I Banana Pie. What do I love even better? Banana Pie…in a jar! That’s right, you heard me. A dessert in a jar and each one contains chocolate cookie crumbs, sliced bananas, pudding, and topped off with even more cookie crumbs.  I was inspired by my fave dessert place in NYC, Milk Bar for the banana pudding.  Ridiculously yummy.

Check out this video as it gives you step-by-step instructions – and never mind the monkey-ish behavior by me in the beginning (how did that make the final cut anyway?!?)

WHY SHOULD YOU MAKE BANANA CREAM FROM SCRATCH?

  1. Easie-peasie. Blend. Bloom&Boil. Blend Again.  Don’t worry, I will teach ya about blooming.
  2. No substitute.  It is impossible to buy a good banana mix from the store.  I love to take shortcuts or buy premade, but for banana cream, no such luck!
  3. Your family will think you are a rockstar.  Truly, a b-a-n-a-n-a rockstar (like my grandma Tory).

I get nostalgic when I think about this dessert. It brings me back to movie nights when I was a kid. Typically on a Friday night, my Grandma would make these mini banana pies in individual jars and serve them up to her lucky grandkids. We would even be allowed to eat on the sofa (!) since it’s not as messy as a slice of cake or even a bowl of ice cream slathered with fruit coulis.

START WITH BLENDING

Be prepared for a lot of blending action with this recipe. Blend, blend, and blend! For the first round, puree the bananas, cream, and milk until totally smooth. Second round, add the sugar, cornstarch, salt, and yolks and continue to blend.

WHAT IS “BLOOMING?”

Two steps are required to complete the process of bringing sheets or granules of gelatin to bloomin’ life!  I find it easy to remember that first it must be softened (bloomed with cold water until it is jelly like), then liquified by a heat source before incorporated into your recipe.  There is a great youtube video by Marx Foods if you want more details.

BLOOMING PART 1:

Let 1 tablespoon water cover 1 teaspoon of gelatin powder (like Knox).  Let this bloom for 5 minutes until it is jelly like.

banana pie

MEANWHILE…COOK THE PUDDING

Add the blended mixture from the blender to a medium saucepan. Whisk the contents of the pan and heat over medium-low heat. As the banana mixture heats up, it will thicken. Bring to a boil and then continue to whisk vigorously for 2 minutes to fully cook out the starch. Think Elmer’s Glue when checking the consistency, with a yellowish-greyish color.  You will see big bubbles form on the surface of the pudding when it is ready.

banana pie

BLOOMING PART 2:

Pop the jelly-like ‘bloomed’ gelatin into the microwave for 10 seconds to completely liquify it.  It should look like this right before you add it to the blender.

banana pie

FINAL BLEND:

Blend the hot pudding, butter, & the bloomed liquified gelatin until smooth. Put a few drops of yellow food coloring into the mixture to really amp up the yellow – gotta have it cartoon-banana yellow (otherwise it will taste great, but look like sludge).  Once completely blended, cover with saran wrap (yes it will be hot, that is fine) so that the saran touches the hot pudding when it covers the top. This helps avoid a ‘skin’ from forming. Let it cool completely in the fridge for about 60 minutes.

WHIP SOME CREAM TO ADD TO THE PUDDING MIXTURE:

An hour later back at the ranch… whip the cream to medium-soft peaks.

Combine the cold cartoon-banana mixture to the whipped cream and slowly whisk until evenly colored and homogenous. And there you go – you’ve completed the pudding part of the banana pie.

banana pie

Now, here’s where the fun begins so grab your Little Nerds to help you out. Put some chocolate cookies (I used Tates Chocolate Biscuits) into a ziploc and crush until you get cookie crumbs. Assemble each pie in a jar by layering the cookie crumbs, sliced bananas, pudding and topping it off with the last of the cookie crumbs.

And now you’re ready to make a full night of it! Thanks, Grandma, for making our movie nights so special.

banana pie

Photos by: Maria Hedrick Photography

banana pie
banana pie

Banana Pie In A Jar

By TheSweetNerd  ,

April 1, 2018

Milk Bar Banana Pudding Recipe, Christina Tosi

  • Prep: 35 mins
  • Cook: 1 hr

Ingredients

2 ripe bananas

1/3 cup heavy cream

¼ cup milk

½ cup sugar

2 tablespoons cornstarch

½ teaspoon kosher salt

3 egg yolks

1 teaspoon gelatin

1 tablespoon cold water for blooming (or a few drops more if needed)

3 tablespoons butter

yellow food coloring, 3 drops (or to your liking)

¾ cup heavy cream

3 cups chocolate cookie crumbs (Tate Cookies, storebought)

8-12 mini mason jars

2 yellow ripe bananas, sliced for layering in mason jars

Directions

1Blend: Combine bananas, cream, milk and puree until smooth. Add, sugar cornstarch, salt, and yolks, and blend again until totally smooth. Pour into a saucepan and set aside (no heat yet).

