Half-hour Pudding Recipe (2024)

This half-hour pudding is the ultimate vintage dessert that takes just 30 minutes to get on the table. It tastes just like Grandma used to make, and I always adore pulling out generations-old recipes at dinner parties that still pack a punch.

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I remember the first time I tried this incredible recipe. I dug into it after a bad day at school when I was a child. Let me tell you – the ridiculous sweetness of the brown sugar sauce instantly made everything better.

Oh, and if you’re wondering what half-hour pudding actually IS? Well, it’s essentially a sweet bread pudding that’s baked in a rich caramel sauce. It’s just as indulgent as it sounds and is perfect for sorting out that sweet tooth.

Now, the soft and moist cake is a serious hit. But I’d say it’s the silky caramel sauce that tastes uber-sweet on the tongue that tips this recipe over the edge. It’s certainly sugary, but it’s oh-so-decadent and will have you sticking your spoon back in for seconds, thirds, and fourths!

Just fill your dessert dishes to the brim, serve them to your guests, and wait for nods of approval around the table.

Trust me, you’re going to get them!

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Why You’ll Love This Half Hour Pudding

  • As you might have guessed from the name, it’s ready in just 30 minutes.
  • It’s packed with delicious, silky, and sweet caramel flavor.
  • This pudding tastes so smooth on your tongue and will have you going back for seconds!
  • It’s super sugary, making it perfect for satisfying that sweet tooth.


The full printable recipe card with measurements and instructions is found at the bottom of the post.

For the cake

  • Brown sugar. This gives the cake a molasses-like flavor and keeps it super sweet.
  • Milk. For moisture and making sure the cake combines properly.
  • Flour. I recommend using regular all-purpose flour for this.
  • Baking powder. Crucial for getting a rise in your cake!

For the sauce

  • Brown sugar. Brown sugar mixes perfectly with butter for a rich and deliciously sweet sauce.
  • Boiling water. For loosening the other ingredients and making things pourable.
  • Butter. Adds an indulgent smoothness that you can’t beat.
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How to Make Half Hour Pudding

  • Step One: Preheat the oven to 375F.
  • Step Two: Stir together the cake ingredients in a large bowl and set it aside.
  • Step Three: Bring water to boil on the stove.
  • Step Four: Add in the brown sugar and butter and stir.
  • Step Five: Boil for 5 minutes.
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  • Step Six: Pour the sauce into a 9 x 13 baking pan and top it with the cake batter mixture.
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  • Step Seven: Bake for 30 minutes, serve, and enjoy!
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Equipment Needed

You don’t need much to make half-hour pudding (and that’s what I love about it!). But you can certainly grab a few basic pieces of equipment to make things easier.

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What to Serve with Half Hour Pudding

If you want to add more oomph to your half hour pudding, it’s a good idea to serve it with a few of these fabulous recipes!

  • Fruit co*cktail Cake
  • Wacky Cake
  • Blueberry Pie Ice Cream
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Recipe Tips and Tricks

  • Don’t overmix your batter. Although this recipe is indulgent and sticky, you don’t want to be left with a dense batter. To avoid this, combine the ingredients slowly until it’s just combined.
  • Don’t skimp on the caramel sauce. You must pour some caramel sauce over the cake to stop it from going dry! And hey, using more caramel sauce is always a good idea.
  • Don’t burn your caramel. It sounds obvious, but you’ll want to keep a close eye on your caramel. If you cook it on heat that’s too high (or for too long!), you could easily burn your caramel.
  • Measure the flour carefully. It’s easy to overmeasure your flour and end up with an overly dense and floury cake. To avoid this, double-check your measurements with a digital weighing scale.

Variations and Substitutions

  • If you want, you can throw in a few nuts or dried fruit (like raisins!) into the cake mix for a bit of a change.
  • If you adore chocolate, why not top this dessert with a few chocolate chips or cacao nibs for a hint of bitterness?

Storage Instructions

To keep this half-hour pudding tasting delicious, store it in an airtight container for up to 4 days.

Can I Freeze?

You can freeze this tasty pudding in portions (for easy defrosting!) for up to 3 months.

You can technically keep it for longer, but it tends to lose some of its structural integrity after this point.

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Pudding Recipes

If you can’t get enough of this half-hour pudding, I suggest rolling up those sleeves and getting to work on a few other desserts! Hey, you only live once, right?

  • Butterscotch Pudding – Is there anything better than a rich and tasty butterscotch pudding? It’s way better than anything you could get in a packet, and it seriously couldn’t be easier to make. The perfect choice for a lazy midweek dessert!
  • Orzo Pudding – It might sound slightly bizarre to use orzo in a dessert, but it tastes just dreamy in this interesting twist on rice pudding. It’s creamy and is packed with a cinnamon flavor that’s so warming and moreish.
  • Butterscotch Pudding Cookies – If you just can’t scratch that butterscotch itch, then you need to jump on these butterscotch pudding cookies. They’re super thick and chewy, and you can even make them with a box of instant cookie mix for ease!
  • Cracker Pudding – This is an old-school recipe made with milk, soda crackers, eggs, vanilla and coconut. It’s one of my favorite vintage dishes that’s thick, creamy, and beautifully sweet.
  • Rocky Road Pudding – When it comes to indulgent desserts that combine multiple flavors and textures, this Rocky Road Pudding always wins out. It’s topped with nuts and mini marshmallows and has a glorious chocolatey taste!

You’ll also like Eggnog Bread Pudding, Earthquake Cake and Fruit co*cktail Cake.

Follow me on Instagram@simplystacieblog, Facebook atSimply Stacie, TikTok@simplystacierecipesor Pinterest at@simplystacieand let me know how you liked this recipe and my other recipes.

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Rate this Recipe

4.49 from 25 votes

Half-Hour Pudding

Created by Stacie Vaughan

Servings 8

Prep Time 10 minutes minutes

Cook Time 30 minutes minutes

Total Time 40 minutes minutes

An easy vintage dessert recipe just like Grandma used to make. The sweet bread pudding bakes in a rich caramel sauce for 30 minutes.



  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 4 tsp baking powder


  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 4 cups boiling water
  • 2 tsp salted butter


  • Preheat oven to 375°F.

  • Stir together cake ingredients in a large bowl. Set aside.

  • Bring water to a boil on the stove. Add in brown sugar and butter and stir. Boil for 5 minutes.

  • Pour sauce into a 9×13 inch baking pan. Top with cake batter mixture. Bake for 30 minutes.


Serving: 1bowl | Calories: 357kcal | Carbohydrates: 81.4g | Protein: 5.4g | Fat: 1.9g | Saturated Fat: 1.1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.7g | Cholesterol: 5.6mg | Sodium: 50.3mg | Fiber: 0.9g | Sugar: 56g

The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

Course Desserts

Cuisine American

Keyword half hour pudding, old-fashioned pudding, pudding, pudding recipe

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Half-hour Pudding Recipe (2024)


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