Bread Pudding for Two with Bourbon Sauce (gluten-free, dairy-free, whole grain options)

This bread pudding for two is made slightly healthier, has a simple bourbon sauce and has gluten-free, whole grain and dairy-free options!

With Mardi Gras culminating tomorrow on Fat Tuesday and Valentine’s Day on Sunday, I thought I’d share a New Orleans recipe for two! When I first started looking at bread pudding recipes, I was sort of appalled by the amount of butter, sugar and cream in there.

I figured that’d be okay for a serving or two but so many of the recipes yield 8-12 servings (and you know when they say 8-12 it’s really like 5-9 servings in reality). I was thinking bread pudding doesn’t reheat so well so here we are with bread pudding for just two. You could probably even get three servings out of this recipe if you want them a little smaller. They are pretty big!

Bread Pudding for Two with Bourbon Sauce {can be made dairy-free, gluten-free or whole grain}

We had bread pudding every day we were in New Orleans. I wasn’t sure if I’d even like it before I tried it. I thought of it as old, soggy, baked bread, which didn’t sound all the appealing to me. But I was so wrong! This stuff is delicious.

This recipe is like my Bananas Foster French Toast recipe in that it’s easy to make whole wheat or gluten-free. Here’s a recipe for whole wheat brioche and one for gluten-free brioche. Challah and French bread work, too!

Bread Pudding for Two with Bourbon Sauce {can be made gluten-free, dairy-free and whole grain}

Unlike Bananas Foster, bread pudding didn’t originate in New Orleans, but 11th century England. I guess the cooks in New Orleans just needed a use for all that leftover French bread. And added bourbon because… why not? ;)

I used canned coconut milk instead of cream or regular milk, meaning this bread pudding is also dairy-free (here’s a nice dairy-free French bread). If you want to use something other than coconut milk, I have no idea how that’d work since coconut milk has quite a bit more fat than dairy milk, almond milk, etc.

Bread Pudding for Two with Bourbon Sauce {can be made gluten-free, dairy-free and whole grain}

Without the bourbon sauce, the bread pudding itself is pretty boring and I wouldn’t bother making it. The sauce is everything! If you don’t want to use bourbon, then use some other kind of booze.

And don’t omit the raisins! I’m not a big fan of raisins and thought I could do without but… nope. It’s much better with raisins.

Want a fun variation? Try this Gluten Free Mango Bread Pudding!

Bread Pudding for Two with Bourbon Sauce (gluten-free, dairy-free, whole grain options)

Rated 5.0 by 2 readers
Bread Pudding for Two with Bourbon Sauce (gluten-free, dairy-free, whole grain options)
  • Prep Time:
  • Cook Time:
  • Ready in:
  • Yield: 2 large servings


    For the bread pudding:

  • 3/4 cup (177 milliliters) full-fat canned coconut milk
  • 3 cups (7 deciliters) of 3/4" cubes of stale1 brioche, challah or French bread (use gluten-free, whole grain, regular or dairy-free bread, if desired)
  • 3 tablespoons raisins
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar or raw sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • pinch of salt
  • For the sauce:

  • 1/4 cup (50 grams) brown sugar or raw sugar
  • 1 tablespoon (14 grams) coconut oil or unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon bourbon2
  • 2 teaspoons full-fat canned coconut milk (I think water would also work)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • pinch of salt


