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Get ready to indulge in the Halloween spirit with candy corn pudding parfaits! These delightful candy corn inspired dessert parfaits layer velvety vanilla and pumpkin pudding, with a fluffy dollop of whipped coconut cream. It’s like the grown-up and tastier version of the classic Halloween candies!
Candy Corn Inspired Pudding Parfait
I originally published this Halloween pudding recipe in 2020, and I make it often because I love the combination of creamy vanilla and pumpkin pudding.
And while this easy pudding recipe isn’t actually made with candy corn candy, the iconic stripes of color from the little candy is what inspires this festive and fun dessert! Plus, when you start with a velvety base of vanilla pudding, the color and layering possibilities are endless.
Have no fear though – if you are looking for a dessert recipe made with candy corn candy, try my candy corn caramel sauce. And of course, you can add a handful to a batch of double chocolate chip cookies or fudgy gluten free brownies for fun!
What You’ll Love About This Halloween Pudding
- Creamy Pudding – Both the vanilla and pumpkin pudding are finished with butter – which adds to the silky, creamy texture.
- Sophisticated Flavor – This pudding prominently features vanilla and pumpkin, which are a match made in heaven. Just like a healthy dollop of whipped cream on a pumpkin pie!
- Easy to Customize – Swap the vanilla pudding for chocolate pudding. Or pumpkin for smooth fruit puree – much like my strawberry pudding.
- Festive & Cute Dessert – On looks alone, this dessert parfait screams Halloween! Pun intended.
Everything YOu need To Make candy corn Pudding parfaits
- Pumpkin Puree – Use a can of pure pumpkin, and not pumpkin pie filling. The latter has added ingredients we don’t want (or need!) in the pudding.
- Heavy Cream – Heavy creamy will lend to the silky custard texture of the pudding.
- Milk – I like to use whole milk to make the creamy and rich.
- Maple Syrup – Maple syrup imparts delicious buttery-caramel notes. Though, you can swap for any sweetener of choice.
- Corn Starch – Corn starch is key to thicken the pudding to the right consistency.
- Egg Yolks – Egg yolks help with consistency and make the pudding incredibly silky.
- Vanilla – For flavor!
- Butter – I recommend unsalted butter since we add our own. The butter gives the pudding a glossy finish.
- Salt – A little salt goes a long way to balance and enhance all the flavors in the candy corn pudding.
- Food Coloring – To amp up the colors of yellow and orange.
- Small Saucepan – I recommend a good heavy duty saucepan because it will heat the pudding evenly – no burning!
- Mixing Bowls – A couple small mixing bowls is all you need.
- Fine Mesh Strainer – A small mesh strainer will remove any unwanted lumps from the creamy pudding.
How To Make homemade Pudding
- Mix the egg yolks, cream, and cornstarch – Whisk the ingredients until they are fully incorporated.
- Heat the milk and maple syrup – Heat to scalding – which means just before boiling. Little bubbles will form along the sides of the pan.
- Temper the egg yolk mixture – Pour a little of the heated milk over the egg yolk mix to temper it. This alleviates making scrambled eggs!
- Heat the pudding until it is thick – Transfer the tempered mix back into the saucepan and heat the pudding until is bubbly and thick.
- Transfer half the pudding into a mixing bowl – You can strain the pudding if you like, then enhance the color with food coloring.
- Add the pumpkin to the remaining pudding – In the saucepan, add the pudding and heat back up until bubbly. Transfer to the other mixing bowl.
- Cover the pudding and refrigerate – Cover each bowl of pudding with a piece of plastic wrap directly touching the pudding. This will keep a skin from forming. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours, or overnight is best.
- Assemble – Use your serving glass of choice and layer the puddings and finish with whipped cream.
Tips For Making Candy Corn Pudding
- Whole milk and heavy cream make super creamy pudding – I have made pudding using coconut milk, and it tastes great. Though, nothing beats the richness of a full-fat dairy pudding!
- Cook on medium heat – Pudding can be finicky and actually go the opposite direction if heated at too high a temp. High temperature may break down the thickening ability of the cornstarch and egg yolks.
- Don’t over whisk the pudding – Just like cooking too hot, ff you whisk aggressively, this will may yield thin pudding.
- Don’t overcook the pudding – Remember that the pudding will thicken more as it chills. If you heat it too long on the stove, it will get too thick, almost like Jello.
- Strain the pudding – I do this every time, regardless if I think the pudding is lump free. It reassures me that the pudding will be free of lumps and bumps.
- Start sparingly with the food coloring – A little goes a long, long way. As you can see, I opted not to have the neon colors of the actual candy.
- Cover the pudding directly with plastic wrap – When the pudding is ready to be chilled, the plastic wrap placed directly on top of the pudding will keep a skin from forming.
