Comfort Food Friday!

Finally made it to the end of a looooong week and felt it was time for some French Toast Casserole action. This is a HUGE favorite for our family, so I thought I would share it with you in case you could use a little warm comfort casserole goodness for your weekend, as well…

If you would like to skip the steps & head straight to the recipe, click on the title for a printer-friendly version:

Heavenly French Toast Casserole

This is a super simple recipe – just keep in mind that you need at least 8 hours of refrigeration to get the light and fluffy consistency – 24 hours if you can be patient enough for the melt-in-your-mouth version.

Prep Time: 15 – 20 min

Chill Time: 8 – 10 hrs or up to 24 hrs for ultimate joy

Cook Time: 40 min

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 Tbsp softened butter, used to grease your dish 
  • 12 slices of sandwich bread, or sliced French baguette or loaf bread 
  • 8 eggs, whisked
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 cup cream 
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 2 Tbsp sugar
  • a pinch of salt

Using a piece of plastic wrap to cover your fingers, generously grease a 9″ x 12″ casserole dish or pan (or a similar size is fine) with the softened butter.

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Lay your bread slices across the bottom of the dish, then arrange a second layer on top. If you are using a baguette in your recipe or another kind of flavored or uncut loaf, make your slices approx. 1″ thick, if possible. Challah bread is incredibly dreamy in this recipe!

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In your mixing bowl, whisk your eggs so they are blended but not frothy. I take this step before adding the other ingredients because it can be difficult to tell if you have broken up all of the yolks once the other ingredients are combined.

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Then add the remaining ingredients and continue to whisk together until well blended but not bubbly. When choosing your cream, I typically use heavy or whipping cream when I am using 2% reduced fat milk. Light cream or even Half and Half may also be substituted for healthier options.

* * *

Carefully pour the mixture over your bread slices, trying to cover all of the edges. Using your whisk or a spoon, gently press the bread into the egg mixture allowing it to absorb more of the liquid. Any slight indentations left by this process will be cooked out in the final stage of preparation.

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Cover your dish with plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator for at least 8 – 10 hours or overnight. I find that the longer I chill the dish (up to 24 hours), the casserole becomes lighter and fluffier in texture, almost like a custard!

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The next day, remove your casserole from the fridge while you preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. I like to let the dish sit for a good 10 minutes or so while I grab a coffee, so it’s not such a temperature shock from the fridge to the oven.

* * *

Remove the plastic wrap & bake the casserole uncovered on the center rack for 40 minutes until lightly golden on top. Expect it to puff up in the oven as it bakes, so adjust your racks accordingly.

Allow it to cool for about 10 minutes.

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Serve with your favorite maple or flavored syrups, fresh fruit or dessert toppings.

Bon App├ętit!