This Italian bread pudding with condensed milk is a very simple and easy to make Italian dessert. This bread pudding recipe uses stale bread, golden raisins, eggs, sugar and milk which is baked in the oven and topped with a rich sweetened condensed milk sauce. This bread pudding with condensed milk is great to entertain with and simple enough to make when you are craving something sweet.
What is Italian Bread Pudding
Italian bread pudding is very similar to American bread pudding. It usually has golden raisins and the Italian bread pudding is most often made with a creme anglaise type of sauce.
This type of traditional sauce is a little more involved and not exactly quick to make. For this bread pudding recipe, the vanilla sauce has been simplified by using condensed milk with some butter, vanilla and milk.
Pouring the condensed milk over the bread pudding instead of adding it into the recipe is a much better way to get that delicious condensed milk flavor. I feel very confident in saying that it tastes better too!
Another main difference with this Italian bread pudding recipe is there is no cinnamon added. It does however require the same basic ingredients to soften up stale bread and transform it into something that tastes so amazing.
I love this Italian dessert so much because I hate to throw out any food (unless it goes bad.) Getting to eat dessert and making sure I am not wasting food is a win win here.
The bread for this Italian bread pudding:
This bread pudding with condensed milk uses stale baguette bread. If you do not have stale bread or cannot wait to make the recipe then store bought baguette from the bakery section (without any toppings or butter) can be used.
Just make sure to leave it out on the counter overnight to toughen up.
Remember, the more preservatives that are in the bread, the longer it will take to get stale. Basically, all natural bread is not only better for you but better for your bread puddings!
Another important note about the type of stale bread to use is you want stale bread that is tough and not dry. If you have bread that dried out too much like a crouton then that would not taste as good.
Stale and chewy is the name of the game for bread pudding.
Ingredients you will need to make this Italian Bread Pudding recipe
- stale bread
- golden raisins (optional but recommended)
- For the vanilla sauce for the bread pudding- sweetened condensed milk, butter, milk and vanilla
Many of these ingredients for this bread pudding with condensed milk sauce can be substituted based on your preference. If you cannot find golden raisins, you can use regular purple raisins.
You could also just leave out the raisins if you prefer. If you need a dairy free alternative for the milk or condensed milk, then you can substitute dairy free milk for the regular milk in the recipe.
Even the sweetened condensed milk sauce can be adjusted by just using coconut condensed milk!
About the vanilla sauce for this Italian bread pudding recipe
This condensed milk sauce (my simple vanilla sauce) that I created for this bread pudding recipe was born out of laziness and not wanting to make a traditional complex vanilla sauce. I have to say that in this instance, my laziness really paid off!
This quick vanilla sauce for this bread pudding has condensed milk, a touch of butter, vanilla and milk. Yup, canned sweetened condensed milk!
I don't think there is any dessert or breakfast (like my baked french toast casserole) that doesn't taste better with condensed milk. I will even make this condensed milk sauce on its own for cakes.
This simple vanilla sauce is what makes this bread pudding so good. It is one of my favorite sauces for desserts and the uses are absolutely endless. You can add it to ice cream, cake, bread pudding or any other things you can think of needing a sweet decadent and lush sauce.
I love it even more because it is so easy to make. I just don't think cooking should be complicated.
As I mentioned above, if you are on a dairy free diet, you can totally use a coconut condensed milk in place of the regular condensed milk. It is really delicious both ways!
What I love about this bread pudding with condensed milk sauce
- It is so simple to make.
- It tastes amazing.
- That vanilla condensed milk sauce is addictive (make extra, trust me). If you want, you can skip straight to the bread pudding sauce
- It is made in individual portion sizes so everyone can eat their portion when they want.
For More Italian Dessert Recipes:
- Italian Pizzelles are a classic cookie made at family gatherings and holidays. Growing up, these were made every Sunday for our Italian family gatherings.
- My cookie press Pizzelle cookies that are made with the same dough you make a pizzelle with but you do not need a special pizzelle maker for this one. So delicious!
