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Battle of the Bread Puddings! Recipes and Comparisons of Classic, Italian and Sweet Wheat Chocolate Bread Puddings

Updated on September 9, 2012
5 stars from 6 ratings of Bread Pudding

Last month we had a "Battle of the Bread Puddings." I have two family recipes one classic and one Italian. I had never made either before, heck I'd never made or even tried bread pudding before. Crazy, I know. I've heard over and over how delicious and comforting bread pudding is, but it just never sounded appealing to me. Really? Soggy bread? But, I had these two family recipes and when a recipe is carefully passed down, it has to be good right? So enlisting the help of my husband and three year old son we went about the excruciating task of taste testing these.

I made the classic bread pudding first. I gathered the ingredients and followed the recipe carefully, even making sure the bread cubes were just the right dryness. It was surprisingly easy! Out of the oven it smelled amazing I could barely wait for it to cool slightly. I dished it out, quickly snapped my picture for this hub, then drizzled it with caramel sauce.... mmmm amazing ^_^ Both my husband and I were over the moon about this new yet old dessert. I felt like kicking myself for not making it sooner. My son? He cleaned his plate.

Right after making the classic version I came up with my own variation. Sweet Wheat Chocolate Bread Pudding. Unfortunately I didn't have the ingredients on hand so it would have to wait until after the Italian version.

The Italian bread pudding is very different in ingredients and preparation. It has a layer of apples on the bottom and plenty of orange zest. Both give this version a much fresher, lighter taste. Bump up the spices a little and it's like an interesting version of apple pie. My husband's not one for fruity desserts but still enjoyed it. I love fruity desserts and enjoyed this version very much. My son... said he liked it, but didn't want to finish.

Final surprise contestant: Sweet Wheat Chocolate Bread Pudding. This one smelled amazing! It looks much richer than it really is. The chocolate isn't overpowering and it was just sweet enough to make you forget your eating healthy whole grain bread. Drizzled with caramel sauce and sprinkled with pecans made this version a true contender! We all loved it and my son wanted seconds.

Look through the recipes yourself and find our results at the end of this hub.

Make sure your bread cubes are dry! You can either leave them in a paper bag on the counter for a couple days, or bake them on a cookie sheet in a 300'F oven for 10-15 minutes stirring once or twice.

Classic Bread Pudding

  • 4 cups dry white bread cubes, about 6 slices
  • 1/3 cup raisins
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Click thumbnail to view full-size
Especially tasty drizzled with caramel sauceBread cubes ready to be lightly toastedBefore adding the milk mixtureReady to go in the ovenFully cooked and ready to serve!
Especially tasty drizzled with caramel sauce
Especially tasty drizzled with caramel sauce
Bread cubes ready to be lightly toasted
Bread cubes ready to be lightly toasted
Before adding the milk mixture
Before adding the milk mixture
Ready to go in the oven
Ready to go in the oven
Fully cooked and ready to serve!
Fully cooked and ready to serve!
  1. Preheat oven to 350'F. Lightly grease a 1 1/2-2 qt casserole pan.
  2. In a medium to large bowl combine the bread cubes with the raisins, set aside.
  3. In a medium bowl beat the eggs then add the remaining ingredients.
  4. Pour the milk-egg mixture over the bread cubes and stir just until combined.
  5. Pour into prepared pan and bake in a 350'F oven for 55 minutes, or until it's puffed up slightly and a knife inserted near the center comes out mostly clean.
  6. Serve warm plain, or topped with caramel or butterscotch sauce.

Orange zest contains a unique flavonoid called hesperidin. Not only does hesperidin lower cholesterol it is a natural anti-inflammitroy which has shown some promise in fighting certain types of cancer, such as breast cancer.

Before squeezing out the orange juice remember to remove your zest first!

Italian Bread Pudding

  • 2 small or 1 large eating apple
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons fresh orange juice
  • 1 loaf stale Italian or French bread
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups light cream
  • zest of one orange
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Best presentation!No mixing!Soaked and ready for the oven
Best presentation!
Best presentation!
No mixing!
No mixing!
Soaked and ready for the oven
Soaked and ready for the oven

instructions

  1. Lightly grease a 2 quart casserole pan.
  2. Peel, core and thinly slice the apples, arrange into prepared pan.
  3. Sprinkle apples with 2 tablespoons of the sugar and then drizzle the with the fresh orange juice.
  4. Thinly slice the bread and remove the crusts.
  5. Arrange in pan and press down to slightly compact. Only put as many slices as will fit in the pan, they should just reach the top.
  6. In a medium bowl beat the eggs then combine with the milk, remaining sugar, zest and cinnamon.
  7. Pour milk mixture over bread. Let sit for 30 minutes, now would be a good time to preheat your oven to 350'F
  8. Once the bread has sat for 30 minutes bake in a 350'F oven for 30 minutes or until golden brown and set.

