Peppermint crisp pudding: a South African classic

Peppermint crisp pudding - a South African classic dessert

Peppermint pudding is a classic South African dessert that is so easy to whip up and hardly warrants a recipe. It’s something I just make without thinking.

Peppermint crisp pudding - a South African classic dessert

You would typically make this in a square or rectangle dish with defined layers of biscuit and caramel, but I wanted to deconstruct it a bit and make individual servings. Frankly, they are just so much more pretty to photograph.

Peppermint crisp pudding - a South African classic dessert

This is a recipe that you can adapt and change. You could add all the cream to the caramel or leave some of it to decorate the top. You could use more or less chocolate.

I like to add a splash of coffee liqueur to the coffee-flavoured milk which gets sucked into the Tennis biscuits. This adds a delicious grown-up boozy edge to this dessert. The coffee adds depth of flavour to balance out the sweetness a little. 

* Tennis biscuits are coconut tea biscuits (in the UK Nice biscuits are a brand that is similar to the Tennis biscuit).

Origins of Peppermint Crisp pudding/tart

The South African Peppermint Crisp Tart (or pudding) is a beloved dessert with an interesting history. Its origins trace back to the 1970s when it was first introduced as a recipe on the packaging of a popular South African chocolate bar, the Peppermint Crisp.

This iconic dessert quickly gained popularity for its simplicity and deliciousness. The Peppermint Crisp Tart is made by layering tennis biscuits (a coconut tea biscuit/cookie), whipped cream & caramel, and crumbled Peppermint Crisp chocolate bars.

These layers create an ultra-sweet dessert with contrasting textures. Over the years, it has become a staple at South African gatherings and is a dish filled with nostalgia.

You might also like these South African recipes:

Classic South African unbaked milk tarts

Earl Grey tea milk tart  – Baked milk tart 

Orange malva pudding

Pear & ginger malva pudding

Malva pudding with cranberries & ginger

My grandmother Betty’s crunchy recipe

The best buttermilk bran rusks

A classic buttermilk rusk recipe

Muesli rusks with oats & raisins

Traditional South African bobotie with fragrant yellow rice

What you need to make 1 dessert (will feed 4 – 6) 

Peppermint crisp pudding

A classic South African peppermint crisp pudding recipe.
Print Recipe
Peppermint crisp pudding - a South African classic dessert
Prep Time:10 minutes


  • 1 tin of caramel about a cup
  • 1 cup of cream 25oml
  • 80 g of chocolate peppermint crisp bars
  • about 1/3 of a cup of milk
  • 1 tsp instant coffee granules
  • 1 packet of Tennis biscuits
  • 1 TBsp Baileys / Cape Velvet/chocolate liqueur – optional


  • Whip the cream and add about 3/4 of it to the caramel, reserving the remaining 1/4 for garnish.
  • Beat the cream into the caramel until it is smooth. Grate the chocolate and add 3/4 of it to the cream/caramel mix. Pour the milk into a shallow bowl and dissolve the coffee granules. If you are adding booze like I like to do when making this for adults, then you add it to the milk now.
  • Dunk the Tennis biscuits into the milk mix, flipping them over and then setting them aside. This softens them slightly and I like the flavour the coffee adds.  It helps takes the edge off the sweetness of this.
  • If you are making one dessert you would place a layer of Tennis biscuits at the bottom, top with a thin layer of caramel and then repeat until all the mixture is used up. I like a layer of cream on top. To make the individual portions, simply crumble a biscuit or two and then top with caramel and then repeat.
  • Decorate with grated peppermint crisp.
  • It will set in the fridge and is a bit better to make this in advance or the day before.
Servings: 4 4-6
Author: Sam Linsell


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  1. This is T’s ultimate fave dessert.
    I love the idea of adding Bailey’s into the mix, am definitely going to do that for him next time.

  2. I love this dessert as it a favourite with all ages and the twist of soaking the biscuits first in the coffee-milk and adding the Baileys gives it a great taste twist!

  3. Thanks Lisa, I find it just takes the sweet edge off and gives this more depth.

  4. Enjoy Caylee and let me know ho wit goes (we all know how much you love Baileys) S x

  5. Nooooooooo, Sam!!! I can’t stand it any longer – I want some!!!

  6. These look fabulous! And my little boy loves anything minty, so I’m sure they’ll be a hit. What’s a Tennis biscuit by the way? I’m thinking like a Digestive in the UK?

  7. Hi Kathie, Tennis biscuits are sort of thin tea biscuits with coconut. perhaps. I think digestives could work well.

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