The Next Best Thing To Robert Redford
Robert Redford Dessert Recipe
Jessica’s husband’s family introduced her to The Next Best Thing To Robert Redford. After that, no holiday was complete without it. She was forever grateful… 😉 In 2012 Jessica introduced this recipe to the readers of Fabulessly Frugal and we found out that this amazing recipe has been known by many other names!
Some of those names include The Next Best Thing to (insert any actor/actresses name here), Better than Sex Dessert, Almost Better than Sex Dessert, Better than Anything Dessert and Chocolate Pie Squares. Some readers use a lemon pudding instead of vanilla and call it Aileen Torte or Lemon Lush.
My parents used to make this dessert all the time when we were growing up and they called it 4 Layer Dessert. We called it For Later Dessert because they always seemed to wait forever to let us have some.
You can not beat the mixed flavors of cream cheese and chocolate. I am bringing sexy back (insert Justin Timberlake song) today because I think this is an awesome dessert to help you get over those end of holiday blues. Plus it would be a great dessert for a Labor Day weekend BBQ! I hope you enjoy it as much as we do.
Preparing the Crust:
You will need to chop your pecans. You can do this by hand but it is much faster in a food processor or blender. I use my dry blade Vitamix.
Mix flour, softened butter, and pecans until crumbly (I recommend the medium-high setting on a mixer, the crust is thick) and press into a greased 13 x 9 baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes until lightly golden. Let cool.
Tip: The crust mix is very sticky! Spray your spatula with cooking spray to keep it from sticking as you spread it in the baking dish. ALSO, the crust will take about 45 minutes to cool, use that time to make your other layers.
Adding the Cream Cheese Layer:
Beat cream cheese sugar and a half carton of cool whip. This is another thick mixture so I recommend using the medium-high setting on your mixture. Once finished, spread over cooled crust.
Adding the Pudding Layer:
For a cute added touch (see pic below), reserve 1 teaspoon of the chocolate pudding mix. Then combine the vanilla and chocolate pudding with 3 cups cold milk. Blend it until smooth and thickened. If it needs a little thickening, you can cover it and put it in the fridge while the crust is cooling. When you’re ready, spread the pudding mixture over cream cheese layer.
Adding the Final Layer:
Spread remaining cool whip over the top. You can stop right there, but for added sexy, add the optional garnishes!
Get the chocolate pudding mix and sprinkle that on top (I used this handy mesh stainless steel strainer to sift it on top). Use a veggie peeler to make the chocolate curls to add to the top.
EASY AND DONE!
I hope you enjoy this delicious recipe (I don’t know how you couldn’t!). The crust is really the star of this recipe, it adds a nice texture and nutty flavor that goes so well with the other layers.
If you try this recipe yourself, be sure to come back and let us know how it went! We love to hear your stories and experiences.
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Cuisinart Mini-Prep Plus Food Processor
The Next Best Thing To Robert Redford
- 9x13-inch pan
- 1 cup flour
- ½ cup butter or margarine softened
- 1 cup finely chopped pecans or walnuts
- 8 ounces cream cheese
- 1 cup sugar
- 8 ounces Cool Whip
- 1 package 3.4 ounce vanilla instant pudding
- 1 package 3.9 ounce chocolate instant pudding, with 1 teaspoon reserved for garnish
- 3 cups cold milk
- 1 chocolate bar grated (optional, but makes it look pretty!)
- Mix flour, butter, and pecans until crumbly and use a spatula sprayed with cooking spray to press into a greased 9x13 baking pan (see notes).
- Bake at 350°F/175°C for 15-20 minutes until lightly golden. Set aside to cool (about 45 minutes).
- In the meantime, beat cream cheese, sugar, and half container of cool whip until smooth.
- Spread over cooled crust.
- Reserve 1 teaspoon of chocolate pudding mix to sprinkle over the top of finished dessert.
- Combine both the vanilla and chocolate pudding powders with 3 cups cold milk. Blend until smooth and thickened. Spread over cream cheese layer.
- Spread remaining cool whip over the top and sprinkle with reserved chocolate pudding mix and the grated chocolate bar.
Comments & Reviews
Hmmm, looks yummy enough but I don’t think anything can be better than Robert Redford!!!
I would have to name it “Next best thing to Steve Young” lol
That is what our family calls Chocolate Delight. It’s a REQUIREMENT that we have this at every thxgvng n Christmas gathering on my moms side of the family. I like it with Graham cracker crust myself.
We call it Chocolate Delight, too! 🙂 AND, I also started using graham cracker crust instead. I like it better that way. Too funny!
It is one of my favorite desserts. I could eat the whole pie.
We make it with a crushed Oreo crust. It’s truly sinful.
I have substituted lemon pudding for the chocolate, and it’s called “Lemon Delight.”
THANK YOU for this. I was looking for something new and simply and I do believe this is the winner. Can’t wait to eat it. My thighs thank you too.
We’ve been making this for years and love it. For a great variation use 2 pkgs. Pistachio pudding. Lemon is also wonderful. We like it slightly frozen too. Yummy.
Oh My Gosh!!! I love this dessert!! We make it every year!
We have always called this 4 layer dessert..but I prefer your name so much better…lol…This is awesome with butterscotch pudding!!