- Make the pudding the night before – If you can. Then you will be assured that it has set up nicely.
Yes, the recipe is easily doubled.
Not really. The actual candy is supposed to mimic flavors of honey, vanilla, butter, and sugar. However, I find the waxy candy tastes simply like sugar. This pudding emphasizes vanilla and pumpkin flavor.
I recommend allowing each pudding to chill separately, then assembling. This just makes sure both are thick enough to not bleed into the other.
A few things could have happened: did you heat it long enough to allow the cornstarch to thicken; did you heat it at too high a temperature, which will break down the thickening ability of the cornstarch and egg yolks; did you whisk it too vigorously, which will also break down the thickening ability?
The pudding and any leftovers should be covered and refrigerated for up to 3 days. Beyond that, and the pudding will start to get thin.
Candy Corn Pudding Parfait Dessert
Base Vanilla Pudding
- ½ cup heavy cream
- 2 large egg yolks (room temperature)
- 3 tablespoons corn starch
- 1 ½ cups whole milk
- ¼ cup pure maple syrup
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- pinch salt
Base Vanilla Pudding
- In a medium mixing bowl add the cream, egg yolks, and corn starch. Whisk until the corn starch dissolves.½ cup heavy cream, 2 large egg yolks, 3 tablespoons corn starch
- In a small saucepan set over medium heat, add the milk and maple syrup. Heat the milk until it is scalding (just below boiling – small bubbles will form around the side of the saucepan) – do not boil. Remove from the heat.1 ½ cups whole milk, ¼ cup pure maple syrup
- Slowly drizzle about half of the heated milk into the corn starch mixture, whisking constantly. This tempers the egg yolk so it does not scramble. Pour this mixture back into the saucepan with the remaining milk and return to medium heat. Gently whisk constantly until the pudding starts to thicken – about 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from the heat.
- Add the vanilla, butter, and salt to the pudding and whisk until the butter is melted and incorporated. Transfer half of the vanilla pudding to another mixing bowl. Optional – To ensure you have a silky smooth pudding, strain it through a fine mesh strainer set over a bowl.½ teaspoon vanilla extract, 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, pinch salt
- Coloring the vanilla pudding – If you want to color the pudding to be more yellow, add 1 small drop of yellow food coloring, and stir until fully mixed.yellow food coloring
- Cover the vanilla pudding with plastic wrap set directly on top of the pudding – this keeps a skin from forming. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours – or overnight is best.
- With the remaining vanilla pudding still in the saucepan, add the pumpkin puree and pumpkin pie spice. Heat on medium heat and whisk until the pudding is fully incorporated and the pudding is bubbly again. Transfer the pumpkin pudding to another mixing bowl. Optional – To ensure you have a silky smooth pudding, strain it through a fine mesh strainer set over a bowl.½ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice, 6 tablespoons pure canned pumpkin
- Coloring the pumpkin pudding – If you want to color the pumpkin pudding to be more orange, add 1 small drop of red and 1 small drop of yellow food coloring, and stir until fully mixed.red food coloring, yellow food coloring
- Cover the pudding with plastic wrap set directly on top of the pudding and refrigerate for at least 4 hours – or overnight is best.
- Assembling the parfaits – Spoon in equal amounts of your vanilla pudding into your parfait glasses. The number of parfaits will depend on the size of your glasses. Then spoon equal amounts of the pumpkin pudding over the vanilla. Top whipped cream and a candy corn candy. Enjoy!
- Serving Size – This recipe will yield two pudding parfaits and can easily be doubled. The number of parfaits will depend on the size of your serving glasses.
- Coloring the Pudding – The vanilla and pumpkin layers will naturally have a yellow and orange hue. A drop of food coloring will deepen the colors.
- Candy Corn in the Pudding – There is no actual candy corn candies in the pudding – except for a garnish! If you want a recipe that uses candy corn candy, try my candy corn caramel sauce.
- Pumpkin – Depending on the brand, canned pumpkin can have different names, but is the same thing: Pumpkin Puree, Pure Pumpkin, 100% Pumpkin, Organic Pure Pumpkin. Just be sure it is not Pumpkin Pie Filling.
- Strain the Pudding – This is optional. Sometimes you may get small lumps in the pudding where ingredients didn’t combine well. Straining the pudding through a mesh strainer will remove any lumps.
- Pudding Consistency – The pudding will thicken as it refrigerates.
about the author ...
I'm Erin and I'm all about desserts - and a little bit of butter!
I've tested, written, and photographed hundreds of recipes on my website. Here you'll find the tastiest small batch gluten free and traditional desserts - all homemade, all simple, and all for you!