Raisin pudding may be made a variety of ways, with textures ranging from thick and gritty to smooth and creamy. Many types of raisin pudding can be made from scratch or prepared from a boxed pudding mix. Adding raisins to vanilla pudding mix, milk, and sugar is one variation of raisin pudding. Using ripe bananas can turn an ordinary pudding recipe into a sweet and creamy banana raisin pudding.
Cooking with raisins can add nutritional benefits as well as extra flavor to most pudding recipes. Raisins are also a good source of dietary fiber for any pudding recipe. A desert popular in England is known as bread and butter pudding. When raisins are added, this becomes a bread and butter raisin pudding. Orange marmalade may also be added for a tangy taste.
Americans generally prefer a traditional dessert known as raisin bread pudding. Unlike English bread and butter pudding, this recipe does not call for fruit or marmalade. Other than raisins, cinnamon may be added, as well as a small amount of vanilla extract. Many people use day-old bread to make bread pudding. If raisins are not available, raisin bread may be used as a substitute.
Rice pudding with raisins is a popular dessert, made with rice, eggs, milk, sugar, and raisins. If desired, vanilla extract may be added as well. This type of raisin pudding is often served in restaurants and diners. When prepared at home, a sugar substitute may be used in place of white sugar. A variation of raisin rice pudding known as raisin rum pudding is made with a small amount of dark rum.
An English Christmas tradition that originated many centuries ago is known as plum pudding. This is actually a raisin pudding with a very thick consistency, similar to cake. Traditional plum pudding does not contain plums, although the name was derived from the main ingredient, which was raisins, then referred to as plums. Allspice and nutmeg give plum pudding its distinct flavor, and a dash of dark rum may be added as well.
Not all raisin pudding is meant for dessert. Raisin oatmeal pudding is a breakfast food. Ingredients may vary for this recipe, but typically include rolled oats, egg yolk, and milk. Brown sugar and cinnamon are commonly added to raisin oatmeal pudding as well. In place of rolled oats, some may prefer to use packets of instant oatmeal.