Decadent Upcycled Bread Pudding with Caramel Sauce: A Sweet and Comforting Dessert

Rediscover the charm of classic desserts with this scrumptious bread pudding, ingeniously crafted using leftover pastries such as croissants, muffins, and sponge cake. This recipe transforms day-old baked goods into a luxurious dessert, soaked in a rich, cinnamon and lemon-infused custard, and topped with a homemade golden caramel sauce. It’s a brilliant way to minimize waste while enjoying a truly decadent treat.

Why You’ll Love This: This bread pudding isn’t just delicious; it’s also incredibly comforting, with warm notes of cinnamon and subtle hints of lemon and rum. The texture is wonderfully creamy and custardy, with soft, soaked pieces of pastries creating a delightful contrast in every bite. The caramel sauce adds a rich, buttery finish that perfectly complements the gentle spices and bright flavors within the pudding.

Perfect Occasion: Ideal for holiday dinners, family gatherings, or as a special treat during the colder months, this bread pudding can serve as a heartwarming dessert that feels both festive and comforting. It’s also a fantastic option for potlucks or buffet-style meals, where guests can enjoy a scoopful of warm, caramel-drenched delight.

Decoration Tips: To dress up this rustic dessert, drizzle additional caramel sauce on top right before serving. A sprinkle of powdered cinnamon or a few lemon zest curls can add visual appeal and enhance the flavor. For a festive touch during the holidays, garnish with star anise or a cinnamon stick. Serving it with a dollop of whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream can make it even more indulgent.


  • 150-200 grams of leftover pastries (like sponge cake, muffins, croissants), cut into small pieces
  • 6 large eggs
  • 200 grams of sugar
  • 750 ml of milk
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • Lemon peel
  • A splash of rum (optional)

For the Caramel:

  • 150 grams of sugar
  • 2 tablespoons of water
  • A few drops of lemon juice
  1. Start by infusing the milk with the cinnamon stick and lemon peel. Heat the milk in a saucepan until it’s just about to simmer, then remove from heat and let it cool to room temperature.
  2. In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs and sugar together until well combined. Gradually stir in the cooled, infused milk and a splash of rum, if using.
  3. Gently fold the pastry pieces into the milk and egg mixture, allowing them to soak and become slightly spongy.
  4. For the caramel, in a saucepan, combine the sugar, water, and lemon juice. Cook over medium heat without stirring, letting the mixture turn into a light golden caramel.
  5. Carefully pour the hot caramel into your chosen mold, tilting it to coat the bottom and sides evenly. Allow the caramel to set by cooling it down.
  6. Pour the custard and pastry mixture over the set caramel in the mold.
  7. Bake in a water bath at 190 degrees Celsius (374 degrees Fahrenheit) with only the lower heat on, for about 55 minutes.
  8. Allow the pudding to cool, then refrigerate for at least 8 hours, preferably overnight.
  9. To serve, carefully invert the pudding onto a plate.

Enjoy this delectable upcycled bread pudding, where every spoonful offers the perfect blend of sweetness, spices, and rich caramel—an enjoyable way to bring new life to leftover pastries!

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