Pawpaw Pudding Recipe (2024)

Recipe from Sheri Castle

Adapted by Jeff Gordinier

Pawpaw Pudding Recipe (1)

Total Time
1 hour 15 minutes
Rating
4(173)
Notes
Read community notes

When it comes to pawpaw, accept no substitutes. Trust us; we tried. We went to a bunch of experts — scholars who specialize in fruit, plus chefs and cookbook authors who know all about the proud culinary history of Appalachia — and we asked them, “If a home cook doesn’t happen to have any pawpaw, what combination of other fruits and vegetables might work well as a replacement?” We picked up passing nods to sweet potatoes, bananas, papayas, avocados, really ripe mangoes. But in the end everyone came back with variations on “Forget it, there’s nothing like a pawpaw.”

The goopy-textured, tropical-ish fruit whose name sounds like a punch line on “Hee Haw” can be found scattered all over the country, but recipes (for cakes, pies, puddings) abound largely in West Virginia and nearby states like Kentucky, Ohio and Indiana. If you happen to secure some pawpaw, best to get out of its way, as is the case with this pudding. Pawpaw is a holiday guest who responds well to minimal interference. —Jeff Gordinier

Featured in: The United States of Thanksgiving

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Ingredients

Yield:12 servings

  • ½cup/1 stick/113 grams butter, melted and slightly cooled, plus more for baking dish
  • 2cups/400 grams sugar
  • cups/190 grams all-purpose flour
  • 1teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼teaspoon salt
  • ½teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 3large eggs
  • 2cups /1 pound/454 grams pawpaw pulp, thawed if frozen (see note)
  • cups/355 milliliters whole milk
  • 1teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • Lightly sweetened whipped cream, for serving

Ingredient Substitution Guide

Nutritional analysis per serving (12 servings)

297 calories; 10 grams fat; 6 grams saturated fat; 0 grams trans fat; 3 grams monounsaturated fat; 1 gram polyunsaturated fat; 47 grams carbohydrates; 1 gram dietary fiber; 35 grams sugars; 4 grams protein; 111 milligrams sodium

Note: The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

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Pawpaw Pudding Recipe (2)

Preparation

  1. Step

    1

    Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 13-by-9-by-2-inch baking dish.

  2. Step

    2

    In a large bowl, whisk together sugar, flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg.

  3. Step

    3

    In another large bowl, whisk together eggs and pawpaw pulp until smooth. Whisk in milk and vanilla. Whisk in melted butter. Pour into sugar mixture and stir only until combined.

  4. Step

    4

    Pour batter into prepared dish. Bake 50 minutes or until just set in the center. Cool to room temperature on a wire rack before cutting. Serve with a dollop of whipped cream.

Tip

  • Frozen pawpaw pulp can be bought online from integrationacres.com and earthy.com.

Ratings

4

out of 5

173

user ratings

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Private Notes

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Cooking Notes

P.M.

We had a glut of pawpaws this year- almost 400 lbs! We sold or gave away a lot of them but I did process and freeze quite a lot. I made this pudding for Thanksgiving and one of the guests declared it was the best desert he'd ever had- a rare rave from him.I halved the sugar, I was concerned the amount of sugar in the receipt would overwhelm the unique floral character of the pawpaw.

Linda

Delicious, but I don’t taste the pawpaw as much as I had hoped. But my husband likes it, and he doesn’t really care for pawpaw. Like others, I drastically cut down the sugar: about a half cup instead of two cups. My pawpaws are plenty sweet already.

HB

This is extremely sweet. If I make it again I'll use only 1 1/2 cups of sugar, if that.

b bowers

I made it with Paw Paws growing near the Olentangy River by Ohio State Univ. campus. My first time picking and seeding. I learned a lot and will be a better judge of size and ripeness. Tough to beat the wildlife to the choice pawpaws. I cut the sugar to 1 cup like others recommended. I enjoyed it warm with a little bit of whip cream. BTW the 21st annual Paw Paw fest is being held this weekend (Sept. 14-16) down near Athens Ohio. Jacki-O's brewery makes Paw Paw beer.

Amanda Ira

Thank you for sharing this recipie!! I added cream cheese icing to my piece instead of whipped cream and it was fantastic! My daughter and I walk our dog in the woods by our house and we always forge. Paw paws are the main thing we collect. Although it is fun to her she doesnt care for the paw paw fruit alone as much as I do. We LOVED this recipie and will now be a regualr treat in our house!

