Salted Caramel Pudding
Cool and creamy homemade pudding, full of the rich and buttery flavor of salted caramel, layered with crunchy chocolate cookie crumbs and fresh whipped cream. There’s no wrong time for this unforgettable dessert!
If I were to ask you, “What is the most memorable dessert you’ve ever tasted,” what pops into your brain?
Is it something your grandmother made for you? Something you’ve made yourself that really stands out? Or maybe it was something you ate at a restaurant.
For me, it’s the latter. Years ago, Mr. and I enjoyed a stellar meal at Barbuzzo in Philadelphia. Each course was better than the last, and the whole experienced culminated in a dessert that truly blew us away. I haven’t forgotten it since.
I was speechless. The flavors were just like pure heaven. Sweet and complex, rich, with a refreshing yet comforting velvet-y texture that just kept me going back for more. We ended up returning to Barbuzzo again, not long after (a rarity for us, when there are so many fabulous foodie destinations in Philly), just so that we could experience that dessert one more time.
Not long after that, I discovered that chef Turney had shared her fabulous recipe with Bon Appetit, and both the Mr. and I were thrilled. I’ve since made it several times, and it never disappoints. In this version, I’ve scaled it down, replacing the whole milk with 1% (it’s what I keep on hand, and the extra egg and butter add richness back in), and substituting crushed Oreos for the base, just because I think they’re easier to find than the Famous Wafers that the original recipe calls for. If you’re serving a larger crowd, it doubles and even triples beautifully.
There is no bad time to make this dessert. It just works, no matter the occasion. You can serve it at a dressy dinner party, or curl up on the sofa and enjoy it in your jammies. Personally, I think it’s perfect football food. It’s approachable, because it’s pudding, but the taste is bonkers, so it’ll still be sure to impress your guests.
And, it can be made ahead! I like to prepare everything but the whipped cream in advance. Keep the cookie crumbs in an airtight container at room temperature, and the pudding in the fridge. An hour or so before the guests arrive, whip the cream, layer it all in plastic cups or mason jars, and set it out on a tray. The crumbs will stay crunchy for a couple of hours, and the cleanup is minimal. 😉
You could also drizzle a little salted caramel sauce over the whole thing! That would really elevate the flavors… Check out my favorite salted caramel sauce recipe here. It’s done in less than 10 minutes and it will truly make you swoon!
As you can see, this recipe uses just the egg yolks. If you aren’t quite sure what to do with the leftover whites, here are a few ideas to get you going:
Raspberry Meringues with Whipped Ganache
Chocolate Swiss Meringue Buttercream Frosting
Excellent quality vanilla makes all the difference in the world, for this recipe! I love Lagrima Vanilla Extract, and here is a link to the candy thermometer I like to use for cooking custards and caramel: Candy Thermometer. It makes recipes like this one a breeze!
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Salted Caramel Pudding
For the Salted Caramel Pudding
- 1/3 cup (73.33 g) dark brown sugar, , loosely packed
- 1/3 cup (78.86 ml) water
- 2 tablespoons (29.57 g) cornstarch
- 1 1/2 cups (354.88 ml) milk,, divided (I used 1%)
- 3 egg yolks,, large
- 2 tablespoons (29.57 g) unsalted butter
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
For the garnishes
- 10 (120 g) Oreo cookies,, crushed finely (approx. 3/4 cup crumbs)
- 1/4 cup (59.15 ml) heavy cream,, whipped to soft peaks with 1 tablespoon powdered sugar
To Make the Salted Caramel Pudding:
- Place the brown sugar and water in a small pot and cook over medium heat until a candy thermometer registers 215 degrees F. Remove from the heat and set aside.
- Place the cornstarch in a medium pot and whisk in 1/4 cup of the milk. When there are no lumps remaining, stir in the remaining milk. Bring to a bare simmer over medium heat.
- Place the egg yolks in a medium bowl, and whisk the hot milk in, just a little at a time, taking care not to scramble the eggs.
