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This pumpkin spice french toast casserole is perfect for pumpkin season!!
This time of year, everything on the internet gets flavored with pumpkin spice. There are a thousand memes out there to attest to the fact.
But let’s face it, there is a really good reason for that. It’s just so darn GOOD!!! And after a long summer of sweat and hot sun rays, Pumpkin and pumpkin spice signify the beautiful season of fall, not to mention a delicious breakfast!
Pumpkin spice brings up images of bonfires, sweaters, boots, and yes… pumpkin pie as well as other seasonal desserts. It’s a sure sign that the holidays are on their way. A time of year that is supposed to be happy and filled with family and friends and wonderful gatherings and parties. This fall season dish is a great recipe for the pumpkin lover in you! (And psst… it’s even great for Christmas morning! Pumpkin spice flavors are fantastic for the winter holidays! It’s just one of those special breakfasts that do well from fall through winter. The whole family will love it!)
Baked French Toast Recipe
Any type of french toast bake is literally going to be a baked french toast. So you’ll make your french toast as you normally would, but then put it into a baking dish or casserole dish to bake it in the oven, instead of frying it in a pan. It’s a great way to cut down on fat and calories!
Pumpkin French Toast Casserole
This casserole doesn’t have any actual pumpkin in it. This recipe is all about the pumpkin pie spice! If you want to add real pumpkin, you can certainly do that. I would simply blend up about 1 cup of it with the milk, and then proceed with the recipe as usual. However, if you do this, make sure it’s 100% pumpkin puree, not pumpkin pie filling. The pumpkin flavor will really come through!
Fresh Bread Vs. Stale Bread
Some folks feel very strongly about whether to use fresh bread or old bread. The truth is, you should use what you enjoy using. Either way, this will be a great casserole filled with wonderful fall flavor. This easy recipe will accommodate whatever kind of bread you want to throw at it. Either way, I recommend cutting your bread into smaller pieces. The smaller you cut the bread, the easier this becomes to eat.
What’s The Best Bread For French Toast Casserole?
For the purposes of clean eating, you’ll want to use whole grain bread with no white sugar added, or any other chemicals or preservatives. While many people enjoy using challah bread or brioche bread, it generally has a lot of garbage in it. This recipe is formulated for a hearty, whole grain bread. So don’t be shy. Just read the ingredient list!
Overnight Pumpkin French Toast Casserole
If you need to make this ahead of time, you can do that pretty easily. Follow the recipe as stated, but hold off on the baking! You can store this in the fridge overnight and bake it first thing in the morning. Just be sure to cover it well with plastic wrap for the fridge. This is a great way to make sure this gets served fresh and warm for breakfast or brunch.
Pumpkin Spice French Toast Muffins
You can easily make muffins with this by packing the bread into a muffin pan. And if you want to get extra fancy, you can make a quick streusel topping to sprinkle over the top. It’s a little like an extra delicious bread pudding with a crumb topping!
12 cups whole grain bread cubes – Cut bread slices into cubes before measuring. This is approximately one, full, standard loaf of bread.
6 large eggs
1 ½ cups almond milk – Use the unsweetened variety. Regular dairy milk works too, whole milk is best. Soy or cashew milk works too. In fact, the only milk I would avoid here is coconut milk.
⅓ cup maple syrup – Use the real stuff, not an imitation syrup. It makes a huge difference!
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract – Again, use the real stuff. Not vanilla flavoring.
1 tbsp. pumpkin pie spice – Make sure there is no sugar added. You can also make your own in minutes using this recipe for pumpkin pie spice. You’ll just need a small bowl to mix everything together.
1 cup pecans – Crushed or chopped fine. This is optional to sprinkle over the top of the casserole.
Whipping cream – Optional, but delicious for garnish when serving. Just spoon a dollop on top as needed. Use heavy whipping cream and a sweetener you are comfortable with.
How To Make Pumpkin Spice French Toast Casserole
Preheat oven to 350° F. and cut the bread into bite-sized cubes as you for more accurate measuring.
Oil an 8 x 11 casserole dish or baking dish, and put the bread cubes into it. Set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, maple syrup, vanilla extract, and pumpkin pie spice.
Pour the egg mixture over the bread, being sure to gently stir or toss the bread in the baking pan to ensure that all pieces soak up some of the mixture. It’s okay if there is a little liquid in the bottom of the dish. You just want to be sure that all the bread gets saturated.
Bake for approximately 30 minutes (will vary by oven), or until all the liquid is gone and the bread has a nice, golden brown tint to it. The idea is to fully cook the egg. If it starts to get too brown on top before it’s done, you can place a loose piece of aluminum foil over the top of the dish until it’s done.
Allow to cool slightly, then serve with a bit of additional warm maple syrup and some pecans if you like. This will taste great warm or at room temperature.
How To Store French Toast Casserole
Whether you are making this ahead of time and storing it unbaked to bake for a special occasion or eating this one hour after you’ve baked it, you will want to store it the same way. Using the dish you baked it in, wrap the whole thing in plastic wrap and store it in the fridge for up to 4 days. This tastes just as good the next morning as it does the morning you bake it.
Need Recipe Supplies?
Hiware Extra Large Bamboo Cutting Board for Kitchen, Heavy Duty Wood Cutting Board with Juice Groove, 100% Organic Bamboo, Pre Oiled, 18″ x 12″
More Easy Breakfast Casseroles
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Pumpkin Spice French Toast Casserole Recipe
Pumpkin Spice French Toast Casserole Recipe
- Casserole dish
- 12 cups whole grain bread (cubed for measuring)
- 6 large eggs
- 1 ½ cups almond milk (unsweetened – regular milk works too)
- ⅓ cup maple syrup (the real stuff)
- 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
- 1 tbsp. pumpkin pie spice (no sugar added)
- 1 cup pecans (crushed – optional for topping)
- Preheat oven to 350° F. and cut the bread into bite-sized cubes as you for more accurate measuring.Oil and 8 x 11 casserole dish and put the bread cubes into it. Set aside.
- In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, maple syrup, vanilla extract and pumpkin pie spice.
- Pour the mixture over the bread, being sure to gently stir or toss the bread in the pan to ensure that all pieces soak up some of the mixture. It’s okay if there is a little liquid in the bottom of the dish. You just want to be sure that all the bread gets saturated.
- Bake for approximately 30 minutes (will vary by oven), or until all the liquid is gone and the bread has a nice, golden brown tint to it. The idea is to fully cook the egg.
- Allow to cool slightly, then serve with a bit of additional maple syrup and some pecans if you like.
Recipe from the Gracious Pantry® archives, originally posted 11/11/16.