Stop the presses. I made French Toast. I ate French Toast. I liked French Toast.

I know I’ve mentioned it before, but I’ll tell you again why this is such big news. I am not a fan of sweet breakfast items. I don’t really like pancakes, French toast, pastries, donuts, etc, etc. Savory is where it’s at for me. My husband, on the other hand, likes all of the above. Unfortunately for him, I don’t often make them. Like, I’m talking maybe twice a year. Maybe. But this weekend he got lucky. My friend Amanda was hosting a brunch party and I volunteered to help her with the food. She’d already planned to do an egg and sausage casserole, so I wanted to come up with something totally different.

Out came my trusty brunch binder. I knew we had big plans for Friday night and would be out very late, so the idea of getting up early Saturday morning to prepare some involved dish before the 10:30 a.m. brunch would just be ludicrous. When I saw this recipe clipping, I thought I’d found the perfect dish. What immediately caught my attention was the word “overnight”. I could throw everything together on Friday evening before hitting the town, and then all I had to do was wake up an hour before the gathering to pop it in the oven. Sounded like the perfect plan to me, but I figured I’d better run it past the French toast expert in my house first. I mean, I don’t eat the stuff, so who am I to judge if it sounds good? Well, it took about 1 split second to get a very enthusiastic go ahead from the hubby.

I’m so, so glad I made this! Talk about gushing praises. Every single guest had complimentary words, one even going so far as to say it was the best French toast she’d ever had. And then there’s me. I honestly didn’t even think I’d eat a piece, but curiousity won out. How could I not try a dish that I made and everyone seemed to love?

Goodness. Let’s just say that I’m glad I doubled the recipe and had leftovers!


Overnight Caramel French Toast

Serves 10. From Cooking Light.


1 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup light-colored corn syrup
1/4 cup butter
Cooking spray
10 (1-oz) slices French bread (soft bread such as Pepperidge Farm)
2 1/2 cups 1% low-fat milk
1 Tbsp all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp salt
2 large eggs
2 Tbsp granulated sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon


Combine first 3 ingredients in a small saucepan. Cook over medium heat 5 minutes or until mixture is bubbly, stirring constantly. Pour mixture evenly into a 13 x 9-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray.

Arrange bread slices in a single layer over syrup in dish.

Combine milk and next 4 ingredients (through eggs) in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk. Pour egg mixture over bread slices. Cover and refrigerate for 8 hours or overnight.

Preheat oven to 350°.

Combine granulated sugar and cinnamon. Sprinkle evenly over bread.

Bake at 350° for 50 minutes or until golden. Let stand for 5 minutes before serving.

30 Responses to “Meatless Monday: Overnight Caramel French Toast”

  1. 1

    Nashville Nosher — November 15, 2010 @ 6:58 am

    yum! sounds like a perfect christmas morning dish.

    • Beth replied: — November 15th, 2010 @ 5:04 pm

      It would definitely be perfect for a Christmas morning dish. I might even make it for my own family for the holidays!

  2. 2

    Vivek Surti — November 15, 2010 @ 12:25 pm

    Glad you’re on the pro-french toast side now! It’s a slippery slope to pancakes, waffles, and donuts!

  3. 3

    ErinsFoodFiles — November 15, 2010 @ 4:37 pm

    I was definitely shocked you posted this!! I am a lover of sweet things, but for some reason, I crave eggs for breakfast most often. Only on a rare occasion will I crave a sweet breakfast.

    • Beth replied: — November 15th, 2010 @ 5:03 pm

      I know, it’s SO unlike me!! But since I ate 4 pieces of it (1 on Saturday, 2 on Sunday, and 1 today), I knew I would be doing others a disservice by not posting it!

      I still won’t say that I am a complete convert of sweet breakfast things though…this was an exception ;-)

  4. 4

    Liz — November 15, 2010 @ 6:25 pm

    Your blog is gorgeous! So happy to have stumbled upon it!!

    • Beth replied: — November 15th, 2010 @ 7:05 pm

      Thanks Liz! I’m glad you found it too :-)

  5. 5

    Liz @ Blog is the New Black — November 15, 2010 @ 9:35 pm

    Now I want to host brunch just to make this!!!

  6. 6

    Taylor — November 15, 2010 @ 9:58 pm

    I agree with Nashville Nosher…this sounds like the perfect Christmas morning breakfast! I love that it’s a Cooking Light recipe….that means I can have seconds :)

  7. 7

    ashleynashville3 — November 16, 2010 @ 2:05 pm

    i am immediately forwarding this to my mom for breakfast over T-weekend or Christmas!!

  8. 8

    Shannon — November 16, 2010 @ 4:22 pm

    I’m not much of a french toast lover either, but WOW, this looks really really good!!!

  9. 9

    Stephanie — November 21, 2010 @ 11:07 pm

    I refuse to eat any french toast that hasn’t been made by my mother or myself. I’ve never had any kind of “fancy” french toast, but have been realizing that if I like it so much I should probably try a few recipes. This sounds delicious, and I definitely like the overnight factor as well!