Border

Dark chocolate contains antioxidants called flavonoids. These work to repair damage done to your cells while protecting them from further damage and the buildup of bad cholesterol.

Sweet Wheat Bread Pudding

  • 4 cups "sweet dark" wheat bread cubes, about 6 slices
  • 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup Hershey's syrup
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon instant coffee granules, optional

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Before adding the milk mixture.Ready to go in the oven.Fully cooked and smells sooo good!
Before adding the milk mixture.
Before adding the milk mixture.
Ready to go in the oven.
Ready to go in the oven.
Fully cooked and smells sooo good!
Fully cooked and smells sooo good!

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350'F. Lightly grease a 1 1/2-2 qt casserole pan.
  2. In a medium to large bowl combine the bread cubes with the chocolate chips, set aside.
  3. In a medium bowl beat the eggs then add the remaining ingredients.
  4. Pour the milk-egg mixture over the bread cubes and stir just until combined.
  5. Pour into prepared pan and bake in a 350'F oven for 55 minutes, or until it's puffed up slightly and a knife inserted near the center comes out mostly clean.
  6. Serve warm plain, or topped with caramel sauce and chopped nuts or more hershey's syrup.

Did you enjoy this fierce competition? Want more? Check out this bloodthirsty hub by Vespawoolf!

Chicken and Dumplings: A Gluten vs. Gluten-Free Throwdown

Chicken & dumplings are the ultimate comfort food. But is it possible to enjoy them on a gluten-free diet? Learn how to make gluten-free chicken & dumplings and whether or not they measure up to the traditional style.

Conclusion

While we thoroughly enjoyed all three recipes and would make them all again there has to be a winner. My husband and I both ranked these 1-3 and ranked them for our son based on how he seemed to like them. First place spots receive 3 points, second place 2 points and 3rd place 1 point.

My husband- 1st: Classic, 2nd: Sweet Wheat, 3rd: Italian

Myself- 1st: Classic, 2nd: Italian, 3rd: Sweet Wheat

My Son (3 years)- 1st: Sweet Wheat, 2nd: Classic, 3rd: Italian

And the winner is....

First place goes to Classic with 8 points

Second place goes to Sweet Wheat with 5 points

Third place goes to Italian with 4 points

Which bread pudding would win in your house?

See results

Comments

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    • Mama Kim 8 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sasha Kim 

      5 years ago

      Thank you Raincitygirl ^_^ I hope you enjoy!

    • Mama Kim 8 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sasha Kim 

      5 years ago

      Daniel... That sounds wonderful! You wouldn't happen to have a hub on how to make Lokshen Pudding? Thank you for your great comment and vote ^_^

    • Mama Kim 8 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sasha Kim 

      5 years ago

      That is wonderful Mary!! Saving stale bread is a smart thing to do! I usually keep a stash in the freezer... perfect for making bread crumbs too when I need them. Thank you for your wonderful comment and support ^_^

    • Mama Kim 8 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sasha Kim 

      5 years ago

      Thank you Anamika! I hope you enjoy trying the variations ^_^

    • Mama Kim 8 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sasha Kim 

      5 years ago

      Suzie, Thank you so much for your wonderful support ^_^ The traditional bread pudding is just as good without the raisins if your partner doesn't like them. Enjoy cooking and eating these ^_^ thanks again!

    • raincitygirl profile image

      Siri 

      5 years ago from Vancouver

      Yum! I think I will have to give the sweet wheat bread pudding a try!

    • Daniel_Benson profile image

      Daniel_Benson 

      5 years ago from London

      great recipes! I look forward to using one on Christmas Day; it is our family tradition. My personal favourite is Lokshen Pudding, which is made similairly but with vermicelli as opposed to bread. Great Hub, voted Up.

