10 Takes on Bread Pudding

By Sarah Freeman  |  February 13, 2014

It turns out yesterday’s bread tastes even better today. Especially when it's doused in sugar, some sort of liquor and an assortment of spices before being baked into a custardlike creation. Bread pudding is having a moment in Chicago, popping up on both dessert and brunch menus, as pastry chefs give slightly stale baked goods of all shapes and sizes, from brioche to pretzels, a sweet second chance.

  • 312

    Executive chef Luca Corazzina uses banana bread for his budino di pane. The rich banana bread pudding is served with crème ingles and banana fudge gelato.

    136 N. LaSalle St.; 877-405-4563

  • Lovely

    You can keep your Cronut, New York City. Here in Chicago, the pastry professionals at this bakery transform croissants into bread pudding and cover it in brown-sugar cream sauce.

    1130 N. Milwaukee Ave.; 773-572-4766

  • Bang Bang Pie Shop

    These pie experts transform their other specialty pastry into sometime even more delicious. Flaky biscuits are baked into bread pudding bursting with cranberries and covered in maple glaze.

    2051 N. California Ave.; 773-276-8888

  • Atwood

    Chef Derek Simcik gives his coffee bread pudding an extra kick with chocolate espresso beans. The dish is also accented with hazelnut brittle and amaretto Chantilly cream.

    1 W. Washington St.; 312-368-1900

  • Ada St

    One of the most decadent items on Ada St.'s brunch menu is the pretzel bread pudding served in an individual skillet with maple whipped cream and candied bacon.

    1664 N. Ada St.; 773-697-7069

  • Café des Architects

    This elevated take on the classic desserts features pieces of chocolate bread pudding. Pastry chef Leigh Omilinsky balances the rich flavor with passion fruit and Tahitian vanilla.

    20 E. Chestnut St.; 312-324-4063

  • Mk

    Pastry chef Lisa Bonjour has as much of an affinity for naming desserts as she does for making them. "‘Cause it’s a bittersweet cin-phony" is her take on bread pudding and consists of cinnamon sticky toffee bread pudding with candied pecans, griottines cherries and coffee ice cream.

    868 N. Franklin St.; 312-482-9179

  • Sola

    A fall and winter favorite is this apple bread pudding filled with baking spices, from cinnamon to anise, and served with mascarpone ice cream, hoisin caramel sauce and pecan brittle.

    3868 N. Lincoln Ave.; 773-327-3868

  • Southport Grocery

    The winter special at this cozy bakery and cafe is a gluttonous pick-me-up to ward off the seasonal blues. Bread pudding pancakes are available Monday though Friday until the end of the month.

    3552 N. Southport Ave.; 773-665-0100

  • Sidedoor

    This new gastro-lounge next to Larwy’s serves a pretzel roll bread pudding that is baked with whiskey-soaked apricot, pistachios and cinnamon and served with whipped cream.

    100 E. Ontario St.; 312-787-6768