You're going to be crazy about this crockpot pumpkin bread pudding with Caramel Sauce! It's such a tasty decadent fall treat!
Spray the crockpot with cooking spray, and turn heat to high.
Place the croissants on a cutting board, or mat, and cut into 1 inch cubes. Cut the jumbo pumpkin muffins into 1 inch cubes, and add both to the Crockpot, tossing with your hands to blend. Place lid on the crockpot.
In a large measuring bowl, or bowl with a pouring spout, place the 8 ounces of cream cheese, and place the bowl in the microwave.
Microwave for about 1 minute, stirring half way through, to soften the cream cheese, making it easy to stir. Stir the cream cheese with a large spoon until it's smooth and creamy.
Stir in the sugar (1 cup) and keep stirring until the sugar is completely blended. Add the can of pumpkin, and stir to blend.
Add the Sweetened Condensed Milk, Egg, Cinnamon, Pumpkin pie spice, and Vanilla, and stir until blended and smooth.
Pour mixture over cubed Croissants and pumpkin muffins, and stir to mix.
Cook on high for about 1 to 1/2 hours, and then turn the heat to low, and finish cooking, for about 2 - 3 hours, or until a knife inserted in the middle comes out clean.
In a heavy bottom sauce pan, over medium high heat, melt the butter. Add the milk, and brown sugar, stir to combine, and dissolve the brown sugar.
When the sauce boils, turn the heat to low, and continue to stir, and add the vanilla. This must be stirred the whole time it's cooking, or it will stick in the bottom.
Continue to stir until the mixture begins to thicken. When it starts to thicken, keep stirring and cooking for about 5 minutes, then turn off the heat, remove the saucepan, and stir in the Maple Syrup.
If you serve this right away, it will stay the same consistency. If you serve at a later time, the sauce may thicken until it resembles thick cold gravy, but don't worry. Just put the pan back on low heat, and stir in about 1 Tablespoon of butter, and a few drops to several drops of milk, and stir.
The sauce will begin to thin. Just keep adding a few drops of Milk at a time until you get it to the consistency you prefer.
To serve, you can either spoon the Bread Pudding from the crockpot, or cut it in pieces and remove it with a cake server. Place the bread pudding on a dessert dish, or bowl, and spoon caramel sauce over the top. Enjoy!
NOTE: You can also serve this with Whipped cream.
Since Crockpot's cook a little differently, just watch the Crockpot to make sure it doesn't start to burn in the bottom when it's on high. You may need to turn it to low right at the one hour mark, or it may take the additional half an hour to cook a bit more before you turn to low.
ALSO: The Croissants and Jumbo Pumpkin muffins can be purchased at your local market. If you can't find the pumpkin muffins, but the store has pumpkin bread in loaves, that will work fine. You're going to cube them, so it doesn't really make that much difference if it's a muffin, or a loaf. The beauty of Bread Pudding is using what you have or can find, and it will still come out delicious when you add the pumpkin cream cheese mixture, and the Caramel sauce.