Last updated on May 23rd, 2023
Piña Colada Pineapple Bread Pudding has a tropical twist with crushed pineapple, golden raisins, shredded coconut and pina colada mix.
This recipe came about because I had a lonely can of frozen piña colada mix just hanging out in my freezer. Long ago have I forgotten why exactly I purchased said can of frozen piña colada mix. But now, every time I open the freezer, it stared back at me, reminding me of beach escapes that wouldn’t be taking place for a good long while.
What to do? Sure, there is the most obvious option — throw it in the blender with a
lot of little rum. But if you’re like me, once sweater weather hits, frozen drinks are the last thing on my mind.
I begin to brainstorm. Dump it into a cake batter? Coconut-flavored cookies? The more I thought about it, the more bread pudding seems like the obvious choice.
The History of Bread Pudding
Food historians believe bread pudding first arrived on the scene way back to the 11th or 12th century as a way for peasants to ensure stale bread didn’t go to waste. Original versions were probably not nearly as delicious as modern day makings, as they were likely made with water instead of heavy cream. Over the years, bread pudding has shaken off its humble beginnings and has now earned a reputation as the ultimate comfort food.
The Key to Tasty Bread Pudding
Not all bread is equal. While there are a ton of options out there, you want to select a bread that will hold up well to being soaked in liquid. Sandwich bread is too soft — you’ll end up with mushy bread pudding.
Any crusty bread such as French, ciabatta or sourdough work well and lend a unique flavor and texture. For something more luxurious, try using brioche or pannetone, a fruit-filled Italian sweet bread available during the holidays..
Using dried bread is also important because it more readily absorbs liquid. Beforehand, cube your bread, then arrange it in a single layer on a cookie sheet. Dry it in the oven at 350 degrees for 10 minutes.
When measuring bread cubes, measure loosely. Don’t pack the measuring cup. Also keep in mind, using more or less liquid than what the original recipe calls for cand change the denseness of your dish.
How to Make Piña Colada Pineapple Bread Pudding
Step one. In a large bowl, combine four cups of heavy cream or whole milk, 1-1/2 cups of crushed and drained pineapple, and eight tablespoons of melted unsalted butter. Add in 1-1/2 cups of sweetened, flaked coconut, 1-1/2 cups of chopped pecans, and 1/2 cup of golden raisins.
Next, add two cups of thawed piña colada mix, two tablespoons of vanilla, two teaspoons of nutmeg, two tablespoons of cinnamon, two cups of sugar and three lightly beaten eggs. Stir until everything is thoroughly combined.
Step two. Fold about 6-8 cups of loosely packed bread into the bowl. Folding just means we are going to mix the bread in gently in order to preserve the cubes as much as possible. Mix just until the bread is coated with the mixture. Everything should be moist but not soupy.
Pour the mixture into greased 9-by-12-by 2-inch glass baking dish. You could also spoon the pudding into mini ramekins or medium greased muffin pans for individual servings.
Step three. Allow mixture to sit in the refrigerator for a minimum of two hours to allow the bread to soak up the custard.
Step four. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Bake for one hour, or until the top is golden brown. Serve warm with rum sauce, ice cream or whipped cream.
How to Make the Rum Sauce
Step one. Cream 1/2 cup of room temperature unsalted butter and one cup of sugar. Creaming just means mixing your butter and sugar together until it becomes light and fluffy.
Step two. With the mixer running, add one teaspoon of vanilla extract to the creamed butter and sugar.
Step three. Once the vanilla is incorporated, add one lightly beaten egg.
Step four. Then add 1-3 tablespoons of rum. Start with one, give it a taste, then add more if you want. If you don’t want to use actual rum, you can use rum extract. Gives you all the flavor without the booze.
Step five. Transfer everything into a medium saucepan. Heat and stir over low heat for about 10 minutes until sugar is completely dissolved.
Step six. Serve the sauce warm over individual puddings.
Piña Colada Bread Pudding with Rum Sauce
- 4 cups heavy cream or whole milk
- 1-1/2 cups crushed pineapple drained
- 8 tablespoons of unsalted butter melted
- 1-1/2 cups sweetened flaked coconut
- 1-1/2 cups chopped pecans
- 1/2 cup golden raisins
- 2 cups frozen piña colada mix thawed
- 2 tablespoons vanilla
- 2 teaspoons nutmeg
- 2 tablespoons cinnamon
- 2 cups of sugar
- 3 eggs lightly beaten
- 1 loaf of day-old French bread cubed (about 6-8 cups loosely packed)
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter room temperature
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 egg lightly beaten
- Rum or rum extract to taste to taste about 3 tablespoons
For the bread pudding:
- In a large bowl, combine all ingredients except the bread. Mixture should be moist but not soupy. Fold bread into mixture and stir until bread is thoroughly coated. Pour into greased 9-by-12-by12-inch glass baking dish. For individual mini bread puddings, spoon pudding mixture into medium greased muffin pans or ramekins.
- Allow mixture to sit in the refrigerator for a minimum of two hours to allow the bread to soak up the custard.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake for one hour, or until the top is golden brown. Serve warm with rum sauce, ice cream or whipped cream.
For the rum sauce:
- Cream butter and sugar.
- Add vanilla.
- Slowly stir in the egg, and then add the rum.
- Heat and stir over low heat about 10 minutes until sugar is dissolved.
- Serve warm over individual puddings.
What a lovely idea for a warm dessert, bread pudding is so comforting and then with Caribbean flavors, I bet it is delightful. I want a bowl of this please =)
Wow, this is a genius idea. I love all the flavors. It’s incredible what you can come up with if a frozen can stares at ya from the freezer 🙂 I love the story of the bread pudding too! I’d love to make this recipe soon!
Anything with coconut will be a winner in my house. Great work!
The best recipes are born from a long, forgotten ingredient! I love what you did with the pina colada mix! Genius. Truthfully, I probably would have just added the rum and taken the easy way out -but this pudding looks phenomenal! Bravo my friend.
I love your twist on bread pudding here. This looks absolutely delicious! What a wonderful dessert…bread pudding is a main staple in my house during the holiday season. Going to have to try this!