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Cause when it’s carnival time, everybody’s having fun!

It’s time for Mardi Gras celebrations. From the time I was a little girl growing up in Houma, I loved the ‘pawade,’ but more importantly I loved King Cake.  Real, good bakery King Cake, not the ‘dried store bought’ versions of King Cake, but more the ‘creamier bakery’ versions.

As I grew up, and while my love for King Cake continued, I didn’t love all the carbs from the bread.   My goal was not to create a low-fat cinnamon roll (can we just say DRY!), but to create a dish embracing my memories of the creamery bakery favorites.

After a few flops of working to create a ‘skinnier’ version of one of my favorite treats, I created a very flavor-rich dish combining the delicious flavors of a traditional King Cake with the creaminess of bread pudding.  I simply reduced the sugar in both the cake and toppings, and while I used bread – remember – this is Mardi Gras!

Skinny King Cake Bread Pudding

Skinny King Cake Bread Pudding
Serves: 12 Servings
  • 1 French bread loaf, cut into pieces
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup of Egg beaters
  • 2 cups of fat-free half and half
  • 2 cups of 2% milk
  • 1 1/2 cups of sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of almond extract
  • 1 tablespoon of vanilla extract
  • Glaze, recipe follows
  • Mardi Gras Sugars, recipe follows
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Place bread pieces into 9 x 12 baking pan.
  3. In a large bowl, combine eggs, egg beaters, half and half, milk, sugar, almond extract, and vanilla extract. Whisk until blended.
  4. Gently pour mixture over bread.
  5. Let bread mixture sit 30 minutes while pressing bread into milk mixture.
  6. Place pan in oven.
  7. Cook for 30-40 minutes or until mixture is set in center.
  8. Cool slightly and top with Glaze and Mardi Gras Sugars.
Glaze[br][br][b]Ingredients:[/b][br] – 3/4 cup confectioners’ sugar[br] – 4 tablespoons 2% milk[br] – 1/2 teaspoon almond extract[br][br][b]Instructions:[/b][br] 1. Mix sugar, milk, and almond extract in a bowl.[br][br]Mardi Gras Sugars[br][br][b]Ingredients:[/b][br] – 6 tablespoons of white sugar, divided[br] – Yellow food coloring[br] – Green food coloring[br] – Purple food coloring[br][br][b]Instructions:[/b][br] 1. Place 2 tablespoons of sugar in sealable plastic bags.[br] 2. Add 1-2 drops of yellow food coloring into one bag, seal, and shake to combine.[br] 3. Add 1-2 drops of green food coloring into a second bag, seal, and shake to combine.[br] 4. Add 1-2 drops of purple food coloring into a third bag, seal, and shake to combine.