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Croque Monsieur Savory Bread Pudding

5 from 1 vote
Ham, cheese, bread, and cream — what else could you want for breakfast? My Croque Monsieur Savory Bread Pudding recipe is your morning go-to.
Croque Monsieur Savory Bread Pudding in a dish.

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Hi Bold Bakers!

IN THIS RECIPE: You’re about to get a Savory Bread Pudding recipe unlike any other — simple and perfect for breakfasts or brunches, with ham, cheese, and cream.

I’m sure you can tell, I’m a huge fan of sweet pastries, muffins, and any baked good you can get your hands on for breakfast. (There are no hard and fast rules here — I fully believe you can have brownies for breakfast.) But sometimes, savory breakfast is what I need to hit the spot.

My croque monsieur bread pudding, also known as strata, is perfect for a savory breakfast — especially if you’re hosting a brunch! It’s cheesy, eggy, and packed full of flavors. And bread. Lots of bread.

This is also a great make-ahead recipe for when you know you won’t want to be bothered in the morning. You can make this 30 minutes before you plan to bake or the night before! You want that bread to soak up all the good flavor so take your time! 

Don’t forget that if you have any questions at all that we respond to every comment on the site!

Croque Monsieur Savory Bread Pudding baked to perfection.

What Is a Croque Monsieur Strata

Croque monsieurs are basically just a fancy and French grilled cheese with ham. This strata, or bread pudding, or breakfast casserole, whatever you want to call it, takes its inspiration from that. As always, there are eggs and bread, but I love to add some cooked ham and cheese to my savory bread pudding. 

As always, feel free to get creative. Add some bacon or your favorite veggies! 

What You Need to Make Croque Monsieur Savory Bread Pudding

How to Make Croque Monsieur Bread Pudding

There’s no easier breakfast — let yourself have a lazy morning and make this savory bread pudding. Here’s how you do it — but don’t forget to get the printable recipe will all the measurements further down on this page.

  1. First, butter your casserole dish and set it aside so it’s ready to go.
  2. Whisk the eggs, milk, cream, mustard, garlic, thyme, salt, and pepper in a large bowl. This is your custard mix.
  3. Cut or tear the bread into 1–inch (2½cm) and toss onto the custard.
  4. Let the bread sit in the custard for at least 30 minutes, or until the bread has absorbed all or most of the liquid. (Make this dish ahead, it will hold in the fridge for hours.)
  5. Combine your grated cheese and ham in a bowl as the bread soaks.
  6. When your bread has soaked up the custard and you’re ready to bake, preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C).
  7. Place half of the bread in your prepped casserole dish. Layer it with half of your cheese and ham mixture.
  8. Top with the rest of your bread and any leftover liquid. Then, sprinkle on the remaining cheese mixture.
  9. Bake for 50-60 minutes until the pudding is puffed and golden and slightly pulled away from the sides of your dish. 

Gemma’s Pro Chef Tips For Making Savory Bread Pudding

  • Don’t forget to butter your dish before you add the pudding. It makes it so much easier to clean later.
  • Stale, day-old bread is best for this recipe as it will more easily absorb the custard. If your bread is very fresh, lay the cut pieces on a baking sheet and dry it out in a 300°F (150°C) oven for about 20 minutes before tossing it with the custard.
  • This bread pudding can be fully assembled and held in the refrigerator overnight before baking.
  • If you want to make this vegetarian, leave out the ham.
  • You can add leafy greens like spinach or kale to this recipe – finely slice and saute briefly to soften before adding to the custard.

A heaping serving of Croque Monsieur Savory Bread Pudding

How Do I Store Bread Pudding?

You can store any leftover Croque monsieur bread pudding in your refrigerator for up to 2 days. Reheat the leftovers in the microwave or in a 225°F (110°C) oven until warmed through.

Make More Pudding!

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Croque Monsieur Savory Bread Pudding Recipe

5 from 1 vote
Ham, cheese, bread, and cream — what else could you want for breakfast? My Croque Monsieur Savory Bread Pudding recipe is your morning go-to.
Author: Gemma Stafford
Servings: 12 servings
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 50 mins
Soak for atleast 30 mins
Ham, cheese, bread, and cream — what else could you want for breakfast? My Croque Monsieur Savory Bread Pudding recipe is your morning go-to.
Author: Gemma Stafford
Servings: 12 servings

Ingredients

  • 6 large eggs (at room temperature)
  • 1 cup (8floz/240ml) whole milk (at room temperature)
  • ½ cup (4floz/120ml) heavy cream, at room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 4 cloves of garlic (crushed)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme (minced)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper (freshly ground)
  • 1 loaf of day-old French bread (about 20oz/567g)
  • 2 cups (6oz/170g) Gruyere cheese (grated)
  • cups (7oz/200g) cooked ham (diced)

Instructions

  • Butter a 9x13 inch casserole dish. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, cream, mustard, garlic, thyme, salt, and black pepper.
  • Cut or tear the bread into 1-inch (2½cm) pieces and toss onto the custard.
  • Let this mixture sit for at least 30 minutes, or until the bread has absorbed all or most of the liquid. (You can make this dish up in advance and hold it in the fridge for hours until ready to bake)
  • While the bread is soaking, combine the grated cheese and ham in a small bowl.
  • Once the bread is ready, preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C).
  • Place half of the bread in the prepared casserole dish. Layer with half of the cheese mixture.
  • Top with the remaining bread and any collected liquid and then sprinkle with the remaining cheese mixture.
  • Bake for 50-60 minutes, until the pudding, is puffed and golden and is pulled away from the sides slightly. Serve warm or at room temperature.
  • Store leftovers well covered in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Reheat in the microwave or in a 225°F (110°C) oven until warmed through.
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Andrew
Andrew
4 months ago

Hmmmm Thank you Gemma, I’m always looking for new ideas for breakfast for my B&B guests here in France and I think a Croqué Monsieur pudding would delight them or maybe horrify them LOL 😁 I always have plenty of baguettes to use up and anything I can prepare the evening before is a big help as you can imagine. I think I would divide this into individual ramekins before baking for presentation reasons and serve it with tomates cerises et roquette on the side. I’ll do a test bake first 👨‍🍳

Sara
Sara
4 months ago

Hi Gemma, what do I do for a vegetarian version? Thanks

Suzanne Luce
Suzanne Luce
4 months ago

If you want to make it the night before, would you fully assemble or keep the bread mixture separate from the cheese mixture and layer just before baking in the morning?

Nichola Stephenson
Nichola Stephenson
12 days ago

Hello Gemma😊
I was reading Andrew’s comment about making in individual dishes. Would the cooking time need to be altered for this?

Amy Holcombe
Amy Holcombe
4 months ago

Snowed in today with only country ham in the fridge. What a wonderful modification to this great recipe! My family loved this savory dish and we will definitely be making it again. Thank you Gemma!

Helen Dehner
Helen Dehner
4 months ago

Making this tomorrow morning!!

Carol Worster
Carol Worster
4 months ago

I have made regular bread pudding in my slow cooker. Would this work in it do you think? Are there any modifications I should make when trying it?

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About Us

Meet Gemma

About Us

Meet Gemma

Hi Bold Bakers! I’m Gemma Stafford, a professional chef originally from Ireland, and I want to help you bake with confidence anytime, anywhere!

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