Pumpkin French Toast Bake

My husband and I really enjoy having friends and family over for brunch.  We like to do at least one savory and one sweet dish.  I’m usually in charge of the sweet, of course!  One of my favorites is a french toast casserole that I’ve made a handful of times.  It’s easier than trying to time individual pieces of french toast coming of the griddle and staying hot for everyone.  Continuing my love affair with pumpkin, I wanted to share this yummy fall french toast bake recipe found on minimalistbaker.com.

Author: Minimalist Baker
Recipe type: Breakfast
Cuisine: French Toast
Serves: 10
Ingredients
  • 3 1/2 cups 1-inch bread cubes
  • 7 large eggs
  • 2 cups milk (any kind)*
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/4 cup pumpkin BUTTER (or 1/2 cup pumpkin puree)*
  • 3-4 tablespoons brown sugar for topping
  • nuts, like pecan or walnuts (optional)
Instructions
  1. Cut any kind of bread into 1-inch cubes – I recommend a crusty, whole grain variety. If using sandwich bread, use 5-7 thick slices. Then, spread into a lightly greased 9×13 baking dish.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, vanilla and pumpkin butter until well combined. Pour over bread and push down with a spoon or your hands until it’s all soaked and mostly covered. Cover with saran wrap or lid and refrigerate overnight.
  3. In the morning, preheat oven to 350 degrees, uncover and top with brown sugar and nuts (optional). Bake for 35-45 minutes or golden brown and no longer wet.
  4. Serve immediately with maple syrup, honey or agave nectar. Store leftovers in the refrigerator covered for up to a couple days.
Notes
* I used 2%, but use skim or low-fat for a lighter recipe. Alternatively, use non-dairy such as soy or almond. * If using pumpkin puree instead of butter, it’s important to compensate the flavor by adding a bit more puree, pumpkin pie spice, and even a little agave nectar or maple syrup to the batter. Otherwise, it will lack that delicious fall, pumpkin flavor you’re going for.