Homemade Banana Cream Pie

5 from 2 votes

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From the buttery, flaky pie crust to the silky smooth vanilla pudding, this homemade banana cream pie is 100% made from scratch! It’s packed with fresh bananas, easy to prepare in advance, and utterly delicious! 

Banana cream pie decorated with dollops of whipped cream and banana slices.


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Why you’ll love this recipe:

An all-American, old-fashioned banana cream pie is hands down one of my favorite pies ever! And if you don’t feel the same way, I’d guess you’ve never had 100% homemade banana cream pie. 

  • This banana cream pie recipe is the real deal (just like my homemade cherry pie), with absolutely no pre-made ingredients or instant pudding mix. 
  • It’s filled with an irresistibly smooth yet sturdy vanilla custard, sliced bananas, and fluffy whipped topping. 
  • The fresh flavors make all the extra time and effort worth it! 

And, don’t be alarmed by the length of the recipe directions. They’re as detailed as possible to guarantee a perfect pie on your first try!  

A slice of banana cream pie lifted up from the whole pie.

Four Components of Banana Cream Pie

Homemade banana cream pie consists of four components:

  • Pie crust – While you can use store-bought pie crust, I love my all-butter pie crust so much, and it’s quite easy to make!
  • Vanilla puddingHomemade vanilla pudding makes this banana cream pie the best of the best!
  • Whipped cream – My homemade whipped cream with a secret ingredient is amazing. You can make the simpler version that’s included here.
  • Fresh bananas – Add as much banana as your heart desires! I included a tip on how to prevent the banana slices browning.
Banana cream pie components: blind baked pie crust, vanilla pudding, bananas and whipped cream.

How to make banana cream pie from scartch:

While 100% scratch-made pie might seem super high-maintenance, this easy banana cream pie recipe simplifies the process. I promise it’s all worth it in the end!    

  • Make the pie dough according to my all-butter pie dough tutorial.
  • Roll the dough out into a 10 to 11-inch circle on a lightly floured surface. And carefully transfer it into a pie pan. 
  • Pierce holes all over the crust using a fork. This prevents bubbles and air pockets from forming. (I forgot to pierce my crust here, and you can see some bubbles. Not a big deal.)
  • Cover the crust with aluminum foil, and weigh it down with pie weights (or dried beans).
  • Bake the crust for 15 minutes at 350°F. Then, carefully remove the foil and pie weights. Bake for another 10-15 minutes or until golden brown. Let cool. 
Side by side pie crust in a pie dish before and after blind bake.

Vanilla pudding is easy to make from scratch. Here is my detailed tutorial with step by step photos for the best vanilla pudding. But in a nutshell, here’s how to make vanilla pudding.

  • Heat milk and cream until scalding
  • Whisk the egg yolks, sugar, cornstarch, vanilla extract, vanilla bean paste, and salt until doubles in size.
  • Temper the egg yolk mixture with a cup of scalded milk, whisking the egg yolks constantly as you’re pouring. 
  • Pour the tempered egg mixture into the remaining scalded milk, and cook over medium heat for 8-10 minutes (or until nice and thick), stirring constantly. 
  • Cover it with a plastic wrap touching the entire surface of the pudding.
  • Chill the pudding for at least 1 hour. 
Homemade vanilla pudding in a bowl.

Check for doneness

I have a simple trick to check the pudding for doneness! First, coat the back of a spoon with the pudding. Then, run your finger down the middle of the coated spoon. If your finger trail remains separated, the pudding is done. If the pudding immediately runs back together, it needs more cooking time. 

  • Slice the bananas, and layer about ⅔ of the slices on the bottom of the prepared pie crust, reserving the rest for topping. 
  • Pour the cooled vanilla pudding over the layer of sliced bananas and smooth the surface. 
  • Cover the pie with a plastic wrap and chill until ready to decorate and serve.
Collage of 4 images of assembling the banana cream pie.
How to prevent banana slices from browning

Soak the sliced bananas in a water with a few drops of freshly squeezed lemon juice for 1-2 minutes. Remove the banana slices onto a plate lined with paper towel to soak up excess water.

Don’t soak banana slices for too long. Or they’ll turn mushy.

banana slices in a small bowl with lemon water.

Make the whipped cream when ready to ready serve the pie.

  • Whisk the heavy cream on medium speed in a mixing bowl fitted with the whisk attachment. 
  • Add the sugar and vanilla extract as soon as the cream starts to thicken.
  • Continue mixing until stiff peaks form. 

Use medium speed

Whisking at medium speed is ideal! Beating the cream at medium speed creates sturdier whipped cream with stiff peaks. Beating at high speed incorporates too much air, causing the whipped cream to weep quickly. 

Banana cream pie decorated with dollops of whipped cream and banana slices.

