Butterscotch Pudding Parfait with Gingersnap Crumble

Classic butterscotch pudding is enhanced with tangy whipped crème fraîche and warm, spicy gingersnap crumble to make a beautiful parfait.

Joanne Chang's Butterscotch Pudding Parfait
Photo: Tara Donne
Active Time:
50 mins
Total Time:
6 hrs 50 mins



  • 2 cups whole milk, divided

  • 1 cup packed dark brown sugar

  • 1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt

  • 4 large egg yolks

  • 1/4 cup cornstarch (about 1 1/8 ounces)

  • 2 tablespoons (1 ounce) dark rum or Scotch whiskey

  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

  • 1/2 cup cold unsalted butter (4 ounces), cut into 1/2-inch pieces


  • 1 cup heavy cream

  • 1/2 cup crème fraîche or sour cream

  • 3 tablespoons powdered sugar

  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract


  • 2 cups gingersnaps (about 6 3/4 ounces), crushed (about 1 3/4 cups)


Make the butterscotch pudding

  1. Stir together heavy cream, 1 1/2 cups milk, brown sugar, and salt in a large saucepan. Bring mixture to a simmer over medium, whisking often to dissolve sugar.

  2. Meanwhile, whisk together egg yolks, cornstarch, rum, vanilla, and remaining 1/2 cup milk in a heatproof bowl until smooth.

  3. Gradually ladle about half of the hot cream mixture into egg yolk mixture, whisking constantly. Once half of the hot cream mixture is whisked into the egg yolk mixture, scrape all egg yolk mixture into remaining hot cream in pan.

  4. Cook pudding over medium-low, whisking constantly, until bubbly and thickened, 2 to 3 minutes. Pour mixture through a fine wire-mesh strainer into a medium-size heatproof bowl. Gradually add butter pieces, whisking until butter is completely incorporated before the next addition. Press plastic wrap directly on surface of pudding; chill until set, at least 6 hours or up to 3 days.

  5. Remove chilled butterscotch pudding from refrigerator; peel off and discard plastic. Set pudding aside.

Make the whipped crème fraîche

  1. Combine heavy cream, crème fraîche, powdered sugar, and vanilla in bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment; beat on medium speed until soft peaks form, 1 to 2 minutes.

  2. Spoon about 1/2 cup pudding into each of 8 glasses. Sprinkle each pudding evenly with about 3 tablespoons crushed gingersnaps. Top each with about 1/3 cup whipped crème fraîche. Garnish with remaining crushed gingersnaps (about 1/2 tablespoon each). Serve immediately, or chill, uncovered, up to 8 hours.

Make Ahead

Butterscotch pudding can be made up to 3 days in advance, covered with plastic wrap, and stored in the refrigerator.

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