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Classic Bread Pudding with Rum-Raisin Sauce

Scott Phillips

Servings: 8 to 10

Simply mix the liquid ingredients, pour over the bread, let soak, and bake. It’s that easy. And when serving the sauce, use a spoon to be sure to scoop up some of the raisins that sink to the bottom.


For the bread pudding

  • 1/2 Tbs. unsalted butter, softened
  • 6 to 7 cups lightly packed 1-inch bread cubes, preferably from a day-old, Italian-style loaf with any hard crusts removed
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1-1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
  • 1/4 tsp. table salt
  • 2-1/2 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup heavy cream

For the rum-raisin sauce

  • 1-1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 3/4 cup raisins
  • 2/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 3 to 4 Tbs. dark rum

Nutritional Information

  • Calories (kcal) : 500
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 250
  • Fat (g): 27
  • Saturated Fat (g): 16
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 1.5
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 8.5
  • Cholesterol (mg): 185
  • Sodium (mg): 250
  • Carbohydrates (g): 53
  • Fiber (g): 1
  • Protein (g): 8


Make the bread pudding

  • Butter an 8-cup baking dish, such as an 8-inch square. Pile in the bread cubes; the dish should be almost completely filled. Have ready a larger baking pan that can comfortably hold the smaller dish.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs, yolk, sugar, vanilla, and salt. Add the milk and cream, and whisk until well blended. Pour the egg mixture evenly over the bread. Cover with plastic wrap directly on the surface, and let sit at room temperature, pressing down on it occasionally to submerge the bread in the custard, for at least 45 minutes and up to 24 hours. (Refrigerate if soaking for more than 2 hours; let sit at room temperature while the oven heats.)
  • Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 350°f. Bring a kettle of water to a boil, and then take it off the heat. Remove the plastic wrap from the pudding and place the baking dish in the larger baking pan. Put the baking pan on the oven rack. Carefully pour enough hot water into the pan to reach about halfway up the sides of the baking dish.
  • Bake until the center of the pudding springs back when gently pressed with a finger and a knife inserted in the center comes out almost clean, 50 to 55 minutes. Cool in the water bath on a rack for about 15 minutes. Carefully lift the baking dish out of the water and transfer to the rack to cool.

Make the rum-raisin sauce

  • Combine the cream, raisins, and sugar in a 3-quart saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, reduce the heat to low, and cook, stirring frequently, until the mixture thickly coats a silicone spatula and holds a line drawn through it, 6 to 8 minutes. Off the heat, stir in the rum.


  • Serve the bread pudding warm or at room temperature with warm rum-raisin sauce drizzled over each portion. Serve the extra sauce on the side.

Scatter 2 Tbs. finely chopped crystallized ginger over the bread cubes. in place of milk and cream in the custard, use two well-shaken 13.4-oz. cans coconut milk. increase the vanilla to 2-1/2 tsp. and add 1-1/4 tsp. finely grated fresh lemon zest to the custard. After baking, sprinkle toasted shredded coconut over the pudding. 


Soak 1/2 cup dried cranberries in very hot tap water until plumped, about 20 minutes. Drain well. Scatter the cranberries over the bread cubes. Add 3/4 tsp. pure almond extract to the custard. After baking, sprinkle toasted sliced almonds over the pudding. 


Soak 1/2 cup dried cherries in very hot tap water until plumped, about 20 minutes. Drain well. Scatter the cherries and 2 oz. finely chopped bittersweet chocolate over the bread cubes. increase the granulated sugar to 3/4 cup, and whisk 1 oz. (1/3 cup) unsweetened Dutchprocess cocoa powder into the custard.


Rate or Review

Reviews (2 reviews)

  • AnneJ | 04/05/2016

    This was easy and I loved it! I am gluten free so I made it using a combination of Trader Joes' all-grain sandwich bread and a raisin cinnamon bread I made from a Glutino sandwich bread mix. Both are firm breads but also absorbed the liquid in 45 min. I made a half recipe minus the extra half half yolk. This half recipe, served with fresh sliced strawberries, makes 6 servings.

  • DWROH | 02/09/2016

    I had never made bread pudding before, but this recipe came out superbly. I halved the ingredients and baked the bread pudding in a glass meatloaf pan. Use the water bath surround as per Abigail's instructions. Scrumptious!

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