This maple pecan bread pudding is made with challah bread, infused with maple and vanilla flavors and drizzled with maple cream sauce. Because there is no butter in this recipe, the pudding is not greasy at all, instead it’s delightfully rich and creamy.
Why make this recipe?
This bread pudding is absolutely delicious, very easy to make and it reheats and freezes very well. I adapted the recipe from America’s Test Kitchen but put a maple slant on it by adding maple syrup to the custard and making a maple cream sauce to go with it. (For more delicious maple-flavored fall desserts, check out this maple mascarpone cake frosting and these maple-glazed pumpkin spice cookies.)
What I love about this bread pudding recipe is that it uses only egg yolks, rather than whole eggs, which makes for an extra smooth and creamy custard.
This bread pudding makes 8 servings, which makes it a great dessert for a Thanksgiving or Christmas gathering.
For the custard:
For the bread filling:
For the sauce:
- Be sure to use real maple syrup for the custard and for the sauce, not any imitations.
- You have to use challah bread for this recipe, no other type of bread will work. You will need almost one entire loaf of bread.
How to make it:
See full ingredients & instructions in the recipe card below!
Step 1. Add egg yolks, sugar and vanilla extract to a large bowl.
Step 2. Whisk until smooth.
Step 3. Whisk in cream, milk and maple syrup.
Step 4. Add bread cubes to the custard, cover and let the bread soak up the custard for 30 minutes in the fridge.
Step 5. Heat the oven to 325 degrees F., then carefully stir pecans into the bread/custard mix. Transfer the soaked bread cubes along with any remaining custard into one or two baking pans (see recipe notes).
Bake until no liquid remains in the center when you push down on the surface (about 50 min., regardless of which type of pan(s) you use).
Step 6. While the pudding is in the oven, make the sauce: Mix heavy cream and maple syrup together in a saucepan and bring to a low simmer. Simmer, stirring continuously, until you have a thick and creamy sauce (10 to 15 min.). Let cool to room temperature, then refrigerate.
Recipe notes & tips:
- You can use either one 9″ x 13″ or two 8″ x 8″ baking pans for this recipe.
- Be sure to add the sauce right before you’re serving and not before. If the sauce sits on the pudding for too long, it’ll make it soggy.
Frequently asked questions:
Serve this bread pudding warm and drizzle it with the cold sauce.
Yes, this bread pudding freezes very well. Let it cool down after baking, then cut it into sections or individual portions, transfer them to freezer bags and place in the freezer.
If you have bread pudding left over that you want to eat the next day (or if you want to make it ahead), you can store it in an airtight container in the fridge and then warm it up for a few seconds in the microwave before serving.
You can use either a glass or a nonstick metal baking pan for this recipe. Bread pudding is a “wet” baked good and those are traditionally baked in glass pans but nonstick metal pans such as what I used here work equally well.
No, you don’t have to grease the pans (regardless of which material you use), just transfer the bread/custard mix straight in.
The only bread that works in this recipe is challah bread. (If you want to make your own challah bread, I recommend this great recipe from The Kitchn: How To Make Challah Bread. Since you know you’re going to cut the loaf into little cubes you don’t need to bother with the braiding and can instead just make one big plain loaf.)
More delicious fall dessert recipes:
See more baked dessert recipes →
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Full Printable Recipe
Maple Pecan Bread Pudding
- measuring cups and spoons
- bread knife and cutting board
- large bowl
- rubber spatula
- baking pan(s) (see notes)
- wooden spoon
For the pudding:
- 9 large egg yolks
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- 4 teaspoons vanilla extract
- ¼ cup maple syrup*
- 2 ½ cups heavy cream
- 2 ½ cups milk
- 10 cups bread cubes (1-inch) from challah bread (you need almost 1 entire loaf for that)
- 1 cup roughly chopped pecans
For the maple cream sauce:
- 1 cup heavy cream
- ⅓ cup maple syrup*
For the pudding:
- Whisk the egg yolks with the sugar and vanilla in a large bowl.
- Whisk in the maple syrup, the cream and the milk.
- Add the bread cubes to the custard, cover and let soak for 30 minutes in the fridge.
- Heat the oven to 325 degrees F.
- Carefully stir in the pecans, then transfer the soaked bread cubes along with any remaining custard into the baking pan(s).**
- Bake the bread pudding until no liquid remains in the center when you push down on the surface (about 50 minutes, regardless of which type and size of pan you use). Let cool a bit.
For the maple cream sauce:
- Combine cream and maple syrup in a saucepan, bring to a low simmer and stir continuously with a wooden spoon on medium-low heat until thickened (10 to 15 minutes). Let cool, then refrigerate.
- Serve the bread pudding warm and pour the cold maple cream sauce on it right before serving.***