My mom makes the yummiest dessert. It goes something like this:

Chocolate pudding + Cool Whip + crumbled brownies. Bled together until it looks right. Top with Heath bar if you feel like it.

When I was charged with Easter desserts, I wanted to make a riff off this family favorite. But Cool Whip is troubling to me. Have you read the ingredients?

Water, corn syrup and high fructose corn syrup, hydrogenated coconut and palm kernel oil, sodium caseinate, vanilla extract, xanthan and guargums, polysorbate 60 and betacarotene.

Oh my. All those unpronounceables. I don’t think we want to ingest them. So I changed the recipe up to make it with real food. This meant organic pudding sans funky stuff and REAL whipped cream. The fat content certainly went up…but we did kick the word “hydrogenated” out of the mix. That counts for something!


1 4.5 oz chocolate pudding, prepared.

(I used an organic stovetop version and whole milk)

1 8×8 pan of your favorite brownies

(I use Mama Pea’s Double Chocolate¬†recipe)

2 cups cold heavy cream

2 tablespoons sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla

Chocolate chips for topping.

*Prep your pudding and brownies as far as a day in advance, if you can avoid eating them. Get them in the fridge so they’re nice and cold.

*Place your cold cream in a large metal bowl. Add in the sugar and vanilla, then beat with an electric mixer until stiff peaks form. For me, this was 5 minutes on a medium speed.

*Gently fold about 3/4 of the whipped cream into the pudding mixture. Reserve the remaining whipped cream.

*Roughly crumble your brownies. Add about 3/4 of the brownie crumbles into the fluffy pudding.

*Now start layering. Pudding mixture–remaining brownies–pudding mixture–remaining whipped cream–chocolate chips.

So simple. So good. What’s your favorite easy dessert recipe?