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Banana Pudding – A Favorite Southern Cast Iron Dessert!
Banana pudding and the south go hand-in-hand. Baking and cooking are skills that I have grown over time. My husband likes to tell the story of when we first moved in together. Every dish I made had mushrooms in it. From the spaghetti to the meatloaf to soup, I loaded them up. Salt, pepper, and a little garlic powder were the extent of my spice collection. My pan set was quite sad but now, I use my cast iron for everything. I still use mushrooms but have learned that less can often be more and all of my dishes are loaded with flavor from spices.
Thinking Outside of the Banana Pudding Box
If you’ve picked up a box of pudding or Nilla wafers, then you know that banana pudding calls for a box of each. Along with milk and some vanilla extract, the recipe is simple. One of my favorite areas of baking/cooking to explore has been creating pre-made or box mixes from scratch. They are surprisingly simple and the taste is far superior to anything that is grab-n-go.
From experience, do not forgo using the original Nilla wafers. I have yet to find a single brand that can even begin to touch their deliciousness!
I chose to create a Southern Banana Pudding dessert in my 10″ Lodge Cast Iron skillet for several reasons. Puddings and custards can easily stick to pans if not cooked at the proper temperature and stirred properly; but when seasoned properly, the cast iron is a non-stick surface.
When we started raising our own pigs, we switched to lard from other processed oils. I render it myself and feel confident that it’s healthier for my family. Less oil/lard is required in cast iron – another reason I love it! Cast iron pans are chemical-free so if you eliminate chemicals in your choice of oil, your foods are much healthier.
Iron deficiency is common – especially for women. Using cast iron to cook our foods allows necessary dietary iron to leach into our foods. It does make the foods darker in color; however, they are still tasty and fortified with iron! Cooking with cast iron can increase the iron content of your food by up to 20 times – particularly if it’s acidic.
My husband has bragged on his granny’s cast iron banana pudding for years. I decided to create my own version and share with y’all. I hope you enjoy!
Cast Iron Southern Banana Pudding
A delicious (and healthy!) southern version of a favorite dessert!
- 3 eggs large, separated
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 3 cups whole milk
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp banana flavored extract optional
- 1/2 tsp rum flavored extract optional
- 1 box Nilla wafers
- 6 ripe bananas
- 1/8 tsp cream of tartar
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
Separate your egg whites and yolks. Set whites aside.
In your cast iron pan, whisk 1/2 cup of sugar, 1/3 cup flour, and 1/4 tsp of salt with 3 cups of milk.
Whisk in egg yolks until mixture is smooth.
Cook using a wooden spoon, stirring frequently to avoid burning on low-medium heat.
Continue cooking until custard is thick.
Remove from heat and whisk in vanilla and flavored extracts until smooth.
Set aside and allow custard to cool. It will thicken as it sits.
Layer Nilla wafers in the bottom and around the edge of a 10" cast iron skillet.
Slice bananas and cover wafers.
Pour custard on top. Continue layers until all of the custard is used.
Beat the egg whites until smooth and frothy.
Add 1/8 tsp of cream of tartar, increasing speed so the frothy mixture creates peaks.
Slowly add 1/4 cup of granulated sugar.
Continue beating until stiff peaks from.
Spread meringue on top of layered skillet.
Using a fork, create peaked swirls in the meringue.
Place skillet under broiler for a few minutes. Keep an eye on it because it can easily burn! Allow peaks and edges to brown like you would a marshmallow.
Remove from oven and allow to cool.
Feel free to pin so you can create a delicious Cast Iron Southern Banana Pudding dessert of your own later! If you love bananas, you’ll want to try our Banana Crumble Muffin recipe, too!