Banana pudding cheesecake minis have a vanilla cookie crust and are topped with homemade whipped cream, salted caramel sauce, and fresh banana.
The Ultimate Banana Pudding Cheesecake Combo
This is a big beautiful blend of banana pudding, cheesecake, and bananas foster. The caramel and banana combo is so bananas foster (my favorite banana dessert of all time), but then you get the whipped cream and the vanilla cookie crust and it's all about the banana pudding!
These are a big hit at spring and summer gatherings and they're pre-portioned so it's even easier for everyone to get a bit, but not too much. Here's how to make the layers:
Vanilla Cookie Crust
This cookie crust is crazy easy. You just need a food processor or blender to get the job done in a couple of minutes.
To the food processor, you'll add about 18 Nilla wafer cookies, 2 tablespoons of melted butter and a tablespoon of brown sugar. Process until the mixture looks like wet sand.
Add a tablespoon of the mixture to each muffin cup and then press into the bottom with the tablespoon so that it is firm and goes up a bit on the sides. Bake in a 350˚ oven for 5 minutes to set the crusts.
Banana Cheesecake Filling
Now we move over to the stand mixer or handheld electric mixer and get the banana pudding cheesecake filling made.
First, add 12 ounces of softened cream cheese to the bowl with ½ a cup of brown sugar. Beat those together on medium speed until the cream cheese gets a bit fluffy, which was about 2 minutes for me.
Next, you'll add ½ a cup of mashed ripe banana, a container of vanilla greek yogurt (or ⅔ cup), a beaten egg, and another teaspoon of vanilla and a teaspoon of baking powder. Back on the medium speed, you'll beat those until it's thoroughly blended.
Using a large batter or ice cream scoop, divide the batter over all 12 muffin openings. Bake in a 350˚ oven for 20 minutes or until just the center is a bit jiggly.
[su_highlight background="#a4bcb2" color="#ffffff"]TIP #2: FILL THEM UP![/su_highlight] You're going to have to fight your natural cupcake instincts to not overfill these. You want them almost to the top of the cupcake liner ( I left about ⅛ and inch).
Salted Caramel Sauce
After the cheesecakes have completely chilled they're ready to layer up with some extra yummy toppings.
Salted caramel sauce is easy to make IN THEORY because it's so few ingredients. However, I'd be lying to you if I said I haven't totally ruined or burned a few batches.
That being said - there are a ton of yummy pre-made options at the store which is what I do if I don't have the time or mental capacity to make my own. When I do make my own, though, I use this recipe from Danielle of Live Well Bake Often.
[su_highlight background="#a4bcb2" color="#ffffff"]PRO TIP: REMOVE THE CUPCAKE LINERS BEFORE ADDING THE TOPPINGS [/su_highlight] If you leave the cupcake liners on, you'll get giant pools of the caramel in the corners of the cupcake liners. I wait until the cheesecakes are fully chilled and then peel off the liners and add the toppings.
Homemade Whipped Cream
Because it wouldn't be banana pudding without whipped cream - at least to me. I know everyone has different texture preferences for cheesecake and banana pudding, but whipped cream makes everything better.
If you haven't made whipped cream before, it's really simple and you only need a couple of ingredients: heavy whipping cream. powdered sugar and a splash of vanilla extract.
Here's what you do - put all of those ingredients in your stand mixer bowl or a large bowl with an electric hand mixer and beat away on medium speed until stiff peaks form. Then spoon a big dollop over every mini cheesecake.
[su_highlight background="#a4bcb2" color="#ffffff"]PRO TIP: GET A PASTRY BAG FOR THIS LOOK[/su_highlight] If you want to be extra - get a pastry bag with an extra-large coupler and circle tip. If you don't have one yet for about $10 you can get a full kit of everything you will ever need for baking.
Make Ahead and Storage
You can make the cheesecakes the day before and chill in the fridge (covered) overnight. When you're ready to serve them, add the caramel, whipped cream, and a banana slice.
Once they're decorated you have about 3 days (maybe 5, they don't last that long when I make them) before they're starting to get a funky texture and the moisture from the cheesecake and whipped cream just don't get along anymore.
More Dessert Recipes
- Layered Red Velvet Brownies
- Gluten-Free Almond Butter Oatmeal Cookies
- Peanut Butter Swirled Avocado Brownies
- Salted Caramel Apple Hand Pies
Mini Banana Pudding Cheesecakes
FOR THE CRUST:
- 18 vanilla wafer cookies
- 2 tablespoons butter (melted)
- 2 tablespoon brown sugar
- ¼ tsp salt
FOR THE FILLING
- 12 ounces cream cheese (softened)
- ½ cup brown sugar
- ½ cup mashed banana ((about 1 4-ounce banana))
- ⅔ cup vanilla greek yogurt
- 1 egg lightly beaten
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 cup whipping cream
- ¼ cup powdered sugar
- 1 large banana (sliced)
- Salted Caramel Sauce
- PREPARE: preheat the oven to 350˚F and place cupcake liners in a muffin pan.
- MAKE THE CRUST: Add cookies, butter, and sugar to a food processor and process until the mixture resembles coarse sand. Press 1 tablespoon of the crust mixture firmly into the bottom of each muffin cup and bake for 5 minutes.
- MAKE THE FILLING: Using a stand mixer or electric hand mixer with a batter attachment on medium speed, beat together the cream cheese and brown sugar until smooth. Then add the banana, yogurt, egg, vanilla, and baking powder and whisk until mostly smooth (it's okay to have lumps from the bananas)
- MAKE THE CHEESECAKES: Pour the mixture over the prepared crusts and fill the cups until almost completely full. Tap the pan gently to even out the cheesecakes and remove any air pockets. Bake the cheesecakes for 18-20 minutes or until the outsides firm and the centers are still jiggly. Allow the cheesecakes to come to room temperature before refrigerating (about 1 hour).
- MAKE THE TOPPINGS: Using a stand mixer or hand mixer with a whisk attachment on medium-high speed whisk together the cream and sugar until stiff peaks form. Drizzle about 1 teaspoon of salted caramel sauce over the top of each cheesecake before adding the whipped cream. Pipe or spoon the whipped cream over each cheesecake, followed by additional caramel sauce and then a slice of banana.
- Wait until serving to put the toppings on the cheesecakes so the bananas don’t brown and the whipped cream doesn’t get sticky.
- Remove the cupcake liners before topping and serving
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