Tips for Success:

  • Weigh the flour or use the spoon-and-level method. Weighing your pie crust flour on a kitchen scale eliminates the guesswork and ensures accuracy. However, the spoon-and-level method is your next best option if you don’t have a kitchen scale. My guide to measuring flour outlines both methods in detail.  
  • To prevent the pie crust from shrinking, chill for at least 30 minutes before blind baking (as instructed), and crimp the edges over the lip of the pie dish. Take a look at my no-fuss, 3-finger method for crimping pie dough. It’s not fancy, but it’s super simple and doesn’t let any pie dough go to waste! 
  • Make a few extra batches of pie dough for the freezer so they’re at arm’s reach when the craving for homemade banana cream pie hits! 
  • If you have your own favorite pie dough, it’s perfectly okay to use it instead. Just don’t skip the blind-baking step! The crust for homemade banana cream pie must be baked until golden before adding the bananas, custard, and whipped topping. 
  • To avoid soupy, runny pudding, use whole milk (or at least 2%), and cook until it’s nice and thick. Undercooked pudding is the #1 reason the pie gets soupy.
  • Cook the milk and cream low and slow, avoiding bringing them to a boil. If they get too hot, the cream will burn on the bottom of the pan, giving the milk a burnt taste. 
  • Use cold heavy cream straight from the fridge for a fluffier whipped topping that whips up quickly! 
  • Use firm, not overly ripe bananas. Avoid soft, mushy bananas that have started to brown. Firm, yellow bananas will be easier to slice and give your pie the best and brightest presentation.  

Make-Ahead Tips:

One of the reasons I love this homemade banana cream pie recipe is that you can prepare all the parts at least a day in advance! However, it’s best to assemble the pie the day you plan on serving it so the banana slices look fresh.

  • The pie dough can be prepared up to 3 days in advance. Wrap it tightly in plastic wrap, and store it in the refrigerator. 
  • The pie crust can be blind-baked up to 1 day in advance and stored at room temperature until you’re ready to assemble the banana cream pie. 
  • Vanilla pudding can be made up to 2 days ahead of time. Store it in the fridge covered in plastic wrap, with the plastic wrap touching the surface of the pudding. 
  • Whipped cream is best made the day you plan to use it, but it can be made up to 1 day in advance. Store it in a covered container in the refrigerator, and re-whip before serving if needed. 

Storing Tips:

Homemade banana cream pie is best enjoyed the day it’s assembled. However, leftovers can be stored covered in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Just keep in mind that the bananas will turn brown as the pie sits. 

A slice of banana cream pie on a small plate.


How do you keep bananas from turning brown in banana cream pie?

As soon as you peel your bananas and expose them to air, they oxidize, causing them to turn brown and slightly slimy. To prevent this, soak the sliced bananas in a water with a few drops of freshly squeezed lemon juice for 1-2 minutes. Remove the banana slices onto a plate lined with paper towel to soak up excess water.

Why is my banana cream pie not thickening?

Your banana cream pie filling won’t thicken properly if you use low-fat milk or don’t cook the custard long enough. For a thick and creamy vanilla custard filling, use whole or 2% milk and cook the pudding until it’s no longer runny. It’ll also continue to thicken as it cools.

Is banana cream pie made of pudding?

Yes, banana cream pie is made with homemade vanilla pudding or instant banana-flavored pudding. Most banana cream pies contain a layer of sliced bananas topped with pudding, whipped cream, and more fresh banana slices. 

A slice of banana cream pie lifted up from the whole pie.
5 from 2 votes

Homemade Banana Cream Pie

All-American, old-fashioned, 100% from scratch banana cream pie featuring flaky buttery pie crust, silky smooth vanilla pudding, plenty of bananas and homemade whipped cream. Seriously so delicious and can totally be prepared in advance!
Prep: 50 minutes
Cook: 40 minutes
2 hours 30 minutes
Total: 4 hours
Servings: 8 servings
Yields: One 9-inch pie


For pie crust:

  • 1 ½ cups (190 g) all-purpose flour
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ cup (113 g) unsalted butter cut into ½ tablespoon pieces and frozen
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 3-4 tablespoons ice water

For vanilla pudding:

  • 2 cups (480 ml) whole milk 2% will work too
  • ½ cup (120 ml) heavy (whipping) cream
  • 1/3 cup (65 g) granulated sugar
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 3 ½ tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla bean paste
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 4 medium bananas

For whipped cream:

  • 1 cup (240 ml) heavy whipping cream
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


To make the pie dough:

  • In a large mixing bowl with paddle attachment, mix together flour and salt.
    1 ½ cups all-purpose flour, ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • Add frozen butter cubes and mix until butter is somewhat mixed into the flour with visible chunks still there, while mixer is running on low. (Alternatively, you can use a pastry cutter, instead of stand mixer.)
    ½ cup unsalted butter
  • Add egg yolk and continue to mix until the butter pieces are about pea sized.
    1 egg yolk
  • Stir in ice water one tablespoon at a time, until the dough is almost comes together. (TIP: Depending on humidity, you might not need all the water, or you might need additional couple of tablespoons. That’s why you need to add it 1 tablespoon at a time until big clumps of dough sticks together. Don’t be alarmed if you see pieces of butter in the dough, that’s exactly what you want to see. Those butter pieces will melt during baking and create the most tender and flaky crust.)
    3-4 tablespoons ice water
  • Form the dough into a ball and slightly flatten into a disk. Wrap it in a plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, or up to 3 days.

