Bursting with classic gingerbread flavors, Gingerbread French Toast is perfect for Thanksgiving breakfast, Christmas brunch or any morning.
What better Thanksgiving or Christmas morning breakfast is there then hot, fresh Gingerbread French Toast smothered in homemade Eggnog Syrup? Seriously?!?!
This Gingerbread French Toast recipe is a perfect addition to this years Thanksgiving or Christmas breakfast OR for that matter, any day of the week through the holiday season. It’s delicious and drips of holiday delight, literally!
A French toast recipe that fuses classic French toast, gingerbread flavors, and creamy custard together in a harmoniously sweet and delicious way needs to be shared and enjoyed all season long. Period.
WHAT KIND OF BREAD SHOULD I USE TO MAKE FRENCH TOAST?
Short answer, whatever you have on hand BUT some types are better than others.
We love using the Pioneer French Bread from Costco because it’s under $4 a loaf, soft and sliced thick. With slices about 1 inch thick, this bread is ideal and budget conscious. We also like using Sara Lee Artesano bread because it is also cut into thick slices, has a great texture and is slightly sweeter than traditional French bread
Other breads that would be fabulous for this recipe include:
- Brioche – light, fluffy bread with a sweeter flavor than a traditional bread. Enriched with eggs and lots of butter.
- Challah – similar in flavor and texture as brioche, enriched with eggs but made with oil instead of butter.
- Crusty French bread or baguette – More traditional flavor (not as sweet as brioche or challah). Typically more chewy.
SHOULD I USE DAY-OLD BREAD OR STALE BREAD FOR FRENCH TOAST?
It is known that French toast is typically better when made with stale or day-old bread because the drier bread absorbs more of the egg custard mixture.
Do you have to use day-old or stale bread? NO! I typically don’t because I forget to leave it out/open and I don’t want to take the time to dry it in the oven before making breakfast.
So, I will leave this one up to you. Fresh bread or stale, this recipe will taste delicious.
HOW TO MAKE GINGERBREAD FRENCH TOAST:
First, you need the following ingredients:
- bread – thick sliced preferred
- eggs – use whole eggs or yolks only for a richer more custardy flavor
- flour (optional) – helps thicken the egg mixture.
Don’t skimp on the cream and use milk because the cream and eggs in this recipe are what creates the smooth custardy texture and flavor.
Next, blend all the ingredients together using a whisk until the mixture is smooth. Once there are no lumps the mixture is ready and the bread of choice can go for a dunk. Soak each piece of bread for 10-15 seconds to allow the bread to absorb as much egg mixture as possible then fry them on a griddle or in a frying pan (coated with butter or pan spray).
Cook each piece of bread for 3-5 minutes on each side or until golden brown and serve immediately.
Of course you’ll want to top them off with a pad of butter and drench them in my 5-Minute eggnog syrup… because that’s the best way to have them.
GINGERBREAD FRENCH TOAST CASSEROLE STYLE:
Speaking of not having time in the morning… did you know this recipe can be made into a casserole?
Say what?!?! Yep, it’s true!
I’ll share the recipe adjustments in the notes of the printable recipe card below.
Rather than cooking each piece of French toast on the stove the bread will be cubed and egg mixture poured over it. Bake and viola! Breakfast is served.
This method is great if you don’t have a lot of time to prep and cook breakfast in the morning. It does still takes time to bake BUT that time is mostly inactive meaning you don’t have to babysit French toast while it cooks. If you choose to go the French toast casserole route, you will have 30-40 minutes of inactive time while it bakes.
Another benefit of the casserole method, it can be prepared the night before and set it in the fridge until you’re ready to bake it.
HERE’S THE FULL PRINTABLE RECIPE. ENJOY!
- 8-12 pieces thick-cut bread (French bread, brioche, challah, French baguette)
- 1 cup cream
- 4 large eggs (or 7 egg yolks)
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 2 Tbs molasses
- 1/2 tsp cloves, ground
- 1 tsp ginger, dried and ground
- 1 tsp cinnamon, ground
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 Tbs flour (optional to help thicken)
- Whisk all ingredients together (except the bread) until there are no lumps.
- Heat griddle or fry pan on medium to medium-high heat. Spray with pan spray or coat with a small amount of butter.
- Soak each slice of bread in egg mixture for 10-15 seconds to allow bread to absorb mixture.
- Place on heated griddle or in fry pan. Cook for 3-5 minutes on each side or until golden brown.
- Serve immediately with butter, preferred syrup or toppings.
See notes for directions for Gingerbread French Toast Casserole-style.
GINGERBREAD FRENCH TOAST CASSEROLE:
If making recipe as a baked casserole, increase cream to 1 1/2 cups. Make egg mixture according to recipe above with the exception of increased cream.
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Cut bread into 1 inch cubes.
- Prep 8x8 or 9x9 baking dish by spraying with pan spray. Add bread cubes until pan is about 3/4 full (number of slices will vary depending on type of bread used).
- Pour egg mixture over bread cubes. Bread should absorb all liquid and be fully moistened.
- Bake at 350°F for 30-40 minutes or until casserole is golden brown and begins to "puff" in the center signifying the eggs in the mixture are cooked and custard is done. Center should have a slight giggle when moved but should not be runny.
- Remove from oven. Let cool for 5-10 minutes. Serve with your favorite syrup or toppings.