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Magnolia Bakery Has Shared the Secret Recipe for Their Most Famous Dessert

The beloved bakery made famous by a certain Sarah Jessica Parker show.
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A beloved bakery made famous by Sex and the City was busy celebrating its 25th birthday as Sarah Jessica Parker and Cynthia Nixon were spotted working on the set of the upcoming reboot last week. True fans can celebrate both by making one of Magnolia Bakery's most talked-about recipes of all time. We've got the scoop for how to make the iconic banana pudding, plus a way to make it gluten-free.

Magnolia Bakery's banana pudding arguably eclipses the brand's one-of-a-kind cupcakes in fame. Whether you're Team BP or Team Cupcake, you've got to appreciate the fact that Magnolia's banana pudding is once again making the rounds online. The Magnolia Bakery Cookbook was published in 1999 (one year after Sex and the City came on the air), but it didn't have the iconic recipe inside. (Related: The Best & Worst Sodas in America—Ranked!)


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The coveted instructions were later included in The Magnolia Bakery Handbook, which was released in October 2020. Though unplanned, it likely came in handy to many home cooks amid the baking renaissance sparked by the pandemic. Americans were turning to comfort foods, and banana pudding is certainly comforting.

Truth be told, the recipe was shared even earlier in 2009's The Complete Magnolia Bakery Cookbook. But there's something about the recent reawakening of New York—including the reopening of Broadway and more Sex and the City—that makes Magnolia's recipe timely for re-circulation right now.

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Recipe: Magnolia Bakery's Banana Pudding (via Today)


  • 1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 1/2 cups ice cold water
  • 1 (3.4-ounce) package instant vanilla pudding mix (Jell-O brand is recommended)
  • 3 cups heavy cream
  • 1 (11-ounce) box vanilla wafers (Nabisco Nilla Wafers are recommended)*
  • 4-5 ripe bananas, sliced


1. Whisk together the cold water and sweetened condensed milk in a medium-sized bowl. In a separate bowl, pour in the pudding mix and begin to slowly whisk in the liquid mixture, until it is smooth with no lumps, about one minute. Cover and refrigerate for at least an hour until it's firm.

2. Whip the heavy cream until it starts to thicken, then increase the speed until stiff peaks form.

3. Add your pudding mixture to the whipped cream and whisk until there are no streaks of pudding in the mixture.

4. In a trifle or wide glass bowl, spread one-quarter of the pudding over the bottom and place a layer with one-third of the cookies as well as about 1 to 1 1⁄2 of the sliced bananas to cover the full layer. Continue the process until complete, ending with one final layer of pudding and a garnish of some of the remaining wafers.

5. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for four to six hours. It's recommended to serve the dessert within 12 hours.

*For gluten-free Magnolia Bakery banana pudding, sources have suggested the bakery itself recommends Kinnikinnick Vanilla Wafers.

If you don't have a Magnolia Bakery location in your neck of the woods, try making our lighter version of banana pudding, which only has 290 calories. And to go get all of the latest food news delivered right to your email inbox every day, sign up for our newsletter!

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Krissy Gasbarre
Krissy is a senior news editor at Eat This, Not That!, managing morning and weekend news related to nutrition, wellness, restaurants and groceries (with a focus on beverages), and more. Read more about Krissy
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