The Best Budin de Guayaba or Guava Bread Pudding

budin de guayaba or guava bread pudding

This budin de guayaba or bread pudding with guava slices has been a family-famous dessert in the home of Aida Diaz, 87, for decades. The retired Puerto Rican interior designer, mom and grandmother made this dulce treat so often and to such acclaim, she has the recipe memorized.

Aida was born in Trujillo Alto in northwest Puerto Rico and married an Army official. Which means their family moved a lot — “23 times in 20 years!” she says. Not a bad thing for a decoradora who enjoys setting up new homes. ”There were a lot of sofas!” she smiles. But no matter how many times Aida and her Puerto Rican husband were relocated, she says, they kept their island close by flying home with the kids to visit family every December for the holidays. And she made sure to cook Boricua recipes like this delicioso bread pudding with guayaba or guava paste, a pantry staple in most Puerto Rican cocinas.

budin de guyaba or guava bread pudding
We made Aida’s recipe two ways: with a top layer of caramelized sugar and guava slices in a flan mold and in a baking pan, with the guava chunks inside the batter. Both are totalmente delicioso, though we love the first version most.

”My whole family loves this postre,” says Aida. ”Every time I made it, I kept improvising the ingredients, until I got it just right.” She started with the classic receta for Puerto Rican budín de pan: bread, milk, evaporated and/or condensed milk, sugar and vanilla. One day, taking a cue from another favorite postre, flan, Aida experimented with adding caramelized sugar plus guava paste to the top and then baking it in a water bath or baño de Maria.

Guava fruit or guayaba
Guayaba or guava, a soft-pink fruit made into a sugary paste, is a sweet pantry staple in many Latino kitchens.

The budin-flan mashup was so spectacular, Aida never looked back.

The other defining ingredient is slightly stale bread, says Aida. Make sure the baguette you use is several days old, so that it really soaks in the two kinds of milk — 2% and evaporated — when your pour it over the stiff bread chunks. ”It’s a great way to use old bread you can’t eat anymore.”

This budin de guayaba is the ideal nibble with a mid-afternoon cafecito, she says. The caramelized sugar and melted guava swirl together, adding just the right toque de dulce to play off the creamy-tanginess of the bread pudding. It’s a memorably delicioso combination.

Aida closes her eyes and recites the recipe she knows by heart. Here it is.

Ready to Make Aida’s Budin de Guayaba?

The Best Budin de Guayaba or Guava Bread Pudding

Recipe by Aida Diaz
4.0 from 6 votes
Cuisine: Puerto Rican

8 to 10

Prep time


Cooking time




  • 1/4 cup sugar, for the caramelized topping

  • 1 baguette, several days old (about 8.5 oz)

  • 4 cups milk

  • 12 oz evaporated milk (1 can)

  • 4 eggs, lightly beaten by hand

  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract

  • 1 cup sugar

  • 1/2 cup butter (1 stick)

  • 8 oz guava or guayaba paste (about 1/4 container)


  • Preheat oven to 375°. While it warms, place in the oven a large baking pan filled with about 2 inches of water.
  • Caramelize the Sugar
  • On the stovetop, address 1/4 cup sugar in a saucepan set to medium. Keep an eye on it because sugar can quickly burn when it starts to melt. When the sugar caramelizes, turning light amber, remove from the stove immediately. Pour the liquified sugar into a large flan mold. Set aside to cool.
  • Tear the baguette into bite-sized chunks. Place the pieces in a large mixing bowl.
  • In a separate bowl, mix the milk, evaporated milk, lightly beaten eggs, vanilla and sugar. Pour into the bowl with the bread and with a spoon or your hands, gently mix together so that all the ingredients are well blended.
  • Melt the stick of butter in a saucepan. Pour the butter into the bread mixture bowl and stir together.
  • Putting It All Together
  • Place your flan mold with the now-hardened caramelized sugar on a work surface. Add slices of guava paste in a single layer on top of the sugar. Pour in the bread mixture, stopping when you are 1/2 inch from the top of the flan mold.
  • [You will have a good amount of bread pudding mixture left over. We buttered a second baking pan and filled it with the remainder. Aida advises sinking 1/2-inch chunks of guava paste directly in the batter, a couple of inches apart, so we did.]
  • In the 375° oven, place the bread pudding in the flan mold with the caramelized sugar inside the baking pan with the warm water or baño María. The water should come no higher than halfway up the side of the flan mold. Bake for 50 minutes or until a knife comes out clean.
  • On a different rack, place the second guava bread pudding in the buttered baking dish. Bake for 90 minutes.
  • When each is ready, remove and allow to come to cool. Serve at room temperature or slightly chilled (after half an hour in the fridge) for dessert or with a cafecito for a delicioso coffee break.


  • Note from the test kitchen: This Puerto Rican bread pudding with guayaba is one of the most interesting and delicioso desserts we have ever made at Familia Kitchen. We baked it yesterday to shoot it for the recipe photos, and the whole thing was eaten by nightfall.

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