- Italian basil olive cake. This is one of my favorite cakes to make and it is as easy as blending everything together and pouring into a pan.
- Italian Berry Cake with Mascarpone Cream. This is a light wonderful layer cake that looks beautiful but is very easy to make.
- Italian Plum Tart. This is one of my favorites when plums are in season.
- Italian Pizzelle Cannoli are really delicious and simple cannoli made with rolled pizzelles and the most delicious cannoli cream.
Tips on making this bread pudding with condensed milk sauce
What if I do not have individual ramekins?
This is a question I get asked often. If you do not have individual ramekins, you can combine this whole recipe for the four servings into a small square baking dish, about 8"x8".
If you are using a round baking dish then a small round 6"x2" dish.
Add five minutes of cooking time to the recipe and then test for doneness by inserting a toothpick into center and it comes out clean. If it is still wet just add another 5 minutes or so until it is cooked through.
I will say that ramekins are so invaluable in my kitchen. If you do not have ramekins I would definitely try to add those to your kitchen wishlist since they come in handy for some many things!
It is best served warm once it has rested for a few minutes after coming out of the oven.
Should bread pudding be served hot or cold?
You always want to serve your bread pudding almost right out of the oven. Just remove it from the oven and let it sit for a couple minutes before serving.
Can I make my bread stale for this recipe if I do not have stale bread?
You can speed up the process of bread going stale by placing your bread on a baking sheet and into a pre-heated 325 degree oven for about 5-10 minutes. Just check it every few minutes and make sure it is not turning into a crouton but just getting dried out a bit.
Can this bread pudding be made ahead of time?
Yes this bread pudding can be made ahead of time. Just follow all of the recipe all the way through baking, just let the bread pudding come to room temp after it is done cooking.
At this point, place some aluminum foil over the tops and store in your fridge for up to 2 days.
To re-heat, remove from the fridge about a half hour before warming. When ready to warm, place your ramekins on a large baking sheet and cover with aluminum foil.
Then place into a pre-heated 325 degree oven and bake for 10-15 minutes or until warmed all the way through.
Italian Bread Pudding with Vanilla Sauce
Tried the Recipe? We Would Love To Hear From You In The Comments Below!
- 4 ounces of stale bread a little less than ½ of a baguette, preferably a thin baguette cut into ½ inch slices
- 1 ½ cups of milk
- ½ cup of golden raisins
- 1 cup of sugar
- 1 tablespoon of butter (unsalted) for greasing your ramekins
- 1 egg
- 1 egg yolk
- 7 ounces sweetened condensed milk
- 1 tablespoon of milk
- 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon of butter (unsalted)
- Pre-heat your oven to 325 degrees.
- In a small pot heat your milk and sugar until the milk gets hot and the sugar is dissolved.1 ½ cups of milk, 1 cup of sugar
- While your milk is heating, place your stale bread into a shallow dish. Now pour your hot milk mixture over this and let sit for 20 minutes.4 ounces of stale bread
- Now in a small bowl add your raisins and enough hot water to cover them and let those sit for 20 minutes.½ cup of golden raisins
- While your bread and raisins are soaking, butter 4 large ramekins (or 6 medium sized ramekins) and sprinkle with a little bit of sugar and spread it around so that it covers all of the butter. Set these aside.1 tablespoon of butter (unsalted)
- Once your bread is done soaking, pour it through a large sieve and with your hand gently press out some of the milk. Now place your bread into a large bowl.
- Drain your raisins and add those to your bowl. In a separate bowl, lightly whisk your egg and egg yolk and add that to your bowl and mix all of your ingredients together carefully as to not break up your bread too much.1 egg, 1 egg yolk
- Now scoop out your bread mixture into your ramekins making sure they are all even and sit just below the rim.
- Place on a cookie sheet and bake for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, increase your oven temperature to 350 and bake for another 10 minutes.
- While your bread pudding is baking you can make the sauce.
