New Orleans bread pudding

New Orleans style bread pudding puts all other bread puddings to shame. The whiskey sauce is what takes this dessert over the top!

new orleans bread pudding

Many years ago, our city had a fabulous New Orleans restaurant. My husband and I would go there all the time. I would get my fix of po boys, gumbo, jambalaya and etoufee. Sadly, the restaurant closed and has not reopened.

During one of our final visits there, the head chef/owner came out to greet us and gifted us with a serving of his bread pudding. My husband, who is NOT a bread pudding kind of guy, loved it. I’ve been dreaming about the bread pudding but have not made the effort to recreate it until today.

new orleans bread pudding

I had just baked two loaves of craquelin brioche that were slightly over baked. Rather than discard it, I used it in this bread pudding. Not surprisingly, the orange zest and pearl sugar gave this pudding an incredible depth of flavor.

new orleans bread pudding

The three of us enjoyed this bread pudding immensely, including my husband. The best part of the dessert was the dreamy whiskey sauce. That is something you could just drink by the cup!

Husband’s rating: 4 out of 5
Addie’s rating: 4.5 out of 5
My rating: 4.5 out of 5

New Orleans bread pudding

Our favorite local New Orleans restaurant closed many years ago. I have fond memories of their bread pudding with whiskey sauce. This is an homage to them.
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time1 hour 5 minutes
Resting time1 hour
Total Time2 hours 15 minutes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Pudding
Servings: 12
Author: Eva Bakes


Bread pudding

  • 1 and ¼ pounds (about 1 and ½ loaves) French bread, Italian bread, brioche or challah cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 3 large eggs
  • 4 cups whole milk I used 2 cups of 1% milk and 2 cups of heavy cream
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Whiskey sauce

  • 8 Tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup bourbon or whiskey
  • 2 Tablespoons water
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • teaspoon salt
  • 1 large egg


Make the bread pudding

  • Generously grease a 9”x13” baking pan and set aside.
  • Add the cut bread cubes and sprinkle the raisins on the top.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, sugar, vanilla, and cinnamon. Pour this over the bread and raisins, making sure to cover every part of the pan. Use a silicone spatula to press the bread pieces down to soak up the liquid. Let the bread rest for 1 hour (you will want to press on the bread every 15-20 minutes or so to make sure the top pieces of bread get enough liquid).
  • Preheat your oven to 375°F. Bake in your preheated oven until the top is golden brown, about 1 hour. Let the bread pudding cool as you make the whiskey sauce.

Make the whiskey sauce

  • In a small saucepan set over low heat, melt the butter. Add the sugar, whiskey/bourbon, water, nutmeg, and salt.
  • Keep stirring until the sugar is completely dissolved.
  • Take the saucepan off the heat and vigorously whisk in the egg. Place the saucepan back on the stove and continue to cook until the sauce thickens, about 1 minutes.
  • Strain the sauce over a fine mesh sieve to separate out any cooked bits of egg.
  • Slice the bread pudding and serve with whiskey sauce poured over the top.


Leftover bread pudding should be stored, covered, in the refrigerator and can be reheated in the microwave. The sauce can be made ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days in advance. If not using the sauce immediately, it can be left at room temperature for 1 day and should be covered and refrigerated afterwards. 
Source: Big Oven


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