Homemade chocolate pudding is rich, silky, and decadent. The BEST chocolate pudding is also simple to make. Every spoonful of this creamy pudding from scratch recipe is an absolute delight!
Chocolate pudding makes a kid-friendly treat that even mom and dad love to eat! It's one of those classic desserts that's been around forever.
After a lot of delicious experimenting, I've come up with the best homemade chocolate pudding recipe. At least the best that my family has ever tasted.
Rather than just using cocoa powder like many other chocolate pudding recipes, this one uses two additional types of chocolate, bittersweet chocolate and white chocolate.
It's great served up alone or with a little whipped cream and maybe some strawberries on top or caramel sauce.
If you love pudding like I do, you'll want to also try Banana Pudding Cheesecake Trifle, Stovetop Raisin Almond Rice Pudding, and Ozark Pudding.
Why You Will Love This Recipe
- Made from scratch! There's nothing better than from-scratch chocolate pudding!
- Best chocolate flavor. This recipe is rich, decadent, indulgent, and will satisfy the strongest chocolate craving.
- Great texture. A velvety-smooth and creamy pudding!
- Simple ingredients. You don't need a lot to make it and most are easy to find.
- Chocolatey goodness! This from-scratch pudding contains THREE different kinds of chocolate!
Ingredients In The Best Chocolate Pudding
This easy chocolate pudding recipe is made with easy to find ingredients. Here's what you need:
- Sugar: Use granulated sugar for this recipe.
- Bittersweet Chocolate: I find the bittersweet chocolate works perfectly with the white chocolate.
- White Chocolate: Choose a good quality white chocolate.
- Cocoa Powder: I recommend a high-quality cocoa powder with rich chocolate flavor.
- Cornstarch: Thickens up the pudding for you.
- Milk: Whole milk makes for the creamiest pudding.
- Salt: Just a touch enhances the sweet chocolate flavors.
- Heavy Whipping Cream: Makes this pudding super creamy and velvety.
- Vanilla Extract: Use pure vanilla extract rather than imitation.
The full list and quantities are in the recipe card further down the page.
Don’t have the correct ingredients on hand? Here are some tried and true swaps you can make.
- No bittersweet chocolate? Use semi-sweet chocolate for a slightly sweeter pudding.
- Swap Your Sugar. Use brown sugar or coconut sugar instead.
- No vanilla extract? Use banana, almond, coconut extract instead. Also, try adding in one-half teaspoon of almond extract with the vanilla extract for a somewhat nutty flavor.
- Cornstarch: You can use tapioca flour instead!
This chocolate pudding makes the base to create so many different flavors. Here are some helpful tips for you to change up the recipe for homemade chocolate pudding.
- Want more intense cocoa flavor? Replace the white chocolate with dark or semi-sweet chocolate.
- Dark Chocolate Pudding: Replace the bittersweet and the white chocolate with equal parts dark chocolate.
- Orange Chocolate Pudding. Add a touch of orange zest.
- Cookie Lover: Stir one-half cup of finely crushed Oreo cookie crumbs into the pudding before it sets in the fridge.
- Caramel Lover: Stir in one-half cup chopped pieces of soft caramels before pudding cools for an indulgent, buttery, toffee-flavoured treat.
- Sprinkle some flaked sea salt on top. We recommend fleur de sel to enhance the chocolate flavor even more!
- Banana Pudding: Replace half of the heavy cream with mashed banana for a delicious banana-chocolate hybrid that’s will blow your mind. Just be sure not to overcook it or over mix, so you don't end up with a grainy texture.
- Going Nuts: Add a handful of walnuts, almonds, or pecans to the pudding just before it cools, for extra texture and crunch.
- Rich Coffee Flavor: Add a tablespoon of instant coffee or espresso powder to the pudding mixture before cooking.
- Add Preserves: Stir in two tablespoons of your favorite jam, such as raspberry or strawberry, before cooling.
- Add Peanut Butter or Hazelnut Spread: Add a couple tablespoons of peanut butter or hazelnut spread to add nutty flavor while adding the vanilla extract.