    • mary615 profile image

      Mary Hyatt 

      5 years ago from Florida

      I save stale bread and when I have enough, I make bread pudding. I love it warm out of the oven best. I've only made the classic but the other two sound good, too. I do like to add some raisins in mine.

      Great recipes, I voted this UP and shared.

    • Anamika S profile image

      Anamika S Jain 

      5 years ago from Mumbai - Maharashtra, India

      I absolutely love bread puddings. I did not know these many variations. Pinned!

    • Suzie HQ profile image

      Suzanne Ridgeway 

      5 years ago from Dublin, Ireland

      Great recipes Mama K!!

      Bread and Butter pud is a favourite here but I haven't made it in years so will definitely give this a go. Always had the traditional type but your other family ones sound delicious too!! My partner is not a fan of raisins or currents so I have not made it for him yet. Votes up +++++++, shared and pinned!! Can't wait to try the lot!:-)

    • Mama Kim 8 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sasha Kim 

      5 years ago

      Shelley, Thank you so much for your wonderful comment and votes! I'm so glad you like the classic... I'm planning on making that one again soon as well.

    • CyberShelley profile image

      Shelley Watson 

      5 years ago

      The classic is fantastic - will be doing again for visiting family next weekend. Thanks your recipes are great. Up, interesting and useful

    • Mama Kim 8 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sasha Kim 

      5 years ago

      Kawaljit, Thank you for your lovely comment ^_^ I hope you get to make then and enjoy! They are a great comfort food and wonderful during the winter.

    • Kawaljit kaur profile image

      Kawaljit kaur 

      5 years ago from JALANDHAR, Punjab (India)

      Mouth watering recipes! I can feel the taste of all of them. would love to try! Thanks for sharing

    • Mama Kim 8 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sasha Kim 

      5 years ago

      Moonlake, It seems I have something to learn from you Aunt! As I said in the hub, I'm new to the world of bread pudding ^_^ I will certainly start setting aside the scrap bread for pudding from now on. Thank you for the tip! Also, thank you for commenting and pinning ^_^

    • moonlake profile image

      moonlake 

      5 years ago from America

      My husband loves bread pudding and I make it for him. I do not like it so never eat it. When my aunt makes her bread pudding she always uses what ever bread, rolls or buns she had left over. According to my husband she makes the best bread pudding. Enjoyed reading your hub. Pinned.

    • Mama Kim 8 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sasha Kim 

      5 years ago

      Glimmer, Thank you so much for your comment and share! These are excellent cold weather desserts ^_^ so comforting.

      Sujithbeta, Thank you for stopping by ^_^

    • sujithbeta profile image

      Sreejith k 

      5 years ago from Kerala, India

      looks delicious. Thanks for sharing

    • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

      Claudia Mitchell 

      5 years ago

      It's starting to get cool here so these look even more appealing than they did before. Yumm. Shared.

    • Mama Kim 8 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sasha Kim 

      5 years ago

      Thank you so much Terrye! Love your comments and appreciate the votes ^_^

    • TToombs08 profile image

      Terrye Toombs 

      5 years ago from Somewhere between Heaven and Hell without a road map.

      Boy oh boy, Mama Kim, this is so tempting! Gonna have to try it! :) Great job! Voted up and more!

    • Mama Kim 8 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sasha Kim 

      5 years ago

      Alicia, Your comment has me smiling from ear to ear ^_^ I'm so happy a bread pudding lover like yourself approves of these recipes. Thank you for your generous comment and share ^_^

    • Mama Kim 8 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sasha Kim 

      5 years ago

      LL Woodard, Thank you so much, I love foods that call upon warm childhood memories ^_^ Your comment, vote and share are all greatly appreciated!!

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 

      5 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      I love bread pudding. It's one of my favorite desserts, so having your three recipes to choose from is a real treat! I thought carefully about the recipes, and my favorite is ..... all of them!! I'm going to share this hub.

    • L.L. Woodard profile image

      L.L. Woodard 

      5 years ago from Oklahoma City

      I enjoyed bread pudding as a child and have been looking for just the "right" recipe to make it myself. Thanks to this hub, my search is over.

      Voted up and shared.

    • Mama Kim 8 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sasha Kim 

      5 years ago

      Deborah, Thank you so much ^_^ The Italian version is especially good for summertime I think. Thank you so much for your very generous comment/vote/share, they are greatly appreciated!

