I have a mission in life, of sorts. And although it’s not as noble as say, finding ways to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, it is nonetheless heroic to certain segments of the world’s population.
I’m on a mission to turn indulgent desserts into family-friendly breakfast and brunch items. (You’re welcome.) It’s been done before, of course. Cake morphed into muffins, fried dough was branded with a more breakfast-friendly moniker, “doughnuts”, and toaster strudels? Let’s not even go there.
However, I think I’ve hit a home run with my Chocolate Banana Bread Pudding. With the goodness of whole grain whole wheat bread, fresh, ripe bananas and a touch of pure cocoa powder, I feel good about serving this pseudo-dessert. And, with Family Day just around the corner, Healthy Grains Institute challenged me to create a fabulous addition to a brunch menu that features one of our favourite comfort foods… bread!
It’s no secret that food brings families together. Some of our fondest memories are from moments spent around the breakfast table; giggling while we pick marshmallows out of cereal, teasing the boys about their latest crush, or simply enjoying the sheer pleasure of breaking bread (preferably the warm, out-of-the-oven kind) with loved ones.
That’s why I’m looking forward to Family Day – it’s all about celebrating togetherness. With our incredibly busy lives and penchant for eating on the go, we don’t always have a chance to sit down and enjoy a comforting, feel-good meal. This weekend, bond over brunch!
This recipe yields 10-12 servings (serving size: about 3/4 cup). Prep time is about 10 minutes, but you’ll need to factor in about 15 minutes of resting, 1 hour of baking and 15 minutes of cooling.
5 large eggs
3 cups whole milk
1 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
2-3 medium ripe bananas, chopped
1 loaf (8 cups) day-old (or lightly toasted) whole grain whole wheat bread
powdered sugar, optional garnish
chocolate syrup, optional garnish
Chop whole grain whole wheat bread into 1-2 in cubes; set aside in a large bowl.
Whisk eggs in a separate large bowl. Whisk in milk, brown sugar, cocoa powder, vanilla and salt until combined. Add banana and stir until incorporated. Pour mixture over bread and stir until combined. Let stand for 15 minutes, tossing the bread with the liquid a few times to help it absorb the custard.
Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat a shallow 9×13″ baking dish with cooking spray.
Transfer the pudding mixture to the prepared pan. Coat a piece of foil with cooking spray and cover the pan with it, sprayed-side down. Bake for 30 minutes. Uncover and continue baking until puffed and firm to the touch, about 25 to 30 minutes more. Let cool for 15 minutes before serving.
Dust with powdered sugar and drizzle with chocolate sauce, if desired. (Hint: All the YES.)
For additional recipes and information on how to include grains as part of a healthy, balanced diet, visit www.healthygrains.ca.
Oh wow this looks good, I love bread puddings and this one just took it up a notch with chocolate, perfect for valentines!!
This looks really good!
I have never eaten or made a bread pudding I may have to try this
Mmmm…looks delish! I love bread pudding as a snack with afternoon tea. Looking forward to trying this recipe for Valentine’s day!
fabulously delicious…you are amazing cook. Hope it turns out looking just as good as yours! YUMMY!
I also love bread puddings and with chocolate….omg this has to be sinfully delicious
This sounds so very delicious!!!! Sending to my mom. lol
La Cuisine d'Helene
I’m licking the screen, I will have to make this soon, looks delish!
Yum…drooling here! That looks so good, definitely going to have to try it out!
My family would go crazy for this! Extra chocolate sauce at our house please! :)
This pudding looks fabulous Lena!
This looks so good and it’s a great way to use up day old bread
This looks so nice! I love your pictures. I’m not normally a fan of bananas but my kids are.
So much yumminess! I’m reading this on Family Day, but will definitely add it to my weekend breakfast repertoire. Thanks Lena :)
I love bread pudding! Add chocolate to the mix and I think that I might eat the whole thing!
Yum! yum! yum! looks delicious and very chocolately
this looks so amazing! will try it this weekend
Oh boy – this looks super good! I just have to wait until my bananas ripen. =)
Yummy, bet it would be good with apples too.
mouth watering but for those don’t want the sugar what is a good substitute?
I love all things banana. I would love this right now!
I just tried bread pudding for the 1st time at a fancy buffet last month. Out of all the desserts, it was the favorite of everyone there. So decadent! This banana one looks amazing too.
I have to say this was a very delicious dish and i have prepared it twice since finding it here a few weeks ago.
This looks fabulous!
Looks delicious and seems quite simple to make. Thx for the share. I printed this one out for my recipe book (:
I love bread pudding. I’ve never had it in these flavours- sounds yummy!
so fun & yummy!!! Sinful treat that the whole family would love, thanks for sharing. I am going to give it a try! (not the best at cooking but I try) LOL
I have to try making this ! My family would love it !
Love bread pudding – this variation looks so good
The grandkids are here for the weekend and hubby whipped up a batch of this recipe and the kids loved it,i actually loved it and had seconds
I finally made some and it was pretty good
WOW, WHAT A CHANGE UP FOR BREAKFAST OR BRUNCH LOOKS REAL GOOD
We served this at Brunch this morning it was delicious !
I made this bread pudding for my Mom senior tea party and everyone loved it!
Your recipe looks delicious and I like how easy it looks to make