Grandma’s Old Fashioned Bread Pudding with Vanilla Sauce

I’ve often questioned what it is about bread pudding that captivates and enchants people. There were never any leftovers when my mom made my grandmother’s recipe when I was a child—not even a crumb on the pan. At the restaurant where I worked, the pastry chef would make bread pudding in numerous pans as a special dessert, and it would be gone long before dinner service ended. One was available for dessert, while the other was for takeout.

When I was in my 20s, I suddenly developed a taste for the bread pudding my mother often cooked. After calling her and obtaining the recipe, I hurried to the supermarket to pick up a few things before coming home to start making the bread pudding.

I was floored when I realized that it is not difficult, it doesn’t have exotic ingredients or lengthy wait times, and I did it all by myself on the first try. The way I had seen people adulate over it you would think that it was like making baklava with all its time and tediousness!

I assure you that this will be a breeze, everyone will love it, and they might just think you are a superhero who spent all day making this divine dessert!




1 (1-pound) loaf (4 cups) French bread – cubed 1 1/2 inches
1/2 cup raisins (golden raisins are my favorite.)
2 cups milk
1/4 cup butter
1/2 cup sugar
2 large eggs – slightly beaten
1 Tbsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg


1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
1 Tbsp. vanilla extract


Heat oven to 350°F.
Butter a 1 ½ – 2 quart casserole. Set aside.


Place bread cubes onto baking sheet. Bake 8-10 minutes or until toasted.
Combine toasted bread cubes and raisins in prepared casserole. Set aside.
Combine milk and 1/4 cup butter in 1-quart saucepan. Cook over medium heat 4-7 minutes or until butter has melted. Cool slightly.
In a large mixing bowl, combine the sugar, eggs, vanilla, and nutmeg. Mix well.
Add milk mixture; mix well.
Pour the mixture over bread cubes.
Transfer to the oven and bake 40-45 minutes or until set in center. (Make the vanilla sauce while the pudding is baking.)
Remove from oven and let it rest for 10-15 minutes.


While the pudding is in the oven, prepare the vanilla sauce.
In a saucepan, combine the butter, sugar, brown sugar, and heavy whipping cream.
Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for 5-8 minutes or until mixture thickens and comes to a full boil.
Remove from heat and carefully stir in the vanilla.
Spoon warm pudding into individual dessert dishes; serve with sauce.
If there is any leftover, wrap in plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

• Raisins:
You can adjust the quantity of raisins to suit your tastes. Even leave them out if you wish.

• Spices: Adding some cinnamon is delicious.

• Chocolate Chips: Chocolate bread pudding is unbelievable, just leave out the spices.

• Bread: You can use whatever leftover bread you have – except I do not recommend rye or pumpernickel! Challah bread makes fantastic bread pudding. Don’t be afraid to mix up different types of bread – it is a great way to use up the stale pieces.

• FREEZE: After baking, cool completely, wrap in plastic wrap and a layer of aluminum foil, and freeze for up to 2 months. Let it thaw in the refrigerator.

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