Maple Bourbon Sweet Potato Bread Pudding


For thanksgiving in our house, there's one non-negotiable dish. Sweet potato pie. It's something that my husband grew up having as a family tradition, and now that we're further away and don't always make it to his grandmother's house for thanksgiving, I've been happy to carry on the tradition for him in our own home. If you haven't had sweet potato pie, it's a close cousin to pumpkin pie, just a teensy bit more southern. 


As as I was flipping through a recipe magazine a week or two before thanksgiving, I stumbled across a recipe for sweet potato bread pudding and said it out loud. My husband dropped his fork and immediately started asking all sorts of questions about it. I asked if he'd prefer that over our traditional pie this year, and without a second of hesitation he said yes. 


I decided to adapt the original recipie and add a little bit more of a southern flare, like the maple and bourbon. The first recipie also called for French bread. I used challah instead. It's dense, delicious, and really soaks up whatever batter you put in it. (I won't use anything else for Sunday French toast.) Lastly, instead of one large bread pudding, I made mini bread puddings in a larger size muffin tin. This made them the perfect portion. Plus everyone loves individual size anything.  =)



1 3/4 cups whole milk

1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar

1⁄4 bourbon 

1⁄4 cup unsalted butter, melted

1/4 maple syrup

1 1⁄2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice

1 teaspoon orange zest

1⁄2 teaspoon salt

6 large eggs

1 (15-ounce) can sweet potato purée (or homemade!) 

1 (12-ounce) loaf of challah bread, cut into 1-inch cubes

1⁄2 cup chopped pecans (optional)




  1. Spray a muffin tin, or glass casserole dish with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together milk, brown sugar, bourbon, melted butter, maple syrup, pumpkin pie spice, zest, salt, eggs, and sweet potato until combined. Stir in bread and pecans.
  3. Pour mixture into prepared dish. Cover with aluminum foil, and refrigerate 1 hour and 30 minutes.
  4. Preheat oven to 375°.
  5. Bake 30 minutes. Uncover, and bake until lightly browned and set, 15 to 20 minutes more. I actually ended up broiling mine for the final few to get a nice crisp on top. Just make sure you watch it!
  6. Let stand 15 minutes before serving.

While the pudding muffins (well that's fun to say) were in the oven, I made a super simple vanilla glaze for the top.  

  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

You can adjust the thickness by adding more or less milk. I wanted mine thick, but you can add more milk one teaspoon at a time until you find your desired consistency. 


Xo, enjoy!