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Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with Irish Bread Pudding with Whiskey Caramel Sauce! Such a decadent and easy dessert.

Caramel sauce being poured over a ramekin of irish bread pudding.

What are your favorite St. Patrick’s Day traditions?

We love to head to our local parade (STL is known for their family parades on St. Patrick’s Day, it is SO fun), drink some green beer, and then head home for Irish Bread Pudding with Whiskey Caramel Sauce.

Our dog Scout even joins the fun by wearing her favorite green sequined collar. That poor dog doesn’t stand a chance. It’s one of our favorite days!

Is there anything more comforting than bread pudding? Super simple while also being decadent, it’s the perfect way to indulge on date night, after a long week, or just celebrating everyday things.

This Irish Bread Pudding with Whiskey Caramel Sauce is perfect for St. Patrick’s Day! Oozing with flavors that make St. Patrick’s Day a favorite (WHISKEY!), warm, delicious, and SO EASY.

What’s not to love!

Overhead view of three ramekins of irish bread pudding. A small pitcher of whiskey caramel sauce is next to them.

Delicious Irish Bread Pudding

I just have such a thing for bread pudding. I’ve made it with chocolate (hot chocolate bread pudding to be exact!), and even made an apple pie bread pudding.

And of course there’s pumpkin bread pudding and croissant bread pudding.

But you can’t beat this Irish bread pudding with whiskey caramel sauce version. It’s bursting with flavor and personality.

You can bake Irish bread pudding in a large casserole dish or in individual ramekins for guests. It’s the perfect dessert to make when entertaining because it’s thrown together in minutes.

Leave the bread pudding a bit to soak up all the goodness in the custard and then bake. Top with extra whiskey caramel sauce or whipped cream for an extra special treat. Don’t you just want to dive right in??

I love to soak the raisins beforehand in the whiskey for extra bursts of flavor throughout. If you’re not a raisin lover (hello, my husband!), I have also used chocolate chips.

Now THAT is decadent! Ooey, gooey, and oh so perfect. It’s a great way to finish off a meal of Irish lamb stew and soda bread.

Whiskey Caramel Sauce: The Perfect Finish

The whiskey caramel sauce is what really takes this Irish bread pudding recipe from delicious to amazingly decadent.

Unlike some bread pudding recipes that simply serve the sauce on top, some of the whiskey caramel sauce goes into the bread pudding custard.

That means the flavor of the sauce is in every single bite of this bread pudding.

Then you can serve even more of the remaining sauce on top as well! Double the whiskey caramel sauce for double the flavor.

You might even want to make extra Whiskey Caramel Sauce to drizzle on top of ice cream or over apple crumb pie. After all, who said that you could only enjoy it for St. Patrick’s Day?

Spoon in a ramekin of irish bread pudding topped with whiskey caramel sauce.

How to Make Irish Bread Pudding & Whiskey Caramel Sauce

Even though you have to make two things for this recipe – the caramel sauce and the bread pudding – don’t be intimidated. You can do this!

Ingredients you’ll need

The first step to making this recipe is making the whiskey caramel sauce. For that, you will need:

  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 1/4 cup butter, cubed
  • 2 ounces cream cheese, cubed
  • 1/4 cup Irish whiskey
  • 1/4 cup milk

You can use your favorite Irish whiskey for this recipe. If you don’t have a particular favorite or aren’t super familiar with Irish whiskeys, Jameson is a great option! 

Use the rest of the bottle to make some Irish old fashioneds or Irish coffees to go with your St. Patrick’s Day meal. 

For the bread pudding, you will need:

  • 10 cups cubed French bread (cut into 1/2 inch cubes)
  • 1/2 cup raisins (or chocolate chips if you don’t like raisins)
  • 2/3 cup whiskey caramel sauce
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 can evaporated milk, 12 ounces
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • cinnamon sugar to taste

This recipe makes a 9×13-inch pan or about six 6-ounce ramekins of bread pudding. So there’s plenty to feed a crowd or have leftovers if you are just feeding a few people!

I really like using French bread for this recipe. It soaks up the custard really well without getting too soggy. 

Feel free to soak the raisins in a bit of the Irish whiskey while you work on the caramel sauce for even more flavor. 

