Baked French Toast
I’m not sure what’s taken me so long to share this recipe because it’s SO GOOD. And SO EASY. Really doesn’t get much better than that. This dish is the perfect make ahead breakfast/brunch item. It turns out best when you prep it all the night before and then just have to bake it in the morning. My kids love it so much that Charlie was begging me to make it again this week. Lucky for him, we had an extra loaf of bread lying around – that tends to happens when Bob does the grocery shopping.
When I’m planning ahead, I make this baked french toast with a loaf of Challah or, if you can find it, some sort of bakery style cinnamon sugar loaf. My sister’s in-laws live near a bakery in CT that makes a ridiculous cinnamon sugar loaf and they bring me some around Christmas. I end up freezing it specifically to make this dish. It’s worth it. But really, it will taste delicious with any bread (baguette, Italian loaf) because you’re dousing it in eggs, sugar, milk and all other sorts of deliciousness. So, find yourself an excuse to make an amazing breakfast for someone you love because you need to try this out.
Baked French Toast
- 1 large loaf challah bread (you can also use a bakery style cinnamon sugar loaf if you can find one, or a baguette will work, too)
- 8 whole eggs
- 2 cups whole milk
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 2 tbsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp cinnamon (if you're using a cinnamon sugar loaf, you don't need this)
- 1/2 cup flour
- 1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 stick cold unsalted butter, cubed
- Maple syrup, whipped cream and fresh fruit for topping
- Spray a 9"x13" baking pan with nonstick spray or grease it with butter.
- Tear the bread into chunks or cut it into cubes and evenly distribute in the pan.
- In a large mixing bowl, beat together the eggs, milk, heavy cream, sugars, vanilla and cinnamon.
- Pour the mixture over the bread pieces in the pan and press down with your fingertips to make sure the bread is all moist.
- Cover the pan tightly with plastic wrap and let it sit in the fridge for until you're ready to bake (ideally, overnight).
- In a medium bow, mix together the flour, brown sugar, cinnamon and salt.
- Add in the cubed butter and using a pastry cutter or a sharp knife cut into the butter until it has become small pieces look like pebbles. Store in a plastic bag in the fridge until you're ready to bake.
Putting it all together...
- When you're ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350°F.
- Sprinkle the topping all over the casserole and bake for 45 minutes - 1 hour. If you bake for 45 minutes, the consistency will be a soft, bread pudding texture. I like to bake it for an hour so it gets crispy on top and then let it set out of the oven for at least 10 minutes so it firms up a bit.
- Cut it into individual pieces and serve topped with maple syrup, fresh whipped cream and fruit.
Recipe adapted from Pioneer Woman