Pudding Lust Cake

May 14, 2012

I’ve never been one for pudding. It’s just not my thing. Like I’ve said before, I need texture. I LOVE my bars and cookies chocked full of goodies and my ice cream brimming with add-ins- thus my love affair with Ben & Jerry’s. So pudding doesn’t exactly turn my crank. This particular dessert takes pudding to a whole new level though. It’s not simply pudding. It’s a bar. It’s a cake. It’s a delicious, multi-layer dessert. And guess what? There is texture.

You start off with the simplest pecan crust.

Smooth on a layer of sweetened cream cheese….

Top THAT with your favorite instant pudding flavor.

And do not even think about forgetting the whipped topping. Whipped topping makes everything magical, don’t you agree?

SEE! Not just your everyday pudding. So much more. And the options are endless. You can choose whatever pudding flavor you prefer depending on taste or even the season. For example, the pumpkin spice instant pudding would be great in November or December, and the lemon would be fantastic in the Spring or Summer. And there are all the other many flavors to choose from- banana, coconut, cheesecake, Oreo, vanilla, chocolate, etc. I chose butterscotch simply because I thought the carmel-like flavor would pair really well with the pecans, and it did. But as I said, what pudding you use is totally your call! Thats what really makes this dessert so fun and versatile. Not to mention that it is SUPER simple!

And even though you do have to bake the pecan crust, I still think this dessert is the perfect summer time treat. It’s refrigerated and served chilled so it’s cool and refreshing. Although, don’t count on it being light… it definitely is a bit decadent for a pudding.

4.9 from 10 reviews
Pudding Lust Cake
Serves: 12
  • CRUST:
  • 1½ cups all purpose flour
  • 3 Tb sugar
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 1½ sticks (3/4 cup) butter, melted
  • 1 (8oz) package of cream cheese, soft
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 (8 oz) containers cool whip (or one 16 ozz container)
  • 2 small packages (3.4oz) of Jello instant pudding flavor of choice
  • 3 cup cold milk
  1. For the Crust: Combine butter, flour, chopped pecans and sugar and press into a 9" x 13" baking dish. Bake at 375°F for 10-15 minutes. Let cool completely.
  2. For the Cream Cheese Layer: Beat cream cheese, powdered sugar until smooth. Fold in 1½ cups cool whip until fully incorporated. Spread over crust.
  3. For the Pudding Layer: Mix pudding mixes with cold milk, whisking for several minutes. Set it in the fridge for 5-10 minutes to let it thicken. Spread over the cream cheese layer. Top with remaining container of cool whip.
  4. Cut into squares to serve. Keep refrigerated.

adapted from Sweet Treats and More


{ 34 comments… read them below or add one }

sara May 15, 2012 at 3:49 am

Wow, this looks incredibly tasty – a great dessert! 🙂 So pretty too!


Spencer May 15, 2012 at 5:18 am

Looks absolutely delicious! I am certainly lusting after it!


Susana May 15, 2012 at 6:32 am

Oh my, this looks like heaven!


Sharon May 15, 2012 at 6:45 am

This is my family’s favorite dessert, and they always want it with pistachio pudding. A friend gave me the recipe after she took it to a church potluck about 20 years ago. She called it “I’ll Make It and You’ll Come Running.” We still call it that. My kids are now in their late 20’s!


shelia May 18, 2012 at 12:30 am

This is one of my all time favorite desserts, my mom got the recipe from “one of the church ladies”, over 35 yrs ago, she always made it with chocolate pudding but it is great with any kind of pudding! We always called it “Chocolate Flop” because it usually ended up all mixed together on your plate! It always reminds me of her and how we would have it on Sundays after church, funny how a simple recipe can bring back such warm, wonderful memories!


Marianne May 22, 2012 at 8:32 pm

This is so good, I make it with one choc and one vanilla pudding. We call it Chocolate delight! It is also good if you replace the puding layer with Pie filling, it takes 2 cans. My mom would put blue
berry on one side and lemon on the other.


Diane November 29, 2012 at 9:47 pm

Marianne~~How your mother made this sounds astoundingly good, but could you explain how she put the blueberry on one side and the lemon on the other side, of what? Thanks so much, Diane
For the sake of the computer, I am giving this 5 stars, which I’m quite sure it deserves!


Mrs. K July 4, 2012 at 4:33 pm

It’s humorous to hear what everybody calls this. Around here everybody calls it “Lush” and depending on the flavor of pudding, it’s Lemon Lush, Chocolate Lush, etc. Butterscotch sounds lover-ly.


KParsons September 12, 2012 at 2:45 pm

This looks absolutely ah-mah-zing and I love the ideas for alternate flavors. I also have to ask: WHERE did you find those napkins? I LOVE them!!


lmachell September 13, 2012 at 8:23 am

Target : )


website design package April 8, 2013 at 10:02 am

In fact no matter if someone doesn’t be aware of afterward its up to other viewers that they will assist, so here it happens.


