Pumpkin bread pudding

If there is one thing I look forward to every fall, it’s this stuff–the warm, sweet, cozy taste of pumpkin bread pudding. It’s so easy to make, yet it offers complex flavors and totally wows dinner guests. Seriously, the most challenging part of this is cubing a day-old sourdough baguette.

The rest is simple and will make you wonder why you ever thought you couldn’t be a whiz at baking.

So, a note about the timing. I recommend planning things so that this comes out of the oven just as you are serving dinner. Cover it lightly with a piece of foil to keep the top parts warm, but don’t worry about it cooling too much to serve. By the time you’re dishing it onto plates, the temperature will be just right.

Pumpkin bread pudding

Adapted from SmittenKitchen (bread pudding recipe is just tweaked a little; I added the frosting)

Bread pudding

  • 1 and 1/2 c whole milk
  • 3/4 c canned pumpkin
  • 1/2 c granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs plus 1 yolk
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • pinch allspice
  • pinch cloves
  • 2 (generous) tbsp bourbon
  • 5 c cubed day-old bread (about 1/2 of a sourdough baguette)
  • 3/4 stick butter


  • 1 package cream cheese
  • 1/4 c + 1 tbsp bourbon
  • 1/2 c half and half
  • 1/3 c granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  1. Place the butter in a glass baking dish. Place dish in oven preheating to 350 degrees.
  2. Combine all other bread pudding ingredients in a large bowl and whisk thoroughly.
  3. When butter has completely melted, remove dish from oven and toss bread in butter to coat completely. This is easiest if you have a baking dish with a lid.
  4. Pour pumpkin mixture all over the bread, making sure all pieces of bread are coated.
  5. Bake at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes.
  6. While bread pudding is baking, make the frosting. Use a stand mixer or hand beaters to whip the cream cheese until it’s smooth. Slowly add bourbon and half and half, beating continuously until all liquid is integrated. You may need to use a rubber spatula to remove extra cream cheese from the sides of the bowl.
  7. Slowly add sugar, continuing to beat until all lumps have disappeared. Finally, beat in vanilla extract.
  8. Once bread pudding has cooled slightly, dish up a serving and drizzle with frosting.

If you like a stronger bourbon taste in your frosting, you could slightly increase the amount of bourbon and use a little less half and half. Store leftovers in the refrigerator–it reheats well in the microwave. Enjoy!

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