The Best Bread Pudding

Total Time:
25 hr 10 min
10 min
24 hr 10 min
50 min

8 to 10 servings

  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 5 large beaten eggs
  • 2 cups milk
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 3 cups cubed Italian bread, allow to stale overnight in a bowl
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter, softened
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • For the sauce:
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup brandy

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 13 by 9 by 2-inch pan.

Mix together granulated sugar, eggs, and milk in a bowl; add vanilla. Pour over cubed bread and let sit for 10 minutes.

In another bowl, mix and crumble together brown sugar, butter, and pecans.

Pour bread mixture into prepared pan. Sprinkle brown sugar mixture over the top and bake for 35 to 45 minutes, or until set. Remove from oven.

For the sauce:

Mix together the granulated sugar, butter, egg, and vanilla in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir together until the sugar is melted. Add the brandy, stirring well. Pour over bread pudding. Serve warm or cold.

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    WAY to sweet!
    I doubled the bread when I saw how wet it was I will not make the sauce next time it was plenty sweet without it!
    I do not understand how these reviews give so many stars to this recipe when almost every single person had to alter the original quantites of the ingredients listed in the recipe. If you have to change the recipe to make it good, then it is not a 4 star recipe.
    Good once you cut down the sugar by half. We didn't do the sauce either, because that's overkill. Some reviewers say it's too sweet, others say it's perfect (obviously their tastebuds are desensitized by eating buckets of sugar on a daily basis). If you like/want richness, don't modify the recipe. If you have a normal sense of taste, modify it. I can't imagine how you could taste anything but sugar if you didn't alter the recipe, but if you're in the mood for that...
    Wow, I came to food network thinking that people who like to cook can't be that negative and off putting, I guess I was wrong. So, if you like/want to be rude in your thinking, hey put it out there, if not then keep your sugar and other food opinions to yourself. Let's talk about the recipe, not other peoples tastes in food. Everyone is different.
    I agree.
    yes thank you I so agree with you
    Wish I had read the suggestions to cut the white sugar in half...holy cow this is SWEET!! I doubled the amount of bread--it just seemed too liquidy when I was mixing the egg/milk mixture with the stale bread bits. I baked it about an hour. And I also cut the brandy syrup in half and it was more than enough. But the flavor was really tasty. I loved the pecans!
    Delish! I cut the sugar to 1cup, and used Disaronno (amaretto) in my sauce. Yummy!!!
    I love bread pudding. I made this for Christmas Eve exactly as written. However I found this recipe to be a sugar overload and a bit too egg-y. I just put another pudding in the oven, but this time I increased the bread and decreased the sugar and egg.
    25 hours is too much time to consider this recipe in todays fast paced world. I've never made anything that took that long; not even chocolate
    Are you joking? Read the recipe, it just means that you leave the bread out to get dry overnight. It only takes 10 min prep time. I call that very doable! And one star? you didn't even try it. That causes the ratings to go down for no reason, and makes it hard to find a good recipe based on the star ratings.
    that's telling her ! Mabel , get wit da program.
    The Best!! Just alter the amount of sugar in the bread pudding!!!
    This is one of the best! But... it does not take 25 hours and 10 min. to make?
    Used regular white organic bread, came out kind of soggy but very tasty. Did only 1 cup granulated sugar and not the 2 recommended in the original recipe and it came out just fine and definitely sweet enough. Butter, pecan, brown sugar topping adds enough sweetness. Did not try sauce and was pretty good without. Better when warm with a dollop of cream or softened vanilla ice cream. Taking off one star simply because the two cups of granulated sugar would have been way too much.
    Fantastic!!! Next time adding some cream to the mixture...not that it needs it...but why the heck not.
    Excellent recipe! Do cut the sugar in half for the custard. The sauce is plenty sweet. I also added the zest of an orange to the custard which brightened up the dish.
    Delicious! After reading the reviews, I cut the sugar to one cup and also cut the eggs down to just 3 and it came out just fine. I made this for Christmas and my family loved. Easy recipe and very tasty
