This simple, Classic British Bread and Butter Pudding bread and butter pudding is so similar to the ever popular Bread Pudding, except the bread is buttered. Plus, it could not be easier to make. You’ll get the perfect taste sensation as it gets brown and crispy on top and light and custardy underneath. 

Triangles of bread browned in the oven with custard and raisins

This dish is best made with day old bread that has dried out. This is because fresh bread is very moist and will not absorb the custard as well. Once the bread has dried out, it will be more  sponge-like so it can soak up all the flavors.

Scooping out a slice of bread pudding
How do you get day old bread?

You can leave it out in the open air for a day to dry out, or, you can lightly toast it and allow the bread to cool. Just don’t brown the bread.

In typical fashion of old English recipes, this dessert was a way for the poor to use up extra egg, milk and bread as well as being an inexpensive dish to make.

Since bread was an inexpensive grocery item, bread was used a lot for both savory and sweet dishes, just like Berry Summer Pudding.

Bread and butter pudding viewed from overhead
Why is it called pudding?

In England, we refer to dessert as ‘pudding’. Historically, dessert was used more by the upper classes for their ‘posh’ sweets and the name pudding was used by the lower classes for more rustic, modest desserts.

Do you serve bread butter pudding warm or cold?

It is best served right after baking. The tops of the bread slices are still warm and crispy and the custard is creamy. There’s your taste sensation right there!

This recipe serves 4 people but you can double the recipe if you need to serve more people  (you’ll need a larger dish or make 2 of the same recipe). To store leftover bread and butter pudding, cover tightly and store refrigerated for 3 days.

Bread and butter pudding served on a white plate topped with whipped cream and raspberries

To reheat bread pudding, put in an ovenproof dish, cover with foil and reheat at 350°F/180°C. Remove the foil at the end to re-crisp the bread (it’s all about that crispy top, remember?). I like to serve with whipped cream and berries.

Yield: 4

Traditional British Bread and Butter Pudding

A square baking dish filled with bread and butter pudding

Slices of white bread are buttered then baked in custard.

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour

Ingredients

  • 10 slices day old white bread *see note
  • 4 tablespoons butter, plus more for greasing
  • 1 ½ cups (340 ml) whole milk
  • 3 large eggs whisked, room temperature
  • ½ cup (60 grams) light brown sugar (golden caster sugar)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon grated nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • ½ cup (60 grams) currants, sultanas or raisins

Instructions

  1. Evenly butter the bread slices on 1 side, cut into triangles. You can leave the crusts on or remove.
  2. To a large bowl add the milk, eggs, sugar, vanilla, nutmeg and lemon zest. Whisk to combine.
    Grease the bottom of a square 8 x 8-inch (20 x 20 cm) baking dish with butter.
  3. Add a layer of bread slices to the bottom of the pan, slightly overlapping. Sprinkle half of the currants, sultanas or raisins. Add the rest of the bread slices and the currants, sultanas or raisins. Pour over the custard so the bread is evenly coated. Gently press the bread slices so they all make contact underneath with the custard. Leave at room temperature for 20 minutes so allow the bread to soak the custard.
  4. Preheat the oven to 350°F/180°C.
  5. Bake the pudding, uncovered in the center of the oven for 30-40 minutes until browned.
  6. Remove from the oven and allow to rest for 10 minutes before serving to allow the custard to set.

Notes

* You can leave the slices out overnight to dry or lightly toast without browning

Nutrition Information

Yield

4

Serving Size

1

Amount Per Serving Calories 560Total Fat 21gSaturated Fat 11gTrans Fat 1gUnsaturated Fat 8gCholesterol 179mgSodium 572mgCarbohydrates 79gFiber 3gSugar 44gProtein 15g

This nutrition calculation is provided by Nutronix that is only a guideline and not intended for any particular diet.