make your own: chocolate pudding.

February 15, 2016

make your own chocolate pudding | reading my tea leaves
The chief problem with a cold snap is needing to leave the house in search of chocolate should the ration be dwindling. We were stuck with unsweetened baking chocolate and little else this weekend. I had nearly resigned myself to crawling under the covers to moan and whimper when I remembered pudding and the neglected jar of corn starch in the back of my cabinet that I could use to make it.

I’m a fan of recipes with ingredient quantities that come in a neat row of even numbers. Rote memorization of simple desserts is a necessary skill life, if you ask me, and when you’re not dealing with too many eighths or quarters or combinations of the two, all the easier the skill is to master.

No dessert in the house? How about an easy chocolate pudding? Two tablespoons of cocoa, two tablespoons of corn starch, 2 tablespoons of sugar, a pinch of salt, two cups of milk, four ounces of unsweetened chocolate, and two teaspoons of vanilla extract (or if you’re me: a very hearty glug, gone unmeasured). It’s easy enough to have memorized nearly as soon as you’ve made it once. 

The only (mildly) time consuming part of making chocolate pudding is the stove-top mixing—something you have to do in the pudding from a box, too, mind you. So the bonus here is quality ingredients that you likely already have in the house, without any of the dyes, preservatives, or artificial flavors that hide out in the square little box.chocolate_pudding_reading_my_tea_leaves_IMG_4725

Chocolate Pudding

Adapted from Edible Rhody.
Yields about 2 cups of pudding.

2 tablespoons granulated sugar (if you’re using bittersweet chocolate, I’d recommend slightly less, depending on your sweet tooth)
2 tablespoons corn starch
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 generous pinch salt
2 cups whole milk
4 ounces dark chocolate, chopped (or any kind you’d like, bearing in mind sweetness)
2 teaspoons (or one very hearty pour) vanilla extract (less if you don’t share my enthusiasm for vanilla extract)
treats enough for topping

Into a heavy bottomed sauce pan, mix together sugar, corn starch, cocoa powder and salt. Gradually stir in milk. Bring mixture to a boil over medium-high heat, whisking all the while. Whisk the mixture for two full minutes as the chocolate thickens. Ponder the strength of your forearms as you work. Remove from the heat and stir in chopped chocolate and vanilla extract (the chocolate should be chopped finely enough to melt easily into the mixture.) Pour the pudding into a large bowl (or several smaller ones) to set. (I used four of the smallest 3.1-ounce Duralex Picardie tumblers that we have and had just the right amount to leave room for toppings.) Chill in the refrigerator for two hours and top with a smattering of chopped nuts, granola, fruit, whipped cream, or any other decadent topping that suits your fancy. I used chopped roasted hazelnuts here

Note: We don’t buy plastic wrap in our house, but like most pudding recipes, the original suggests using plastic wrap to form a tight seal on the surface of the pudding to prevent a form from forming. I say, embrace the skin and cover any imperfections with your toppings.make your own chocolate pudding | reading my tea leavesWhat about you? Easy desserts up your sleeves worth sharing?

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  • Reply cevd February 15, 2016 at 11:27 am

    pudding skin is my favorite. just say no to plastic wrap!

    • Reply Erin Boyle February 15, 2016 at 11:57 am


  • Reply Joan February 15, 2016 at 11:29 am

    Good timing! We were just talking about how one of the little ones here should be drinking more milk.
    I always thought skin sounded a bit weird when talking about pudding, but that sure is what it looks like. 🙂 My grandma always had the skin on hers and it never bothered me to eat it.
    Thanks for the recipe!

    • Reply Erin Boyle February 15, 2016 at 11:56 am

      Ha! This is definitely a bit chocolate heavy, but it is a delicious treat!

  • Reply Katharine February 15, 2016 at 11:30 am

    This is exactly the conundrum I was facing while being snowed in today, so this recipe is perfectly timed!

  • Reply Andrea February 15, 2016 at 12:20 pm

    sub coconut milk and add chia seeds and va voom!

  • Reply Megan February 15, 2016 at 1:21 pm

    Chocolate pudding is often my go-to dessert… I try not to have too many sweets in the house, but when I just have to have something sweet, I can always make chocolate pudding, as the ingredients are items I usually have on hand. My version of this pudding has way more sugar in it though, so I’m keen to try this lower sugar version. Thanks 😉

    I’ve really been enjoying your blog after stumbling across it a few weeks ago. Beautiful.

    • Reply Erin Boyle February 15, 2016 at 1:50 pm

      Thanks for your kind words! I admittedly have a kind of a light-on-the-sugar-style sweet tooth!

  • Reply KariM February 15, 2016 at 2:07 pm

    Yum! I was just looking for a way to use up some milk that’s about to go bad and this looks perfect.

  • Reply KariM February 15, 2016 at 3:22 pm

    Yum! Thanks for the idea. I have some milk that’s going off and this is perfect.

  • Reply Maria February 15, 2016 at 3:39 pm

    You’ve problably heard of Brigadeiro, the popular Brazilian dessert, but nevertheless it is worth sharing: one can of condensed milk (or boiled milk, sugar and eggs if you’re keen to DIY), four table spoons of powdered chocolate and one tablespoon of butter et voila! Melt the butter, pour the condensed milk and the chocolate and bring it to boil, and that’s all. At our place it is an year-round staple for unexpected guests or just Sunday night

  • Reply jaclyn February 15, 2016 at 4:11 pm

    This sounds great and I live in RI so I was happy to see the recipe source from ediblerhody!

  • Reply Traci February 15, 2016 at 5:17 pm

    I’m definitely going to try this, and hopefully add it my “what to make for dessert” list. Admittedly a very short list. I’ll let you know how it turns out!

  • Reply Brielle February 15, 2016 at 6:19 pm

    This is great and so much easier than you would think. Yum!

  • Reply shannon February 15, 2016 at 6:44 pm

    I never understood the anti-skin people. What about pudding skin singles?!

    Thanks for sharing this lovely, simple recipe 🙂

  • Reply Emma February 16, 2016 at 2:58 am

    Must try this, looks delish!

    Our go to dessert is usually fresh or frozen fruits or berries + wipped cream. Pimped with what is at hand; nuts, maple sirup, shredded chocolate… Surprisingly tasty, despite the simple/non existent recepie! 🙂

  • Reply Anna February 16, 2016 at 3:09 am

    I like to make super simple cookies which I whip up in 10 minutes: 1 cup of almond flour, 1 egg, 1 tablespoon of oil and then whatever flavour I want. Vanilla, chocolate, nuts, … endless possibilities. Bake at 160°C for around 12 minutes and voila!
    I do love a really good chocolate pudding though, especially with a great crunchy topping!

  • Reply Yvonne February 17, 2016 at 12:41 pm

    Such a great yet simple recipe! I just tried it (sans the vanilla, didn’t have any and didn’t feel like leaving the house) and it tastes amazing. I used dark chocolate with orange and I can see myself making this regularly in the future.
    Thanks for sharing this treat!

  • Reply Lauren February 22, 2016 at 9:10 pm

    Two of our go-to’s around here: either a piece of quality dark chocolate or dates, sliced, pitted, and topped with peanut butter. So delicious!

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