Best Pudding Cups: It’s Pudding Time, Children

The best pudding cups are tasty, creamy, and portable, so you can bring dessert with you, wherever you might be going. A chocolate cake won’t fit in your purse, but a chocolate pudding cup sure will. But what’s the best pudding cup you can buy? Grab and spoon and let’s discuss. In the words of the great Les Claypool, it’s pudding time, children

I absolutely love pudding. In fact, I love any food that easily slides down the ol’ gullet. Give me soup! Give me Jell-O! If you don’t need teeth to eat it, I’m in! (I do have teeth, I just like to give them a breather every now and then.) Pudding is underrated and more adults should be eating it. It’s sweet, satisfying, rich, and, best of all, it comes in convenient little cups. We peeled the lids off of everything from rice pudding to lemon pudding to find the best pudding at the grocery store. (P.S. If you’d like something to listen to while you read this, I have a recommendation. Spoiler, it’s Primus.)

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best pudding cups

Best Tart

Snack Pack Lemon

When it comes to creative flavors, Snack Pack really shines (although, they also happen to make the best chocolate pudding we tasted, too). This lemon pudding is tart and highly nostalgic. I couldn’t place it at first, but my colleague Jordan Myrick said it reminded them of the filling inside Hostess lemon hand pies, and that’s totally accurate. Crumble a graham cracker on top of this cup and you’ve got yourself a mini lemon pie dupe. 

Credit: Merc / Walmart

Rating:

7/10

Sporks

best pudding cups

Best Indulgent

Snack Pack Butterscotch

There’s no butterscotch pudding better than the Jell-O butterscotch pudding that comes in a box, but Snack Pack Butterscotch pudding will scratch that itch, minus all the simmering and stirring. Snack Pack may not make the highest quality pudding, but the butterscotch flavor in this cup helps create the illusion of creaminess, kind of like a Werther’s Original you can eat with a spoon. If you’re craving a butterscotch sundae but don’t want something that heavy, Snack Pack Butterscotch is a lighter and easier option. 

Credit: Merc / Walmart

Rating:

7.5/10

Sporks

best swirl pudding

Best Swirl

Jell-O Chocolate Vanilla Swirl

This is another totally nostalgic snack. My grandparents always had chocolate-vanilla swirl Jell-O Pudding Pops in their garage freezer, and the flavor of this Jell-O swirl pudding sends me straight back to their cul-de-sac, minus the brain freeze. We tried this head to head with Snack Pack’s swirl pudding, and enjoyed the flavor of Jell-O more overall. Jell-O’s swirl pudding is smoother than Snack Pack’s, and I couldn’t help but notice that the first ingredient is skim milk rather than water. I know, I know, skim milk is basically water, but that extra creaminess gave Jell-O an edge. This is the best pudding cup if you truly can’t decide whether you want vanilla or chocolate (or if you wish Jell-O still made pudding pops). 

Credit: Merc / Target

Rating:

8.5/10

Sporks

best chocolate pudding cup

Best Chocolate

Snack Pack Chocolate Fudge

Chocolate pudding is great, but the best chocolate pudding is actually chocolate fudge pudding. We tried this alongside regular Snack Pack Chocolate (as well as Great Value’s chocolate pudding), and found that this one has a richer chocolate flavor that more closely approximates hot fudge on a sundae. It’s thick and gloopy and extremely satisfying. Regular ol’ chocolate pudding just can’t hold a candle! 

Credit: Merc / Walmart

Rating:

8.5/10

Sporks

best rice pudding

Best Rice

Señor Rico Rice Pudding

In the battle of the rice puddings, it was Señor Rico versus Kozy Shack. I thought Kozy Shack had a slightly richer pudding flavor, but I loved how homemade Señor Rico seemed. It really tastes like something you’d get at a good Mexican restaurant, plus, they top it with a healthy sprinkle of cinnamon, which really amps up the overall flavor. I will never eat another rice pudding cup without demanding cinnamon on top.

Credit: Merc / Ralphs

Rating:

9.5/10

Sporks

best pudding cups

Best of the Best

Kozy Shack Tapioca

When I was little, my grandmother (not Pudding Pop grandmother, a different one) told me that the tapioca pearls in tapioca pudding were fish eyeballs, so it’s really a miracle that I love this stuff as much as I do. But it’s just so much fun to eat! Little slippery orbs suspended in delicious vanilla Kozy Shack pudding? Delicious, and more substantial than pudding that isn’t packed with baby bobas. You can really taste the quality of Kozy Shack pudding—it’s super milky and smooth. I gave Jordan a bite and they said, “This tastes like a homemade pudding or like something you’d get at a restaurant.” It’s really that good! If you can get past that fish eyeball bug I just put in your brain, these are the best pudding cups at the grocery store.

Credit: Merc / Target

Rating:

10/10

Sporks

Other products we tried: Kozy Shack Rice Pudding, Raymundo’s Nilla Pieces + Banana Pudding, Snack Pack Tapioca, Snack Pack Chocolate, Great Value Chocolate


About the Author

Gwynedd Stuart

Gwynedd Stuart, Sporked’s managing editor, is an L.A.-based writer and editor who spends way, way too much time at the grocery store. She’s never met an Old El Paso taco or mozzarella stick she didn’t like.

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  • 🤣🤣🤣 I told my kids that tapioca had white fish eggs in it and if there was ever tapioca around they wouldn’t touch it. (They’re all grown up and STILL won’t eat it! 😂😂😂) I’m such a bad mom, lol.

    Reply
  • Snack Pack is like the generic nasty version of Jello pudding. You have to get the Jello ones that are NOT sugar free, sometimes that is a challenge.

    Reply
    • Yeah I agree, snack pack isn’t that good.

      Reply
  • This dark chocolate pudding is the real deal..not for amateurs!

    Reply
  • Have you tried Petit Pot dark chocolate pudding(many supermarkets et al)? It puts the other brands to shame…made French style,in an environment friendly glass mini pot,it is scrumptious. Wish it was more widely available but it can be located or ordered.

    Reply
    • Marcia you’re right, Petit Pot is the best of the best! very expensive though

      Reply