vanilla baked french toast

April 26, 2010

Can you imagine a more decadent and satisfying way to make good on leftover/now stale crusty bread? I can’t. Seriously.

This is always my problem with buying a delicious loaf of bread for something or other. There’s always one really good use for it, then it’ll doubtless get used as a vessel for cheese, but I always end up wasting a bunch of it.

No more, friends, no more…

Vanilla Baked French Toast
adapted from Smitten Kitchen

  • about 3/4 loaf day old bread (French or Italian loaves work well but Challah is best), cut in 1-inch slices
  • 2 cups milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • dash salt
  • 1-2 teaspoons vanilla extract


1. Generously grease a 9×13-inch baking dish with butter.
2. Arrange the bread in two tightly-packed layers in the pan. It’s super useful how loaves like French batard (what I used) or sourdough, tend to have smaller slices at each end, since these do an awesome job of filling any gaps.
3. Whisk the milk, eggs, sugar, salt and vanilla and pour over the bread. Sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar.
4. Wrap tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. The bread will absorb all of the milk custard while you sleep.
5. Bake at 425F for 30 minutes, or until puffed and golden.
6. Cut into generous squares and serve with maple syrup, fresh fruit, powdered sugar or all of the above. Or if you’re me…bacon.

Serves 4-6 as main course.

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