Butterscotch Pudding
Even comfort food can go glam. Photo by Duard van der Westhuizen.




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February 2007
Last Updated September 2018

Product Reviews / Main Nibbles / Desserts

Michael Recchiuti’s Butterscotch Pudding

A More Sophisticated Version Of The Popular Comfort Food

Need some comfort to chase away the blues? This butterscotch pudding recipe, like Michael Recchiuti’s Brown Sugar & Macadamia Nut Cookies, is another opportunity to explore the exotic, high quality brown sugars available at many gourmet and health food stores.

Premium sugars like Zulka brand add a personality and depth you won’t find if you use a less expensive, big name brand brown sugar.


If you can find it, Michael recommends using Billington’s Dark Muscovado or Molasses sugar for this recipe, an import from England (we use Zulka).


(Of course, you can always use the brown sugar you have.)


Check out the different types of sugar in our Sugar Glossary





  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1-1/4 cups dark brown cane sugar, packed
  • 1 Tahitian vanilla bean, split horizontally
  • 2-1/4 cups whole milk, plus 1/2 cup milk set aside
  • 3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 extra-large egg yolks
  • 1/2 tablespoon pure vanilla extract, preferably Madagascar Bourbon
  • Crème fraîche (for garnish)
  • Shaved chocolate (for garnish)

If you don’t want the shaved chocolate garnish in this recipe, consider sliced almonds and whipped cream or meringue (photo courtesy Frontera Grill | Chicago).


  1. Melt the butter in a large saucepan. Scrape the vanilla seeds from the bean into the pan and then add the bean. Add the brown sugar and simmer gently just until it dissolves. Remove from heat.
  2. In a medium saucepan, stir together 2-1/4 cups of the milk and the heavy cream. Bring to a boil over medium heat.
  3. Pour the hot liquid into the dissolved brown sugar. Whisk this mixture to combine.
  4. In a small bowl, mix together the remaining 1/2 cup milk, cornstarch and salt. Whisk this into the saucepan and return the mixture to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer.
  5. Place the egg yolks in a small bowl and whisk by hand until blended. Whisk about 2 tablespoons of the milk mixture into the yolks to warm them gradually. Let temper for about 30 seconds.
  6. While stirring, gradually add the tempered yolks to the hot mixture until fully combined. Remove from heat and let cool slightly.
  7. Strain the pudding through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl. Add the vanilla extract and stir until combined.
  8. Pour or spoon the pudding into individual serving cups. Cover and refrigerate for at least 6 hours or overnight.
  9. Serve chilled or at room temperature within 24 hours.
  10. Garnish with crème fraîche and shaved chocolate.

Yield: 6 cups

Recipe © copyright Michael Recchiuti. Other material