2Bloom Step 1: In a separate bowl, add 1 teaspoon gelatin and cover with water to activate gelatin. Be sure all the gelatin gets covered and there are no clumps (I stir with my finger). Let it bloom for 5 minutes until jelly-like consistency.

3Stovetop: Now, whisk the blended pudding over medium heat. As it heats, it will thicken. Bring to a boil, and continue to whisk vigorously for 2 minutes until starch is cooked out. When the surface boils with thick bubbles, then it is ready. The mixture will resemble a thick cement-like glue, with a color to match! Dump the contents of the saucepan back into the blender.

4Bloom Step 2: Microwave the bloomed gelatin until clear and warm (10 seconds).

5Blender: Add the butter, gelatin, and banana mixture back into the blender and blend. Add drops of yellow food coloring to brighten the mixture. Transfer the banana mixture to a heatsafe container and firm until it cools completely (at least 60 minutes).

6Mixer (whisk attachment): Whip the heavy cream until medium peaks (ribbons will form and you will know it is done). Fold the whipped cream into the banana pastry cream by 1/3rds. Each third, lightly fold the cream until thoroughly mixed in. Refrigerate until assembly.

7Assembly: Add cookie crumbs to the base of the mason jar, add fresh sliced bananas, then banana cream mixture, and lastly top with chocolate crumbs.

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23 Comments

  • Tessa
    12 months ago

    I grew up on my Grandma Williamson’s Banana Cream Pie recipe so this little mini version is a dream. Thanks for the lesson on blooming!

    • Cindy "TheSweetNerd" Rodriguez
      12 months ago

      I hope it brings back good memories like Grandma Williamsons!

  • Kendall
    12 months ago

    What a cool technique! I’ve never heard of blooming so thanks for the fun lesson. This looks mighty delicious by the way

    • Cindy "TheSweetNerd" Rodriguez
      12 months ago

      Thanks Kendall. Your friends at school will love it.

  • Love everything about this! Desserts in jars are just so fun and you can never go wrong with banana pudding 🙂

    • Cindy "TheSweetNerd" Rodriguez
      12 months ago

      Thanks Jennifer. I love it too. Hope all is well for ya.

  • Lorna Soonhee Umphrey
    12 months ago

    This sounds so yummy!!

    • Cindy "TheSweetNerd" Rodriguez
      12 months ago

      Awesome, hope you love it as much as I do Lorna.

  • Ryan Arnold
    11 months ago

    Ummmmmm, I’m going bananas over here with how delicious this looks! The video was super cute, but the recipe sells itself. I can’t wait to try this tonight – it seems like the perfect end to a long week!! Thanks for sharing.

    • Cindy "TheSweetNerd" Rodriguez
      11 months ago

      Oh I hope you love it. Thanks Ryan!

  • 11 months ago

    This looks amazing!! My dad loves banana cream and I know he would love this!!!!!!!!

    • Cindy "TheSweetNerd" Rodriguez
      11 months ago

      Awww, shucks. Thanks so much Deanna. My dad loves bananas too! I hope he loves it.

  • 11 months ago

    Oh how delicious. LOVE the video and they are such cute desserts when served in those jars. 🙂

    • Cindy "TheSweetNerd" Rodriguez
      11 months ago

      Right? I love those jars too. They are so fun. Thanks for the love.

  • 11 months ago

    My Dad loves banana pudding. Will have to make this for him.

    • Cindy "TheSweetNerd" Rodriguez
      11 months ago

      Thanks Julie. I am glad you like it. Hope your dad loves it as much as mine!

  • 11 months ago

    Wow. This process is so creative! Looks delicious!

    • Cindy "TheSweetNerd" Rodriguez
      11 months ago

      Appreciate the love Brandi. I promise it tastes as great as it looks.

  • 11 months ago

    These look so fun, sound so delicious and I’m LOVING the video!!

    • Cindy "TheSweetNerd" Rodriguez
      11 months ago

      Thanks Sarah! I appreciate the love. Let me know if you make it!

  • Banana pie was not a popular thing around here when I grew up, but I totally feel like I missed out cause this sounds amazing!! Love those little individual desserts and this one looks so creamy dreamy!! I think I’ll have to have two servings just to make up for not having any all these years 😉

    • Cindy "TheSweetNerd" Rodriguez
      11 months ago

      I swear when I eat it, I have to stop myself from eating more. It can be a scary addiction! HA. Thanks Dawn.

  • Banana cream pie is one of my fav desserts! (I’m actually sharing a banana cream parfait recipe on the blog tomorrow!)

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