  10. 10

    vanessa jackson — December 8, 2010 @ 7:53 am

    Hi Beth,

    I have a question about the recipe. Do you use salted or unsalted butter? Does it make a difference? I’m going to make this for an office breakfast potluck on Friday.

    • Beth replied: — December 8th, 2010 @ 8:23 am

      Hi Vanessa~ I used salted. Usually if the recipe doesn’t specify, that’s what I do. Enjoy!

  11. 11

    vanessa jackson — December 10, 2010 @ 10:29 am

    The french toast was a hit! Thanks so much for posting the recipe. Everyone in the office loved it.

    • Beth replied: — December 10th, 2010 @ 10:50 am

      Yay! I’m so glad! Thanks for coming back and letting me know. I love to get feedback from you guys :-)

  12. 12

    Test Kitchen: Overnight Caramel French Toast « — February 12, 2011 @ 8:09 am

    […] http://www.eat-drink-smile.com/2010/11/meatless-monday-overnight-caramel-french-toast.html […]

  13. 13

    Sara — December 12, 2011 @ 1:52 pm

    I have an office brunch next week and was thinking of making this. Only thing is we don’t have an oven at work so I would bake it at home and then it would sit for 4 hours before being served. Is it still tasty room temperature?

    • Beth replied: — December 12th, 2011 @ 2:07 pm

      Hmmm. I’ve never tried it at room temp, so honestly can’t say for certain.

      I am a bit afraid that the caramel would get too hard and/or too sticky once it cools and removal from the pan would become difficult. Do you at least have a microwave that you could warm it up? That would probably help.

  14. 14

    stephanie — December 25, 2011 @ 2:36 pm

    EXCELLENT breakfast dish! Served it today for Christmas…what a hit! When you make the caramel and pour it in the baking dish, it gets hard quickly, so work fast to spread it! The adults loved it even more than the children! Thanks for this recipe…its a keeper!

    • Beth replied: — December 26th, 2011 @ 7:32 am

      Hi Stephanie- Thanks for the note regarding the caramel. I’ve never let it sit for any significant amount of time, so have never had a problem with it hardening. Good to point out to others that might though.

      I also made this on Christmas morning for my husband’s family and they all loved it! It’s my go-to dish for all brunches now!

  15. 15

    Caramel French Toast #Recipe — January 10, 2012 @ 6:01 am

    […] no need for syrup. I found this recipe while I was stumbling and pinning. This recipe comes from eat.drink.smile. She said to bake for 50 minutes. For some reason I had to do 15 minutes more. The egg mixture […]

  16. 16

    Amy — March 7, 2012 @ 1:54 pm

    Hi! I can’t wait to try this! I am going to make it for my husbands birthday brunch party this weekend. Two questions. First did you use a regular loaf or French bread ( long and skinny) or a load in the bread aisle ( square slices). Two- haw you tried it with nuts before?


    • Beth replied: — March 7th, 2012 @ 11:26 pm

      French loaf- long & skinny. I buy the Pepperidge Farms Twin Loafs. And no- have never put nuts in it, but I bet it’d be great!

      Everyone is going to love it!!

  17. 17

    Baylee — June 12, 2012 @ 12:04 pm

    WOOOOOOOOOOOOOW! Last night I was making it and instead of putting the bread in a single layer, I ripped it up in small pieces & made a single layer of bread on the bottom.. My dad tried it on his lunch break a few minutes ago; he is just like you about sweet stuff in the mornings & he liked it. He said that it tasted like bread pudding. It’s a fabulous recipe and taste AMAZING, as i’m eating it right now I am about to drool. It’s delicious. :)

  18. 18

    Karen — November 14, 2012 @ 8:34 pm

    I’ve always wanted an overnight french toast recipe (a good one that is).

    We have 8 kids and they are growing up fast, so they eat a lot when they come home for the holidays. I definately need to double the recipe… did you fit it all into that 13 x 9, or did you use 2 pans when you doubled your recipe?

    I’m thinking this should satisfy everyone if I make sausage & eggs to go with it!

    • Beth replied: — November 15th, 2012 @ 5:22 am

      Hi Karen,
      I used two pans. So I didn’t actually mix any of the ingredients together for the 2- just made 2 completely separate dishes. I think your whole family will love it!

      Darn it. Now you have me craving it ;-)

  19. 19

    Kentucky — January 1, 2013 @ 6:00 pm

    I have a question about the texture. Is it gooey/soggy?

  20. 20

    carol toland — October 29, 2015 @ 11:13 am

    in the picture you posted with the recipe for carmel french toast it looked to me like there was fruit (apples maybe) in the picture. I don’t see any mention of it in the recipe

    • Beth replied: — October 29th, 2015 @ 11:22 am

      Hi Carol,
      No, there is no fruit in the recipe. What you’re seeing in the photo is simply the caramelized bread.

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