How to Make Cinnamon Bread Pudding

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As humble, homely and rustic it may seem, nothing beats a classic cinnamon bread pudding and this version, made irresistible by the addition of buttery brioche and dark chocolate chunks, is a decadent and rich show-stopper in its own right. This bread pudding looks and tastes unforgettable, despite being incredibly simple to put together. One mouthful of this warm, custardy, rich and spiced bread pudding, and you'll understand why this baked favorite has stood the test of time.

Dark chocolate chunks take your cinnamon bread pudding to the next level.
Dark chocolate chunks take your cinnamon bread pudding to the next level. (Image: Thalia Ho)

Things You'll Need

  • 1 loaf of brioche / 14 ounces / 400 grams (or another sweet yeast bread, such as challah, cinnamon swirl bread, panettone or raisin bread)
  • 6 eggs
  • 1 cup granulated sugar, plus more for sprinkling the dish
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon bourbon, rum or brandy (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 cup dark chocolate or add-in of choice, such as raisins or nuts (optional)
  • Butter, for greasing the dish

Step 1: Prepare Ingredients

Measure out all of your ingredients to have them handy. Cut the bread into 1-inch / 2.5-centimeter cubes, aiming for uniform size and consistency. Place the cubes in a large bowl and set aside.

Measure out all ingredients needed beforehand.
Measure out all ingredients needed beforehand. (Image: Thalia Ho)
Cube the brioche bread into uniform chunks.
Cube the brioche bread into uniform chunks. (Image: Thalia Ho)

Step 2: Whisk Eggs and Sugar

In a separate large bowl, whisk together the eggs to combine.

Whisk the eggs together to combine.
Whisk the eggs together to combine. (Image: Thalia Ho)

Then whisk in the granulated sugar, and combine until well dissolved.

Whisk to dissolve the granulated sugar.
Whisk to dissolve the granulated sugar. (Image: Thalia Ho)

Step 3: Add Milk and Cream

Pour in the milk, followed by the cream. Stir to combine.

Add the milk and cream to eggs and sugar.
Add the milk and cream to eggs and sugar. (Image: Thalia Ho)

Step 4: Add Flavoring

Add in the vanilla extract followed by the bourbon, rum or brandy, if using.

Add in the essence and alcohol.
Add in the essence and alcohol. (Image: Thalia Ho)

Then stir in the cinnamon followed by the sea salt. The mixture should be creamy, consistent and thick.

Stir the mixture until thick and creamy.
Stir the mixture until thick and creamy. (Image: Thalia Ho)

Step 5: Combine Wet and Dry

Pour the wet ingredients evenly over the cubed bread, and toss gently to combine.

Gently toss together the wet and dry ingredients.
Gently toss together the wet and dry ingredients. (Image: Thalia Ho)

Step 6: Stir In Additions

Mix in the dark chocolate chunks or other additions of choice.

Mix in the dark chocolate chunks.
Mix in the dark chocolate chunks. (Image: Thalia Ho)

Step 7: Let the Mixture Stand

Let the mixture stand for 20 to 30 minutes so the liquid has time to absorb.

In the meantime, heat the oven to 350 F / 180 C. Generously butter your desired baking dish and then coat with a few tablespoons of sugar, tapping out any excess. This will caramelize the bottom of the pudding into a delicious and sweet sticky crust. Then, pour the absorbed bread mixture into the prepared dish.

Pour the mixture into your prepared dish.
Pour the mixture into your prepared dish. (Image: Thalia Ho)

Step 8: Bake

Bake the bread pudding for 35 to 45 minutes. It should be golden on top and no liquid should seep out when pierced gently with a fork.

The Cinnamon Bread Pudding will be golden and puffed when baked.
The Cinnamon Bread Pudding will be golden and puffed when baked. (Image: Thalia Ho)

Step 9: Cool

Let the bread pudding cool for 10 minutes before cutting and serving warm.

Let the pudding cool down before cutting and serving.
Let the pudding cool down before cutting and serving. (Image: Thalia Ho)

Tip

  • Bread pudding is extra delicious served with a generous dollop with creme anglaise, custard or a good vanilla bean ice cream.

Serve the bread pudding warm.
Serve the bread pudding warm. (Image: Thalia Ho)

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