Holiday Pistachio Dessert Recipe
Holiday Pistachio Dessert Recipe photo by Taste of Home

Holiday Pistachio Dessert Recipe

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For my best festive menu, I make this "famous" dessert, which my children gobble up immediately. It’s a hit at every gathering! —Edie DeSpain, Logan, Utah
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 30 min. + chilling
MAKES:15 servings
Quick Test Kitchen Approved
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 30 min. + chilling
MAKES: 15 servings


  • 1-1/4 cups biscuit/baking mix
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons cold butter
  • 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup plus 1 tablespoon confectioners' sugar, divided
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream, whipped, divided
  • 2-1/2 cups cold milk
  • 2 packages (3.4 ounces each) instant pistachio pudding mix
  • Chocolate curls, optional

Nutritional Facts

1 piece (calculated without chocolate curls) equals 279 calories, 16 g fat (8 g saturated fat), 38 mg cholesterol, 392 mg sodium, 30 g carbohydrate, trace fiber, 4 g protein.


  1. In a small bowl, combine the biscuit mix, walnuts and brown sugar. Cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
  2. Press into an ungreased 13-in. x 9-in. baking pan. Bake at 375° for 10-12 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool on a wire rack.
  3. In a small bowl, beat cream cheese and 1 cup confectioners' sugar until fluffy. Fold in half of the whipped cream; spread over crust. Stir remaining confectioners' sugar into remaining whipped cream; refrigerate until serving.
  4. In another bowl, whisk milk and pudding mixes for 2 minutes. Let stand for 2 minutes or until soft-set. Spread over cream cheese layer. Cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours before serving.
  5. Garnish with sweetened whipped cream and, if desired, chocolate curls. Yield: 15 servings.
Originally published as Holiday Pistachio Dessert in Country Extra March 2009, p49

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Reviewed Apr. 18, 2016

"Delicious. But I'd double the filling. You can never have too much pistachio."

Reviewed Mar. 26, 2015

"Easy to make. Looked impressive. Tasted great. I used gluten free Bisquick. I ended up adding more butter and cooking the crust a bit longer. It was delicious. I also just spread the whipped cream over the top. It was a pot luck dinner and was just easier. It made a great statement for St. Patrick's Day."

Reviewed Dec. 27, 2014

"I doubled the filling- both cream cheese/confectioner's sugar layer and the pistachio pudding layer. I can't see how the original recipe would turn out as written for a 13x9 inch pan- mine looked fantastic and full when doubled. I also did not put the whipping cream in the cream cheese layer but rather just on top of the pistachio pudding layer once set and then garnished with crushed walnuts. The crust was DELICIOUS and the entire dessert was good! Needs to have the filling doubled, in my opinion- to be served to guests"

Reviewed Mar. 18, 2014 Edited Mar. 15, 2015

"Really good! I used chopped pecans instead of walnuts. Really good! Definitely a keeper. However, I did 1.5 times the ingredients because all my layers did seem a little thin, and doubling the ingredients was too thick. But it was delicious!"

Reviewed Mar. 3, 2014

"make it low fat! use neufchatel cream cheese, 1% milk & 1 1/2 cups fat- free vanilla GREEK yogurt, divided, to replace the whipped cream. still tastes great and you feel less guilty! also you can use graham crackers laid flat , to cut out the butter and replace the crust , but the walnuts are a must! just stir into cream cheese layer- which makes this a no-bake recipe as well!"

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