December 15, 2020
Do you need an easy, no hassle but special Overnight French Toast recipe for Christmas morning, Easter, Mother’s Day or another special occasion?
There was a time when I was getting up at the crack of dawn to fix monkey bread and other holiday goodness on Christmas morning – and this was after I had been up late doing stockings! No thank you. Running myself ragged is NOT my idea of a meaningful Christmas Day!
Enter…. make ahead breakfast dishes!
I decided to make breakfast ahead of time, and it has been a game changer. I am no longer a crazy person trying to get it all done. I don’t want to be resentful on Christmas. I want the meal to bless my family and do it in such a way that it is a blessing to me too!
Now I make our Amish Cinnamon Rolls, which are arguably the best there is, and also make this overnight French Toast.
A note about freezing this dish
I sometimes make this a month ahead and freeze it. I thaw it out the day before I’m going to cook it. If you make it this way, just drizzle the extra caramel over the top before freezing so you don’t have the hassle of trying to figure out how to save it!
Creme Brulee Overnight French Toast
As soon as I see the words, Creme Brulee, I’m in! Who doesn’t love that? I found an old recipe of my mom’s and adapted it to make this special dish.
Gather the ingredients
Sometimes I use regular French bread, other times I use the Trader Joe’s Brioche bread (which is what I used when I took these pictures). If you are trying to decide between the two, the Brioche makes a more flan-like consistency, and large French bread loaves taste more like bread pudding.
Mix the caramel mixture on the stove and cut the bread into cubes
Whisk the eggs, milk, half and half, vanilla, salt, sugar, and (optional) liqueur.
You now have three things going- the caramel “creme brulee” mixture, the wet mixture, and the bread cubes. Once the caramel has come to a soft boil (do NOT hard boil), pour half of the caramel mixture into a 9×13 casserole dish.
Layer the bread cubes on top. You can make two stacks.
Pour the egg mixture over the bread cubes and saturate.
Set aside the rest of the caramel mixture in a canning jar or another glass container until right before baking.
Cover and refrigerate overnight
Pull the french toast out of the refrigerator in the morning. Pour the ROOM TEMPERATURE caramel mixture over the top evenly (or save a little bit for drizzling). Place foil over the casserole dish and bake covered for 40-45 min. Uncover and bake another 15 minutes, but watch carefully for burning on the edges (I set my timer for 5 minutes at a time to check it).
Serve with fresh maple syrup or with some reserved caramel mixture. ENJOY!
Christmas Morning Creme Brûlée French Toast
- 3/4 cup butter
- 1 1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
- 3 tablespoons corn syrup
- 1 loaf french bread, sliced 1-inch thick with each piece sliced in half diagonally
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- 6 eggs
- 2 cups half and half
- 2 cups milk
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon Grand Marnier (optional)
- powdered sugar for dusting
- Lightly butter a 9×13 inch baking dish and set aside. Melt the butter and brown sugar with the corn syrup in a small saucepan over medium heat; stir until smooth and bubbly. Pour the mixture into a prepared dish. Arrange the bread slices on top in two overlapping rows. In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, half -n- half, milk, vanilla, sugar, salt and liqueur until well combined; pour evenly over the bread. Cover with foil and chill for at least 8 hours or overnight. Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees. Bake until set in the center, about 45 minutes. Uncover the dish and bake an additional 15 minutes until golden brown. Dust with powdered sugar and serve with sauce from the dish.
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