This is an adaptation of a quick pudding pie my mom used to make with boxed pudding, graham crackers, topped with cool whip, blueberries and sliced strawberries for the 4th of July. It was always a favorite and since I’m not a berry on my desserts kind of person, I used to top mine with a thick layer of decadent ganache, yum! As the years have gone by, and my love for the taste of goodness that only homemade can bring…and the need for gluten free options in order to be enjoyed by all…I turned this family favorite into an even more family favorite.
I used CelebratingSweets Vanilla Pudding recipe and Gluten Free on a Shoestring Nilla Cookie recipe. These cookies are so good! However, they remind me more of graham cracker flavor than Nilla. And even though I stored mine in a glass container, mine remained soft, which we didn’t mind, but just an FYI in case. I doubled the recipes in order to fit the dessert into a 13 x 9 dish and have some extra cookies leftover. The extra cookies were used to make s’mores for Mike, which he hasn’t had in yearrrsss, and he said it was the best s’mores he’s ever had, haha!
The recipes below are already doubled for you to get right to making this yummy goodness!
2-2/3 cups all-purpose or gluten-free flour
1 teaspoon xanthan gum (if you your flour doesn’t already include it)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup packed light-brown sugar
16 tablespoons/1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 eggs at room temperature, beaten
2 tablespoons and 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
4 tablespoons milk, at room temperature
2/3 cup granulated sugar
6 tablespoons corn starch or tapioca starch
1/4 teaspoon salt
4-1/2 cups whole milk ( I didn’t have whole milk so I replaced it with a blend of 3-1/2 cups of 1% milk and 1 cup heavy cream)
4 large egg yolks
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 teaspoons vanilla extract
WHIPPED CREAM TOPPING
2 cups heavy cream
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 tablespoons powdered sugar
Preheat oven to 325F. Line rimmed baking sheet(s) with parchment paper and set aside.
In a bowl, add flour, xanthan gum (unless your flour blend already includes it), baking powder, baking soda, salt, and brown sugar. Whisk with a handheld whisk or mixer to combine.
Add the butter, egg, and vanilla, and beat or process until well combined.
Add the milk, and beat or process until the dough clumps.
Scoop dough by the level tablespoonful, for a more consistent cookie size, about 1 inch apart on the prepared baking sheets
Bake for 15 to 17 minutes, or until the cookies are uniformly golden brown in color. Allow the cookies to cool on a cooling rack or the baking sheet. Store any extra cookies in a sealed glass container to keep more crispiness.
Adapted from Gluten Free on a Shoestring
In a medium saucepan whisk together sugar, cornstarch, salt, milk, and egg yolks. Cook over medium-low heat, whisking occasionally (every minutes or two), until mixture is bubbling all throughout (this takes about 7-8 minutes).
Once bubbling, continue cooking for one or two additional minutes, whisking once or twice, but not too vigorously so as not to break the binding properties. At this point the pudding should be thickened but still pourable, it will thicken more as it cools.
Remove from heat and whisk in the butter and vanilla extract. If there are lumps in your pudding, you can run the pudding through a fine mesh strainer over a large heatproof bowl, however I didn’t and was fine. As long as you whisk thoroughly during Step 1 you shouldn’t get very many, if any, lumps.
Transfer the pudding into a large bowl and cool until it is lukewarm, then cover it with plastic wrap and refrigerate until chilled (This may take several hours, I just made the night before and left overnight and assembled the next day).
Adapted from CelebratingSweets
WHIPPED CREAM TOPPING
In a large bowl, (make sure the bowl isn’t too warm) whip heavy cream until stiff peaks or hills are just about to form. Make sure not to over beat, cream will then become lumpy and butter-like. .
Beat in sugar and vanilla.
Adapted from AllRecipes
Place 1 layer of cookies along the entire base of a dish.
Scoop on chilled vanilla pudding and evenly spread across the top of the cookies.
Scoop on homemade whipped cream onto the vanilla pudding layer and, once again, evenly spread over entire top. Finish with crumbling a cookie all along the top. Enjoy!