Easy Tapioca Pudding

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The best ever, easy tapioca pudding recipe that is ready in only 25 minutes. You’ll love the simple vanilla flavor in this old fashioned recipe. You may also like our baked custard!

old fashioned tapioca pudding

Easy Tapioca Pudding Recipe

What is Tapioca?

I’ve been asked so many times what in the world tapioca is. Tapioca is a starch extracted from the cassava root. Unfortunately it doesn’t really have any protein, fiber or nutrients. It’s pretty much all carbs. However, it is gluten free which means when it is ground into a flour makes it a great alternative to wheat. People use tapioca in bubble tea, desserts and as a thickening agent.

Tapioca Pearls

This recipe calls for Minute Tapioca, which makes it quick and easy. Tapioca pearls tend to be large and need to be soaked before using in a recipe, but quick cooking tapioca (or Minute Tapioca) is a smaller grain and will cook more quickly than the pearls.

How to Make Tapioca Pudding

To make tapioca pudding quickly and easily, simple heat  the milk, sugar and quick cooking tapioca in a saucepan. Bring it to boiling, reduce the heat and allow the mixture to cook for 5 minutes. Make sure you stir this constantly so that the milk does not scorch.

After that step is done, remove 1 cup of  the hot milk. You’re going to temper the eggs slowly with the hot milk. What in the world does this mean? The reason behind tempering the eggs (adding a hot mixture to beaten eggs very slowly) is so that eggs do not cook too quickly. If you poured the eggs right into all of the hot milk, you’d end up with what looks like scrambled eggs in your tapioca pudding and nobody wants that!  Add 2 tablespoons of the hot milk to the beaten eggs and whisk together. Continue to add the hot milk, two tablespoons at a time and whisking constantly, until you’ve added the entire 1 cup of hot milk to the eggs. At this point, the eggs will be warm enough (or “tempered”), so that you can add them back to the hot milk and finish cooking the pudding.

You’ll cook the pudding for just a few more minutes or until the pudding is thick enough to coat the back of a metal spoon. The exact thickness of the pudding is up to you! Some like it a little runnier, some like it thicker.

Once the pudding is at the thickness you’d like, add vanilla extract. Or coconut extract. Or even lemon. You get the idea. Add whatever flavor you’d like!

Serve the pudding either hot or cold. Once it comes to room temperature, be sure to refrigerate any leftovers.

Slow Cooker Tapioca Pudding

Did you know you can make tapioca pudding in the slow cooker? There are a few changes to make if you choose to make this recipe in the slow cooker:

  1. Don’t use minute tapioca. Use small pearl tapioca…the kind you normally would need to soak. Except if you use the slow cooker, you don’t have to soak it!
  2. Be sure to beat the eggs before adding them into the slow cooker. You want them to be well whisked to break them up so that the pudding cooks evenly.
  3. Cook on low for 4-5 hours or on high for 2-3 hours. Watch it VERY CLOSELY. Every slow cooker is different! This is not necessarily a “fix and forget” recipe.
  4. Stir the mixture often so that it slow cooks evenly.
  5. You can easily double this recipe for the slow cooker. However, it may take longer to cook!

Easy Tapioca Pudding Recipe

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Easy Tapioca Pudding

4.59 from 12 votes
The best ever, easy tapioca pudding recipe that is ready in only 25 minutes. You'll love the simple vanilla flavor in this old fashioned recipe.
Servings 6
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes

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  • In a saucepan over medium heat, stir together the milk, tapioca pearls and sugar. Bring the mixture to a boil, stirring constantly so the milk does not scorch.
  • Once the mixture is boiling, reduce the heat to low. Cook and stir for an additional 5 minutes.
  • Crack the eggs into a bowl and use a fork to whisk them together.
  • Remove 1 cup of hot milk mixture. Add two tablespoons of the hot milk mixture into the beaten eggs. Whisk well. Continue to add the hot milk, 2 tablespoons at a time, whisking well with each addition.
  • Stir the egg mixture back into the saucepan with the hot milk. Cook and stir for 2 minutes over medium heat until the pudding thickens. When it is done it should coat the back of a metal spoon.
  • Remove the pudding from the heat and stir in the vanilla.
  • Serve warm or cold!



Calories: 209kcal | Carbohydrates: 33g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 74mg | Sodium: 76mg | Potassium: 184mg | Sugar: 22g | Vitamin A: 290IU | Calcium: 147mg | Iron: 0.3mg
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Calories 209
Keyword pudding, tapioca
About JulieJulie Clark

About Julie Clark

I'm Julie Clark, CEO and recipe developer of Tastes of Lizzy T. With my B.A. in Education and over 30 years of cooking and baking, I want to teach YOU the best of our family recipes.

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2 years ago

5 stars
Absolutely SCRUMPTIOUS! I used 2 Tablespoons of maple syrup instead of the sugar, and 1 + 1/2 teaspoons vanilla, and our farm fresh eggs. It is some of the best tapioca I’ve had in my life! Grammy-approved, too, and she is a tapioca expert. Fabulous instructions! Thank you!!

4 years ago

Would skim milk still work?

4 years ago

5 stars
It’s delicious, made it with almond milk and a bit of maple syrup.

5 years ago

Just made in a pot, pretty easy and I had a cup of coconut milk in the fridge and added 2 cups 2% and it is delicious!! Thank you!