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 °F (175 °C) and grease two 1-cup (8-ounce) ramekins. If you only have smaller ones, then you'll need to use 3 and adjust the baking time.
  2. In a medium or large saucepan (one large enough for all the bread) over medium heat, heat the coconut milk until hot and steamy. Remove the pan from the heat and cool for 3 minutes. Meanwhile, in a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the remaining bread pudding ingredients. After the 3 minutes of cooling, add the bread and raisins to the warm coconut milk and gently stir until combined. Add the egg and sugar mixture to the bread mixture and stir until well combined.
  3. Scoop the mixture into the prepared ramekins. Place the ramekins on a baking sheet to catch any spills (there shouldn't be any – this is just a precaution). The mixture will be well over the ramekins' rims but it will cook down.
  4. Bake for 30-40 minutes or until the topping is firm and browned. It will puff up quite a bit in the oven but will gradually "deflate" after you remove it from the oven. When there are about 5 minutes left on the timer, start preparing the sauce.
  5. In a small saucepan over medium heat, stir together all the sauce ingredients. Bring to a simmer, while stirring frequently, and then remove from the heat. The sugar should be dissolved.
  6. When you remove the bread puddings from the oven, use a knife to run around the edge of the ramekins so that the sauce will be more easily absorbed. Pour the hot bourbon sauce over the bread puddings. The bread puddings do not reheat well but if you have leftover sauce, you can refrigerate that for a few days. If you wish to serve these on a plate instead of in the ramekin, I found it easier to remove them after pouring the sauce over them.


  1. My bread wasn't stale so after I cut it into cubes, I spread them into an even layer on a baking sheet and toasted them while the oven was heating up until they felt dry. If you do this, be careful as you don't want them to brown! I haven't tried this recipe using fresh, untoasted bread so I don't know how that'd work.
  2. There's some debate on whether or not whiskey and bourbon are gluten-free. Check with your doctor if you have questions!
  • For dairy-free: Use coconut oil instead of butter in the sauce.

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38 comments on “Bread Pudding for Two with Bourbon Sauce (gluten-free, dairy-free, whole grain options)” — Add one!

3 comments are awaiting moderation!

  • Pearl says
    August 1, 2022 @ 8:51 pm

    The recipe looks delicious! However, there’s an egg included. Can this still be considered vegan?

    • Erin replies to Pearl
      August 2, 2022 @ 12:35 pm

      Thanks! And nope. It’s not vegan because of the egg. It’s just dairy-free.

  • Randa says
    December 30, 2018 @ 6:45 pm

    Can I change raisins to dark chocolate chips? I don’t like raisins.

    • Erin replies to Randa
      January 2, 2019 @ 9:08 pm

      Of course! Enjoy. :)

  • Sandra says
    December 19, 2018 @ 4:47 am

    Anything I could do to replace the egg? Would like to make it vegan. Thanks!

    • Erin replies to Sandra
      December 19, 2018 @ 10:13 pm

      I haven’t tried it so I’m not 100% sure that it’d work here but I usually have good luck with chia eggs. I’d love to hear how it goes if you try it out!

  • Olivia Freasier says
    September 25, 2018 @ 8:18 pm

    Wondering the difference in cook time if I use an 8×8 pan?

    • Erin replies to Olivia Freasier
      September 26, 2018 @ 9:54 am

      The recipe only yields 2 servings so you’d have to probably quadruple the recipe to have enough for an 8×8. Since I haven’t tried it, I’m really not sure about that, though, or the baking time. Sorry about that!

      • Rachel replies to Erin
        May 19, 2019 @ 7:15 pm

        I quadrupled the recipe in a 2.5 qt. Corningware dish and baked it for 35 minutes. I know that seems like not enough time, but the top was firm and browned and it was cooked all the way through.

        • Erin replies to Rachel
          May 27, 2019 @ 9:55 am

          Thanks for the tip! I’ll have to try that. :)

  • Roxanne says
    April 6, 2017 @ 12:10 am

    Just made this, came out pretty good. The bread I used was pretty dense to begin with ( leftover Bob Mills GF Cinn. raisin bread) so it could of used a bit more liquid for me. But the sauce was great! Enjoyed it, will make again!

    • Erin replies to Roxanne
      April 11, 2017 @ 9:14 pm

      Sorry I just now saw your comment! I’m happy it came out well. :) Thanks for your feedback!

  • Linda Wentworth says
    February 9, 2017 @ 11:55 pm

    What temperature do you bake it at?

