Pillsbury Crescent Roll ‘Bread’ Pudding


Am I the only person who routinely buys Pillsbury Crescent Rolls on sale at Costco and forgets to use them? Crescent rolls are one of the food items that are on rolling-sale at Costco and each time I see them on sale, I fall for buying them. Despite the fact that I really don’t make or eat crescent rolls very often. I’ve always been a sucker for a sale and one time (recently) bought a bunch of yogurt strictly because it was on sale. When I got the box home, several containers had opened and yogurt had gotten everywhere. I had one container of yogurt, and the rest has been sitting in my fridge ever since. Incidentally, I actually love yogurt and eat it often — just not the kind I got from Costco, apparently.

At any rate, every time I buy these damn crescent rolls from Costco, I get right up to the expiration date and scramble to find recipes to use up the 5 tubes of rolls. See my post about Easy Christmas Tree Pull-Apart Bread if you do this too and need some inspo. BTW, I do this so often, I decided to make my own category dedicated to crescent roll dough in this blog.

This time, I thought one of the easiest and most delicious ways to use up the rolls would be to make a bread pudding. I figured I would find a variety of recipes to choose from because I certainly couldn’t be the first person to have thought of using leftover crescent rolls in bread pudding.

Only I couldn’t find hardly any recipes at all, though I found a wide variety of recipes using croissants. Since I don’t exactly think of croissants and crescent rolls as the same thing (though I’m sure that’s what Pillsbury was going for?), I decided to pass on the croissant recipes and instead focused on a regular old bread pudding recipe. I figured I could easily sub crescent rolls for the bread. And where I found inspiration for this crescent roll-based recipe was at Tornadough Alli‘s recipe for The Best Bread Pudding.

I went ahead and doubled the recipe and adjusted some of the ingredients and amounts in order to get a massive casserole dish bursting with custardy crescent roll pudding, yielding sky-high pieces of pudding. I’m in favor of the bigger-the-better when it comes to cookies, cakes, bars, etc.

In researching recipes, I came across some debate about whether or not you can make bread pudding the night before baking it. I found some rather strong opinions in opposition of allowing the bread to sit in the egg mixture for longer than a few minutes, with one such person saying you wouldn’t soak French toast overnight, so why would you soak bread pudding overnight? I found this hilarious because I love overnight French Toast. I’ve even made an Overnight French Toast Waffle Casserole which is one of the best brunch meals I’ve ever made. I actually prefer to make bread pudding the day before you bake it. I don’t so much want defined pieces of bread in bread pudding. I want to be able to cut it like a loaf, if that makes any sense. So at any rate, you can make this recipe the day of or prepare it the night before you plan to bake it. I don’t think I would soak it more than 24 hours but if you do, and it holds up, let the world know by commenting on this blog.

This recipe includes a warm vanilla sauce for topping the pudding. It’s my opinion that you need something on top of bread pudding instead of just eating it alone. Like ice cream. Or warm vanilla sauce. Or both! When we were kids my grandma made Croatian Bread Pudding and we used to top it with a little half-and-half. It was one of her most sought-after comfort food recipes, though now that she’s gone, all of her recipes seem like comfort to me.

pudding ingredients.

  • 32 oz Pillsbury Crescent Rolls, baked several days ago
  • 10 eggs
  • 2 c. sugar
  • 3 c. whole milk
  • 3 c. half-and-half 
  • 1 T. vanilla extract
  • 1 rounded tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. nutmeg

sauce ingredients.

  • 1 c. heavy cream
  • 1 T. flour
  • ½ c. sugar
  • 4 T. butter
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract or beans from one-half vanilla bean pod

directions.

  1. Grease an over-sized rectangular baking dish with butter or vegetable oil spread (like crisco).
  2. Cut leftover crescent rolls into 1″ squares and add to greased baking dish.
  3. In an extra-large bowl whisk together milk, cream, eggs, sugar, vanilla, cinnamon and nutmeg until combined.
  4. Pour over crescent rolls and submerge each piece of roll into the egg mixture. Allow the bread to absorb the egg mixture before baking for at least 30 minutes. You can keep this in your fridge for up to 24 hours if you want to make it the day or night before you intend to bake it.
  5. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees F. If you refrigerated the dish for several hours or overnight, remove from the fridge and let stand on the counter for 30 to 60 minutes before baking. This isn’t required but it may take longer to bake if you don’t. Bake for about 50 to 60 minutes, or until the center is set.
  6. To make the sauce: In a saucepan whisk together sugar, flour and heavy cream until combined. Add in the butter and heat on medium until butter melts and liquid starts to boil. Whisk until thickened slightly then remove from heat and stir in vanilla extract or vanilla beans.

Recipe rating: 

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