A family reunion or picnic favorite, there are many variations of this dessert. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good Oreo and pudding or even lemon no-bake cake, but this time I decided to bring some new elements to the table. What is even better, this recipe can easily be made into a gluten-free option with the substitution of only one ingredient. Let’s get layering!
The No-Bake Pudding Cake
Whoever invented this simple recipe of layering pudding, cookies, fruit, and whipped topping is a genius in my book. Who doesn’t love an incredibly easy treat to serve up on those warm summer days, when the thought of even moving makes you sweat? I know in the summer months, turning my oven on is the last thing I want to do. That is why a no-bake pudding cake is one of the only desserts I bring to a family gathering when it is 90 degrees and sunny.
Did you know May 22 is recognized as National Vanilla Pudding Day? I didn’t. Praise this lovely and divine creation! Believe it or not, this, like many inventions, came from a place of necessity. Alfred Bird first created an egg-free custard powder as his wife was allergic to eggs. These versions of cook-top pudding first graced American shelves in 1918 by My-T-Fine. It took about two decades, though, before the instant version made it to our kitchens in the mid 1940s.
German Spin on Pudding
You may be asking yourself, “Why German pudding?" The simple answer: because it is that good! I am a lover of all things almond, and I had an itch to wrap almond into this recipe. My first thought was almond pudding, of course. After searching the local supermarkets high and low with no luck, I turned my efforts towards Google. Yes, I Googled "almond pudding." Hey, no judgements, it worked!
I quickly stumbled across a wide variety of German pudding choices, ones not seen in local grocery stores. They ranged from vanilla and almond to strawberry and even raspberry.
Germans use their puddings for a wide array of desserts and custards. What’s fabulous is that they aren’t overly sweet, which is commonly found in American puddings, whether they be cook-top or instant. In this case, for this recipe, it was just what I needed to complement this no-bake pudding cake with sweet blackberries.
No-Brainer Tea Pairings
There are a few teas I adore with this dessert. To get that yummy blackberry flavor to pop even more, I recommend Self Care Blend Herbal Tea. You cannot go wrong with a delicate blend of honeybush tea, elderberries, apricots, apple pieces, and marigold. I just love the flavor profile of the elderberries and apricots!
Another choice is Peach Popsicle Herbal Tea. Think juicy, fresh peaches and sweet almonds, all mellowed and enriched by tart hibiscus. It pairs ever-so-beautifully with the almond in the no-bake pudding cake!
Blackberry Almond No-Bake Pudding Cake
- 36 vanilla Oreos or gluten free vanilla sandwich cookies (about one package)
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
- 2 packages almond pudding mix
- 3 cups milk
- 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 16 ounces blackberry jelly, pureed
- 3 cups Cool Whip
- 1 cup fresh blackberries
In a food processor – or the good ole’-fashioned way using a Ziploc bag and hammer – grind whole cookies into fine crumbs.
In a medium bowl, stir together melted butter with cookie crumbs until thoroughly moistened, then press the mixture into the bottom of a 9x13-inch pan. Set in the freezer to firm.
In a large pan, bring milk to a boil. Whisk in almond pudding until well blended. Stir constantly for one minute. Remove from heat.
Add cream cheese and blackberry jam and mix until smooth and creamy. I added all to my stand mixer and blended to a smooth consistency.
Spread the pudding mixture over chilled crust. Set in fridge to firm for 30 minutes.
Top with Cool Whip and sprinkle with fresh blackberries to finish off this easy no-bake pudding cake!
Refrigerate 2-3 hours before serving.