Southern Style Vegan Banana Pudding
Southern Style Vegan Banana Pudding- creamy vanilla pudding with slices of fresh banana tucked inside, finished with a light and fluffy meringue topping. No one will know it’s made without eggs!
If there’s one recipe that always makes me think of my mom it’s banana pudding. The perfect creamy texture with slices of fresh banana tucked inside, soft vanilla wafers on the bottom, and a fluffy meringue topping. Mama sure knows how to make a mean banana puddin’.
In honor of Mother’s Day I wanted to recreate a vegan version of her southern-style banana pudding. It’s kind of ironic that my mom’s recipe is inspired by the south considering that she was born in New York and her parents are Yankees through and through. But spending most of her childhood here left a impression on her tastebuds and my childhood memories too.
As a single working mother raising two children on her own, she didn’t have much time for cooking but when she did, it created a moment to be savored. I’ll always hold her egg white meringue near and dear to my heart but I wanted to see how the mysterious aquafaba would compare to the original.
So this vegan version is pretty simple, starting with a base of Silk’s Organic Soymilk whisked with organic sugar and corn starch for a nice creamy texture. The first time I tried it with coconut sugar it tasted amazing but the color was brown which might be hard for some people to get past so I recommend using cane sugar if you want it to look “normal”.
After you cook the pudding over a low boil for a few minutes, transfer it to a bowl and let it chill in the refrigerator to thicken.
Once it’s nice and creamy, layer the vanilla wafers in the bottom of a purdy dish with sliced banana and spread the pudding on top. Then you beat the aquafaba with a touch of cream of tartar, vanilla and sugar until it’s light and fluffy with stiff peaks (just like meringue) and layer it on to finish. After that you broil the edges for a few seconds until it’s nice and golden, and that’s it. You’ve got yourself a southern vegan pudding to please the masses.
I should note that I had a hard time finding vegan and gluten-free vanilla wafers at my local grocery store so I decided to modify my chocolate chip cookie recipe by omitting the chocolate chips and rolling the balls about the size of 1/2 tablespoon before baking. They weren’t as crunchy as vanilla wafers but they tasted amazing with the pudding. If you’re not gluten-free, Back to Nature makes vegan vanilla wafer you can buy here.
If for some reason you’re not into the whole meringue idea, feel free to skip that part and top it with coconut whipped cream. I tried it that way too and it was just as good!
Southern Style Vegan Banana Pudding
Yield: 8 servings
Prep Time: 15
Cook Time: 10
Total Time: 25 + time to chill
For the banana pudding
- 2 and 1/2 cups Silk Organic Soymilk Unsweetened*
- 4 tablespoons corn starch
- 1/4 cup organic sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 large bananas, sliced
- 12-15 vegan vanilla wafers
For the meringue topping
- 1/2 cup aquafaba**
- 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
- splash of vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons organic sugar
In a measuring cup, combine 1/2 cup soy milk (or other plant-based milk) with corn starch and 1/4 cup sugar. Whisk until dissolved then pour the mixture in a saucepan with the remaining milk and warm over medium heat. Bring to a low boil and continually whisk until mixture starts to thicken, for about 2 minutes. Remove from heat, stir in vanilla extract then transfer to a bowl and allow to cool. Cover and refrigerate for a minimum of 3 hours or up to overnight. Once the pudding is thickened, use a hand mixer to beat it until smooth. This step is key to getting a smooth pudding-like texture! Don’t skip it.
In an 8×8″ dish (or similarly sized dish) cover the bottom with vanilla wafers. Top with a layer of bananas then cover with pudding. Refrigerate while you make the topping.
In a large bowl, add the aquafaba along with 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar. Beat on high for about 7-10 minutes, until stiff peaks begin to form. Add sugar and vanilla extract then continue to beat until dissolved. Taste test and add more vanilla or sugar as desired.
Lastly, spread the meringue topping on top of the pudding layer, using the back of the spoon to create little peaks. Place under the broiler for about 20-30 seconds, or until the top is light golden brown. Careful to keep an eye while you’re doing this step so that it doesn’t burn. Refrigerate for another hour before serving then enjoy!
*If you’d like to avoid soy, any of Silk’s plant-based milks will work in this recipe. I also used their coconut milk with great results.
**Aquafaba is the liquid drained from a can of unsalted chickpeas. A 15-ounce can will have about 1/2 cup. If you’re not crazy about this step feel free to substitute coconut whipped cream in it’s place and skip the broiler.
Did you try this recipe? Please let me know how it turned out by leaving a comment below or sharing a picture on Instagram with the hashtag #makingthymeforhealth. I love hearing your feedback!
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Silk. The opinions and text are all mine.
Oh my! Your aquafaba layer looks over the top! Way too go too on the creamy custard… this looks delicious Sarah! Did you know my Ma’s nanna pudding is one of my favorites as well? It’s been a looong time since I’ve made it … but I’m thinking it’s time. Such sweet memories. xo
This looks INCREDIBLE!
Izzy | Pinch of delight
Well isn’t this a beauty to behold, and I swear you amaze me making a lovely meringue AND banana pudding vegan! What a great tribute to your mom and she sounds like an amazing cook!
Aww! I love this post! My mom is from New York too :) Banana pudding is such a classic delicious taste and so comforting! I love that you made a vegan version and it’s so impressive looking!! That topping :) :)
Yum! I love that this recipe is inspired by your mom :) I have yet to experiment with aquafaba, but it looks SO cool. I need to give it a shot!
