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Banana pudding is a Southern staple and Dolly calls this dessert one of her favorite foods. Her personal recipe is even used in her theme park, Dollywood in Pigeon Forge, which has won best amusement park food four times in the last seven years by Amusement Today. The country queen shared her mama’s famous recipe for banana pudding in her 2006 cookbook, Dolly’s Dixie Fixin’s. Unfortunately, it’s no longer for sale, but Parton was kind enough to explain how to make the dish while chatting with the Hallmark Channel at Dollywood back in 2016.


• 3 eggs, separated

• 1 cup sugar

• 1⁄2 cup all-purpose flour

• 2 cups milk

• Dash of salt

• 4 tablespoons

(1⁄2 stick) butter

• 2 teaspoons vanilla


• 1 (12-ounce) box vanilla


•5-6 bananas, sliced


Preheat the oven to 350 °F.

Lightly beat the egg yolks. Combine 3⁄4 cup of the sugar and the flour in a medium pot. Gradually stir in the milk, followed by the egg yolks and salt. Cook over medium heat 15 to 20 minutes, stirring constantly, until thickened. Remove the pot from the heat and add the butter and 1 teaspoon of the vanilla. Set aside to cool slightly. Arrange half of the wafers on the bottom of a 2-quart baking dish. Top with half of the banana slices. Spoon half of the pudding mixture over the bananas. Repeat with remaining wafers, bananas, and pudding.

In a clean bowl, beat the egg whites with the remaining 1⁄4 cup of sugar and 1 teaspoon of vanilla until they form stiff peaks. Spread with a rubber spatula over the pudding, sealing the edges. Bake until the topping is light golden, 15 to 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool. Serve cooled.

Dolly with the Hallmark Channel sharing her mother’s Banana Pudding Recipe. (2016)

Dolly explained the concept for the cookbook,

“I still like to try new foods as often as I can. But when it comes to cooking for myself and my husband Carl and my great big extended family, which numbers into the multiple hundreds these days, what we really want to eat is what comforts us most: good, hearty food rooted in Mama’s cooking and those country gatherings of my childhood. It’s the food from those Mom and Pop joints that welcome you in as if you’re family. We really just want food that is lovingly made and joyfully served up. Around here, that’s what we call Dixie Fixin’s.”


Even though Banana Pudding is a “Southern Staple”, the first actual banana pudding recipe appeared in 1888, in the Massachusetts-based Good Housekeeping. It's quite similar to a traditional English trifle, with bananas incorporated as the fruit.


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