Does anyone else feel like they can live on french toast for the rest of their life?
I have been loving french toast since I can remember. I have very fond memories enjoying french toast at my childhood friend’s house – her mom made the BEST french toast ever. I also remember ordering it as a kid when we went out to breakfast.
Who am I kidding? I still order it now!
People brunch more when it’s warm out, right? At least it seems to be that way here in Chicago. Don’t get me wrong…you can make this french toast casserole when it’s -34 degrees out, perhaps Christmas morning? A side of bacon and fresh fruit are the perfect companions to this dish – this is exactly how I served it to my family this past weekend and they loved it!
I also made my Egg and Sausage Breakfast Casserole because hello, you can’t serve something sweet like this without adding something savory. The meal was brunch heaven.
No seriously…this is made the night before. When you’re dealing with a custard and bread, the longer it soaks the better. It seems like it would get soggy, but that’s how french toast works…it likes to be soggy before it gets baked.
Sorry, I don’t know how else to explain it.
You can also make the crumb topping the night before and just stick it in the fridge. Before you’re ready to bake, sprinkle it on the top and you.are.done.
You HAVE to serve it with maple syrup…I’m demanding it only because it is so incredible drizzled over top the mound of deliciousness.
Don’t forget to pin this recipe to Pinterest – just click the image below!
- 1 large french baguette cut into one inch cubes
- 7 large eggs
- 2 cups whole milk
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cold and cut into cubes
- ½ cup all-purpose flour
- ½ cup brown sugar
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¾ cup chopped pecans or walnuts
- Maple syrup for serving
- Butter a 9x13 dish and evenly distribute cubed bread; set aside
- Crack the eggs into a large bowl, add sugar then whisk. Add milk, vanilla and cinnamon and whisk until everything in incorporated.
- Pour custard evenly over the bread. Gently press on the bread to make sure all the custard is absorbed into the bread - you may think you don't have enough custard, but you do.
- Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.
- When you're ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Prepare the crumb topping by placing all the ingredients except for the nuts into a bowl. Use your fingers or a pastry blender to cut the butter into the dry ingredients until course crumbs form. Mix in chopped nuts. Sprinkle crumb topping over the bread and bake uncovered for 45 minutes. Serve with maple syrup.