• Put your leftover bread to work and make a bread and butter pudding - sweet or savoury like this ham, cheese and spinach meal. (Danielle Abou Karam)Source: Danielle Abou Karam

Adam Liaw's method for clearing piled-up bread: a savoury bread pudding complete with ham, cheese and spinach for a tasty brekkie.






Skill level

Average: 3.2 (87 votes)

"In my house we love bread, but often have a few different varieties on the go – the kids like soft sandwich breads, the adults like sourdough, there’s often a muffin or two in there. We use what we can but sometimes it gets out of hand and I declare what I call “bakery bankruptcy” where we clear out all the old bread and turn it into breakfast for the next morning."


  • 2 cups baby spinach leaves
  • 100 g butter, melted
  • 6 cups chopped leftover bread (a mix of brown, white, sourdough, muffins), cut into 3-cm pieces
  • 1 cup chopped thick-cut ham
  • 3 cups grated Tasty cheese


  • 8 eggs
  • 625 ml (2½ cups) milk
  • 1 tsp salt


Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Resting time: 2 hours
Cooling time: 15 minutes

  1. Boil the kettle. Place the spinach leaves in a heatproof bowl. Pour over the boiling water, then drain immediately. Brush the inside of a 20 cm x 30 cm baking dish with a little of the melted butter.
  2. Place the bread in a large bowl and toss with the remaining butter. Place half the sourdough in the base of the baking dish and scatter with half the spinach and half the cheese. Repeat with another layer of bread cubes, ham, spinach and cheese.
  3. For the custard, place all the ingredients in a bowl and whisk together. Pour over the bread, then cover with the dish with foil (stick a toothpick in the top of the foil to keep the foil from sticking to the cheese) and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or preferably overnight.
  4. When ready to cook, preheat the oven to 180ºC.
  5. Bake the pudding covered for 40 minutes, then uncover and bake for a further 15 minutes until the centre is set and it is all golden brown. Allow to cool for 15 minutes before slicing and serving.


Adam Liaw cooks, laughs, and explores culture with some of Australia's most beloved in The Cook Up With Adam Liaw.

Photography by Danielle Abou Karam.