Making the whiskey caramel sauce

The most intimidating part of this recipe is making the caramel sauce, but I know you can do it.

Add the water and sugar to a saucepan and place it over medium-high heat. I suggest using a larger saucepan than you think you will need – it will give you more surface area to work with.

Stir until the sugar completely dissolves.

Now, set down the spoon and do not touch it again. Really! 

Unlike recipes like Salted Caramel Sauce that use some corn syrup as insurance against graininess, stirring this could turn it into a grainy mess.

Let the mixture simmer until it is golden. This usually takes around 17-20 minutes. 

Make sure the mixture is simmering (bubbling) the entire time. If it is not, turn up the heat a bit.

Keep a close eye on it because it will go from no color to golden to burnt quickly, but again: Do not touch it!

Once it is golden, remove the pan from the heat. Now grab a whisk and carefully whisk in the butter and cream cheese until all of the clumps are dissolved.

The mixture is super hot and can bubble up, so be careful!

Once the butter and cream cheese are worked in, whisk in the whiskey and milk. It’s probably going to bubble up again, so keep being careful. 

Once the sauce is smooth and combined, set it aside.

Making the Irish bread pudding

To make the bread pudding, combine the cream, sugar, vanilla, evaporated milk, eggs, and ⅔ cup of the whiskey sauce in a large bowl. Whisk well.

Add the cubed bread, stirring to make sure each piece of bread is covered in the custard mixture.

Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to let the bread soak up the custard. You can let the mixture soak for longer – up to overnight! – if you like.

When you’re ready to bake, pour the bread mixture into a greased 9×13-inch dish or divide it into about six 6-ounce ramekins.

Sprinkle the raisins or chocolate chips over the top and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar as desired.

Bake the Irish bread pudding for about 35 minutes or until set. Serve it warm with more of the whiskey caramel sauce as you wish!

Three ramekins full of irish bread pudding topped with whiskey caramel sauce.

Recipe FAQs

What’s the best bread to use for this Irish bread pudding?

I prefer using french bread for this bread pudding. I think it’s the perfect happy-medium between a sandwich loaf and crusty sourdough. It soaks up the custard well but doesn’t turn super mushy.

Can I make this ahead of time?

Yes! The bread should soak up the custard for at least 30 minutes, but you could let it go for as long as overnight if you like. Then you can bake it the next day.

Reheat the caramel sauce for about 30-seconds at a time in the microwave, stirring well between intervals, until warmed through.

How should I store leftovers of this bread pudding?

Store leftovers of the bread pudding in the refrigerator, covered, for up to 3 days. You can also freeze it for up to 3 months. Let it thaw in the fridge overnight.

Reheat in the microwave for 30-60 seconds or warm several portions at a time in a low oven. Place the Irish bread pudding in an oven-safe dish, cover with foil, and place in the oven until just warmed through.

Irish Bread Pudding with Whiskey Caramel Sauce was contributed by Becky of The Cookie Rookie.

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Irish Bread Pudding with Whiskey Caramel Sauce

By: Jamie
4.36 from 88 ratings
Prep: 40 minutes
Cook: 35 minutes
Resting Time: 30 minutes
Total: 1 hour 45 minutes
Servings: 8
Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with Irish Bread Pudding with Whiskey Caramel Sauce! Such a decadent and delicious dessert.


For the whiskey caramel sauce:

  • 1 ½ cups granulated sugar
  • cup water
  • ¼ cup butter cubed
  • 2 ounces cream cheese cubed
  • ¼ cup Irish whiskey
  • ¼ cup milk

For the bread pudding:

  • ¾ cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • ¾ tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 can evaporated milk 12 ounces
  • 2 eggs lightly beaten
  • cup whiskey caramel sauce
  • 10 cups cubed French bread cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • ½ cup raisins or chocolate chips if you don’t like raisins
  • cinnamon sugar to taste
  • Additional whiskey caramel sauce for serving


To make the whiskey caramel sauce:

  • Combine sugar and water in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Use a larger saucepan than you think you will need for more surface area on the bottom. Stir until the sugar completely dissolves.
  • Stop stirring and allow to simmer until mixture is golden (about 17 minutes). The mixture should be bubbling the entire time. Keep a close eye on it; the sauce will go from no color to golden to burnt very quickly. DO NOT STIR!
  • Remove from heat.
  • Carefully add butter and cream cheese, whisking constantly until all clumps are dissolved. CAUTION! Mixture will be very hot and can bubble up during this time.
  • Stir in whiskey and milk. Mixture will bubble a bit at this step as well. Set aside.

