Pudding Shots

Chocolate pudding shots with whipped cream and mint

The Spruce Eats

  • Total: 5 mins
  • Prep: 5 mins
  • Cook: 0 mins
  • Chill: 30 mins
  • Servings: 8 servings
  • Yields: 8 2-ounce shots

First, there were Jell-O shots, and then came the pudding shot. These spiked little treats are fun party favors and can be made up ahead of time, stored in the refrigerator, and brought out at just the perfect time. Just like their jiggly counterparts, you can take them anywhere your flavor cravings desire.

The great thing about pudding shots is that they are very easy to make. If you can use a whisk, then you can make pudding shots. You'll simply substitute half of the milk needed to make instant pudding with the liquor combination of your choice, mix, and allow them to set. (Some readers like to freeze them for a couple of hours—or for much longer.)

The really fun part is exploring all the flavor possibilities. You can mix and match ingredients, recreate your favorite cocktails, or simply make it your own—experimenting is the way to figure out what you like. Pudding looks great layered, so mix up two different batches and layer them in cups. Browse cake decorating options or use small candies, chocolate shavings, a dusting of cocoa powder, a drizzle of syrup, crushed nuts or cookies, coconut flakes, and small pieces of fruit for topping. Make it something that complements the pudding flavor and is small enough to go down easily and smoothly. When you are feeling extra creative, try chocolate chip cookie shot cups. They're perfect for pudding and miniature muffin tins create bite-sized morsels that are fun finger food.

Turn your kitchen into a lab and enjoy!

Ingredients

  • 1 (3- to 4-ounce) package instant pudding (any flavor)
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup liquor (or divide multiple liquors to taste)
  • Optional: 8 ounces whipped cream (or whipped topping)
  • Garnish: whipped cream

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients. 

    Pudding shot ingredients
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  2. In a mixing bowl, combine the pudding, milk, and liquor.

    Combine pudding, milk, and liquor for pudding shots
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  3. Whisk for about two minutes or until the pudding is nice and smooth.

    If your mix includes a liquor that's around 80-proof, such as vodka or rum, whisk in 8 ounces of the whipped cream or topping. It will help stabilize the shots.

    Whisk until pudding is smooth
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  4. Spoon into shot glasses or disposable plastic cups and refrigerate for about 30 minutes until the pudding sets up.

    Spoon pudding into glasses for pudding shots
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  5. Top with whipped cream and any additional toppings you desire. Serve and enjoy!

    Pudding shots with whipped cream and mint
    The Spruce

Why Are My Pudding Shots So Runny?

If you make pudding shots with a liquor that is around 80-proof, the higher alcohol content may prevent the pudding from setting up properly. If that's the case, add in 8 ounces of whipped cream or cream topping before chilling. It will help create some stability so the shots won't run.

Recipe Variations

Think about your favorite desserts and treats, then figure out how to transform those flavors into a delicious pudding. Using the recipe above, here are some pudding shots to try:

Many of our favorite mixed drinks can serve as inspiration for pudding shots, too. Quite often, you can use the same liquors that are in the cocktail.

Tips

  • If the pudding you're using directs you to use more or less milk, follow that recommendation. Split the liquid volume equally between milk and liquor.
  • When it makes sense, include cream liqueurs to make up for the lost density when replacing milk.

How Strong Is a Pudding Shot?

Every pudding shot you make will have a different alcohol content based on the liquor you use. On the high side, those with a single 80-proof liquor will weigh in around 15 percent ABV (30 proof). That's like taking a straight shot of a sweet liqueur. However, most of the time you'll mix in lower proof liqueurs, which will weaken the shot. For instance, the banana split pudding shot will be just 4 percent ABV (8 proof). Pudding shots are small and generally low-proof, but they're also delicious so it's easy to have one too many.

How to Store and Keep Pudding Shots

Pudding shots need about half an hour to chill before serving, but if you want to keep them a bit longer than that, cover the tops with plastic wrap or set them in a sealed container and refrigerate until you are ready to serve them. Follow the same procedure if you would like to freeze them; they can be frozen up to a week before serving. Transfer to the fridge before serving. If you've put them in a container to freeze, pack them tightly and use a thin kitchen towel as padding to help prevent them from tipping over.

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