This combined berries & cream cheese French toast casserole combines juicy berries, silky cream cheese, and challah bread all soaked with a wealthy brown-sugared egg custard. This spectacular breakfast or brunch dish is altogether creamy, gentle, crisp, and comforting, and the perfect half is that prep work is EASY!
Much less Work, Extra Reward
What I really like most about French toast casseroles, and why I bake them so typically, is the low upkeep issue. You’re not standing over the range and cooking French toast for the entire household. As an alternative, you’re layering bread and egg in a pan and baking it. And, most notably, you are able to do many of the prep (which is minimal to start with!) the evening earlier than.
This implies extra time with visitors/household/your espresso and fewer time working within the kitchen. Quickly sufficient, breakfast will likely be prepared. And BONUS: your kitchen will scent such as you had been baking all morning. How sneaky of you!
I printed this recipe in 2018 utilizing solely strawberries—and it’s fabulous ready that means—nevertheless, it’s normally a much bigger hit once I use a medley of berries and I need to present you the way I do it. (You possibly can efficiently use frozen berries now too, see Notes.) This dish is what everybody loves about blueberry French toast casserole and cream cheese French toast casserole mixed in 1 dish: a number of berries, a number of texture, and many cream cheese.
Be aware: Each of these French toast casseroles have a streusel topping and I normally skip it right here, however be happy so as to add it!
This Berries & Cream Cheese French Toast Casserole Is:
- Beautiful for spring and summer time gatherings, together with Mom’s Day & Father’s Day
- Custard-y on the underside
- Crisp on prime
- Full of pockets of creaminess and berries
- Not soggy. I repeat: not soggy!
Above all else, it’s straightforward, spectacular, and pleasing… all of the issues that brunch must be.
3 Main Success Ideas
- START WITH GOOD BREAD. Texture is the objective and utilizing good bread will provide help to get there. By “good,” I imply a bread with substance, taste, and texture similar to challah, sourdough, or a elaborate brioche loaf. Flimsy sliced bread gained’t do you any favors and the casserole normally finally ends up tasting flat and soggy. Your efforts will likely be wasted. (Bonus… do that with artisan do-it-yourself bread or croissant bread. YUM!)
- MAKE SURE THE BREAD IS A BIT STALE. Irrespective of which kind of bread you employ, make certain it’s somewhat crusty and off. Slice and lower the bread into chunks after which let it sit out, uncovered, so it loses somewhat moisture and may maintain onto the egg custard. The extra egg custard the bread can soak up, the much less soggy the French toast casserole will style. For those who don’t have time for this, I’ve a tip for you arising.
- A LITTLE SUGAR IN THE CREAM CHEESE MIXTURE. The cream cheese combination is 3 elements: cream cheese, vanilla extract, and confectioners’ sugar. The rationale I combine somewhat sugar and vanilla with the cream cheese is as a result of with out it, we’ll have random savory non-melted chunks of cream cheese within the dish. I defined this in my common cream cheese French toast casserole recipe. It was good, however not very nice!
What if I Don’t Have Time to Let the Bread Get Stale?
Neither do I. Or I merely neglect after which it’s time to prep the dish and I’ve very moist, gentle bread that gained’t soak up any of the egg custard combination. To repair this, unfold the chunks of bread on a lined baking sheet and toast in a 300°F (149°C) oven for 10 minutes. That is precisely what I do when making sausage & herb stuffing and breakfast strata.
Right here’s the fundamental course of: To assemble, layer chunks of bread, dollops of the cream cheese combination, and combined berries collectively. Pour an egg custard everywhere in the prime after which cowl and refrigerate for a minimum of 2–3 hours or in a single day:
Bake all of it the following morning and serve it heat.
One of the best pan to make use of for this berries & cream French toast casserole is a 9×13-inch or 3–4-quart oven-safe dish. I normally use (affiliate hyperlinks) this glass pan or the pictured pink ruffled baking dish, which is available in a set with different sizes—undoubtedly a splurge, however I’ve discovered the standard to be glorious they usually’re completely beautiful.
Serving Your Berry French Toast Feast!
A sprinkle of confectioners’ sugar and/or a lightweight drizzle of maple syrup finishes the berries & cream cheese French toast casserole. This can be a creamy and luxurious berry breakfast masterpiece, and it pairs properly with scrambled eggs, bacon, sausage, and/or a contemporary fruit salad.
And for extra berry goodness, you may serve the French toast with this strawberry sauce topping. 🙂
Further Favourite Brunch Recipes:
This recipe yields a creamy, contemporary, and deliciously textured berries & cream French toast casserole. Prep it forward so you may have a fast and heat breakfast within the morning.
- Slice and lower the bread into 1-inch cubes. It is best to have round 12 cups of cubed bread—somewhat kind of is ok. For finest outcomes, let the bread cubes sit uncovered at room temperature for a number of hours (or as much as 1 day) to dry out. For those who don’t have the time for that, unfold the chunks of bread on a lined baking sheet and toast in a 300°F (149°C) oven for 10 minutes. (Nice shortcut!)
- Grease a 9×13-inch or any 3–4-quart oven-safe dish with nonstick spray. Unfold half of the bread cubes into the ready baking pan.
- Utilizing a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat the room-temperature cream cheese on medium-high velocity till utterly easy. Beat within the confectioners’ sugar and 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract till mixed. Drop random spoonfuls of cream cheese combination on prime of the bread. High with many of the berries (reserve a number of berries for the highest, for seems to be) after which the remaining bread cubes. Place any reserved berries on prime. Put aside.
- Whisk the eggs, milk, cinnamon, brown sugar, and remaining vanilla extract collectively till mixed. Pour evenly over the bread. Cowl the pan tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for a minimum of 3–4 hours and as much as 24 hours. In a single day is finest.
- Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Take away pan from the fridge.
- Bake uncovered for 45–55 minutes or till golden brown on prime. I normally bake it for 45 minutes as a result of I prefer it softer. Mud with confectioners’ sugar, prime with strawberry topping, and/or drizzle with maple syrup. Serve heat.
- Cowl leftovers tightly and retailer within the fridge for two–3 days.
- Make Forward & Freezing Directions: You possibly can prep the dish via step 4 as much as 24 hours upfront. (See step 4.) To freeze, put together the recipe via step 4 and freeze for as much as 2 months. Thaw in a single day within the fridge, after which proceed with step 5. It’s also possible to freeze the leftover baked and cooled casserole for as much as 3 months. Thaw within the fridge, after which reheat to your liking within the microwave or cowl with foil and bake in a 300°F (149°C) till heat all through, a minimum of 20 minutes.
- Half Recipe: This recipe can simply be halved in an 8- or 9-inch baking pan. The bake time will likely be barely shorter, round 30–35 minutes.
- Bread: Day-old, crusty bread is ideal for French toast casseroles. Slice and lower the bread into 1-inch cubes and let it sit out uncovered all day as instructed in step 1.
- Contemporary Berries: Contemporary berries are ultimate as a result of frozen will leak their juices previous to baking the casserole. If crucial, you should utilize frozen berries, however thaw them first after which pat dry. I normally use blueberries, blackberries, and sliced strawberries. You need to use one or all of these, and/or add raspberries too. Preserve the whole quantity to 2 cups/280–300g.
- Cream Cheese: Because the cream cheese is barely combined with somewhat sugar and vanilla, ensure you are utilizing high quality cream cheese that tastes good. I take advantage of and love full-fat Philadelphia model brick-style cream cheese for this dish.
- Can I add a crumb/streusel topping? Sure, completely. You need to use the identical topping from this plain cream cheese French toast casserole.
Key phrases: berry French toast casserole
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