Rich, creamy, and decadent. This homemade dark chocolate pudding recipe is sure to be a hit whenever you make it. It’s perfect for quiet nights in, as well as a showcase dessert for an elegant special occasion or dinner party!
Do you remember the first time you tried a chocolate pudding? It may have been something your mom made for you, or you may have picked up a pre-packaged pudding box from that nearby convenience store…do you remember how you felt when you finished it? I can almost guarantee you licked the spoon clean (I certainly did!).
And if you’re feeling intimidated about making chocolate pudding from scratch, don’t be! There’s a famous saying that I want you to remember: “A pudding a day keeps the doctor away.” That’s how it goes, right?
What is dark chocolate pudding?
The first thing to know is that a pudding is a custard-like dessert made using milk, sugar, and some sort of thickening agent (egg yolks, cornstarch, etc.). Puddings come in a wide variety of flavors and, as you’ve probably guessed, this particular pudding recipe is flavored using dark chocolate.
Note: If you’re in the United Kingdom, pudding can refer to both savory (such as Yorkshire puddings) and sweet dishes. This dark chocolate pudding recipe uses the word pudding in the North American context.
The difference between chocolate and dark chocolate pudding
The only difference is flavour. Personally, I love the rich flavor of dark chocolate with that slight hint of bitterness. If you really prefer milk chocolate, it’s totally fine to swap it out (but I’d urge you to try the dark chocolate pudding version first!).
Is dark chocolate pudding a healthy dessert?
Not especially. There are some benefits to eating small amounts of dark chocolate (antioxidants!), and there are some benefits to eating pudding (it’s relatively high in calcium, for example), but it’s not something I would consider healthy. You’ll be hard-pressed to find a doctor that’ll recommend chocolate pudding as part of your five-a-day.
It is however a delicious treat that you totally deserve. So go-ahead and enjoy this tasty chocolate dessert without any guilty feelings.
Chocolate Pudding Ingredients
- Superfine sugar
- Whole milk
- Heavy cream
- Dark chocolate
- Crème fraîche or Whipped Cream
- Espelette pepper (optional)
How to make Dark Chocolate Pudding
Making this dark chocolate pudding is actually a relatively simple process – that’s probably why it’s such a popular homemade dessert in France and the United Kingdom.
You start by combining the cornstarch, sugar, milk, and cream in a small pot. Place the pan over medium heat and whisk continuously until the milk mixture has thickened. This usually takes me about four minutes when whisking by hand.
As soon as the mixture starts to bubble, take it away from the heating element, and begin whisking in the chocolate and butter.
That’s pretty much it. You can serve the pudding in ramekins or glasses, alongside creme fraiche, a dollop of whipped cream, and with a sprinkle of Espelette pepper if you’re feeling fancy! Alternatively, you can lightly sprinkle cocoa powder for an extra hit of chocolate.
If you’re not a fan of hot pudding, and prefer your pudding chilled, that works too (you’re probably in the majority…I just have patience issues when it comes to chocolate). Throw it into the fridge for about three hours, and you’ll be good to go!
- My personal preference for this recipe is to use a dark chocolate (around 60-70 percent cacao). Anything less won’t give this pudding its deep and rich chocolaty flavor it deserves.
- Like with any recipe that is based heavily on a single ingredient, you should use the best quality available to you. In this case, opt for the best quality dark chocolate available to you.
- It’s important to chop up your chocolate finely, and not just make do with quickly broken up chunks of chocolate. Large chunks may not melt properly, and your pudding will end up lumpy. (If you want actual chocolate bits in your pudding, I’d recommend roughly grating some milk or dark chocolate over the whipped cream).
- Once the pudding has cooked, don’t leave it in the pan. Divide it into ramekins or serving glasses immediately to avoid the forming lumps.
There are plenty of ways to create easy variations of this chocolate pudding. The simplest change is to switch out the dark chocolate with an equal amount of milk chocolate for a sweeter dessert.
Alternatively, instead of swapping out the type of chocolate, you can swap the garnish. Instead of Espelette pepper (which had a mild level spice to it), you could garnish with berries, or candied fruit. Another option would be to drizzle on a sauce (though I’m rarely a fan of how this turns out for me).
A lot of chocolate pudding recipes add vanilla extract for a slightly different element of flavor. I’ve tried adding a teaspoon of pure vanilla extract to this recipe, and it works great! So if that sounds like something you’d like, go for it!
Storing chocolate pudding
The simplest way to store this pudding recipe is simply to cover the serving dish you’ve placed it in, and refrigerate. Alternatively, if you don’t want to divide the pudding immediately – pour the pudding in to a large bowl (ideally a glass bowl), cover, and refrigerate. In both cases, it’s best to let the pudding come to room temperature before refrigerating.
When refrigerated, dark chocolate pudding should last for around 3-4 days. (I mean, hypothetically. It’s never actually lasted more than a day in my home.)
More chocolate recipes
- Chocolate Cream Pie
- Chocolate Basque Cheesecake
- Two Layer Chocolate Cake with Whipped Cocoa Buttercream
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You don’t need much to make this recipe, (providing you have a saucepan) but having a set of ramekins to bake and serve in is always nice.
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And that’s it for today, bestie. So, what did you think? Have you ever made a dark chocolate pudding before? Are you going to try this recipe? Let me know in the comments below.
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Dark Chocolate Pudding
- Total Time: 30 minutes
- Yield: 6 Dark Chocolate Puddings 1x
- Diet: Vegetarian
This Dark Chocolate Pudding is going to be your go-to recipe. There’s a reason it’s a classic! The dark chocolate flavour is rich but balanced.
- 1 tbsp cornstarch
- ¼ cup superfine sugar
- 1 cup whole milk
- ½ cup heavy cream
- 3 oz dark chocolate, finely grated or chopped
- 2 tbsp butter, softened
- Crème fraîche to serve
- Pinch of Espelette pepper (optional topping)
- Combine the cornstarch, sugar, milk, and cream in a small pot. Place the pan over medium heat and whisk continuously until the milk mixture has thickened, about 4 minutes.
- As soon as the mixture starts to bubble, remove it from the heating element, and whisk in the chocolate and butter until smooth and incorporated.
- Serve the pudding in ramekins or glasses with a dollop of creme fraiche or whipped cream (and with an optional sprinkle of Espelette pepper). If you’re not a fan of hot pudding, and prefer your pudding chilled, refrigerate your puddings in ramekins for 3 hours. Serve!
- Use the best quality chocolate available to you.
- Chop the chocolate finely to avoid there being lumps in your chocolate pudding.
- If you don’t want to use Espelette pepper, you can also sprinkle a little unsweetened cocoa powder over your finished pudding.
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 15 minutes
- Category: Dessert
- Method: Stovetop
- Cuisine: French
Keywords: dark chocolate pudding, chocolate pudding,
My Comment is actually a question about how you treat the pudding if you choose to put it in the refrigerator. Should you cover each ramekin with plastic wrap to avoid the inevitable skin that forms on puddings? do you just make individual ramekins and NOT COVER THEM?
I would recommend covering each chocolate pudding/ramekin individually. Happy cooking!
Terrific blog post! I truly thought dark chocolate was “healthier” for you! Great information and delightful recipe!