Pudding dirt cups are an easy, delicious, and fun no bake dessert for summer parties and outdoor events. Perfectly nostalgic from our childhoods, we seriously can’t get enough!Jump to Recipe
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Dirt cups were a childhood favorite of mine. I was always that weird kid that would eat dirt on the playground so dirt cups were always exciting for me.
Thankfully, I grew out of my weird dirt eating days but I definitely still enjoy a yummy pudding cup.
(PS If you want to be extra fancy, make your own pudding from scratch from this recipe. It’s amazing)!
There are many variations to dirt cups. There’s the classic gummy worm dirt cups (still the best in my opinion), the classy Easter carrot patch dirt cups (which are just too cute), or the adult-ish garden pudding cups with pretty buttercream flowers.
Today we’re making these adult versions of our childhood gummy worm filled dirt cups.
However, a healthy garden has plenty of earth worms to keep the soil healthy so maybe adding some gummy worms would be more realistic.
(PPS. I definitely added gummy worms, see? We can simultaneously be adults and children and thrive).
Tips to Create the Perfect Garden Pudding Dirt Cups
- When you are layering your pudding, keep your spoon in the center of your glass so that you avoid getting the sides of your cup too “muddy”. Once you have enough pudding for that layer, then take the spoon and spread it out so that it touches the sides of the glass.
- When doing your cookie crumb layers, specifically fill the sides first. It is best to hold the glass at a slight angle as you fill so that you have a solid layer without having to use too much cookie crumb in the center.
- Keep your buttercream flowers in the fridge until you’re ready to use them. This will ensure that the keep firm and are easier to work with.
- You can vary the glass/jar size to make smaller (or larger) dirt cups.
Smaller jars, like these cute 4oz ones, are much easier for parties where you’re going to have to serve a bunch of people. It’s still impressive with much less work (and waste) for you.
- Also don’t forget to definitely consider making your chocolate pudding from scratch from this recipe. It’s still super easy while being extra fancy and decadent!
Why Pudding Dirt Cups are the Best
It’s summer, which means it’s hot. I don’t know about you but I definitely don’t want to stand around a hot oven for a good summery dessert.
Pudding dirt cups are a no bake dream. They’re so simple, no where near as messy as some no bake desserts, and are still super impressive to share.
Kids and adults love them and they’re easily adaptable for dietary restrictions like gluten or dairy free or even veganism. (All without sacrificing taste)!
They’re perfect for celebrations year round but obviously will be most popular for things like:
Birthday Parties (or Tea Parties)
Summer backyard get togethers
Halloween (especially if you’re heavy on the worms)
and I’ve even seen them at conferences/corporate retreats.
So really, so versatile for a crowd!
But of course, they’re not just great for sharing at parties and events. They’re also spectacular to enjoy all by yourself while you snuggle up with your dog on your couch for a Netflix marathon.
Garden Pudding Dirt Cups
- 1½ cup Crushed Oreo Cookies
- Gummy worms (optional)
- ¼ cup butter
- 1-2 cups powdered sugar
- 1 tbsp heavy cream
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- pink and green gel food coloring
- Prepare your pudding beforehand. You can use an instant pudding box mix or make it from scratch. Many from scratch recipes are wayyy tastier but require plenty of time to cool and thicken. So plan accordingly.
- Crush the Oreos to a fine crumble (like dirt…obviously) using a food processor.
Make your buttercream flowers.
- With a hand mixer, beat your butter until smooth (about 1 minute). Scrape the sides of your bowl. Beat in the heavy cream and vanilla extract until smooth. Slowly add your powdered sugar (start with one cup before adding more). Beat your buttercream until smooth and fluffy.
- Divide the buttercream in half and separate into 2 bowls. Add 2 drops of green food coloring to one bowl and 2 drops of pink to the other. Mix until color is well incorporated.
- Transfer to your reusable piping bags. (Use a leaf tip for the green and a star tip for your pink).
- Line a baking sheet with compostable parchment paper. Pipe a dot of buttercream on the bottom of your parchment paper in each corner to make sure that the paper stays flat on your pan. If you don't do this, odds are you'll mess up your flowers and leaves.
- Then pipe your leaves and flowers out onto your baking sheet. Chill in the fridge until hardened.
- You can use a variety of containers for your pudding cups. The easiest are jars, wine glasses, or other glass container. A clear container let's you see the "dirt" which is half the fun. *Note that depending on the size of the container you can obviously get more or less that 4-5 cups. I used four 11 oz wine glasses.
- Starting with your cookie crumbs, layer your pudding and cookies all the way to the top of your container. Finish with another thin layer of cookie crumbs. If using gummy worms, layer a couple throughout your cup to your preference
- Using a knife, gently cut the buttercream flowers and leaves off the baking sheet and transfer them to the tops of your pudding cup. Top with an additional gummy worm (again optional). Save any leftover buttercream flowers in an air tight container in the fridge for later decorating projects!
- Serve and enjoy!
I don’t care if you’re an adult or a child, dirt cups will always be a fun treat that will make even the most cynical adults feel a sense of that childhood joy they used to have.
Nothing is better than playing with your food….
(I mean half of baking is decorating. Decorating is edible art. Edible art is play. Therefore, we are playing with food all day every day).
And these pudding dirt cups are the simplest way to play. Deliciously rich and fun to share, how can you not love them?!
So once you’ve made your amazing garden pudding dirt cups, take a pic, post it on the gram and make sure to tag me (@handheld_eats)! I love seeing you creations and really, if you don’t post it on Instagram, did it even happen?
Sharing is caring! Do you know someone who would would love these pudding dirt cups? Share it with them!
Don’t forget to get your free copy of The Small Batch Frenzy! Seriously, the brownies, cookies, and everything else in here will be almost as delightful as these fun summer pudding dirt cups!
See you soon, friends!