    Loved this recipe. I did cut the sugar in 1/2 and added rum to the sauce. YUM.
    We also cut the sugar 1/2 & everyone enjoyed for Christmas
    I didn't like this at all. WAY TOO SWEET! I like a simpler version with no pecans and no streussel. This was not bread pudding to me. I like a thicker pudding, mostly bread, with raisins and then a nice sauce on top. Actually, the sauce was very good.
    O boy Paula Deen, this was YUMMYYY!
    The recipe was easy - But I would agree with the suggestions of others to cut way back on the white sugar. I will try it again and use 1-1/4 cups and see if that reduces the too-sweetness.....
    The brandy sauce is no doubt what makes this 5 star material! I agree with other reviewers that said 2 cups of sugar is too much for this recipe. I took the advice of others, because although I love Paula Deen recipes, she can cook up some SWEET stuff! Anyhow, 1 cup of sugar was plenty and I followed the recipe other than that except I used half a cup raw sugar, half a cup granulated sugar. For the sauce I also used raw sugar and the flavor was just beautiful.
    Thank You again Paula!!! Another winner!
    Easy and delicious!
    It was too sweet and greasy. Next time I will cut the sugar and butter in half.
    TOO GREASY! When finished cooking, the bread pudding was in a pool of butter. I would cut the butter in the topping to 1/4 stick rather than 1/2. Otherwise it was pretty good!
    i love this recipe, have made it around the holidays and it doesn't last through the night! It is so simple and sooo good as it is, The only substitution I made was the brandy, and that's because I forgot to pick some up, but it was around the holidays and I had rum and it was so delicious that's what I use all the time.  
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    Worst recipe I have ever tried! The sugar was too much, the liquid was too much, the pudding didnt set even after I cooked it for about an hour. An absolute disaster!
    I do not understand how someone could give a 3, 2 or 1 star rating to an original recipe that they never tried??? You made a different bread pudding if you didn't follow this recipe so explain the rating?? I see this all over this site. People changing a recipe then giving it a low rating. Did it ever wonder to you that when you change a recipe it becomes yours!!! You are rating yourself not Paula! It is so simple a 1st grader could understand...if it doesn't look good, leave it be and come up with your own. lol
    i love this recipe, have made it around the holidays and it doesn't last through the night! It is so simple and sooo good as it is, The only substitution I made was the brandy, and that's because I forgot to pick some up, but it was around the holidays and I had rum and it was so delicious that's what I use all the time. 
    Excellent recipe. The sugar needs to be reduced to 1 cup. Also, other modifications...if you don't have light brown sugar you can use dark brown. I used walnuts instead of pecans and added craisins to the topping. If you don't have brandy you can substitute the liquor. I used cognac and it was excellent
    Before Making this I read a bunch of the reviews and cut the sugar. After modifications this was hands down a 5 star recipe, but if I had followed it as written it would have been inedible 
    My modifications included using 4 cups of bread, adding about a 1/2 cup of raisins, 1 granny smith apple diced into small pieces, using only 1 cup of sugar (next time I will use 1/2 cups) and adding some spices (1 tsp cinnamon, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp nutmeg, 1/4 tsp cloves) and adding a 1/4 cup of butter schnapps to the liquid mix skipping the sauce and opting for fresh whipped cream instead. 
    I think lots of liquors would be great in this! I would've used brandy, but didn't have any. Next time I will probably try creme de cocoa or frangelico. For a non-alcoholic version some grade B maple syrup (it has a stronger flavor than grade A) would be great drizzled on top for a nice flavor boost. 
    This desert was a HUGE hit! The added fruit and pecan strusel topping really pushed this desert over the top!
    These are not modifications, it's a whole different recipe. Are you rating your own recipe two stars are a recipe you didn't even make? How can yu rate a recipe you didn't make?
    It seems you are giving 2 stars to your own recipe, not the food network recipe, and you are saying it was a huge hit... warranting only 2 stars. Hard to understand..???
    This was awesome. Easy & delicious. This one is a keeper!
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