- Vanilla Condensed Milk Sauce:
- With a small saute pan over medium heat add your sweetened condensed milk, 1 tablespoon of milk, vanilla and butter and mix until it is heated through and becomes silky.7 ounces sweetened condensed milk, 1 tablespoon of milk, 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract, 1 tablespoon of butter (unsalted)
- Turn off heat and leave on the stove.
- Once the bread pudding is ready, remove from the oven and lest rest for 5 minutes.
- After resting, drizzle liberally with the vanilla glaze. Enjoy!
Nutrition Values are estimates only.See full nutrition disclaimer here
This bread pudding was delicious and the condensed milk sauce really makes it! We’ll be making this again!
I am so glad to hear that!
So you don't use the sweetened milk that you soak your bread in? Step 6 says to drain it and press most of the liquid out. And then to just add the beaten eggs to the squeezed out bread.
So we just throw out the milk?
Hi Lee. Most of the milk (or a lot of it) will be absorbed into the bread, depending on how dry your bread is. Whatever was not absorbed, you can discard. Hope this helps.
My favorite recipe! We have made this many times now and it is always gone in minutes 🙂
Thanks. I am so glad to hear that!
Can you refrigerate leftovers with the sauce drizzled over it or save sauce for before eating?
Hi. I would refrigerate them separately. You can gently re-heat the sauce on the stovetop to warm it up and then drizzle it over the bread pudding when ready to eat. Hope this helps 🙂
We have made this now at least a dozen times and love it! The bread pudding is so delicious and that sauce is amazing 🙂
I am so happy to hear that 🙂
We loved this bread pudding and that sauce is amazing. Thank you
Hi Alie. I am glad you enjoyed it!
This was awesome! The sauce was seriously delicious too.
Hi, your recipe calls 3 tbs butter twice. One for the sauce and I don’t see you where to add the other 3tbs of butter with bread mixture?
Hi. The recipe has 2 tbsp of butter, one tbsp for buttering the ramekins and the other tbsp of butter for the vanilla sauce.
I hope this helps 🙂
I made this bread pudding last year and it was so good but I forgot which recipe I made and accidentally made another blog's recipe. I couldn't figure out what was wrong until I made this again and realized this recipe was better. Just goes to show that even slightly changing a recipe can make a difference!
I am so glad to hear you enjoyed it and glad you were able to make the recipe again! Thank you for sharing 🙂
Hi Melissa did you use standard butter or unsalted butter in this recipe ?
Hi. Unsalted is best for the recipe but if you do not have that, you could get away with using salted butter 🙂
Z.Michelle Molinary says
I have made this several times. I love it. My fiancé loves it even more. Thank you so much💖💖💖 Ive shared this recipe over a dozen times and everyone loves it💖
I am so glad you enjoyed it 🙂
Curious: why press out any of the milk? That’s what creates the custard.
Hi Theresa. That is a great question. There will still be a custard that forms with the egg and yolk added to the milk soaked bread (there will be enough milk in the bread). Unlike American bread pudding, this Italian version is not as dense and uses less custard to hold it together. I hope this helps 🙂
CHRIS Reiter says
Where is the PIN button so I can save it to Pinterest?
Keeping It Simple says
Thanks so much for your message. We have been working on our site and have temporarily taken down Pinterest buttons since they were causing a slower experience for our users. You can find us on Pinterest under Keeping It Simple blog. Hope this helps 🙂
Hi! Can you make this in one pan? I do not have indiviudal ramekins. If so, what do you recommend the cook time to be?
Sorry for the late reply.
You can use a small baking dish but make sure to keep the bread pudding a good 2 inches deep. Bake it for the same amount of time as the ramekins and test for doneness with a toothpick (it should not be wet). If it is not done, add 5 minutes at a time until it is.
I hope this helps!
Love this recipe! It's wonderful how some simple ingredients are combined to create a rich and comforting dessert.
I love hearing that! Thanks so much Marie
Sounds awesome, can't wait to make!
So glad to hear that Sylvia! 🙂
Love the sauce so much!
We loved this recipe. Will be making it again, thank you!