My mom makes this with sugar free stuff. It’s great for people who can’t have sugar in their diet.
This is a holiday staple at our house…. with the same name, I might ad! EVERYONE should take the time to try this dessert…. or not, if you are dieting! LOL
Oh this is what we call better than sex cake. A staple at our house for
new years parties!
My husband’s family calls this recipe husband’s delight
We call this recipe “Chocolate Pie Squares.” I guess Chocolate Pie Squares is easier to say than Chocolate Pudding Squares! I have made this for years and it always gets rave reviews!
My cousin makes a lemon version of this called Lemon Lush, with the pecan nut crust. Oh boy, is it luscious! This chocolate version looks yummy too. I’ll have to try it. I have cream cheese just waiting in my fridge.
No one makes this better than my mom! 🙂
I’d call it “The Next Best Thing To Brad Pitt”!
Our very old recipe says it’s called “Four Layered Dessert”, but our family renamed it “Texas Yum Yum”
My mom made this pie every once in a while when i was a kid. So yummy!
We call this Fat Man Pie!!!! Now I want one but no time to make it 🙁
My mother-in-law makes this and she calls it “Plush”. We love it. Over the years she has modified it some. In my favorite version she completely cuts out the pudding and adds fresh sliced sugared strawberries. Absolutely delicious!
wow! my family calls this Michigan dessert too! how weird is that. so glad you posted this =)
WE MAKE THIS! It is delicious and this is what we call it too! ive never known anyone to have any idea what we are talking about!
Also named “Republican Dessert” – I grew up on this dish at church potlucks and it was ALWAYS one of the first dishes to get eaten up! Making it for Christmas this year and can hardly wait…. 🙂 🙂
Oh how I love this dessert!! I never knew so many people knew about it hahaha we call it three layer dessert…… not counting the crust I suppose… not sure but my mom made it my entire life for all holiday events 🙂 it is so awesome to see everyone’s names and different variations 🙂 love ♥
This is so good! We call it “Arizona Yum Yum” over here. And we use the graham cracker crust.
When I was a kid I remember it being called “Better than S-E-X dessert,” said just like that because my mom, grandmother, aunts, etc. always spelled it out and blushed when they said it! Jello used to make a Butter Pecan pudding and that is still my favorite variation aside from pistachio, which is a close second.
Our family has been making this since the 70’s and we also call it next best thing to Robert Redford. You are the first ones that I have found that call it the same thing! Its one of my favorites. Its also really good it you use thickened fresh raspberries instead of the chocolate pudding.
My husbands family calls this Dallas Delight and no holiday is complete without it.
We call it Aileen Torte and make it w/chocolate & lemon. My absolute favorite dessert!!!!!!!!!!!
Better than sex is what I’ve always heard it called. This is what I served at my wedding reception 24 years ago.
so excited to make this! there is no such thing as a “6 3/4 oz. box of pudding.” does this recipe use 2 large or 2 small pudding boxes…thanks!
We call it “better than sex cake” it’s very good…I don’t agree with the statement though lol!
Better than Sex in a Pan, YUM!
My friend’s mom used to make this, but I never had the recipe till now, so thanks! I’d call it “The Next Best Thing to Ryan Gosling.” ;o)
I have a question about the recipe! I am allergic to nuts, so what do I need to do in relation to the crust? Will it turn out too mushy or soft w/o the nuts?
Wow! This desert not only looks like it tastes really good, but sounds rather versatile and easy, and it has even started a whole conversation about itself. lol Can’t wait to try this easy recipe with the kids! Maybe the next one we can add our of tweaks to it.
I love this Texas Yum Yum, but have also heard it called “Hippo Delight”
Call it what you will, OH MY GOODNESS, it’s rich, and thick and chocolatey…
Ooh, I can try it with cherries, im sure someone will eat it 😀
My mom also made it with pistachio pudding and it was my favorite!
Do you use real sugar or powder sugar!! ??? I saw one Receipes used the powdered sugar!!
Hello. Has anyone tried this using a peanut butter/chocolate version? 😊
Oh man, I’ve never heard of a chocolate/peanut butter version but that sounds divine! I’m assuming you’d just melt the peanut butter and pour it in the poked cake? OR do you mix peanut butter with the sweetened condensed milk?
Have been enjoying this Robert Redford dessert sine the 1970’s! Truly indulgent. Nothing is better, especially at Thanksgiving. Variations sound interesting (except for peanut butter one…..yes I do like peanut butter) but I am not really into bastardizing Robert Redford. It is a classic and a tradition for us! Enjoy! It’s eorth the calories! 😊😜😊
You actually need 2 SMALL boxes of pudding, not the 5 ounce boxes indicated in the recipe. That would make it way too thick and dried out. I’ve made this recipe like a hundred and fifty times. Lol. My favorite dessert ever!!!
That crust was amazing! I’ve never made a pecan crust before & we all loved it! Plus the thick layers were very indulgent, yet easy. Thanks for such a wonderful dessert!
Hi SG! So glad you loved it! Thank you for taking the time to share your review! 🙂
Fabulous dessert! I just made it for a Father’s Day and used butterscotch pudding! So yummy!
Nice variation there, Judy! Thanks for sharing – glad you enjoyed!
My mother called it next best thing to Clark Gable, it’s always Good !!!