An easy bread pudding recipe made with pumpkin puree, challah bread, and a few other simple ingredients. This pumpkin bread pudding is easy to make and a family favorite!

Two slices of pumpkin bread pudding topped with ice cream and caramel sauce on white plates.

One of the most popular recipes on my site is my husband’s grandma’s bread pudding. I’ve had so many people make the recipe and tell me how much it reminds them of the bread pudding their mother or grandmother used to make all of the time. I can’t even begin to tell you how wonderful that is to hear!

Now that it’s officially fall, I wanted to create a pumpkin version of her bread pudding recipe. My husband and I really loved how this version turned out, so I had to share the recipe with you. It has swirls of pumpkin all throughout it that taste similar to pumpkin pie.

This pumpkin bread pudding is also incredibly easy to make. Just throw some bread in a baking dish, whisk together a few simple ingredients, pour it on top, and bake it. I’m actually considering making it for Thanksgiving this year over a traditional pumpkin pie!

A white baking dish full of pumpkin bread pudding.

Ingredients in This Recipe 

This is such an easy bread pudding recipe, but it tastes gourmet! Here’s everything we’ll be using to make it: 

  • Challah bread: You want to make sure to use day-old bread when making this recipe. If you have a fresh loaf of bread, you can dry it out in the oven at 350°F for about 10 minutes. Either option works fine, just make sure to do one or the other.
  • Whole milk: Whole milk is best because it provides a richer flavor and texture.
  • Pumpkin puree: Make sure to use pure pumpkin puree in this recipe and not pumpkin pie filling. 
  • Sugar: I used a mixture of granulated sugar and brown sugar to sweeten the bread pudding and add a subtle molasses flavor. 
  • Eggs: Need to be lightly beaten. 
  • Vanilla extract: Use pure vanilla extract for the best flavor. 
  • Spices: I used a blend of pumpkin pie spice, cinnamon, and nutmeg in this recipe. If you don’t have pumpkin pie spice on hand, you can make your own

Overhead view of cubed challah bread in a white baking dish.

How to Make Pumpkin Bread Pudding 

To make this pumpkin bread pudding, you’ll start out with a loaf of day-old challah bread. 

Then, just cube the bread or tear it into pieces and spread it around in a baking dish. I use a bread knife to try to cube the bread, but it doesn’t have to be absolutely perfect.

Then mix together the wet ingredients, some whole milk, pumpkin puree, sugar, eggs, vanilla extract, and spices. I typically just stick with granulated sugar in my bread pudding, but I opted to use some brown sugar in this version because it pairs well with the pumpkin.

Wet ingredients for homemade bread pudding in a glass bowl with a whisk.

As far as the spices, you can feel free to adjust them and add more or less if you like.

I used pumpkin pie spice in this pumpkin bread pudding. I also added some additional cinnamon and nutmeg to really amp up the spices in this dish.

Once the wet ingredients are mixed up, pour it all over the bread in the baking dish, making sure that all of the bread is coated with the mixture. If you don’t get all of the bread coated with the mixture, you can gently press the bread down in the dish to make sure it’s coated.

Overhead view of unbaked bread pudding in a white baking dish.

Then, let it sit on the counter for about 10 to 15 minutes so the bread can soak up some of the mixture.

After the time is up, just pop it into the oven and let it bake until the center of the bread pudding is set. In other words, the center should be firm.

Once the challah bread pudding is finished baking, set it aside to cool slightly on a wire rack. You can enjoy this bread pudding plain or serve it with a huge scoop of ice cream and some homemade salted caramel sauce (my personal favorite!).

Slice of pumpkin bread pudding topped with ice cream on a white plate.

FAQ’s

What’s the Best Bread To Use? 

I prefer to use challah bread when I make bread pudding, but any kind of bread will work in this recipe. A few other options that work well are French or brioche bread.

How Do You Reheat It?

While I recommend serving this homemade bread pudding straight from the oven, leftovers are quite hearty and can be reheated easily. To reheat, cover loosely with foil and bake at 350°F for 15 to 20 minutes, or until warmed through. 

Can You Freeze It? 

Yes! Let cool completely, then wrap in several layers of plastic wrap, followed by a layer of foil. To thaw, place in the fridge overnight. Reheat in the oven. 

Baking Tips 

  • Make sure to use pumpkin puree and not pumpkin pie filling in this recipe. Pumpkin pie filling is already sweetened and has spices added to it.
  • Let the bread pudding to sit on the counter for about 10 to 15 minutes before you bake it. This will allow the bread to soak up some of the pumpkin mixture.
  • Adjust the spices to suit your own tastes. 

More Pumpkin Desserts to Try!

A slice of bread pudding topped with ice cream and caramel sauce on a white plate.

Pumpkin Bread Pudding

Prep Time: 15 mins
Cook Time: 50 mins
Total Time: 1 hr 5 mins
An easy bread pudding recipe made with pumpkin puree, challah bread, and a few other simple ingredients. This pumpkin bread pudding is easy to make and a family favorite!

Ingredients

Servings: 12 servings
  • 1 (20-ounce) loaf day-old challah bread , cubed into 1-inch pieces
  • 3 cups (720 ml) whole milk
  • 1 (15-ounce) can pumpkin puree
  • 2/3 cup (135 grams) brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs , lightly beaten
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Instructions
 

  • Spray a 9x13-inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Place the cubed challah bread into the prepared baking dish and spread it around into an even layer. Set aside.
  • In a very large mixing bowl, whisk together the milk, pumpkin puree, brown sugar, granulated sugar, eggs, vanilla, pumpkin pie spice, cinnamon, and nutmeg until fully combined.
  • Pour the mixture evenly over the bread in the prepared baking pan, making sure all of the bread is coated. Allow to sit and soak up the mixture for about 15 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350°F (177°C). Once the 15 minutes is over, place the bread pudding in the oven and bake for 45 to 55 minutes or until the center is set.
  • Remove from the oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool slightly before serving.

Notes

Storage instructions: Store bread pudding in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat individual servings in the microwave for 20 to 30 seconds.
Freezing Instructions: Once the bread pudding has cooled completely, wrap it tightly and store it in the freezer for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator.
Bread: If you have a fresh loaf of challah bread, you can cube it into 1-inch pieces, place them on a baking sheet, and bake at 350°F for 8-10 minutes, stirring often, until the bread is dried out.
 
Cuisine: American
Course: Dessert
Author: Danielle
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