salted caramel Italian bread pudding with chocolate bits

by Michelle

Italian Bread Pudding with Chocolate Chips and Salted Caramel

A couple of weeks ago, my daughter Sara used my blog to cook for a bunch of friends. It was the first time that she needed ‘bite’ to come through for her and we failed. She found the whole thing overwhelming.

“I love reading your posts Mom but what if I wanted to put a menu together for a dinner party. How do I figure out what goes with what”?


The truth of the matter is, when I post, I only write about one part of the meal. I never talk about what I served with the main attraction. I never thought that anyone would use ‘bite’ as a recipe book. Sara asked if I would include, in each post, dishes that could be served with that day’s post to complete a meal.

I love idea. The only problem is because I’ve written posts only including one part of the dinner I was serving not everything I’ve written about works together. So, when I can, at the bottom of my post you’ll find menu suggestions. Just click on the shortlink under the thumbnail photo and you’ll be immediately whisked away to that post/recipe. Keep in mind, they’re only suggestions…

Panettone Cubes

Saturday night was a miserable rainy night. We were hosting a dinner party and I wanted a dessert that would make everyone feel warm and cozy. With the wind and rain howling outside my humble bread pudding catapulted to stardom with the addition of heavy cream, lots of eggs, chocolate chips, homemade salted caramel and best of all the substitution of Italian panettone for ordinary white bread. And just because there wasn’t enough delicious happening, I decided to add a smear of Nutella across each plate. If you’re looking for a “knock it out of the park” dessert, look no further. It’s simple and fantastic!

Chocolate Chips

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

1 lb Italian panettone
6 extra-large eggs
4 ½ cups heavy/whipping cream
1 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup sugar
10 tablespoons semi sweet chocolate chips


  • Trim the dark brown outer crust from the panettone.
  • Cut the rest of the loaf in 1-inch cubes.
  • Butter 10 popover cups or 12 muffin tins generously.
  • Place 1/3 of the panettone cubes in each cup.
  • Sprinkle each cup with 1 teaspoon of chocolate chips
  • Repeat until all the panettone and chocolate chips are used up.
  • In an eight cup measure, whisk together the eggs, heavy cream, vanilla and sugar.
  • Slowly pour the custard mixture over the panettone and chocolate chips.
  • Allow the custard to soak into the panettone for 20 minutes
  • Place the baking dish into a larger pan and add very hot tap water to the larger pan until it’s halfway up the side of the baking dish.
  • Bake the pudding for 35 minutes or until the custard is set and the top of the pudding is light golden brown. A knife inserted into the middle of the custard should come out clean.
  • Allow to cool for 15 minutes.
  • Serve warm or at room temperature

THE LOVE:  You can use a commercial caramel sauce to drizzle over the top of the puddings, if you’re unsure about making the homemade sauce. Smear a tablespoon of Nutella on each serving plate. Put the pudding on top of the Nutella, drizzle with caramel sauce, sprinkle with sea salt flakes and you’ve created a rock star!

printable recipe

salted caramel Italian bread pudding with chocolate


1/2 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon pure vanilla
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup sugar
2 tablespoons corn syrup
2 tablespoons water
2 teaspoons Maldon sea salt flakes


  • Place cream and vanilla in a medium saucepan over medium heat until it‘s steaming.
  • Stir in the butter, turn off the heat, and set aside.
  • In a large heavy-bottomed saucepan, combine the sugar, corn syrup, and water. Cook over medium-high heat, swirling the pan just slightly until the sugar becomes a medium amber color, about 10 minutes.
  • Remove the caramel from heat and carefully whisk the cream mixture into the caramel.
  • The caramel will solidify. Whisk until it melts into the cream mixture and you have a sauce.
  • Stir in Maldon sea salt flakes.

THE LOVE: Don’t let your caramel get to dark or it will have a burnt taste.

printable recipe

salted caramel Italian bread pudding with chocolate

menu suggestions that would work with today’s post:

Thanks for reading.