- Stir in the slightly cooled caramel, transfer the mixture back to the pot, and cook over medium heat, stirring, until thickened (about 5 minutes, or to a temperature of 175 degrees F).
- Immediately remove from the heat, stir in the butter, vanilla, and salt, and pour through a fine mesh strainer into a heat-safe vessel. Press plastic wrap directly onto the surface of the pudding, and chill through (2 hours to overnight).
- Place a tablespoon or two of cookie crumbs in the bottom of each serving cup. Layer with chilled salted caramel pudding, and top with sweetened whipped cream.
I love great restaurant experiences like that. And I love recreating the dishes at home even more. This looks like pure comfort!
Isn’t it the best? I was so psyched when I saw that the chef had shared her recipe. Thank you so much, Laura!
I cannot blame you for not being able to forget this dessert! I loooove salted caramel and this pudding looks so rich and silky and perfectly salty and sweet!
Thank you so much Kayle! Hope you have a wonderful weekend, my friend 🙂
I can’t even remember if I already comment on this. I keep coming back to it because it is so gorgeous. Every time I see it, the photo just draws me in 🙂 And it’s an EASY one even I can make WITHOUT asking you for tips!!
Haha Nagi you are too sweet! You can ask me for tips any time girl!
I shouldn’t have clicked on this. I’ve been trying to eat better ever since I almost broke my scale when my fat butt stepped on it a couple weeks back. But now all I can think about is this pudding. It seriously looks amazing. Like ermagherd amazing. Pinning so I remember to make this as a cheat day reward!
Ugh, omg don’t even talk to me about scales! I stepped on mine this morning… I was dreading it and putting it off because I knew it would be bad. It was, bad. I think I’ll go drown my sorrows in salted caramel pudding ;P
This looks delicious and Bon Appetit is my favorite food magazine. You are right, there is no bad time to make this dessert.
Right? Isn’t Bon Appetit the best? I devour every issue! Thanks Chineka 😉
What a wonderful story and delightful dessert to go along with it!
Thank you so much Erin! Hope you had a great week my dear!
Oh I LOVE memorable food moments! Especially the unexpected ones. These little puddings look divine – I have a true weakness for salted caramel!!!
So do I Jessica! It’s so irresistable! Thanks so much for the sweet comment, friend! 😀
The dessert that I always remember my mom making is chocolate pudding pie. Not from scratch but totally delicious. The other dessert I totally loved as a kid was a layered cake hot fudge sundae. It was a layer of vanilla ice cream sandwiched between chocolate cake and drizzled with hot fudge, topped with whipped cream and a cherry on top. Wish the place I got that was still around! Totally digging this homemade pudding, Allie. Salted Caramel, sign me up!
Wow both of those desserts sound fantastic Julie! My husband LOVES pudding pie, and ONLY from a box. Premade crust, Jello pudding, and cool whip. He’ll have nothing to do with any scratch-made nonsense, lol! And that hot fudge sundae cake sounds amazing! What a fun memory; I can just picture it!
What a cute dessert idea! I would love to make these for a party 🙂
Thanks! I’ve made them a few times and they always come together in a snap and everyone loves them. So glad you enjoyed; thanks for the great feedback, Whisk and Shout!
I’m seeing all these homemade pudding recipes lately, I have got to give this a try ASAP! I love that you served it over cookie crumbs to give it some texture!
Thanks Rebecca! The cookie crumbs are a great complement. And homemade pudding is so good and really not that hard to make at all!
Holy Cow! You had me at salted caramel!
I know right??? Anything salted caramel wins in my book 😉 Thanks Tori!
This is pure heaven! I love that not only does this look creamy and delicious, but it’s make ahead and unfussy! Pinning to try!
Awesome! Thank you so much Marcie! I hope you enjoy it if you do try it, and thank you for the pin 😀
Sounds very good but the recipe does not say when to add the butter salt and vanilla
My goodness you are right! Thank you so much for bringing my attention to that- it’s all fixed now 😉