- Coconut: Stir one-quarter cup shredded coconut into your finished pudding mixture before allowing it to cool in the fridge.
- Add some spice: Add a sprinkle of cinnamon, cardamom, ginger, nutmeg or even cayenne to add some warmth to the pudding.
How To Make The Best Chocolate Pudding
- Combine the chocolates in a large mixing bowl and set aside.
- Combine the sugar, cocoa powder, cornstarch and salt in a medium mixing bowl.
- Slowly add the milk and cream, and stir until smooth.
- Pour the milk mixture into a saucepan and bring it to a boil over medium heat, whisking continuously until thickened. Reduce heat to simmer and cook for an additional 2 minutes, stirring continuously.
- Immediately remove from heat and stir in vanilla extract. Then add the chocolate ingredients, stirring to melt the chocolate.
- Allow the mixture to cool. Divide mixture between 6 to 8 small bowls or cups or one giant bowl for you. Just kidding! 😀 Refrigerate the pudding for 1-2 hours or until ready to serve.
TOP TIP: Place plastic wrap on top of the surface of each serving to prevent a harder thick layer from forming on top of the pudding.
- Serve the pudding topped with whipped cream and shaved chocolate or some strawberries.
What to Serve with Chocolate Pudding
- Serve with whipped cream and fresh mint.
- Add some fresh berries, kiwi, oranges or your favorite fruit.
- Grated dark chocolate or shredded coconut flakes are great sprinkled over the top.
- Mini marshmallows make a nice touch on top.
- For some crunch consider adding crushed waffle cone pieces or mini cookies to the top of the pudding while it's still warm.
- Refrigerate: Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
- Freezer: Unfortunately, this pudding will not freeze well. You'll have to eat it all while it's still good.
- Use medium heat to prevent scorching at higher temperatures.
- Whisk consistently. The pudding may burn if you don't whisk the pudding enough while adding the milk. This also gives the pudding a thick, creamy texture.
- Chill before serving. The pudding needs time to set so give it at least an hour.
- Stir before serving to make sure its nice and creamy. I highly recommend serving with whipped cream on top.
- For more intense flavor, add more cocoa powder.
- For less sweetness, use more bittersweet dark chocolate and less white chocolate.
- Stir in the vanilla quickly so its mixed evenly into the mixture before it cools so it can better enhance the chocolate flavor and add a subtle extra layer of sweetness.
- To prevent a thin skin layer from forming on top of each of your pudding cups inside the fridge, press down a piece of plastic wrap over each cup before cooling them in the refrigerator.
Do you have questions about how to make the best chocolate pudding? Here are some of the most commonly asked questions about making chocolate pudding.
To prevent a skin from forming on top of the pudding, place a piece of plastic wrap directly on the surface of the pudding while it cools. Ensure that the entire surface is covered, and that there are no air bubbles.
Cover the surface of the pudding with plastic wrap, and place it in the refrigerator. Pudding will take about 2 hours to set.
More Chocolate Recipes
If you are specifically looking to satisfy a chocolate craving, you have to take a look at some of my favorite chocolate recipes.
The Best Chocolate Pudding
- ¾ cup sugar
- 1 ½ ounces bittersweet chocolate chopped
- 1 ½ ounces white chocolate chopped
- ⅓ cup cocoa powder
- ⅓ cup cornstarch
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 2 cups milk
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- In a large mixing bowl combine the chocolates. Set aside.
- In a medium mixing bowl combine sugar, cocoa powder, cornstarch and salt. Slowly add the milk and then the cream. Stir until smooth.
- Pour into a saucepan. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium heat, whisking continuously until thickened.
- Reduce heat to simmer and cook for an additional 2 minutes, stirring continuously. Immediately remove from heat and stir in vanilla extract. Combine the mixture into the bowl with the chocolate, stirring to melt the chocolate.
- Allow mixture to cool. Divide mixture between 6 to 8 small bowls or cups.
- Press a piece of plastic wrap over the surface of the pudding, to prevent a skin from forming on the top.
- Refrigerate until ready to serve.
This post was originally published in August 2016. It has been updated with new images and content.
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