    • Erin replies to Linda Wentworth
      February 9, 2017 @ 11:58 pm

      Oh my goodness! Thanks for pointing that out. I’ve fixed it! Bake it at 350 F. Enjoy. :)

  • Stacy | Wicked Good Kitchen
    February 28, 2016 @ 6:01 pm

    Oh, girl…you had me at bourbon! Seriously though, this bread pudding recipe for two, incorporating coconut milk, is pure genius. YUM. We always use bourbon in our bread puddings over any other whiskey called for. Cannot wait to try this recipe, Erin! Thanks for sharing!

  • Nutmeg Nanny says
    February 11, 2016 @ 5:09 am

    It’s 11pm here and looking at this recipe is making my stomach go crazy! I need bourbon sauce in my life!

    • Erin replies to Nutmeg Nanny
      February 15, 2016 @ 9:44 pm

      Yeah, you do! I know you’d love it. :)

  • Lora @savoringitaly says
    February 10, 2016 @ 3:53 pm

    Every once in a while, I have a craving for bread pudding! My dad was a huge fan and he used to make his own versions for me. :) LOVE the bourbon sauce…of course it makes it amazing! And raisins for me!!

    • Erin replies to Lora @savoringitaly
      February 10, 2016 @ 8:41 pm

      Do they have bread pudding in Italy?! I would have never thought that. Now I want Italian bread pudding! :D

  • Laura Dembowski says
    February 10, 2016 @ 2:42 pm

    Bread pudding can be so heavy. I love how you lightened it up while still letting it be a decadent gooey dessert.

  • Aly ~ Cooking In Stilettos says
    February 10, 2016 @ 4:34 am

    You had me at the mere mention of bourbon! These look amazing and I love how you have it sized for just a couple. Whenever I make bread pudding – it’s as if it’s for an army unless I do individuals in muffin tins and then freeze.

  • Rose | The Clean Dish says
    February 10, 2016 @ 4:01 am

    Erin, I love that you made a version for just two! I always shy away form recipes that yield large amounts… because, you know. I’ll just end up eating it all myself then nobody is happy ;) This bread pudding sounds like a winner to me!! I never had bread pudding so it’s high time I try some. Starting with your recipe!

    • Erin replies to Rose | The Clean Dish
      February 10, 2016 @ 8:42 pm

      Whaaat?! You have to try it out! Grain-free bread pudding sounds difficult, though. I bet you can find a way to make it happen! :)

  • Stephanie says
    February 9, 2016 @ 3:42 pm

    I love bread pudding when it’s done right, and I don’t think you can go wrong with that sauce!!!

  • Heather | All Roads Lead to the Kitchen says
    February 9, 2016 @ 2:30 pm

    PERFECTION – this looks rich, and perfect, and amazing! The sauce and that interior shot practically made me whimper.

  • Kimberly @ The Daring Gourmet says
    February 9, 2016 @ 3:28 am

    Oh my gosh, Erin, you’re killing me….YUM!!!!!!

  • Charlotte Moore
    February 9, 2016 @ 2:03 am

    Looks wonderful!! I love bread pudding with a lemon sauce. This sauce looks mighty good though.

    • Erin replies to Charlotte Moore
      February 9, 2016 @ 2:04 pm

      I’ve never tried it with lemon sauce! I’ll have to try that next. Though I really, really love the bourbon sauce. ;)

  • Lauren Kelly Nutrition says
    February 9, 2016 @ 1:35 am

    I love bread pudding, I haven’t had it in ages! Love that bourbon sauce too, what a treat!

  • Ashley @ Wishes and Dishes says
    February 8, 2016 @ 11:03 pm

    This is brilliant you made a two portion bread pudding! You’re right – a full recipe is WAY too much!

    • Erin replies to Ashley @ Wishes and Dishes
      February 9, 2016 @ 2:05 pm

      Right?! I don’t need all that bread pudding in my life. Give me one big serving. That’ll do. :D


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