This easy bread pudding sauce is sweet, buttery, and filled with caramel and vanilla flavor. Made with only 5 ingredients in just 10 minutes, this sauce is the perfect finishing touch to the classic holiday dessert!
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Caramel Sauce for Bread Pudding
You haven’t tried bread pudding until you’ve tried this bread pudding caramel sauce! It’s the best part of the whole dish and is seriously so delicious. It’s sweet, buttery, and has just the right amount of vanilla and caramel flavor. It reminds me of my favorite buttermilk syrup, but with a caramel twist.
This caramel sauce is the perfect finishing touch to bread pudding and is easily whipped up on the stove in just 10 minutes. You only need 5 ingredients to make it, 3 of which you will already have on hand to make the bread portion of the dessert.
Not only does this sauce taste delicious with bread pudding, but it can also be served with overnight French toast, buttermilk pancakes, caramel apple monkey bread, and even a bowl of vanilla ice cream. Or if you’re like me, a spoonful or two of the plain sauce never hurt anybody!
This recipe is similar to making homemade caramel sauce, but with a lighter consistency. Start with the base sauce ingredients below, but feel free to add other spices (like a sprinkle of cinnamon or nutmeg) to give it more holiday flavor.
Find the full printable recipe with specific measurements below.
- Butter: This adds a delicious richness to the sauce. I like to use salted butter to add a hint of salty flavor to balance out the sweet caramel.
- Sugar: You’ll need a mix of half-granulated sugar and half-light brown sugar. It helps to sweeten the sauce, as well as add a nutty, caramelized flavor.
- Heavy cream: This helps thicken the consistency and gives it an extra boost of richness.
- Vanilla: A dash of high-quality vanilla extract helps pull all of the flavors together.
How to Make Sauce for Bread Pudding
Making bread pudding sauce is a simple task and takes your bread pudding to the next level. Simply mix ingredients together, boil them to thicken, and make a glazed look, then pour it over top of the bread pudding. It is the best dessert combination!
- Mix together. Combine the butter, sugar, brown sugar, and heavy cream in a saucepan over medium heat. Cook for 5-7 minutes, stirring frequently.
- Boil. Once it comes to a full boil, cook for 1 minute and then remove from heat.
- Stir. Then stir in the vanilla.
- Serve. Drizzle over bread pudding. Serve while warm.
For an even more delicious bread pudding, try using a loaf of homemade French bread. It has the best flavor and a thick and sturdy texture. It’s important to leave the bread out overnight to stale so that it doesn’t get soggy. If you forget, you can toast the bread cubes in the oven for 5 minutes to quickly harden them up.
Helpful Cooking Tips
Bread pudding sauce is a basic pantry staple ingredient that is simple to make and combined has the most flavor. Follow along with these helpful tips to know just what to do when making the best bread pudding sauce!
- Butter. I like to cube the butter to help it melt faster and cook more evenly in the saucepan.
- Continue to stir. Make sure to stir constantly while the mixture cooks. You don’t want it to burn.
- Add vanilla last. Wait to add the vanilla until after you remove the pot from the heat. If you add it in the beginning with the rest of the ingredients, the flavor will cook off.
- Don’t overheat. As soon as the sauce begins to bubble, that means it’s almost ready to go. Let it cook for about another minute, then remove the pan from the heat.
Yes! This is perfect to freeze in a freezer bag separately from the bread pudding.
Let it cool for a few minutes before serving. The consistency of the sauce will thicken as it cools.
In this recipe, we skip the rum, but traditionally rum is a part of the sauce in bread pudding.
Storing and Reheating Sauce
Place the leftover bread pudding sauce in an airtight container in the refrigerator until ready to warm up. Warm up slowly on the stovetop, stirring until the sauce is heated through.
More Ways to Use Bread Pudding Sauce
Bread Pudding Sauce
- ¼ cup butter , I used salted
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- ¼ cup light brown sugar , packed
- ¼ cup heavy cream
- 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
- Combine the butter, sugar, brown sugar and heavy cream in a sauce pan over medium-heat. Cook for 5-7 minutes, stirring frequently.
- Once it comes to a full boil, cook for 1 minute and then remove from heat. Then stir in the vanilla.
- Drizzle over bread pudding. Serve while warm.
Nutrition provided is an estimate. It will vary based on specific ingredients used.
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