panettone bread pudding

My eyes are tired.

I started and finished reading The Help in 3 days this weekend. I watched a painful and sad football game. I stayed up way too late reading, trying to forget the game and finish the book.

And I could barely get out of bed this morning. But then I remembered what was for breakfast.


Besides As I Lay Dying, I’m now convinced that Southern Literature is one of my favorite genres to read. If you haven’t read Their Eyes Were Watching God or A Streetcar Named Desire or I Am One of You Forever, you should change that. The language and images and history and the food(!) bring the characters and settings to life.

After finishing The Help, all I could think about was fried chicken, beans, and southern desserts. But not pie. No…not pie.


I know panettone is not southern – it’s Italian. But bread pudding is definitely something you can find just about anywhere in the south.

Thanks to the Foodbuzz Tastemaker Program, I received 2 different panettone to try. I knew what panettone was, mostly because I watch so much Giada on Food Network. But I had never tried it and I was excited to see what all the fuss was about.

I mean, it sounds like fruitcake in bread form – not the most exciting thing.


Sunday morning, Nick’s parents, Nick and I cut into the traditional loaf of panettone and ate it in hunks with our herb baked eggs (told you we were addicted) and sliced apples.

And we loved it! The dough is fluffy and a little shaggy, and the orange zest keeps the rich eggy bread from seeming too heavy. I’m not normally a fan of raisins in bread, but I loved everything about it.

So bread pudding it was.


With two loaves to get through and only two of us in the house, I knew I needed to make a few things so the bread wouldn’t be wasted.

Plus, bread pudding is fun and super easy to make.

I love mixing up the custard the night before and letting the bread soak overnight. For weekday mornings, it means we can actually have a breakfast like this since half of the work has been done already.


Breakfast bread pudding is a good thing. Breakfast bread pudding made with Italian panettone is even better. I’m not sure what this makes me – very southern or almost Italian…maybe southern Italian?


Panettone Bread Pudding

Makes: 6 servings


  • 4 cups diced panettone (Italian holiday bread)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup half and half
  • 1 and 1/2 cups milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp salt


  1. Place diced bread in a greased baking dish.
  2. In a separate bowl, beat the eggs and stir in the half and half, milk, vanilla, and salt.
  3. Pour the egg mixture over the bread, making sure to get each piece coated. Press the bread into the custard to help it soak in each piece.
  4. Cover the dish with foil and place in the refrigerator overnight.
  5. In the morning, remove the pan from the fridge and preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  6. Bake at 350 degrees, covered, for 25 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for another 5-7 minutes until the bread pudding is set.


  1. I’ve never tried panettone, but the reviews seem to be very positive! Love that you used it in bread pudding- very creative!

  2. LOVE pannetone bread pudding! A couple years ago I bought pannetone at Trader Joe’s and they had a recipe for bread pudding on their website. So good!!

  3. I need to try this! I’ve never eaten panettone before :)

  4. Bread pudding is such a treat! What a great use of the bread to try… I had never heard of it before.

  5. Bread Pudding is one of my favorite desserts!! This looks like a wonderful reason to get out of bed today.

  6. Nicely done! I have read on more than one occasion that panettone makes the best bread pudding ever. You are a wise woman. :)

    • I’m sad to admit it, but this bread pudding was so delicious compared to the one I made with my homemade bread. it’s just so rich!

  7. Brandi,
    all your recipes are so great! Love you girl!! XO

  8. It’s official. I’m going home today and using the rest of my open loaf to make THIS!

    ? – did the recipe leave the bread too wet? It just looks super moist (which isn’t necessarily a bad thing!!:) )

    • we loved it like it is, but you could definitely cut back a little on the liquid, if you wanted. Or bake it a little longer uncovered.

      i can’t wait to try the chocolate chip one!

    • it would also be delicious with a little brown sugar sprinkled over the top before baking!

  9. I didn’t sign up for that one because panettone has always freaked me out a little bit -all those fruits and whatnot made it look like fruit cake to me. But there is a chocolate one! OMG! Yum.

  10. i’ve never had pannetone, but this bread pudding would certainly get me up in the morning :)

  11. I’ve never seen a box of panettone before! I need to scour my grocery store!

  12. Panetone is my favorite dessert. It’s big in Spain too and I learned to love it there. I miss it as one of the things I don’t eat Gluten free and now your bread pudding makes me miss it more.

    Looks so good Brandi!

  13. Their Eyes Were Watching God is one of my favorite stories of all time. Now I want to check out I am one of you forever! Thanks for the book love!

  14. Have you read any of Joshilyn Jackson’s books? I’ve ready all of them; my favorite is There Are Gods in Alabama. She’s is a current Southern writer that I really enjoy.

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