Freida Wright July 5, 2013 at 4:09 pm

I love this dessert. I have been making it for over 35 years. It is wonderful with 1 pistachio and 1 banana pudding. Second favorite is butterscotch. You can’t go wrong when you want to impress guests. Friends have requested I take it to parties. I have decorated it will chocolate curls–Cadbury’s milk chocolate works with a potato peeler.


Diane July 5, 2013 at 11:00 pm

I have been making this cake since the 1970’s. Brought one over to my sister-in-laws house and almost killed my brother-in-law. The nuts are ground fine and I didn’t know he was allergic to them. Needless to say I left the nuts out when ever I made it for him. This is so versatile. You really can make any flavor you want but lemon is the best. Enjoy! There will be NO leftovers!


Daisy July 16, 2013 at 9:53 pm

This is just about the same recipe my friend shared with me – called Lucretia’s Legacy. Only she adds 1/2 cup Heath Chocolate Toffee bits to the pudding mixture and then sprinkles another 1/2 cup of Heath Chocolate Toffee bits over the Cool Whip. And it is great!! Love it!!


lmachell July 17, 2013 at 7:19 pm

I love Heath Chocolate Toffee- sounds delicious!


Denease October 10, 2017 at 3:05 pm

What kind of pudding mixture did you use?


Joanne McGowan July 18, 2013 at 8:46 pm

I have made a dessert that is very similar to this with lemon pudding for many , many years. Everybody raves about it. It is sooo good. I call it lemon lust.


Belinda July 18, 2013 at 10:32 pm

Another of my Mom’s favorites. She served it often.


Rebecca August 5, 2013 at 7:03 pm

I’m almost 100% certain this is my all time favorite dessert from childhood! My aunt used to make it and it was so hard not to eat more of it then of the actual dinner. I can’t thank you enough for posting it! I’m so glad I saw it on Pinterest! 🙂


Candice August 15, 2013 at 9:23 pm

I love that this has so many names. My mom used to make this, but she would never tell me what it was called, so I named it Rich and Famous Cake and that’s what we called it at our house. When I got older I learned that the name of the dessert as given to my mom was “Better Than Sex” – rather than try to explain that one to a four or five year old, she just let me name it whatever 🙂


Jack March 2, 2014 at 10:10 am

What size pan would you use?


lmachell March 5, 2014 at 8:30 pm

9 inch by 13 inch


Kathy March 2, 2014 at 7:56 pm

This is what I know as a “Lemon Lush” providing of course you use lemon flavor. I love this dessert. Yes, I agree it is so good & versatile all,yr. round. No bad time of yr. to make it. Love it in the Spring time the best…usually around Easter, but good anytime. Use any flavor, whatever you have & i always delicious!!! Happy eating.


Edi Rains March 6, 2014 at 7:13 am

Has anyone ever made this with a store bought crust ? Want to make it for a St Patricks Day luncheon with pistachio pudding. Thanks for your help….


Brenda Turnquest November 23, 2016 at 2:43 pm

You can make it with store bought crust, but the nuts really make the difference in the crust.
Just think how great it would be with pistachio nuts in the crust. Of course, you can probably chop the nuts and spread a layer over the crust.


Barbara July 17, 2014 at 4:51 pm

when do you use the butter?????


Jenn August 10, 2014 at 2:41 am

In the crust. See direction #1


Isabel Villanueva March 1, 2015 at 1:24 am

This cake looks super good. Since I cannot eat peanuts, is there something else I can put into the crust? What about vanilla wafers if so, or anything you can suggest? Desperately waiting !!!!!!


MaryAnn Burns March 1, 2015 at 3:42 am

try using crushed up sandies use them all the time with my desserts..i make a horrible crust


Lady M March 4, 2015 at 6:27 pm

Husband made this with pistachio pudding mix. OMG – so light and fluffy! Family loves it.


Renee June 10, 2015 at 6:03 pm

I have made this desert for so long it is everyones favorite at my house. We do the pumpkin , chocolate and the lemon. Have not tried coconut and that sounds divine and in the summer I bake the crust on the grill with in direct heat and helps keep the house cool just have to watch the temp. so it doesn’t burn or bake to long.


Barb F August 18, 2015 at 7:37 pm

It would be nice to have a thumbprint picture in the corner of the print out recipe, to help remember what the recipe looks like. Seeing releases the lust to make the desert. I want to try with chocolate and butterscotch with the heath chips, so luscious. Thanks.


Jo February 28, 2016 at 9:02 pm

I agree with you 100%. I do not understand why so many recipes are loaded with pics, but don’t print one with the recipe. I like to see what it is supposed to look like.


montnan February 24, 2016 at 11:38 pm

I’ve been making this for almost 50 years, although we rather unimaginatively just called it “Layered Pudding Dessert”. I prefer cooking the pudding, since instant anything has a funny taste to me. And I also like to whip real cream -about 1 Cup, with a tsp or 2 of sugar in place of each 8 oz container of cool whip. There are so many possible flavors, many of which have been mentioned, but I’ll add coconut with toasted coconut in place of nuts in the crust,


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