Homemade chocolate pudding is the coziest of simple desserts. Made on the stovetop in about 20 minutes, it’s rich and creamy, thickened with cornstarch, naturally gluten-free.
When I was growing up and we wanted a quick, easy, homemade dessert on a weeknight, my mom would make chocolate pudding. It was a special type of magic to see her combine a few ingredients in a saucepan and, moments later, have a thick, creamy chocolate dessert. Now as a parent, it remains one of my favorite things to make for my kids.
The Stovetop Method for Homemade Pudding
The stovetop method that both my mom and I use is adapted from Hershey’s and uses egg yolks (not the whites) and cornstarch to thicken the chocolate base. This version also uses a tip I found in an old Cook’s Illustrated magazine which advises that the best chocolate flavor comes from a combination of cocoa powder and solid chocolate. When I tested my go-to cocoa powder recipe with a bit of chopped dark chocolate added at the end, I couldn’t believe how much it enhanced the chocolate flavor.
This chocolate pudding is incredibly easy to make and uses ingredients that you most likely already have in your kitchen. You can probably mix up a batch right now!
1. In a mixing bowl whisk together egg yolks and milk. (Any type of milk will work.)
2. In a saucepan, combine sugar, unsweetened cocoa powder, cornstarch, and salt.
3. Slowly pour the liquids over the dry ingredients, whisking well.
4. Heat the mixture until it begins to simmer. Whisk it constantly as it heats (this will prevent lumps).
5. Stir in chopped chocolate or chocolate chips (this gives it extra rich chocolate flavor).
6. Refrigerate until chilled.
Yes. Homemade chocolate pudding that is thickened with cornstarch is a gluten-free dessert. If you are adding bar chocolate or chocolate chips to give the pudding a rich chocolate flavor, be sure that those are certified gluten-free before adding them or just use cocoa powder.
Possible Toppings for Chocolate Pudding
- Whipped Cream
- Grated Chocolate
- Mini Chocolate Chips
- Chocolate or Caramel Sauce
More Chocolate Desserts
- One-Bowl Chocolate Cake
- Chocolate Chip Ricotta Cake
- One-Bowl Chocolate Guinness Cake
- Banana Bread Bundt Cake with Chocolate
- Homemade Hot Chocolate
- Saucepan - A good quality saucepan will help the ingredients to heat evenly.
Homemade Chocolate Pudding
- Mixing Bowls
- 2 Egg Yolks (discard egg whites or use them for something else)
- 2 ½ cups Milk, any type
- ⅓ cup Sugar
- ⅓ cup Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
- 1 ½ Tablespoons Cornstarch
- 1 Pinch Kosher Salt
- 2 ounces Dark Chocolate or Chocolate Chips (optional, see note)
- Whipped Cream, for topping (optional)
- Shaved Chocolate, for topping (optional)
- In a mixing bowl, whisk egg yolks until smooth. Add milk to egg yolks while whisking. Set aside.
- In a medium saucepan, combine sugar, unsweetened cocoa powder, cornstarch, and salt.
- Pour egg-milk mixture over dry ingredients, whisking well.
- Place the saucepan over medium-high heat. As the mixture heats, whisk constantly (this is the key to avoiding lumps). When it begins to simmer, add in chocolate. Continue simmering, stirring constantly, until chocolate melts and pudding thickens, about 1 minute.
- Pour pudding into dessert dishes. Chill for at least one hour.
- Just before serving, top pudding with whipped cream and shaved chocolate. Serve chilled.
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