Chocolate Eclair is one of those delicious, easy, no-bake desserts that you often find at pot-luck gatherings and in church cookbooks. I’m sure it was originally created by either Jell-o or Cool Whip brands! I also have no idea why they called it “chocolate eclair” when there’s a pastry with the same name. But I also don’t much care because it’s just that yummy!
I’ve found a lot of variations online. Many seem to use chocolate frosting from a can. While I’m sure those are still delicious, this one creates more of a candy-barn coating with a pretty shine to it. The very rich chocolate flavor is offset by the creamy cool whip layer. I can’t imagine the canned frosting is anywhere near as good. And this is pretty easy too.
I made this for this past Thanksgiving and took it to our get-together. I will say, I don’t think it did well in the disposable pan pictured. It developed almost a metallic taste to it. So I recommend sticking to glass or Pyrex or whatever traditional 9×13 pan you happen to have!
Why I Love This Chocolate Eclair Recipe
Our entire family loves this dessert. It’s always a favorite with kids, as there’s nothing particularly “scary” about it…whereas pecans or pumpkin trigger a negative response in some kids. (Well, in some adults, too.) The ingredients are all easy to find at your local supermarket, too. Just hit the cookie aisle, the baking aisle, the dairy case, and frozen foods and you’ll be in and out in no time.
(I hate the supermarket at holiday time, can you tell?!?!)
I don’t think I’ve ever thrown any of this dish away. I do usually hope that enough is left to take back home, though. It keeps pretty well for a few days too, as long as you don’t expect the graham crackers to stay crunchy. It’s still good even after they get soft.
This chocolate éclair is perfect for a regular weekday dessert or a family gathering at the holidays or otherwise. The only thing it probably wouldn’t be well-suited for is a picnic in warm weather. It does need to stay cold! And don’t forget to plan ahead for this dish, since it has to chill overnight.
If you love Cool Whip desserts, make sure to check out my Strawberry Pretzel Salad recipe!
- 9×13 Baking Dish
- Small sauce pan
- 2 medium mixing bowls
- 2 packages Jell-o brand vanilla pudding (small size, 3.4oz)
- 3.5 cups milk divided
- 12 oz Cool Whip thawed
- 2/3 box graham crackers
- 4 oz unsweet baking chocolate
- 1/2 stick butter
- 3 cups powdered sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla
- In a medium bowl, mix together Cool Whip, pudding mix, and 3 cups milk.
- In a 9×13 inch pan, place one layer of graham crackers
- Top with 1/2 of pudding and Cool Whip mix
- Place another layer of graham crackers
- Top with remaining half of pudding and Cool Whip mix
- Place a final, third layer of graham crackers
- In a microwave bowl or small saucepan, melt butter and chocolate together
- Stir in 3 cups of powdered sugar, 1 tsp vanilla, and 1/2 cup milk
- Continuing stirring until combined and no lumps remain
- Pour chocolate mixture onto top layer of graham crackers, and spread in an even layer using the back of your spoon
- Chill in refrigerator for 10-12 hours