"Sex in a Pan." That's the given name to this incredible dessert - at least the current name in vogue. I remember this five-layer dessert from the 70's! I can't remember what it was called back then, but I do know, it wasn't Sex In A Pan. I would have definitely remembered that. :) Don't get me wrong, I love the name - it TOTALLY fits; however, I just can't imagine my sweet 3 year old grandson walking up to me and asking, "Nonna, can I have more Sex in a Pan?!" So, I decided to rename it - Afternoon Delight! I really don't know if that's much better, lol; however, Afternoon Delight (as I sing the song) makes me smile and think of the 70's, and a much simpler time, like the dessert! :)
What is it about nostalgic desserts like this - they disappear for a time, only to resurface years later, to be discovered again by a new generation. I think it's because they are incredibly delicious, quick and easy to make, and lend a bit of comfort, as well! Afternoon Delight is truly timeless!
I just love watching friends take their first bite into the crunchy, sweet bottom crust with the four creamy layers upon it, and see the expressions on their faces. The usual explanation is - O. M. G. !!! Then, amazingly, they don't say another word, and just go about finishing it in total silence, savoring each scrumptious forkful.
Have fun creating this divine dessert to serve to your friends and family! …and feel free to name it what you like best! :) Whatever name you choose, have my blog name ready, because this will be one of those desserts that everyone will want the recipe for!
Happy Friday - have a beautiful weekend!
Until next time…mangia! xox
Serves 12 plus
layer 1 - for the crust
1 cup pecans, chopped
3 tablespoons sugar
1/2 cup butter (room temperature, but not too soft)
1 cup flour
layer 2 - for the cream cheese layer
1 - 8 oz package cream cheese, room temperature
1 cup powdered sugar
1 cup heavy whipping cream, whipped
layer 3 - for the chocolate pudding
2 - 1 oz packages of instant or cook & serve chocolate pudding (I used sugar free/fat free)
3 cups milk (I used 2% milk)
layer 4 - for the vanilla pudding
2 - 1 oz packages of instant or cook & serve vanilla pudding (I used sugar free/fat free)
3 cups milk (I used 2% milk)
layer 5 - for the whipped cream topping
2 cups heavy whipping cream, whipped
chocolate shavings for garnish
Create the Afternoon Delight:
- Preheat oven to 350F degrees.
- Lightly spray a 9 x 13 inch baking pan or glass dish with baking spray.
- With a hand mixer, mix all the crust ingredients until they all come together. Press the mixture into the prepared baking dish. Bake for 18 - 20 minutes. Let cool.
- Prepare the chocolate pudding according to package directions. Set aside in refrigerator.
- Prepare the vanilla pudding according to package directions. Set aside in refrigerator.
- Whip the 3 cups of heavy whipping cream.
- In another bowl add the cream cheese, powdered sugar and one cup of whipped cream. Mix until light and fluffy.
- Spread the cream cheese layer over the cooled crust evenly.
- Spread the chocolate pudding evenly over the cream cheese layer.
- Spread the vanilla pudding evenly over the chocolate pudding layer.
- Top with whipped cream and refrigerate a few hours to set up nicely.
- Garnish with shaved chocolate of your choice before serving.
I always use heavy whipping cream and whip all 3 cups needed at one time in a stand mixer. After the cream is whipped, it makes a larger amount than needed for the recipe, so I just use it for my coffee, or add a little more to the top layer, but want to be sure I whip up enough. No sugar is needed in the whipping cream, with the other sweeter layers, it lends the perfect balance. You can always substitute cool whip, if you'd like, but since it takes literally another few minutes for the real whipped cream - go for it!
When I made Afternoon Delight last weekend, I used vanilla instant pudding, and chocolate cook & serve pudding. They both set up equally well; however, I did find the cook & serve a bit thicker, and actually think I'll use cook & serve from now on for both the vanilla and chocolate layers.
I like to add my garnish after I cut the slices, so it looks freshly shaved.
Afternoon Delight keeps nicely for 3 or 4 days in the refrigerator, so feel free to create this a day or two in advance.
Recipe adapted from JoCooks.