Last March, my sweet friend Dorothy from Crazy for Crust invited a few of us food bloggers over to her house for an afternoon of fun, laughter, and lots of sweet treats. We all love to bake, so there were plenty of desserts!
Eventually, we wandered out of the kitchen and towards the comfy couches. Amy sank down onto the sofa next to me and began flipping through Glory’s new cookbook, Glorious Layered Desserts. I gaped at every single page… I thought parfaits were only for breakfast!
Don’t laugh! Up until then, I had only seen (and eaten) fruit and yogurt parfaits sprinkled with granola, like the ones sold at Starbucks and in airport terminals. I spent most of my freshman year of college making my own in the dining hall when the “chicken” dinner dishes looked suspiciously unrecognizable.
I had no idea parfaits could be made sweet for dessert!
The following weekend, Glory hosted a launch party where she served four or five elaborate parfaits from her cookbook. We food bloggers barely moved 10 feet away from the buffet table and constantly helped ourselves to the different glasses. It was so tempting to eat my weight in those chocolate and peanut butter mousses!
While packing up our house last month, I started flipping through Glory’s cookbook again before placing it into a cardboard box with the other ones from my shelf. Realizing I hadn’t sampled a dessert parfait since June, I decided that needed to change, so I created these…
Oreo and Pumpkin Pudding Parfaits! Deliciously cozy with the flavors of fall, these sweet treats taste like pumpkin pie in a glass… With rich chocolate cookies. Does life get any better than that?
Although they look sophisticated, these lightened-up parfaits are so simple to make! You just need 6 ingredients and one bowl. That’s it!
To make the pudding, you’ll beat everything together in that bowl except the Oreos before chilling for a few hours. Do NOT skip the chilling step! It really helps the pudding thicken to a more custardy, pie-like consistency. If you’ll be running short on time the day you want to serve the parfaits, make the pudding a day or two in advance and simply store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
Wait to crush the Oreos until just before serving the parfaits. This helps preserve their crunchy texture. Otherwise, the crumbs become stale and soggy while sitting on the counter or in between sweet layers of pudding, and that’s not the crisp textural contrast we’re looking for!
Tip: To make these parfaits gluten-free, look for special boxes of gluten-free chocolate sandwich cookies in your grocery store. Trader Joe’s sells them, as does Glutino and Newman’s Own. Safeway even offers their own Eating Right brand, so you don’t have to miss out on these sweet treats while on a gluten-free diet!
I found these cute servings glasses at Party City. They’re called Mini Slanted Tumblers, and even though they’re plastic, they’re surprisingly sturdy. As a klutz, I don’t have to worry about dropping and breaking any—always a huge plus! (Yes, that just happened to my favorite tiny white porcelain cup… So bummed!)
You want something that holds about 2-3 ounces—just a little bit bigger than a shot glass. If you only own larger serving dishes, that’s fine too. Nobody should complain about a double serving of dessert!
Lightly spiced and perfectly sweet, these Oreo and Pumpkin Pudding Parfaits are a fun finishing touch to any fall- or winter-inspired meal. As the weather started cooling down this week, my mom and I enjoyed a serving (or two) after dinner a few days ago, and we both scraped the sides, trying to sneak out every last bite.
We just might break tradition and serve these at Thanksgiving this year too!