    • Mama Kim 8 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sasha Kim 

      5 years ago

      Carol, Good choice, they are all worth trying ^_^ thank you for your lovely comment ^_^

      Kaikai, I'm so happy you think so, thanks for stopping by.

    • Deborah Brooks profile image

      Deborah Brooks Langford 

      5 years ago from Brownsville,TX

      wow great recipes.. My favorite is Italian Bread.. I will share this on cooking time on Facebook

      voted up and shared

      Debbie

    • Kai0224liu profile image

      kaikai 

      5 years ago from TX

      Looks so delicious, kaikai

    • carol7777 profile image

      carol stanley 

      5 years ago from Arizona

      They all sound and look good to me. Thanks for the comparison but I think I will want to try all of them. You did a great job on this hub and have lots of mouths watering.

    • Mama Kim 8 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sasha Kim 

      5 years ago

      Thank you girishpuri, This is a pretty easy recipe, you should give it a try ^_^ thank you for your nice comment.

    • girishpuri profile image

      Girish puri 

      5 years ago from NCR , INDIA

      I am great fan of bread puddings, i am not a great cook, but i can feel the flavor of your hub, interesting hub.

    • Mama Kim 8 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sasha Kim 

      5 years ago

      Newusedcarssacram, I'm so happy I can offer you a new food to try ^_^ thank you for your comment.

    • newusedcarssacram profile image

      newusedcarssacram 

      5 years ago from Sacramento, CA, U.S.A

      You gave something new to try...thanks!

    • Mama Kim 8 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sasha Kim 

      5 years ago

      Mvillecat, Thank you so much for your generous comment ^_^ The chocolate one was very yummy. It was even better reheated the next day!

    • Mama Kim 8 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sasha Kim 

      5 years ago

      Mhatter, Thank you, you're sweet ^_^

    • Mama Kim 8 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sasha Kim 

      5 years ago

      Michelle, Me? You're the one that had me wanting moon cakes all day! So much so set some red beans to soak so I can make some paste out of them tomorrow! Bread pudding is so yummy, I hope you get to have some soon. Thank you for the lovely comment and share ^_^

    • Mama Kim 8 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sasha Kim 

      5 years ago

      Bill, I think you'll really enjoy! It's really easy to make as well ^_^ Thank you for your nice comment ^_^

    • mvillecat profile image

      Catherine Dean 

      5 years ago from Milledgeville, Georgia

      I love bread pudding and I will be making the chocolate one for sure. I voted up and tweeted and pinned.

    • Mhatter99 profile image

      Martin Kloess 

      5 years ago from San Francisco

      All I can think of: how lucky your family is. Thanks

    • midget38 profile image

      Michelle Liew 

      5 years ago from Singapore

      Now Kim, you and Janine always make me hungry!! You know I'm pinning!! Bread pudding is classic comfort food, but it's hard to get it over here. Thanks for giving me something great to share this morning!

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I have never tasted bread pudding; heard a lot about it but so far, nada! Thanks for the education; if I ever get the chance I will for sure try it.

    • Mama Kim 8 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sasha Kim 

      5 years ago

      Janine ^_^ The chocolate one was very yummy. I have to say though it was even better the day after, reheated. Thank you so much for your comment/vote/pin/share! You're too kind.

    • Janine Huldie profile image

      Janine Huldie 

      5 years ago from New York, New York

      MamaKim, I loved all of these three recipes, but of course the chocolate got me on the last one and when I do try to make it will be that one first, because I can not ever pass up or say no to chocolate!! Seriously, thank you for this one and have pinned, voted and shared too!!

    • Mama Kim 8 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sasha Kim 

      5 years ago

      Vespa, Oh I'm so happy you like this, both hub and link ^_^ Thank you for your kind and generous comment! These would be perfect with leftover bread ^_^ I always loved orange zest because it adds amazing flavor but now I know how healthy it is I'll be using it even more. Thank you again ^_^

    • vespawoolf profile image

      vespawoolf 

      5 years ago from Peru, South America

      Oh my!! I definitely have to try these. All of them are intriguing, but since the classic won I think we'll have to start with that one. I felt the same way as you about bread pudding. Soggy bread? But now I'm inspired to try your recipes. Besides, we often have leftover bread. Your photos are gorgeous! That alone sold me. Thank you for giving me a whole capsule in honor of the Dumpling Throw Down! I'm speechless. : ) Voted up all the way across and shared. BTW...I didn't know orange zest is so healthy!

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