Chocolate Bread Pudding Recipe photo by Taste of Home
Total Time
Prep: 15 min. + standing Bake: 30 min.
Humble chocolate bread pudding is given the luxe treatment with a semisweet chocolate custard and creamy whipped cream. It's the perfect end to a weeknight meal or a fancier dinner with friends.

Updated: Jun. 19, 2024

If bread and chocolate pudding are two of your favorite things, this dessert is for you. It’s a twist on the classic bread pudding, with a rich chocolate custard. Dried bread soaks in cream, egg and chocolate, then gets baked until it’s soft, warm and puffy. Topped with whipped cream and a dusting of confectioners’ sugar, it’s a humble dessert elevated with chocolate.

If chocolate isn’t your thing, here’s a classic raisin bread pudding instead. And there are even more variations: Try this Caribbean-spiced version (made in a slow-cooker) or a banana bread pudding.

Ingredients for Chocolate Bread Pudding

  • Semisweet chocolate: Not too sweet, not too bitter, semisweet is the perfect balance of chocolate flavor for this dessert.
  • Half-and-half cream: Creamy half-and-half is the luxurious dairy for this sweet custard base.
  • Sugar: Granulated sugar adds just enough sweetness.
  • Milk: To keep the custard from being too thick, 2% milk adds flavor but is less rich.
  • Egg: One egg is all you need to help bind the custard and the bread when it bakes.
  • Vanilla extract: Just a little vanilla adds another layer of flavor.
  • Day-old bread: Dried bread absorbs the custard better, and cubing it makes it easier to serve.
  • Confectioners’ sugar and whipped cream (optional): While these toppings aren’t considered necessary, they certainly take this dessert from delicious to decadent.

Directions

Step 1: Combine the chocolate and cream

In a microwave-safe bowl, melt the chocolate until smooth. Stir in the cream, and set aside.

Step 2: Finish the sauce and toss the bread

In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar, milk, egg, vanilla and salt. Stir in the chocolate mixture, then add the bread cubes and toss gently to coat. Let stand for 15 minutes to let the chocolate sauce soak into the bread.

Step 3: Bake the bread pudding

Spoon the mixture into two greased 2-cup souffle dishes, and bake at 350°F until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean, 30 to 35 minutes.

Step 4: Add toppings and serve

If you want to add a flourish to this already delicious chocolate bread pudding, dust with confectioners’ sugar and dollop with whipped cream just before serving.

Chocolate Bread Pudding Variations

  • Have fun with fruit: Chocolate and fruit go perfectly together. You can add fruit as a topping—like fresh raspberries or strawberries—or add dried cherries or another dried fruit to the custard before it bakes.
  • No souffle dishes? No problem: Instead of using two souffle dishes, pour the bread and custard into an 8×8-inch baking dish. It may take a few minutes longer to bake, but it’s still finished when a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.
  • Dress up your whipped cream: While dreamy whipped cream is fancy enough, you can take it up a notch by adding 1 teaspoon of bourbon or incorporating ground-up freeze-dried fruit to both color and flavor the whipped cream. You need about 1/4 cup of dried fruit (before pulverizing) for 1 cup of cream. Stir it into the cream and whip (this makes an extra-thick whipped cream).

How to Store Chocolate Bread Pudding

Leftover bread pudding can be stored covered in the refrigerator for three to four days.

Can you make bread pudding ahead of time?

You can mix up the custard and bread and refrigerate it for a few hours or overnight before baking.

Chocolate Bread Pudding Tips

How do you melt chocolate evenly?

Chop chocolate in uniform-size pieces, and melt it in the microwave in 10-second increments, stirring in between each session. When there is melted chocolate with just a few chunks left, you should be able to stir and let the residual heat melt the last few bits.

What’s the best type of bread to use for bread pudding?

Any neutral-flavored bread will work in this chocolate bread pudding recipe, like a white sandwich or French loaf, but breads with an enriched dough like brioche or challah work especially well in dessert dishes.

What if my bread isn’t day old?

That’s OK, simply cube up the bread and spread it out on a baking sheet. Bake it on your oven’s lowest setting until it’s dry. Let the bread cool before mixing it with the custard.

Chocolate Bread Pudding

Prep Time 15 min
Cook Time 30 min
Yield 2 servings.

Ingredients

  • 2 ounces semisweet chocolate
  • 1/2 cup half-and-half cream
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup 2% milk
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 4 slices day-old bread, crusts removed, cut into cubes (about 3 cups)
  • Optional toppings: Confectioners' sugar and whipped cream

Directions

  1. In a small microwave-safe bowl, melt chocolate; stir until smooth. Stir in cream; set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk sugar, milk, egg, vanilla and salt. Stir in chocolate mixture. Add bread cubes and toss to coat. Let stand for 15 minutes.
  3. Spoon into 2 greased 2-cup souffle dishes. Bake at 350° until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean, 30-35 minutes.
  4. If desired, sprinkle with confectioners' sugar and top with a dollop of whipped cream.

Nutrition Facts

1 serving: 622 calories, 17g fat (9g saturated fat), 145mg cholesterol, 656mg sodium, 105g carbohydrate (79g sugars, 2g fiber), 12g protein.

This is a fun recipe because the chocolate makes it different from traditional bread pudding. It's a rich, comforting dessert. —Mildred Sherrer, Fort Worth, Texas