Ozark Pudding is a simple, classic, southern dessert made from apples, nuts, and a few other ingredients, served with caramel sauce and ice cream. The apples keep this cake like dessert super moist, and the entire dessert is prepared in minutes.
I’m a lifelong apple lover, and I’ve tried them in a lot of different recipes. This has to be one of my favorite ways to use them!
This was inspired by this delicious apple dessert on the site. It takes apple desserts to an entirely new level.
- all-purpose flour
- baking powder
- Granny Smith apples
- eggs, room temperature
- vanilla extract
- cooking spray or butter for greasing
- vanilla ice cream or whipped cream
- caramel sauce
See the recipe card at the end of the post for quantities and cooking times.
Just like the ingredient list, this pudding is super simple. It only takes a few minutes and a few simple steps to create a truly delicious rustic apple dessert.
Step 1: Prep
Preheat your oven and thoroughly grease and flour an 8 or 9 inch square baking pan. Chop your apples and pecans.
Step 2: Combine Dry Ingredients
In a large bowl, combine flour, baking powder, and salt. Then, gradually add your chopped apples and pecans, stirring until thoroughly coated.
Step 3: Combine Wet Ingredients
In another bowl, combine sugar, eggs, and vanilla, whisking until the mixture is pale yellow in color.
Step 4: Mix the Batter
Add the apple mixture to the wet ingredients and blend until incorporated to create the batter.
Step 5: Bake
Add the batter to the prepared pan and sprinkle with a heaping teaspoon of sugar. Place the pan in the oven and bake until golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with only a few crumbs.
Step 6: Cool and Serve
Place the pan on a wire rack and allow it to cool and set for at least a half hour. Then, top with ice cream or whipped cream and serve.
Hint: An easy way to grease your pan is to spray it with nonstick cooking spray.
Don’t have the correct ingredients on hand or want to change something up? Here are some helpful tips for you to change this Ozark pudding.
- Apples – If you don’t have Granny Smith apples on hand, any firm apple will do the trick.
- Nuts – If you don’t have pecans, walnuts or almonds work well in this recipe.
Want to personalize this Ozark pudding recipe? Here are some of my tried and true tips for changing up this recipe.
- Make Them Mini – Use ramekins to make individual pudding cups.
- Raisins – Add raisins for more flavor.
- Add Cinnamon – Apples and cinnamon is always a great combination in any dish.
If you love rustic recipes like this, you may also enjoy this Stovetop Raisin Almond Rice Pudding.
It only takes a few simple pieces of standard kitchen equipment to make this recipe. A simple recipe only requires simple tools.
- Measuring cups and spoons
- Mixing bowls
- Wooden or plastic spoon
- Baking dish
- Nonstick spray
You can store this delicious pudding at room temperature in an air-tight container for about three days or for up to a week in the refrigerator. For longer storage, you can freeze it for up to three months.
This recipe is incredibly easy, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t a few tricks to make things even more simple. Take a look!
- Save some time by buying chopped nuts at the grocery store.
- If you forgot to bring your eggs to room temperature, simply place them in a cup of hot water for about five minutes.
- Keep your apple pieces on the larger side of bite-sized for a true rustic feel.
- Before turning out your pudding, tap the bottom and sides of the pan several times to help it release.
History of Ozark Pudding
The pudding is called Ozark Pudding. This name comes from the US region of the same name, also known as Big Bend Country, that comprises Texas and Arkansas. In the 70s & 80s, a local baker named Samuel Gist started popularizing his version of this dessert among friends and family by baking batches twice a week to have enough to distribute amongst his friends during the week. Much to his surprise, people started looking forward to getting their weekly serving of Ozark Pudding. Word got around and it wasn’t long before others were inquiring about when they would be able to get their hands on some Ozark Pudding.
Bess Truman Ozark Pudding Recipe
The most famous person who has been associated with Ozark Pudding is former First Lady of the United States Bess Truman. When she and her husband Harry visited Missouri, everyone wanted to show them their hospitality. On one occasion, a local baker named Samuel Gist was asked to bake some dessert for the event. He decided that he would bake Ozark Pudding because he had never made it before. The President and First Lady loved the dessert so much that some days later they asked to have more of it at another event! That’s when Samuel realized he was on to something big, so he set up a business out of his kitchen with the goal of sharing “Big Bend Country” with the entire nation!
More Apple Recipes
Do you love apples? Here are some recipes you may also like to try.
Do you have questions about this Ozark pudding recipe? Here are some of the most commonly asked questions about this Ozark pudding recipe.
How do I serve Ozark pudding?
Place a slice on a plate and top it with a scoop of ice cream or whipped cream. You can also drizzle some caramel sauce over the top.
How long will it last?
This dessert will last for about three days at room temperature or about a week in the refrigerator. You can also freeze it for up to three months.
How do I freeze it?
Let the pudding cool completely in the refrigerator, then wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and store it in a heavy-duty, freezer-safe container.
How do I reheat it?
Let the pudding cake defrost in the refrigerator overnight. Then microwave individual pieces or heat the entire thing in the oven at 300 degrees until heated through.
Why is it called Ozark pudding?
It gets its name from the region where it originated. This pudding is actually from the Ozarks region.
Is Ozark pudding really pudding?
Sort of. It’s a dry custard, which means it’s solid unlike other puddings. This recipe is actually more of a cake than a pudding – kind of like bread pudding.
Ozark Pudding Recipe
Ready to get cooking? Remember that you can print this recipe if you would like.
- 8 x 8 or 9 x 9 inch cake pan
- ½ cup all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 4 Granny Smith apples peeled, cored, halved, and cut into ½-inch pieces
- 1 ½ cups pecans chopped
- 2 cups sugar
- 4 large eggs
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon sugar heaping
- vanilla ice cream or whipped cream
- cooking spray or butter and flour for greasing
- Get out and measure all of your ingredients.
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and prepare your 8 or 9 inch pan with grease and flour. Sometimes I use butter but cooking spray works just fine.
- In a large bowl combine flour, baking powder, and salt. Whisk until blended.
- Add apples and pecans.
- Stir until coated.
- In another bowl add 2 cups sugar, eggs and vanilla.
- Whisk until a pale yellow color.
- Add egg mixture to apple mixture.
- Stir until incorporated.
- Once blended, dump batter into your prepared pan and sprinkle with a heaping teaspoon of sugar.
- Bake until golden and toothpick inserted in to the center comes out with just a few crumbs attached, between 45 and 50 minutes.
- Transfer to wire rack and allow to cool for 30 minutes.
- Spoon pudding into bowls and top with ice or whipped cream and a drizzle of caramel sauce before serving.
- Enjoy every bite!