A fresh and bright side dish that's perfectly matched with grilled meats.
Croissant Bread Pudding with Bacon & Pecans
If you are a bread pudding fan, you’re going to love this indulgent version made with croissants (and bacon!).
I was compensated by Nielsen-Massey Vanillas for my time in developing this recipe and post. All opinions are my own.
There’s something to be said for taking a classic recipe and turning it up to eleven. Making your favourite recipes even more awesome with a few key tweaks and additions. This, my friends, is one of those moments.
I guess the thought process goes something like this: traditional bread pudding uses stale, leftover white bread, which is usually pretty tasteless. The whole recipe kind of exists to give flavor to the flavorless. Repurpose the mundane, if you will. But, what if instead of using bread, you substituted it for a richer, more buttery and flakey option, and changed the game? And what if then, you chose to also add in a more-than-generous splash of bourbon, Neilsen Massey vanilla and Texas pecans?! And, what if, while you were already on this delicious roll, you decided to throw bacon into the mix, because you can?!
Well, then you’d end up with something that looks a little like this:
Using chunks of croissant (and of course, day or two old ones work great for this) also has other advantages. The parts that are submerged beneath the cinnamon flecked custard are of course gooey and have that melt-away texture when they hit your tongue. But unlike bread, which ends up as an unpleasant mouthful of dry crumb if left exposed to the surface, any un-soaked croissant tips take on a flaky, pastry like quality, so you get double the textural experience.
Though you may not expect it, this is actually a great dessert to serve if you’re planning to grill – because you can prep and get it into the oven before you start your cook, it’ll be ready by the time you’re done eating without taking up any valuable grill real estate.
Serve with a giant spoon and watch the crowds help themselves.
Croissant bread pudding with bourbon, bacon & pecans
- 4 croissants, cubed
- 4 strips bacon
- 2 eggs
- 1.5 cups white sugar
- 2 tsp Nielsen Massey Pure Vanilla Extract
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 2 tbsp melted butter
- 2 cups milk
- 1/3 cup pecans, chopped
- optional - a splash of bourbon for kick
- Preheat the oven to 325°F/160C
- Chop the bacon strips into small pieces, and cook down in a pan until crispy, then drain onto paper towel and allow to cool.
- Layer the cubes of croissant in a 9 x 13 inch baking dish. Fill any gaps by pushing and tucking in cubes.
- Combine eggs, butter, vanilla, milk, bourbon and cinnamon. Whisk gently to combine. Gradually add the sugar a little at a time, to dissolve it into the liquid mixture.
- Pour the liquid mixture over the croissant cubes, trying to ensure all pieces are saturated. Then, sprinkle the bacon and chopped pecans over the top, pushing some down into the croissant cubes.
- Bake for 50 to 60 minutes and serve while warm.
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