This Lighter French Toast Casserole can be stored overnight and cooked fresh in the morning – serve with berries and maple syrup!
Ingredients and substitutions
- Loaf of bread – brioche, challah and French bread are the best options. Regular sandwich bread will work, but make sure you only soak it for 10 minutes.
- Eggs – use a flax egg for a vegan option.
- Milk – swap out for a dairy-free milk of your choice like coconut or almond milk.
- Maple syrup – you’ll need maple syrup for that authentic French toast flavour but in a pinch, feel free to use honey or brown sugar.
- Cinnamon – try out other flavours like pumpkin pie spice, nutmeg ,vanilla, ginger, cloves, orange or lemon zest.
- Butter – or a butter substitute of your choice.
- Frozen mixed berries – use any blend of berries you like. You could also use fresh berries if you have some on hand.
- Icing sugar – leave this off if you don’t have any on hand.
- Maple syrup – honey, almond butter or jam would all be good toppings.
- Fresh berries – use any berries of your choice like strawberries, raspberries and blackberries.
How to make French toast casserole
Step 1: Cut the bread.
Preheat oven to 350 F. Cut bread into 1-2 inch cubes. Set aside.
Step 2: Whisk the eggs.
Whisk eggs and milk together in a very large bowl until well mixed. Add maple syrup and cinnamon, stirring well.
Step 3: Toss the bread.
Add in cubes of bread and toss until combined. Let sit for 5 min or up to 12 hours overnight.
Step 4: Grease the dish.
Grease an 9×13 oven safe dish.
Step 5: Add the bread mixture.
Add bread to it, then drizzle with butter and top with frozen berries.
Step 6: Bake and then serve!
Bake in the oven for 30 min. Sprinkle with icing sugar and serve with maple syrup and fresh berries. Enjoy!
What type of bread is best for French toast?
The bread aisle has hundreds of choices for bread and we pretty much all have a favourite when it comes to sandwiches or toast. Wondering what kind of bread to use for this delicious breakfast dish? These are the most highly recommended kinds of bread for French toast:
- Brioche – The thickness of this bread makes it a perpetual favorite. It soaks up all the liquid while cooking but still maintains its shape. The outside browns nicely in the oven while the inside is soft and delicate.
- Challah – It’s very similar in texture to brioche so it soaks up the liquid and keeps its shape. It has a buttery flavour, enhancing the taste of the finished baked French toast casserole.
- French bread – This is a great option if you plan to let your casserole soak overnight. The texture is a little chewier so it’s nearly perfect after a longer soaking time.
If you are having trouble finding any of these, choose a bread that you can buy as an uncut loaf. That way, you can make the cubes instead of working with thin slices. Always leave the crust on so your end product has nice crisp edges.
Sandwich bread will get soggy if it sits for too long, so shorten your soaking time if you plan to use that – only 10 minutes tops.
Frequently Asked Questions
If you find that your French toast casserole is soggy, you likely used sandwich bread, which gets soggy if it sits too long in the liquid mixture. I suggest using brioche, challah or French bread if you plan on making this casserole the night before so it doesn’t get soggy! If all you have on hand is regular sandwich bread, limit the soaking time to no more than 10 minutes.
Fresh berries are a healthy and delicious topping idea for this French toast casserole. Some other things you can top your French toast with are lemon curd, Nutella, bananas, peanut butter, honey, applesauce, yogurt, jam and dried cranberries.
Other breakfast foods are natural side dishes for this French toast casserole. Try serving it with bacon, fresh fruit, sausage, eggs or home fries if you're serving a large crowd. You can divide the servings into 12 portions and then have some extra protein or side dishes available to feed everyone. It’s the perfect dish for Christmas morning or big brunches!
Storing and reheating
This baked French toast casserole can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 days right in the casserole dish or in glass containers.
To reheat, I recommend you take the time to warm up the casserole in the toaster oven or a conventional oven for 10 minutes at 350° Fahrenheit. You can microwave it for 1 to 2 minutes, just keep in mind that the bread will be soggier – but if you like your French toast softer, then go for it!
Can you freeze French toast casserole?
You can freeze this French toast casserole for 1 to 2 months, but I suggest you freeze it without the berries. They contain too much water and will soak your bread. When you’re ready to enjoy, reheat the casserole directly from frozen for 30 to 40 minutes at 350° Fahrenheit.
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Meal prep tools for this recipe
- Grab some glass meal prep bowls if you plan on turning this recipe into your leftovers.
- Freeze this recipe sans berries in glass microwave-safe bowls up to 3 months.
Lighter Overnight French Toast Casserole
- 1 loaf bread
- 4 eggs
- 1 1/2 cups milk
- 1/3 cup maple syrup
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/3 cup butter, melted
- 1 cup frozen mixed berries
- icing sugar, for topping
- maple syrup, for topping
- 1 cup fresh berries, for topping
- Preheat oven to 350 F. Cut bread into 1-2 inch cubes. Set aside.
- Whisk eggs and milk together in a very large bowl until well mixed. Add maple syrup and cinnamon, stirring well. Add in cubes of bread and toss until combined. Let sit for 5 min or up to 12 hours overnight.
- Grease an 9×13 oven safe dish and add bread to it, then drizzle with butter and top with frozen berries. Bake in the oven for 30 min.
- Sprinkle with icing sugar and serve with maple syrup and fresh berries. Enjoy!