Okay, so I start off by lining a large muffin pan (12 muffin cups) with some saran wrap. This is where I'm going to be building my baskets. I make sure that I push the saran wrap into and making a pocket that lines each cup.
Then it's onto making my nests with chocolate chips, peanut butter and chow mien noodles. Into a large mixing bowl go all of the chow mien noodles.
My assistant then helps me melt the chocolate chips in the microwave for 30 seconds. Then stir. Back into the microwave for another 30 seconds. Stir again. And continue melting them at 10 second intervals until the chocolate is all melted and creamy. (Be Careful Not To Burn Your Chocolate!)
Next the peanut butter is mixed into the melted chocolate. I prefer chunky peanut butter, but creamy will work just fine.
Change of assistants and then the chocolate peanut butter mixture gets added to the chow mien noodles.
It all gets mixed together and the noodles get broken up so that the pieces are small enough to form around the muffin cups.
It takes about 1 1/2 tablespoons to make the basket cups. Press the chocolate noodles along the bottom & edges with a tablespoon...or if you don't mind having to lick your fingers, use them! Just make sure that the chocolate and noodles cover the cups well so that the pudding doesn't drip out later...and also leave a well in the middle to be filled later.
Then cover up those little baskets with a layer of saran wrap and toss them in to the fridge for 20 minutes...or overnight.
Once the baskets have cooled and set, they should easily be removed by lifting the saran wrap.
Place the baskets on a tray or plate and begin filling them with pudding. My kiddles are chocolate pudding fanatics so that was our flavor choice. And to make it a little bit easier on Momma, I decided to buy some pre-made pudding cups.
Then start filling those cute little baskets with the pudding. Believe it or not, just one of the pudding cups filled three baskets!
Now for the really fun part...decorating the baskets. I pulled out a mix of goodies...and then let my kiddles have at it. Rose decided that she wanted sprinkles on her pudding.
But pulling out all of the candy didn't go so well...they just ate the candy and wanted Momma to do the rest of the decorating. So I decided to color a little "grass" by adding a couple drops of green food coloring to some sweetened coconut.
Perfect...now there's grass for some of the baskets. At least for those who like coconut. (like Momma)
Sprinkle the "grass" onto the pudding...and then proceed to fill the basket with whatever goodies catch your eye.
And for those who don't like sprinkles or "grass"...a plain pudding basket. Well, almost plain...it's going to be filled with goodies too.
So no matter what their tastes, be it sprinkles,
or coconut "grass",
or bare pudding with candies, there is a basket for everyone.
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Easter Pudding Baskets
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Chill Time: 20 minutes
2 cups Chow Mien Noodles
1 1/2 cups Chocolate Chips (semi sweet, milk, white or dark chocolate)
5 Tbsp. Peanut Butter (chunky or creamy)
4-5 Pre-made Pudding Cups Assortment of Easter candies (sprinkles, robbin's eggs, jelly beans, marshmallows, etc.)
12 Red Vines or licorice ropes
Line a large muffin pan (12 muffin cups) with saran wrap. Be sure to push the saran wrap into each cup, lining them. In a microwave safe bowl or measuring cup, melt the chocolate chips in the microwave for 30 seconds. Stir. Back into the microwave for another 30 seconds. Stir again. Continue melting chocolate at 10 second intervals until the chocolate is all melted and creamy, stirring each time. Be Careful Not To Burn Your Chocolate!
Once chocolate is melted, add peanut butter and stir until well blended. In a large mixing bowl add chow mien noodles and chocolate. Mix until well blended. Break chow mien noodles into small pieces with a spoon while mixing. (1/2 inch or smaller)
Take about 1 1/2 tablespoons of the mixture and press along the bottom & edges of the muffin cups with a tablespoon. Making sure that the chocolate and noodles cover the cups well so that the pudding doesn't drip out later. Be sure to leave a well in the middle to be filled later. Cover with a layer of Saran wrap and place into the refrigerator for 20 minutes minimum. (can be made 2 days ahead)
Once chilled, remove chocolate baskets by gently pulling saran wrap. Place on a plate or serving tray. Take chilled pre-made pudding cups (or homemade pudding) and fill the chocolate baskets. (1 pudding cup will fill approximately 3 chocolate baskets)
To make basket handles, place ends of Red Vines into pudding on opposite sides of the chocolate basket. Decorate with coconut grass and Easter candies.
Place back in saran lined muffin pan, cover with saran wrap and return to refrigerator until ready for use.
1 cup Coconut Flakes, sweetened
5-6 drops Green Food Coloring
Mix coconut flakes and food coloring. Add more drops of green if necessary for desired color. For lighter green, mix 2 drops yellow and 3 drops green food coloring before mixing with coconut flakes.