All Recipes, Holidays/Seasonal, Sweets

Espresso Bread Pudding with Bourbon Sauce

November 19, 2019 (Last updated March 7, 2022) · Nicole Triebe

This Espresso Bread Pudding with Bourbon Sauce is warm, cozy, and completely addicting. The ultimate comfort food for the holidays!

Thanksgiving is around the corner, and the star of the show isn’t the turkey this year, it’s dessert! My espresso bread pudding recipe is to die for, and will steal the spotlight! I’m proud to partner today with Bearcat Infused Bourbon in making a twist on a classic recipe, perfect for the holidays, or year-round! 

Bearcat Infused Bourbon is an infused bourbon created in honor of female distillers, bootleggers, and industry innovators!  It is the first infused bourbon on the market and currently available in Illinois!  It can also be found in Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, Indiana, Rhode Island, and Massachusetts.  Find your nearest location for purchasing here.

Bearcat Infused Bourbon is perfect for those first time bourbon drinkers and my go-to as a bourbon lover!  It has two flavor-infused options: Orange Peel with Spice and Espresso with Aromatic Bitters. The Espresso is complex to the nose with roasted espresso beans appearing on the finish, while the Orange Peel is packed with a fresh citrus aroma, and mild cinnamon and anise flavors at the end. Both are perfect for sipping neat or on the rocks! I also love to add it to classic bourbon cocktails to add a flavorful twist. 

I’m using it today in this decadent Espresso Bourbon Bread Pudding with bourbon vanilla sauce.  The Bearcat Bourbon infused with Espresso with Aromatic Bitters is used in both the Espresso Bourbon Bread Pudding and the sauce!  It adds the most incredible flavor to this sweet dish. This is one of the best desserts I’ve made in a long time!

What do you need to make bread pudding?

  • Short ramekins
  • Stale bread
  • Room temperature eggs
  • Espresso Bourbon
  • Whole milk and heavy cream
  • Espresso
  • Candied Pecans
  • Brown and white sugars
  • Vanilla extract
  • Cinnamon

What is bread pudding?

Bread pudding is a classic dessert made from cubes of day-old bread. Today I’m using brioche bread, because the texture of this fluffy bread is unmatched, and makes this Espresso Bourbon Bread pudding just that much better! The brioche gets soaked in a custard mixture made from eggs, milk, sugar, and a little cinnamon and nutmeg, and Bearcat Bourbon infused with Espresso and Aromatic Bitters. It’s then baked as an individual portion in ramekins until the tops are golden and the middle is still slightly gooey.

bourbon bread pudding with spoonful of bread pudding scooped out

How do I make bread pudding?

  • Start with slightly stale brioche bread cubes. Dry bread can hold more of the custard mixture. If you don’t have brioche, any thick-cut white bread works well – leftover french bread or challah bread is also a great option! Cut the bread into cubes and set aside.
  • Heat oven to 375F
  • To make the custard sauce: In a large bowl, whisk eggs, whole milk and cream, melted butter, Bearcat Bourbon infused with Espresso with Aromatic Bitters, cinnamon, espresso and white, and brown sugar. Whisk until fully incorporated.
  • Place cubed bread in a large square baking dish,large mixing bowl, or something you can fold the bread and milk mixture easily.
  • Then pour the egg mixture over top of the bread, giving it a stir as you go so that all bread is evenly coated. Fold in chopped candied pecans.
  • Spoon into individual ramekins and let sit for 20 minutes before baking. This gives the bread time to soak up all the custard mixture.
  • Then bake the mixture in your preheated oven at 375F for 35 minutes or until the tops are golden brown.
  • To make the bourbon sauce, combine sugar, unsalted butter, heavy cream and bourbon in a small saucepan over medium heat. Whisk and let come to a boil. Remove from heat and pour over top of bread pudding.  

Can I make Espresso Bourbon Bread pudding ahead of time?

This wonderful bread pudding is perfect for the holidays!  It’s super easy to make a couple days ahead and reheat right before serving.  After the bread pudding has cooled completely, place them in an airtight container and store in the fridge for 3-4 days. Be sure to cover well so the dessert doesn’t dry out too much.

To reheat, place in the oven or microwave until the internal temperature reaches 165.  If you like the crunch on top, put it under the broiler for a minute or so at the end of reheating.  Be careful to watch it closely so it doesn’t burn!

Bourbon sauce being poured over holiday espresso bread pudding

This dessert is always a crowd pleaser during the holiday season! Guests will be asking for seconds every time!

What should I serve with bread pudding?

This delicious dessert would pair so well with a scoop of vanilla ice cream!

Need more holiday desserts? Try my no-bake pumpkin cheesecakes or brown butter toffee chocolate chunk cookies!

Pairing a cocktail? Try these chai spiced white russians!

FAQ and Expert Tips

If you have leftovers, store the leftover bread pudding in an airtight container in the fridge for up to four days. To reheat, place in the oven or microwave until the internal temperature reaches 165. 

Use stale bread for the most delicious bread pudding recipe

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bourbon bread pudding

Espresso Bourbon Bread Pudding

  • Author: Nicole Triebe
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 35 minutes
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Yield: 8 1x

Ingredients

Scale
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 1 1/2 cups white sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 tbl brown sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup espresso
  • 1/4 cup Bearcat Bourbon infused with Espresso & Aromatic bitters
  • 1/2 cup candied pecans, chopped
  • 10 slices day old brioche bread, cubed

For the sauce: 

1 cup sugar

1 stick butter, melted

2 cups heavy cream

1/4 – 1/2 cup Bearcat Bourbon infused with Espresso & Aromatic herbs

Pinch of nutmeg


Instructions

  1. Cut day old brioche bread into cubes. 
  2. Make the custard sauce by beating eggs, whole milk and cream, melted butter, Bearcat Bourbon infused with Espresso with Aromatic Bitters, cinnamon, espresso and white and brown sugar. Whisk until fully incorporated.
  3. Place cubed bread in a large baking dish, bowl, or something you can fold the bread and custard easily.
  4. Then pour the egg mixture over top of the bread, giving it a stir as you go so that all bread is evenly. Fold in chopped candied pecans.
  5. Spoon into individual ramekins and let sit for 20 minutes before baking. 
  6. Then bake the mixture in your preheated oven at 375F for 35 minutes. 
  7. To make the sauce, combine all the sauce ingredients in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil.  Pour over baked bread pudding.  

If you loved this recipe, be sure to rate it 5 stars in the comments below!

bourbon bread pudding

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5 Comments

  • Reply Kristen November 20, 2019 at 4:20 am

    This looks SO good. I’m excited to give this recipe a try–my husband loves Bread Pudding!

    • Reply Nicole Triebe November 20, 2019 at 4:33 am

      It’s my new all-time favorite! Thank you!

  • Reply Ro L Gibson November 20, 2019 at 2:41 pm

    Drooling

  • Reply Kim Keener October 4, 2020 at 12:00 am

    Made this for super bowl last year and it was a hit. Super easy too! making it again for a Mulan watch party on Disney+. a go to when you want to impress your guests.

  • Reply Maria March 16, 2022 at 11:17 pm

    Thank you so much. This is so amazingly delicious! I have made it few times and it’s always a hit.. I absolutely love it!

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