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Published December 14, 2018. This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.
This family favorite for croissant bread pudding is one of the best! Top it off with whipped cream and a homemade champagne zabaglione recipe for an unbelievably decadent dessert.
There was a time I was not allowed to go to my Aunt and Uncles on Christmas Eve without bringing this Croissant Bread Pudding with Zabaglione Recipe. It is coveted. It is loved by many, and dang it is delicious!
The buttery croissants in the homemade vanilla bean custard, to the homemade whipped cream and the rich zabaglione everything, about this recipe is a winner. I have to admit, it’s hard to give this away because it’s a bit of a signature but it’s just way too good not to share.
How to Prepare It
Here’s a nice quick secret for your regarding the croissants that go into this recipe. Ask your local grocery store or bakery if they have any 1- or 2-day old croissants.
They’re cheaper and a bit more dried out, which is what you need to make for this. Cutting croissants is messy. They’re flaky they break apart, just not an easy thing to cut up or clean up but man do they make a really good bread pudding.
Now place those cut-up croissant squares onto a sheet tray and bake them until crispy and lightly brown which only takes about 15 minutes or so.
How to Make the Custard
Homemade custard is super easy and going to fill this in nicely. It’s 4 ingredients, that’s it. Here are the steps!
- STEP 1: Slice fresh vanilla beans in half longways.
- STEP 2: Place the vanilla beans in a pot along with heavy cream.
- STEP 3: Scald the cream over low heat.
- STEP 4: Separate the egg yolks from the whites and place them in a large bowl.
- STEP 5: Add sugar to the bowl with egg yolks and whisk until combined.
- STEP 6: Slowly add in about a cup of the scalded cream to temper the eggs.
- STEP 7: Pour in the remaining cream, scrape the vanilla bean seeds in and whisk until combined and you’re done.
How to Make the Best Bread Pudding
Now that your croissants are crispy, and the custard is done, it’s time to make it. Add the croissants to a large casserole dish. You now want to add a secret ingredient, dried cherries. Evenly sprinkle these little tasty gems all over the croissants and then simply pour in your custard.
I like the press the croissants down a bit to sort of submerge them into the custard. Wrap it up in foil and bake away!
How to Make Zabaglione
Zabaglione! Say it with me! Fun right? While your croissant bread pudding is baking, this is a great time to make the whipped cream and more importantly this zabaglione recipe!
Zabaglione is simply egg yolks, wine and sugar, oh yeah and sometimes salt. You start by whisking together the egg yolks and sugar in a metal bowl until they are combined. Transfer that bowl over to a pot with hot water to make a double boiler.
This is crucial in ensuring your eggs do not scramble so be sure to follow this step!
Now, whisk the eggs and sugar over the double boiler for about 1 minute and then add in the champagne. You want to vigorously whisk the zabaglione until it becomes super light and fluffy and honestly resembles a hollandaise sauce, after all, it is made the exact same way.
You’re going to whisk continually for about 4 to 6 minutes so be sure to get that arm pumped up! A quick trick that is if you see your eggs startling to scramble simply remove it from the double boiler and continue to whisk the zabaglione. That’s it, zabaglione finished!
How to Serve
The best way I know how to serve this is by taking out a scoop and pouring the zabaglione all over the top and then hit it with some whipped cream. Seriously you guys, this may be the best dessert you’ve ever eaten. It’s divine.
More Dessert Recipe
If you love this, then here are a few of my favorite dessert recipes of all time!
- Sour Cream Bundt Cake
- Apple Galette Recipe
- Layered Pumpkin Cake
- Panna Cotta Recipe
- Peach Tart with Homemade Puff Pastry
Croissant Bread Pudding with Zabaglione Recipe
For the Bread Pudding:
- 8 large croissants cut up into 1” squares
- 2 vanilla beans cut in half longways
- 6 cups of heavy cream
- 15 egg yolks
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 ½ cups dried cherries
For the Whipped Cream:
- 2 cups heavy whipping cream
- ½ cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the Zabaglione:
- 4 egg yolks
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 cup of dry champagne
- Preheat the oven to 350°.
- Cut up croissants into 1-inch squares and place them on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper and place in the oven on 350° for 15-17 minutes or until golden brown.
- In the meantime, cut the vanilla bean in half longways and add it to the 6 cups of heavy cream in a large pot and scald the mixture on medium-low heat.
- Once scalded add to a mixing bowl with 15 egg yolks and 1 cup of sugar and mix well. Be sure to scrape all the goodness out of the center of the vanilla bean and add to the mixture.
- Once the croissants are browned place them in a large casserole dish and sprinkle the dried cherries on top.
- Next pour in the vanilla bean custard and place casserole dish and cover with foil.
- Bake in the oven at 350° for 45-50 minutes or until the custard is firm.
- Whipped cream: add the ingredients to a standing mixer with the whisk attachment and mix on high speed until stiff peaks are for formed. Chill.
- About 10 minutes before the bread pudding is finished, start making the zabaglione. In a metal bowl on a double boiler on high heat and add in 4 egg yolks, 1/2 cup sugar & champagne. Beat vigorously until thick and foamy. Takes about 6-8 minutes which is perfect because when this is done the bread pudding will be finished as well.
- 10. Pour zabaglione over bread pudding and serve with whipped cream. Enjoy!