Classic apple bread pudding, with plenty of apple and a scattering of raisins, all baked up in a delicious custard. Perfect Fall comfort food!
I never let apple season pass by without enjoying an apple bread pudding! I love to bake it up in a cast iron skillet, but it works equally well in any pan or dish.
I love this bread pudding, as it is made without cream, so all you need is milk for the custard. Together with eggs and butter, this apple bread pudding bakes up beautifully rich in flavour.
What you’ll need
Apples – for best results, use a good baking (pie) apple, that will hold its shape when cooked. I’ve used Cortland apples here. Other good baking apple choices are Granny Smith, Spartans, Crispin, Pink Lady, Honeycrisp, Empire, Braeburn, Northern Spy or Golden Delicious.
Bread – you can use any bread, but a “day-old” or slightly stale bread works best to avoid a mushy bread pudding. I like to cube the bread ahead and just let is stand on a baking sheet uncovered, to dry it out a bit before using.
Raisins– raisins are totally optional here, so simply omit if you aren’t a fan.
You will also need – milk, eggs, butter, brown sugar and vanilla.
- Melt butter in a cast iron skillet or non-stick skillet.
- Add the prepared apples and raisins to the skillet and cook, stirring, until softened, about 3-5 minutes.
- Add warm apples to bowl with the diced bread cubes.
- In the same skillet, add the milk, brown sugar and butter.
- Warm the milk mixture until the butter is melted.
- Pour the milk mixture over the bread/apples in the bowl.
- Add the egg/cinnamon mixture to the bowl.
- Stir together to combine.
- Spoon into the same cast iron skillet (or any oven-safe baking dish) and bake.
- Using a cast iron skillet for this bread pudding allows you to use one skillet to sauté the apples and to bake the bread pudding. Alternately, use any skillet on the stove-top, then once combined with the bread in a bowl, spoon into any oven-safe dish.
- My skillet is 10-inches top diameter. A 12-inch top diameter skillet might be too large, so you might want to use another baking dish. Pick a baking dish that allows the pudding to be a couple of inches thick before baking, as it will compress as it bakes.
- Change it up a bit by adding a splash of rum, bourbon or whiskey to the milk mixture.
How to serve this apple bread pudding
I love to drizzle warm bread pudding with heavy (whipping) cream. It’s sort of like melted ice cream :) A scoop of vanilla ice cream is another option. For a caramel apple variation, drizzle with a homemade or store-bought caramel sauce.
Making ahead, storing and freezing
While bread pudding is always best warm from the oven, you can make it ahead and re-heat to serve later.
To re-heat, either microwave to warm or pop into a 350F oven, loosely covered with foil and heat until warmed, 10 minutes or so.
Bread pudding freezes surprisingly well. Wrap tightly and freeze up to 3 months.
Get the Recipe: Apple Bread Pudding
- 4 cups cubed day-old bread
- 2 Tablespoons butter
- 2 cups baking apples, peeled and sliced *see Note 1 for apple suggestions
- 1/4 cup raisins, optional
- 1 3/4 cups milk, 2 or 3% milk recommended
- 3/4 cup light brown sugar
- 2 Tablespoons butter
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Preheat the oven to 350F. (not fan assisted)
- Baking Pan: If you have a cast iron skillet (10-inch top diameter), it is ideal here, as it can be used on the stove-top and in the oven for baking the bread pudding. If not, use any skillet on the stove-top, then after mixing together in the large bowl, spoon into any oven-safe baking dish (7×11 or 9×9) or similar size that allows the pudding to be about 2-inches deep before baking.
- Add the cubed bread to a large bowl and set aside. Melt 2 Tablespoons butter in the skillet over medium heat. Add the prepared apples and raisins and cook, stirring, until apples soften slightly, about 3-5 minutes. Spoon the apples and raisins over the bread cubes in the large bowl.
- Using the same skillet, add the milk, brown sugar, and remaining 2 Tablespoons butter. Stir to combine and then heat over medium heat on the stove-top until butter is melted. Pour the milk mixture over bread/apple mixture in the bowl. Stir to combine.
- In a measuring cup, whisk the eggs, cinnamon, and vanilla together. Pour egg mixture over bread/apple/milk mixture in the large bowl. Spoon mixture into the cast iron skillet or baking dish.
- Bake in the preheated oven until golden and set and the apples are tender, about 40 to 50 minutes.
- Allow to stand in the pan for at least 5 minutes before eating, or allow to cool, cover and refrigerate if making ahead. Refrigerate up to 2 days.
- Serve warm drizzled with heavy whipping cream or topped with a scoop of ice cream. This is also nice drizzled with homemade or store-bought caramel sauce.
- To re-heat, place into a 350F oven, loosely covered with aluminum foil, until warmed, about 10-15 minutes.
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Hi! I’m Jennifer, a home cook schooled by trial and error and almost 40 years of getting dinner on the table! I love to share my favourite recipes, both old and new, together with lots of tips and tricks to hopefully help make your home cooking enjoyable, stress free, rewarding and of course, delicious!