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Feel Good Pumpkin Bread Pudding

Feel Good Pumpkin Bread Pudding
Feel Good Pumpkin Bread Pudding
This image courtesy of allfreeslowcookerrecipes.com

This Slow Cooker Pumpkin Spice Bread Pudding is an easy pumpkin recipe for fall that is sweet enough to serve as dessert, but not so sweet that you couldn't serve it for breakfast if you wanted. This versatile slow cooker bread recipe is perfect for bringing something festive and slightly different to your Thanksgiving table this year. Kids and adults are sure to enjoy this seasonally-flavored slow cooker recipe. If you'd like to make it a little sweeter, a simple vanilla or maple glaze would complement this recipe wonderfully drizzled on top.

Serves: 8

Ingredients
  • 1 (8-inch) day old French bread baguette
  • 1 (15-ounce) can pumpkin puree (not pie filling)
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice (see note)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 cups milk
  • Powdered sugar for garnish

Craving more seasonal, fall recipes? Try our collection, 10 Savory Sweet Potato Slow Cooker Recipes.



 

Instructions
  1. Cut bread into 1-inch cubes and set aside if the bread is fresh, let cubes dry overnight or toast for 10 minutes in a 350 degree F oven.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, stir together the pumpkin puree, brown sugar and spices. Whisk in eggs until well combined, then gradually whisk in the milk. Toss with the bread cubes until completely coated then set aside for 30 minutes to absorb the custard.
  3. Choose a 3-quart baking dish which will fit easily into your slow cooker insert. Spray the dish with cooking spray and spoon the prepared mixture into it. Tightly cover the dish with foil. Place a folded kitchen towel or small baking rack into the bottom of the insert and pour in 2 cups hot water, then set the bake dish into the insert. Cover lock the lid; cook on high for 3 hours.
  4. Serve the bread pudding while warm, topped with a sprinkle of powdered sugar.
Notes
  • This dish combines the best of two favorites:  pumpkin pie and bread pudding. It is a great way to use day old French bread and turn it into a holiday dessert.
     
  • If you do not have pumpkin pie spice, make a combination of 1 ½ teaspoons cinnamon, ½ teaspoon nutmeg, ¼ teaspoon ground cloves and use that instead.
     
  • Using a water bath* in the slow cooker allows a custard base such as this one to cook more gently and evenly.

 

HOW TO CREATE A WATER BATH IN THE SLOW COOKER*

  1. A water bath or “bain marie” is sometimes called for in recipes where the base is made of eggs and milk, like a custard. Heat that is too high will make that kind of mixture cook unevenly and overcook, causing a grainy or watery texture. To avoid this, the water bath absorbs the excess heat and allows the custard to cook more evenly.
     
  2. To assemble and use your slow cooker for a water bath, you will put the mixture into a separate bake dish, not directly into the insert. First be certain that the bake dish you intend to use will fit easily into the slow cooker you have.  
     
  3. Once the dish is prepared, cover it tightly with foil. This prevents condensed water from dripping from the lid into your recipe.
     
  4. Lay a thin kitchen towel, folded, into the bottom of the insert, or use a small wire cooling rack that fits into the bottom. This assures that the bake dish is not directly on top of the heat source in the cooker. Add 2 cups of hot water to the cooker, then carefully set the bake dish into the insert. Cover and cook as your recipe directs.

 


For more slow cooker pumpkin recipes you can make this fall, see our full collection!


 

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I've never been much of a sweet eater, so I think this would be an amazing treat for me. The fact that it's not your traditional dried out version of bread pudding plus the addition of pumpkin is what makes this perfect. And with powdered sugar as opposed to a super sweet glaze on top...there's no doubt this would be my go to dessert. The only thing I may consider adding is a few pecans to add a little texture.

This had a good pumpkin taste, but personally I like my desserts a little sweeter.

I liked how moist this bread pudding was. I would definitely add a glaze next time. Caramel or vanilla sounds good.

I usually like bread pudding and I love anything pumpkin flavored, but I just didn't love this. I think it could have used more flavoring, so possible some additional cinnamon would have been helpful. I would have also liked if it were more chewy - this version was more pudding than bread.

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