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Banana Chia Pudding! Think classic banana pudding with vanilla wafer cookies and banana slices mixed with healthy chia pudding. Only 8 ingredients and 10 minutes of hands on time, this vegan banana pudding is the perfect dessert when you want a single serving of something a bit healthier!
When I first started developing this recipe, I was thinking of going a much more classic banana pudding recipe. If you’ve never had classic banana pudding, it is DELICIOUS. Fluffy, sweet, banana-y, and very custard like. It’s a Southern favorite – Read about how it became an iconic dessert here!
The downside is it’s usually made with a LOT of sugar, butter, heavy cream, and eggs.
Although I definitely enjoy an indulgent dessert now and then, I wanted this banana pudding to be a healthier alternative that was without a lot of processed sugar and oil!
And then I remembered how magical chia seeds are at achieving a vegan pudding texture! When soaked in liquid, chia seeds become very gelatinous and with the help of a high speed blender, they can be blended into a mousse, pudding like texture.
To develop this recipe I used my Pumpkin Chia Seed Pudding recipe as a base and this banana pudding quickly came together!
Just a few simple ingredients here, but all play an important role!
- chia seeds – for that magical pudding texture we talked about
- canned coconut milk – for the rich, creamy taste!
- ripe banana – we really want good banana flavor!
- maple syrup – a little natural sweetness boost (this is dessert, after all)
- salt – to balance the sweet!
- vanilla extract – for that classic vanilla pudding flavor.
- almond milk – to thin out the pudding just a bit.
- banana slices and vanilla wafers – to make this feel like a classic banana pudding!
- cocowhip – the perfect icing on top!
Preparing Your Pudding
Although this recipe only requires about 10 minutes of hands on prep time, it does require thinking ahead. Just like the Pumpkin Chia Pudding, this pudding is prepared the night before!
If you are really in a rush, allow the chia seeds a minimum of two hours to absorb the liquid and marry all the flavors together, but if you can, overnight is really best.
After two hours, it won’t be as thick, but the flavor is still excellent!
To prepare, simply mash your banana in the bottom of your jar and then add in all of your pudding ingredients (we will layer in the vanilla wafers and banana slices later!).
Avoiding Thin Pudding!
If your pudding turns out thin and it doesn’t appear the chia seeds absorbed the liquid, one of two things likely happened:
- You did not mix your pudding well enough. You want to really make sure you whisk the ingredients together enough so that each chia seed is fully coated in the liquid. If they clump together or are not incorporated properly, they will not be able to absorb as much liquid as needed and you may have a thinner pudding.
2. Your chia seeds are old! Just like with using old baking soda and baking powder, using old chia seeds can be ineffective. Chia seeds generally have a long shelf life due to their high antioxidant powers, but they can go bad faster if not stored in an air tight container or stored in the sun. Chia seeds do very well in an airtight jar in the fridge and freezer!
After your chia pudding has soaked in the fridge overnight or for a minimum of two hours, transfer it to a blender and blend until smooth!
The color of your pudding will get a lot darker because of the chia seeds, but it is okay! It tastes incredible and the color is thanks to the anti-oxidants in chia seeds!
Building Your Cups!
Now that your pudding is nice and smooth (just as pudding should be!), it’s time to layer your banana pudding.
In your single serve jars, add a layer of banana pudding, then a layer of vegan vanilla wafer cookies, then banana slices and repeat until your jar is full!
Top with coco whip, a dash of cinnamon and more cookies and banana slices because why not?
If you like this recipe, check out my other easy desserts!
- Pumpkin Chia Seed Pudding
- Vegan Blueberry Cheesecake Bars
- Peanut Butter Rice Krispie Treats (no-bake)
- 3 Ingredient Chocolate Nice Cream
The perfect cross between classic banana pudding with vanilla wafer cookies and banana slices and healthy chia pudding. Only 8 ingredients and 10 minutes of hands on time, this vegan banana pudding is the perfect dessert when you want a single serving of something a bit healthier!
BANANA CHIA PUDDING
- 1 ripe banana, mashed
- 3/4 cup full fat canned coconut milk
- 3 tablespoons almond milk
- 2 1/2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- In a 16 ounce jar, mix together all of the banana chia pudding ingredients until well incorporated. Make sure all of the chia seeds are covered in liquid so they can absorb liquid and become gelatinous.
- Transfer to fridge and refrigerate overnight or for a minimum of 2 hours.
- Optional: After refrigerating overnight, transfer mixture to a high speed blender and blend until smooth.
- Add layer of banana pudding to bottom of your 16 ounce jar, then add layer of vanilla wafer cookies and lastly a layer of banana slices. Repeat until jar is full.
- Top with cocowhip, cinnamon, and more cookies and banana slices.
- Storing: Store this pudding in the fridge for up to 5 days. Cookies will soften over time. Do not freeze.
- This is a large single serving! You may find it more appropriate for two people.
- If you like the texture of chia pudding without blending, you absolutely can skip step 3.
- If you do decide to blend it and own a newer wider base Vitamix, you will need to make a minimum of 2 servings of this chia pudding at a time or there will not be enough liquid in the canister to blend. If you have the older Vitamix model that is thinner or are using a single serving blending cup, 1 serving should blend just fine!
- I used these jars for this recipe. The price fluctuates a ton on Amazon so if you like them, just watch them for a good price!
- Category: Dessert
- Method: No-Bake
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: vegan banana pudding, banana chia pudding, vegan dessert