Vanilla pudding

A base of vanilla pudding can easily be made into chocolate, if that's what you're craving. You can add melted chocolate to homemade vanilla pudding during cooking. If you've got a box of vanilla pudding or ready-to-eat containers in the fridge, you can adjust them too.

Pudding is nothing more than milk or cream cooked together with sugar, and a thickener of cornstarch or egg yolks, to yield a rich, creamy treat. To make a homemade vanilla pudding into chocolate, you'll need:

  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 3 egg yolks, separated from large eggs
  • 2 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 1/2 cup of sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 to 6 ounces semi or bittersweet chocolate, chopped

In a small bowl, mix the cornstarch with the heavy cream and set aside. Stir thoroughly to eliminate any lumps. Whip in the egg yolks to create a smooth, thick mixture.

Combine the milk and sugar in a saucepan and warm over low to medium heat. Stir often to melt the sugar.

Add about 1/4 cup of the cornstarch mixture, whisking the entire time. Once it's incorporated, add the rest to the pot. Whisk constantly to prevent the eggs from coagulating. Bring the mixture to a simmer, stirring the entire time until the mixture simmers and thickens slightly.

Remove from the heat, and stir in the vanilla extract and the chopped chocolate until the bits are melted.

Refrigerate the pudding in a storage container with a piece of plastic wrap pressed onto the surface, to prevent a skin from forming. Eat when cool.

The pudding lasts about three days.

If you have already made vanilla pudding and it's in the refrigerator, you can doctor it up to create a chocolate flavor. To individual containers of vanilla pudding, add a tablespoon or two of chocolate syrup and stir thoroughly.

  • Already made boxed vanilla pudding chilling in the refrigerator can be made chocolate-y in the same way. Add about 1/4 cup of chocolate syrup to the entire batch and mix vigorously to blend it in; add more to taste but recognize that it will add more sweetness as well as a chocolate flavor. 
  • If you have a box of vanilla pudding mix you'd like to amend, add about 1/4 cup of cocoa powder before following the directions on the package. You'll have made the vanilla base into a chocolate one with almost no fuss.


Don't try to add melted chocolate to storebought, chilled pudding. It will simply coagulate into chunks as its temperature drops.