100 Favorite Dishes 2012: No. 66, Banana Pudding at Pizzitola's

Photo by Katharine Shilcutt
This year leading up to our annual Best of Houston® issue, we're counting down our 100 favorite dishes in Houston. This list comprises our favorite dishes from the last year, dishes that are essential to Houston's cultural landscape and/or dishes that any visitor (or resident) should try at least once.

Everyone knows that the ribs at Pizzitola's Bar-B-Cue are close to the best in Houston. But what this post presupposes is that...maybe the banana pudding is better.

Okay, that's just bullshit. But the banana pudding at Pizzitola's is often neglected in the face of its equally excellent ribs. So I'm here to tell you to save room for dessert at the famous barbecue joint on Shepherd (which also has a reputation for housing big money wheelers and dealers at lunch), because the banana pudding is too good to go ignored any more.

A successful banana pudding has to have four main components: thick, almost custard-like vanilla pudding; fat slices of bananas; real whipped cream; and crunchy Nilla wafers. Too often, banana puddings in restaurants skimp on one or all of these ingredients and the result is a sloppy, watery mess. Pizzitola's gets them all right, even down to the super-crunchy Nilla wafers that seem to be inserted just prior to serving.

Hell, even if you take the banana pudding to go to eat later at your desk (as I did in the photo above, as if you couldn't tell), they're still crunchy. That's a successful banana pudding.

The list so far:

No. 100: Chili cheese mac at Jus' Mac
No. 99: Texas turkey sandwich at Spec's
No. 98: Custard at Petite Sweets
No. 97: Caprichos mixtos at Taqueria Monterrey Chiquito
No. 96: Pineapple-wasabi burger at Lankford Grocery
No. 95: Farmer's MKT Pizza at Phoenicia's MKT Bar
No. 94: Potatoes at Money Cat Brunch
No. 93: Breakfast tacos at Sunrise Taquito
No. 92: Hot dog at Tacos D.F.
No. 91: Avocado gelato at Frozen Cafe
No. 90: Chicken sandwich at JerryBuilt Homegrown Burgers
No. 89: Beer-battered asparagus at Hearsay
No. 88: Honey Badger omelet at Kraftsmen Cafe
No. 87: Pastelitos de carne at El Jalapeño
No. 86: Pancakes at Union Kitchen
No. 85: Wild boar and crab pizza at Boheme
No. 84: Breakfast croissant at BB Donuts
No. 83: Pretzel at Anvil Bar & Refuge
No. 82: Short rib sandwich at Shepherd Park Draught House
No. 81: Grilled shrimp po-boy at Pappadeaux
No. 80: Dahi puri at Shiv Sagar
No. 79: Aporreado at Los Corrales
No. 78: Oxtail francobolli at Aldo's Cucina Italiana
No. 77: Tonkotsu at Cafe Kubo's
No. 76: Spinach danish from Angela's Oven
No. 75: Pupusas at El Petate
No. 74: Pheasant dog at Sammy's Wild Game Grill
No. 73: X-Tudo burger at Friends Pizzeria
No. 72: Esparragos gratinados at Tintos
No. 71: Gua bao at Yummy Kitchen
No. 70: Geisha dog at Happy Endings
No. 69: Oyster po-boy and gumbo at Goode Co. Seafood
No. 68: Ceviche at Sirena Seafood
No. 67: Caldo de mariscos at Taqueria Arandas

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Location Info

Pizzitola's Bar-B-Cue

1703 Shepherd Dr., Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

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I don't know WTH they are talking about either.  Been there, didn't do that.


Guess I've visited on the wrong day ... or got there in time for a bad rack-o-ribs.  I've tried them and haven't gotten the ribs everybody else gets.

just saying
just saying

I disagree.  It looks like the most delicious bowl of mush I've ever seen.


 I do something similar, but add some stubs pork marinade, and maple chips, and some powdered chipolte, adds to the smokey taste along with the paprika of course. :)

Bruce R
Bruce R

This is where I say that food served in foam with a plastic spoon looks unappetizing.


 I've used a variation on the Homesick Texan's Dr Pepper sticky ribs to similar result. My variation is that I basically stopped using her sauce. Not that it wasn't good, but I didn't find it necessary.


Let me get back to you on that one!  But if you ever want to try and make them do the following: Rub:  Garlic powder, onion powder, salt, pepper, meat seasoning, paprika, brown sugar Rub all over ribs, slow cook indirect heat at 325 for two hours, heavenly ribs will follow and may become addicting :)


 And I can get said ribs where? :)


Mine are better


Their ribs best be a little higher up the list, they are the business.


No marinade needed, the rub gives the ribs a crusty exterior with a melt in your mouth interior and in effect a "candied rib" and fuck you delicious.  I made for a party of 30 that mouthgasmed!

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