Did you know that a packet of Jell-O instant chocolate pudding mix has 14 ingredients in it, including three different food colorings? How is that even possible? It’s so easy to make your own “instant” mix at home, you can do it in under 3 minutes. For a step-by-step video tutorial, check it out right here.
I love this recipe for the home cook because it is much simpler to make than a traditional egg-based custard (all puddings as we know them are a type of custard). Custards require a technique called tempering (which you should definitely learn and I will definitely be posting in a different article). This pudding recipe uses cornstarch as a thickening agent, which removes a lot of the finesse and time required to create a traditional custard.
Once you see how easy this is, you’ll never reach for that store-bought stuff again.
Here’s What You’ll Need:
1 c cocoa powder, natural*
1/2 C cornstarch
1/2 c non-fat milk powder
1 1/2 c confectioner’s sugar
1/4 tsp fine salt
* #nerdalert: What’s the difference between natural and Dutch-processed cocoa powder? To put it simply, Dutch-processed (aka alkalized) cocoa powder goes through a process that makes it more alkaline. Natural cocoa powders are much more common in the States. Since they are more acidic, they interact better with alkaline leaveners like baking soda. That isn’t important in this application, but I like the natural product more becuase it has a lighter, fruiter taste to it.
Ready for this?
Mix all the ingredients in a bowl with a whisk, then pass it through a sieve into a larger bowl.
Store it in a cool #instagrammable container and show it off to your friends. That’s it!
This will last for months in a tightly sealed container.
Want to make the pudding?
This is about just as simple as the mix to make.
Here’s what you’ll need:
1 c homemade instant pudding mix
2 c half and half
Combine the mix and half and half in a medium pot with a wire whisk. Combine thoroughly because the cornstarch needs to dissolve thoroughly in cold liquid to avoid creating lumps.
Whisk the mixture thoroughly over medium heat. Cook for 4-6 minutes, whisking continuously. The mixture will be very thin at first. As it heats, it will thicken rapidly.
Once the mixture comes to a simmer, let it cool slightly off heat. Pour it into a container to cool, then place plastic wrap directly onto the pudding (this will prevent it from forming a skin as it cools).
Use this pudding in a s’mores pie recipe, if you are so inclined.