Bread pudding is an amazing old-fashioned dessert and a great way to use some old stale bread. This way you will also reduce your food waste while creating a delicious and easy dessert.
Bread pudding is far beyond a little cubed stale bread, however. Bread pudding resembles French toast in flavor and for me, it is even better because it has some dried fruits inside.
Still, what elevates bread pudding to the realm of a truly decadent dessert is the sauce. The bread is soaked in a mixture of milk and eggs. That mixture is what gives it a nice custard base and turns the plain stale bread into a delicacy.
That’s efficient and delicious!
Bread pudding can be served as a holiday dessert, a regular dessert, or even for breakfast!
And with this recipe, you don’t even have to use the oven at all! So if you ever have a craving for something sweet in hot weather, this is your new go-to.
Read on to make this easy and delicious decadent bread pudding without an oven! I hope you enjoy it.
What is Bread Pudding?
Bread pudding is where leftover stale bread gets a second chance to show its wonders.
You may have heard of bread pudding or custard-soaked bread in fancy restaurants.
At nice restaurants, it’s often made with not-so-ordinary types of bread, but bread pudding is still something you can make with the same quality from the comfort of your home with the ingredients you likely have on hand.
Like I said, for me, bread pudding is an upgraded version of French toast, with crispy edges and a soft center, in one fabulous crowd-pleasing dish.
The foundation of bread pudding is the bread itself.
You can choose stale bread to reduce food waste, or go with challah bread or even sweeter choices, like Panettone bread. The bread is covered with a creamy and lush, pudding-like custard.
And it all results in a crispy-topped dessert!
The custard for the bread pudding is very easy and requires no extra cooking.
You just have to beat the eggs and milk with sweetener and pour over the bread. You have to allow the bread some soaking time, for at least 10 minutes before any baking or cooking over the stove.
What Type of Bread to Choose
As mentioned, you can choose any type of bread you like.
I do not recommend whole grain, just because I have never personally tried it out, but I have made my bread pudding with:
- Plain white bread
- Whole wheat bread
- Regular white bread
- Artisan country bread
- Brioche bread
- Panettone bread
Speaking about the types and which one is the best, I must say it is brioche. Brioche bread is rich and slightly sweet. It will soak up the cream like a sponge.
Sorry if your personal favorite didn’t make it to first place, but if you want that truly outstanding bread pudding, brioche is the right one.
Still, any bread that will soak up the custard nicely will be just perfect. So, beyond brioche, you can use any type of the rich bread you have, and even leftover cinnamon rolls. Now, believe me, that is delicious.
The types of bread you want to avoid are sourdough or hearty whole-grain loaves. The savory flavors in those loaves do not make them well-suited for bread pudding.
So always stick with mild-flavored breads or those on the sweeter side.
Tips for Making the Best Bread Pudding
1. Prepare the bread first.
The night before you want to make your bread pudding, make sure you cut your bread into cubes. This will help them dry out.
If you forgot this step, or didn’t know ahead of time, you can simply toast the bread until it’s dried out.
Although this may sound opposite of what you think the bread should look like, the dried bread will absorb the custard much better. It will give you a better pudding texture in the end.
2. Leave the bread to soak up the custard.
I have mentioned this earlier and I cannot emphasize enough the importance of this step.
You can leave it from 15 minutes up to an hour or even chill in a fridge overnight. The longer the soaking period, the better the custard will soak through the bread.
3. Cook until creamy.
Now if this was a classic oven method, I would say the ideal temperature of the baked bread pudding is 160F on the thermometer.
Still, I am sharing an easier method and without oven, so cook for 15 minutes on one side, and flip and cook for 8-10 minutes on the other side. This will ensure you have a perfectly cooked bread pudding with the crispy top.
How to Make Bread Pudding Without an Oven
Gather your ingredients.
In a mixing bowl, whisk heavy cream, milk, eggs, sugar, and vanilla.
Melt butter in a cast-iron skillet. (If you don’t have one, this cast iron skillet from Amazon is my absolute favorite).
Remove the skillet from the heat making sure it is nicely coated.
Add bread cubes to the skillet and pour over the custard. Let the bread soak up the mixture for at least 15 minutes.
Place the skillet over a stove, medium heat. Top the bread with raisins and cover with a tight-fitting lid or aluminum foil.
Cook the bread pudding for 15 minutes.
Once it is starting to look set, carefully slide the bread pudding onto the plate and flip the uncooked side back into the pan. Cover and cook for another 10 minutes.
Serve bread pudding warm, alone or with dollop of ice cream or some caramel sauce on top.
- ¼ cup heavy cream
- 2 tbsp butter, chopped
- ¼ cup milk
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 1 egg
- 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
- 3 cups cubed stale bread
- 2 tbsp raisins
- Gather your ingredients.
- In a mixing bowl, whisk heavy cream, milk, eggs, sugar, and vanilla.
- Melt butter in a cast-iron skillet.
- Remove the skillet from the heat, making sure it is nicely coated with melted butter.
- Add bread cubes to the skillet and pour over the custard. Let the bread soak up the mixture for at least 15 minutes.
- Place the skillet over a stove, medium heat. Top the bread with raisins and cover with a tight-fitting lid or aluminum foil.
- Cook the bread pudding for 15 minutes. Once it is starting to look set, carefully slide the bread pudding onto the plate and flip the uncooked side back into the pan.
- Cover and cook for another 10 minutes.
- Serve bread pudding warm, alone or with dollop of ice cream or some caramel sauce on top.
Dry bread will soak up the custard better. Cube your bread the night before or toast before cooking to help it dry.
You can leave the bread to soak up the custard for over an hour or even overnight for creamier results.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1 dessert bowl
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 249Total Fat: 14gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 80mgSodium: 223mgCarbohydrates: 26gFiber: 1gSugar: 11gProtein: 5g
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