10 Easy Dessert Recipes That Start With Chocolate Pudding

How to Take Chocolate Pudding and Turn It Into Pies, Cakes, Trifles, and More

Easy chocolate pie sprinkled with chocolate shavings and dotted with fresh raspberries

 The Spruce

Chocolate pudding can be the basis for countless easy dessert recipes. You don't even have to turn on the oven or the stove for many of these recipes, and some can be ready in less than 15 minutes. Most rely on boxed instant pudding mix, but when the recipe specifies prepared pudding, you can use homemade if you prefer. You can find great Valentine's Day desserts, treats for any special occasion, or an easy way to satisfy an everyday hankering for chocolate in this collection.

  • 01 of 10

    Chocolate Pudding Pie

    Slice of easy chocolate pudding pie recipe

    The Spruce / Victoria Heydt

    This no-bake pudding pie turns instant chocolate pudding into a cool and creamy dessert. It does need to chill out in the fridge for a couple of hours to set, so you have to think ahead, but preparation is a snap. The recipe calls for fresh raspberries and shaved chocolate for a garnish, but you can adjust the finish to your own tastes. Try crushed candy, chopped crystallized ginger, or broiled mini marshmallows for an indoor take on s'mores.

  • 02 of 10

    Dirt Dessert Cups

    Pudding dirt cup

    The Spruce 

    Little kids love playing in the dirt, and they love making edible "dirt cups," too. This easy-to-follow recipe requires chocolate pudding, whipped topping, crushed Oreo cookies, and gummy worms (for the "eew" effect). Make these in individual serving cups or use a similar dirt cake recipe to make a big one to share.

  • 03 of 10

    Chocolate Trifle

    A glass bowl helps show off the pretty layers of a chocolate trifle

     The Spruce / Kristina Vanni

    This stunning chocolate trifle looks like it took all day to make but nothing could be further from the truth. It comes together in a snap with boxed cake mix, "cook and serve" chocolate pudding, freshly whipped cream, and cherry pie filling. If you don't have a trifle dish, you can use a regular serving bowl. Choose glass if you can for the visual layering effect.

  • 04 of 10

    Crock Pot Chocolate Pudding Cake

    Spooning out some chocolate pudding cake

    The Spruce / robynmac 

    Contrasting textures make this crock pot pudding cake melt-in-your-mouth good. The warm, creamy pudding pairs beautifully with the moist chocolate cake. Because you can "set it and forget it" in the slow cooker, you can be busy all day and still serve a home-cooked dessert after dinner.

    Continue to 5 of 10 below.
  • 05 of 10

    Chocolate Delight Dessert

    Chocolate delight layered dessert topped with nuts

    The Spruce / Diana Rattray

    This rich layered dessert checks all the craving boxes with chocolaty pudding, sweetened cream cheese, whipped topping, and chopped nuts in a graham cracker crust. The simple recipe lends itself to endless variations, too, with different types of crusts, pudding flavors, and toppings.

  • 06 of 10

    No-Bake Chocolate Cream Pie

    Chocolate pie with a cookie crust and whipped topping

    Bill Milne / StockFood Creative / Getty Images

    It doesn't get much easier than this mix-and-chill pie. You can put it together in 10 minutes but it needs four or more hours in the refrigerator to set, so plan ahead. Throw one together after breakfast and treat the family to a cool, creamy delight on a hot summer evening.

  • 07 of 10

    Kahlúa Bowl Cake

    Kahlúa bowl cake with sliced strawberries and nuts

    Steve Brown Photography / Getty Images

    This Kahlúa bowl cake builds on a baked and cooled chocolate cake. Since you won't need to cook it further, you can get creative with the dish you use for assembly. Cake cubes soak up the Kahlúa or other coffee liqueur, while pudding and whipped topping layers add cool creaminess. You can easily vary the liqueur flavor and type of pudding you use for more options.

  • 08 of 10

    Easy Chocolate Icebox Pie

    Easy chocolate icebox pie decorated with some chocolate curls
    Steve Cohen / Getty Images

    This recipe for chocolate icebox pie uses a graham cracker crust, which requires baking. You can avoid turning on the oven by purchasing a premade crust at the grocery store. For thick chocolaty flavor, fill the pie crust with prepared pudding. For a mousse-like consistency and lighter flavor, fold thawed frozen whipped topping into the pudding before you spread it in the pie.

    Continue to 9 of 10 below.
  • 09 of 10

    Chocolate Toffee-Filled Angel Food Cake

    Angel food cake with a chocolate and toffee filling on a white cake plate


    Proformabooks / Getty Images

    This embellished angel food cake turns meltingly soft as the flavors meld in the refrigerator, though crushed toffee candy adds contrasting crunch. You can use a store-bought cake for this or make one from scratch. Cook's bonus: You can sneak a taste undetected from the trench you must dig out in the center of the cake.

  • 10 of 10

    Gluten-Free Black Forest Brownie Trifle

    Individual serving of Gluten-Free Black Forest Brownie Trifle

    Getty Images / Westend61

    Assemble this dessert ahead of time in individual glasses or one big serving bowl. Basically layers of brownie, pudding, cherry pie filling, and whipped topping, this recipe adapts the ingredients for a gluten-free treat, but you can also make it with standard cake and instant pudding mixes.