Awww, love this tribute to your mama! I actually don’t think I’ve ever had banana pudding before, but this sounds delicious! I enjoy taking childhood favorite recipes and recreating them to be healthier too.
You’v never had banana pudding??!! Oh girl, you need to try it ASAP!
Looks very easy and delicious, exactly what I would like for a nice breakfast.
When do you add the vanilla extract to the pudding? I don’t see that in the directions?thanks!
Sorry about that Jillian! I just updated the directions. You add it before transferring it to a bowl to cool. Thank you for the heads up!
Oh my- This was delicious!! I didn’t make the meringue topping- just topped it with coconut whip. Great recipe!
Yay! So glad you liked it, Jillian! Thank you for the feedback!
I’m from Alabama so I’ve had my fair share of southern style banana pudding but this one blew me away! I’ll never be making banana pudding any other way. I actually wrote it down in my recipe book, which is rare for me. It’s so easy to make, I made three this Thanksgiving week! Thank you for this genius recipe!
Well I’ll take that as the ultimate compliment coming from a southerner! :)
I’m so glad it was a hit. Thank you for taking the time to review the recipe, Sylvia!
I am also from Alabama, I make a vegan one similar. BUT I USE ACCIDENTLY VEGAN GRAHAM CRACKERS, and instead of corn starch use Agar Agar (1 tsp per cup of liquid) and pour it thinly between layers with an added 1Tsp of rum flavoring with the vanilla. It makes a banana pudding bar. Like jello texture
I did bit have wafers on hand so I used ginger snaps and added chopped crystal ginger to the pudding. This was a hit with my family. It is being added to my favorite reviews recipies.
I want to make this for a relative who has dairy and egg allergies. However I do not want the merengue layer, can I omit it all together and just add cookies on the remaining cream layer?
Yes you could! I usually use whipped cream instead of meringue. So Delicious brand makes an amazing one called CocoWhip! and it’s dairy-free. :)
I’m excited to make this recipe for Christmas. I was wondering is I could substitute the real sugar for coconut sugar?
I’m excited to try this recipe was wonderful if I could substitute the sugar for coconut sugar and also the corn starch with arrowroot starch?
Hey Jordyn! I tried making it with coconut sugar and the pudding turned brown. So if you’re concerned with looks I would recommend sticking with white sugar. You could use raw sugar if you like but anything with a caramel color will turn it brown.
As for the arrowroot, you can use it instead of the cornstarch but it is not as reliable as cornstarch. If you overheat the mixture even by a little bit, it will break down the arrowroot and keep it from thickening properly. It’s risky but if you really want to use it there’s a chance it could work out well. I hope that helps!
Absolutely delicious! I’m so glad I came across this article.
We didn’t care for the meringue layer. But the rest was good! Will probably try a different topping next time.
I made this yesterday and had it after our dinner. My husband said after his first bite, that it was really delicious. I hadn’t mentioned that it was vegan, but he knows that anything I make has to be dairy free, as I am lactose intolerant.
That being said, I couldn’t make this delicious banana pudding without real meringue. My roots are southern and that is how my sweet grandma would make it. It turned out beautiful. Thanks for sharing this great recipe.
This turned out absolutely delicious! I used a can of coconut cream as well and omg! Better than whole milk anyday.
Recipe was amazing! My carnivorous husband ate it and loved it.
I made one simple change: I added a carton of mori-nu tofu to the pudding mixture (in a blender). The consistency was perfect and did not need to go into the refrigerator to set.
Is that silken tofu?
I plan to try this recipe for my daughter who is vegan. How about using Lorna Doone cookes in place of the vanilla wafers? I believe they are “accidentally vegan” if I’m not mistaken.
Thanks for recipe! This looks tasty Just am annoying psa- Silk isn’t vegan, it actually has milk in it. Anything with a D next to the U on a product contains dairy. It’s the worst
Hmmm not sure where you heard that but Silk’s soy milk is definitely vegan. You can verify on their website: https://silk.com/plant-based-products/soymilk/organic-unsweet-soymilk
Hi Kate, Sarah is correct here. Silk is most definitely all vegan ❤️
Another brand of vanilla wafers that are also gluten free is Kinnikinnick found at walmart and neighborhood market stores in their section of gluten free foods won’t find them with the rest of the cookies
Awesome awesome recipe thanks
Can we use almond milk instead of soy milk?
That should be fine!
Hey there! I’m currently making this recipe and the very first part of how much milk to add only says 1/2 cup. I’m going to guess this is an error and it should be the full 2 1/2 cups. Can you clarify when you have a moment?
Hi! It’s not an error. You whisk the corn starch and sugar with the 1/2 cup milk then add it + the remaining milk (2 cups) to the pot. I hope that helps! :)
Just had a conversation about banana pudding at work and found out it’s my bosses favorite. I’m going to try this recipe!!
Hello. Sounds fabulous. I need it to be both vegan and sugar free with qty 20 1cup servings. Is there any way you can help me make a shopping list for that amount? Or tell me how many cups are in your recipe? Could I use Stevia granules or liquid instead of sugar? And I won’t need the meringue topping calculations.
Thanks so much!
Growing up in Georgia we enjoyed many Banana Puddings. I have been plant based for a number of years. Just made your recipe for a Sabbath lunch for friends who are all plant based. Used Tru-Whip for the topping. It was a hit with everyone. Thanks for sharing your talents.