To make the bread pudding:

  • Preheat oven to 350°F.
  • If using a 9×13-inch casserole dish, spray with nonstick spray, or spray six 6-ounce ramekins with nonstick spray.
  • Combine cream, sugar, vanilla extract, evaporated milk, eggs, and 2/3 cup whiskey caramel sauce in a large bowl. Stir well with a whisk.
  • Add bread cubes, using a spatula to push down and make sure each piece of bread is coated.
  • Cover and allow to sit in the fridge for at least 30 minutes to soak up all the goodness.
  • Pour bread mixture into the prepared baking dish or ramekins.
  • Sprinkle top with raisins or chocolate chips and cinnamon-sugar as desired.
  • Bake at 350°F for 35 minutes or until set.
  • Serve warm with more whiskey caramel sauce as desired.


If you’d like, you can soak the raisins in some more of the Irish whiskey while you work on the caramel sauce to add even more flavor.
If you prefer, you can stir the raisins or chocolate chips into the bread pudding mixture instead of sprinkling them on top.
Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months.


Calories: 753kcal, Carbohydrates: 119g, Protein: 14g, Fat: 24g, Saturated Fat: 13g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g, Monounsaturated Fat: 6g, Trans Fat: 0.3g, Cholesterol: 102mg, Sodium: 539mg, Potassium: 382mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 83g, Vitamin A: 796IU, Vitamin C: 2mg, Calcium: 255mg, Iron: 3mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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  1. Patrick says:

    5 stars
    F’n amazing

  2. Brian T says:

    I’ve been itching for years to make a bread pudding with whiskey sauce for St. Patrick’s Day and prepared this recipe for guests this year. It was a hit beyond my best expectations, truly spectacular and right up there now with Sticky Toffee Pudding in a tie for favorite holiday dessert — I’ll make it from now on.

    The Le Creuset or Staub mini cocotte dishes are perfect for serving this dish. I used fresh French bread bought the same day and I wish now I had bought it a day in advance and allowed it to harden a bit. I rarely make caramel and am terrified of burning it; cooking the sugar and water on my lowest setting took forever and turning it up to low did the trick but I was careful to remove it the moment it turned amber. Like many kitchen tricks, you simply need to do this a time or two to get the hang of it. Next time I will make the sauce the day before to save work on the day of the dinner. Soaking the raisins in Jameson Irish whiskey was brilliant but next time I think I will mix them in with the custard and save a few to sprinkle on top. I baked the dish early in the afternoon and microwaved it before serving later that day. I haven’t had cinnamon sugar since my mom put it on my toast when I was a kid and appreciated the excuse to buy it, thanks for the nostalgic flashback.

    I love bread pudding and there are many out there with whiskey sauce. This is a notch above all the others, a true delight guaranteed to please and sure to wow your guests. It will be a tradition here. Thanks for a great recipe!

    1. Jamie says:

      So glad you enjoyed the recipe, Brian! Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing your feedback. Happy baking!

  3. Ann says:

    I made this for St. Paddy’s Day it was excellent. I did double the egg mixture, added the raisins and added pecans, a little extra cinnamon.

    1. Jamie says:

      So glad to hear this, Ann! Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing your feedback. Happy baking!

  4. Isabel says:

    I am in the process of making this and have realized that although you list heavy cream in the ingredients for the bread pudding, it’s not included anywhere in the directions. I assumed that it was added along with the milk, so no problem. But also, there’s no indication of where one uses the “cinnamon sugar to taste”. I’ve never made bread pudding before so have no experience with this. I added some cinnamon to the pudding mix. I’m sure it’s going to be spectacularly delicious. Just wanted to let you know about the omissions. Cheers!

    1. Jamie says:

      Thanks for bringing to my attention, Isabel! Yes, you add the cream with the other wet ingredients and you can sprinkle some cinnamon-sugar on top (or mix it in, as you did!). I updated the card. Thanks for stopping by! Happy baking –