Pudding Pops

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Looking for a cooler way to enjoy pudding? Freeze your favorite pudding recipe into pudding pops simply by filling ice pop molds with homemade pudding and freezing solid.

For the Bittersweet Pudding Pops recipe, click here.

Champorado Filipino Coconut Chocolate Rice Pudding with Bacon Bits

Champorado Filipino Coconut Chocolate Rice Pudding with Bacon Bits

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This twist on a classic rice pudding includes crispy bacon, malted chocolate powder, and coconut milk.

For the Champorado Filipino Coconut Chocolate Rice Pudding with Bacon Bits recipe, click here.

Cheesecake Oat Pudding

Cheesecake Oat Pudding

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This cheesecake pudding is thickened with cream cheese and requires zero time on the stove. Just process the ingredients in a food processor and chill in the fridge before serving.

For the Cheesecake Oat Pudding recipe, click here.

Chocolate-Hazelnut Pudding Recipe

Chocolate-Hazelnut Pudding Recipe

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The addition of Nutella to this creamy, homemade chocolate pudding adds a rich flavor boost to a beloved classic.  Best of all, it doesn’t come from a box and tastes much, much better than its shelf-stable kin — the snack pack. Be creative with your garnish, almost any dessert you can crush, crumble or dollop will add a fantastic final touch sure to delight anyone, from toddlers to dinner party guests.— Jess Kapadia

For the Chocolate- Hazelnut Pudding recipe, click here.

Coconut Pudding

Coconut Pudding

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Swap plain milk for flavorful coconut milk for a quick and easy flavor boost to a traditional vanilla pudding recipe.

For the Coconut Pudding recipe, click here.

Healthy Avocado Chocolate Pudding

Healthy Avocado Chocolate Pudding

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A fabulous dessert, with no added oil or refined sugar, that's packed with flavor. Serve with berries. — Whole Foods Market

For the Healthy Avocado Chocolate Pudding recipe, click here.

Lemon Pudding

Lemon Pudding

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For a classic dessert, serve sweet-tangy lemon pudding with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream or some freshly made whipped cream.  — Robyn Lea

For the Lemon Pudding recipe, click here.

Pumpkin Pudding

Pumpkin Pudding

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Want a classic dessert with almost no work, an autumnal twist, and the powerful nutritional profile of pumpkin? This pudding makes the grade.  — Guiding Stars

For the Pumpkin Pudding recipe, click here.

S’mores in Jars

S’mores in Jars

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This s’more variation combines a milk chocolate pudding with graham crackers and a melted, toasted marshmallow topping. The crackers can be classic or cinnamon and when it comes to the topping you have a choice as well. I like the smooth texture of the marshmallow crème topping, but if you try to put a top on a mason jar with this ladled on top, you end up with it sticking to the underside of the lid, which means less in your mouth! — Dede Wilson

For the S’mores in Jars recipe, click here.

Spiced Chocolate Quinoa Pudding with Fresh Berries

Spiced Chocolate Quinoa Pudding with Fresh Berries

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I started working with quinoa in Brazil. It's fluffy, light texture and delicate, nutty flavor as well as its powerhouse nutritional profile all interested me. I was inspired to include quinoa by a chocolate-rice pudding I had made when I was younger. It's fun to make this dessert for friends who are unfamiliar with quinoa. They will be so surprised to discover how delicious it is. — Hubert Keller

For the Spiced Chocolate Quinoa Pudding with Fresh Berries recipe, click here.

The Devil's in the Pudding

The Devil's in the Pudding

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What makes this pudding devilish? Chile seed oil added to this otherwise typical chocolate pudding adds just a hint of pleasant heat to the bite.

For The Devil’s in the Pudding recipe, click here.

Tiramisù Pudding

Tiramisù Pudding

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This pudding recipe mimics the flavors of a traditional tiramisù with the inclusion of mascarpone cheese, instant espresso powder, and of course, chocolate.

For the Tiramisù Pudding recipe, click here.