NC

Made this with pawpaws from a demonstration garden where the staff didn’t know what to do with them. I have three trees not yet producing, just couldn’t wait to try the fruit. This pudding is very pawpaw forward. Made gluten free with extra cinnamon, less nutmeg, half the sugar. Served warm, topped with lightly sweetened whipped cream grazed w cinnamon. A winner! Next time I’ll add a little brandy to the topping.

Naomi

this was delicious, but the pawpaw flavor didn't come through very strongly (or honestly at all). i probably would save my pawpaws next time for something where their flavor can really shine!

Gail

Yes, please halve the sugar. This is excellent with plain yogurt. I also think it would be good with walnuts or pecans added.

Don

The real challenge to this recipe is extracting the pawpaw flesh while avoiding the peel, pits, and any parts of the flesh that have gone bad. I've tried a variety of approaches but it is always a long messy struggle. I welcome advice!

Diana

I peel the paw paw first with a paring knife then cut the paw paw in circles instead of lengthwise. I find it easier to take the seeds out that way.

Jim S

This is the first paw paw recipe my wife has liked. This has a wonderful texture and a nice sweetness without being too much. I think this recipe enhances the flavor of the paw paw. I used frozen paw paw pulp I made when I had more than I could eat at one time.

Krista

Use half the sugar, more cinnamon

Jessica

Absolutely delicious. I followed recommendations here to halve the sugar, otherwise follow the recipe to the tee. I understand why someone said this is the best thing they've ever eaten. It has such a balanced, beautiful taste. I hope I one day find paw paws again, and can make this again.

Himsahimsa

Equal amounts paw paw and sugar. How about just skip the paw paw?

Yim (Canada)

We followed the recipe and made a delicious pawpaw pudding yesterday; we had a piece each after dinner, and we all got sick(me, my daughter and husband) - with vomiting and diarrhea! I was sick all night - didn't sleep.later we googled and found out that there are some people who will get sick after eating pawpaw especially when it's cooked.I think NYT should post a warning with this recipe, because it really can ruin a nice experience.

Baker the Pastry Chef

I recommend using extremely ripe Pawpaw in this recipe, and not adjusting it at all! The sugar doesn't just contribute sweetness, it creates the unique texture of the dessert along with the eggs and butter. The goal here is NOT a cake, it's a pudding like Sticky Toffee Pudding, which you cannot get with the reduced sugar.

Steve Lacks Focus

Tried this with Paw Paw pulp from my own Paw Paw trees. I decided to use only half of the sugar, based on some of the previous feedback. In addition, I used Pamela's mix (Gluten Free) in place of the flour and baking soda. Lastly, I used reduced sugar Vanilla Almond Milk instead of the whole milk. Best recipe so far for Paw Paws.

b bowers

I made it with Paw Paws growing near the Olentangy River by Ohio State Univ. campus. My first time picking and seeding. I learned a lot and will be a better judge of size and ripeness. Tough to beat the wildlife to the choice pawpaws. I cut the sugar to 1 cup like others recommended. I enjoyed it warm with a little bit of whip cream. BTW the 21st annual Paw Paw fest is being held this weekend (Sept. 14-16) down near Athens Ohio. Jacki-O's brewery makes Paw Paw beer.

Sebastian

I made this with some extremely tender paw paws that were picked locally. I followed the recipe exactly. The paw paw flavor in my pudding abounded, but for those sensitive to sweetness you may want to take the others' advice and cut the sugar

Linda

Delicious, but I don’t taste the pawpaw as much as I had hoped. But my husband likes it, and he doesn’t really care for pawpaw. Like others, I drastically cut down the sugar: about a half cup instead of two cups. My pawpaws are plenty sweet already.

P.M.

We had a glut of pawpaws this year- almost 400 lbs! We sold or gave away a lot of them but I did process and freeze quite a lot. I made this pudding for Thanksgiving and one of the guests declared it was the best desert he'd ever had- a rare rave from him.I halved the sugar, I was concerned the amount of sugar in the receipt would overwhelm the unique floral character of the pawpaw.

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Pawpaw Pudding Recipe (2024)
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