To blind bake the pie crust

  • Roll the dough into an 11-inch circle on a lightly floured surface. Wrap the dough around rolling pin and carefully transfer it onto baking pan.
  • Fold the edges out and roll until it meets the pie pan. Crimp the edges any which way you like.
  • Using a fork, pierce holes all over the crust to prevent bubbles and air pockets throughout the crust. Place the crust in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
  • Preheat the oven to 350°F (177°C).
  • Cover the crust with aluminum foil and pour in pie weights, or raw beans.
  • Bake for 15 minutes, and then carefully remove foil and pie weights. Bake for another 10-15 minutes, or until golden brown. Let cool.

To make the vanilla pudding

  • In a heavy bottomed saucepan, combine milk and heavy cream. Slowly bring it to a simmer over medium heat, stirring frequently. (This’s called scalding the milk. Once you see small bubbles appearing on the surface, remove it from heat. Be careful not to boil it though, or it’ll scramble the eggs.)
    2 cups whole milk, ½ cup heavy (whipping) cream
  • In a medium bowl, combine egg yolks, sugar, cornstarch, vanilla extract, vanilla bean paste and salt. Whisk the mixture until creamy and doubled in size.
    1/3 cup granulated sugar, 3 egg yolks, 3 ½ tablespoons cornstarch, 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract, 1 tablespoon vanilla bean paste, ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • To temper the egg mixture, slowly add 1 cup of scalded milk into the egg yolk mixture, while constantly whisking the mixture.
  • Transfer the tempered egg mixture into the remaining scalded milk.
  • Cook the mixture over medium heat, stirring constantly for 8-10 minutes, or until the mixture is nice and thick. (TIP: Coat the back of a wooden spoon with pudding and run your finger right through the middle. If the trail stays separate without running back into the middle, it's done.)
  • Run the custard through a sieve for extra smooth texture.
  • Cover it with a plastic wrap so that it touches the surface of the pudding. This’ll prevent a layer of film from forming on top. Chill the pudding for at least an hour.

To assemble the pie

  • Slice 2-3 bananas and layer the banana slices on the bottom of the prepared pie crust. Reserve the remaining banana for decorating.
    4 medium bananas
  • Pour the cooled vanilla pudding into the pie shell. Smooth the surface and cover with a plastic wrap touching the entire surface.
  • Chill the pie in the fridge until ready to decorate and serve.

To make the whipped cream

  • In a mixing bowl with whisk attachment, combine the heavy cream, sugar and vanilla extrack and beat on medium speed until hard peaks form. (TIP: Beating the cream at medium speed yields sturdier whipped cream that doesn't weep quickly. Whisking at high speed incorporates too much air and whipped cream weeps quicker.)
    1 cup heavy whipping cream, 2 tablespoons granulated sugar, 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • When ready to serve, decorate the pie with heavy cream and banana slices.

Tips & Notes

Make-Ahead Tip:
– Pie Crust: You can prepare the pie shell 1 day in advance. Store blind baked pie crust at room temperature.
Vanilla Pudding: The pudding can also be prepared 1-2 days ahead. Store it separately in fridge, making sure to cover it with a plastic wrap so it touches the surface of the pudding.
It’s best to assemble the pie the day you plan on serving it, so that banana slices look fresh.


Servings: 1 slices
Calories: 544kcal
Carbohydrates: 50.9g
Protein: 10.2g
Fat: 33.3g
Sugar: 23.5g
Sodium: 220.4mg
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American

This recipe was originally published on May 16th, 2018.

Hi, I’m Shinee!

Welcome! I’m so happy you’re here! I believe anyone can cook restaurant-quality food at home! And my goal is to help you to become a confident cook with my easy-to-follow recipes with lots of tips and step-by-step photos.

5 from 2 votes (2 ratings without comment)

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  1. It sounds like perfection. I appreciate the very detailed directions. I rarely make such a dessert. Having your expert tips of what to watch for will help along the way. Thank you… Carol

    1. Glad you found my recipe post helpful, Carol. Thank you for your comment. And please let us know if you give it a try!

  2. Hi, I am trying to find vanilla bean paste but our small town doesn’t have it. Can I use something else or leave it out? Thanks, Diane

      1. Thank you so much. Going to make it for Christmas day as my mom used to so I hope I get it right Merry Christmas to you and yours

    1. Hi, Kris. I don’t treat bananas any special way. If you assemble the pie the day you’re going to serve, they’ll stay fresh. But I noticed they tend to brown when I keep it overnight. I’ve also seen people dip banana slices in lemon juice, or 7UP to extend the fresh look, but I’ve never tried that.