Perfect French Toast is easy to make, and a crowd-favorite breakfast and brunch option! Soft and custardy in the center, and caramelized on the outside, this easy recipe will guarantee perfect results.
Delicious French toast is versatile and simple to make. Follow all of my tips to make Perfect French Toast!
This is a childhood favorite for me, as I’m sure it is for many others as well. Every family has their own way of making French toast. So did mine. So the recipe I’m sharing today is highly adaptable, but also guarantees amazingly delicious and PERFECT French toast!
French toast vs eggy bread vs bread pudding
What is French toast? How does it differ from these other similar-ish dishes? Here’s how I define them;
Eggy bread – This is all egg, with little to no milk/cream or water. The bread is dipped in whisked eggs and pan fried. I grew up calling this eggy bread.
French toast – A more balanced ratio of egg and milk. Usually 1/4 – 1/3 cup of milk or cream per 1 egg. Bread is soaked in the egg mixture and pan fried to get a caramelized crust, and a soft, custard-like center. For some, eggy bread and French toast are indistinguishable.
Bread pudding – I use the same egg to milk ratio as French toast here, but the soaked bread is baked as a casserole, rather than individually pan fried.
What type of bread is perfect for French toast?
Pretty much any type of bread. Any bread that you like to eat is great for making this dish! I grew up eating this with regular bakery bread.
You could also use regular sandwich bread from the supermarket, but these slices are so thin, the bread will simply disintegrate if soaked in the egg-milk mixture for too long.
The best bread for perfect French toast (in my opinion at least) is a thick slice of brioche or challah. But I also love using stale, sliced croissants, or even thick sliced sourdough bread or crusty French bread.
Thicker slices of bread are more suited for French toast, since you can soak them for a little longer to create that soft custard-like center.
Basically, any type of bread can be used to make this, as long as you adjust the soaking time. However, the bread that will give you the best results is,
- A flavorful and/or rich bread such as brioche, challah, or even croissants.
- Preferably the bread should be 1 – 2 days old (stale), so that it soaks up the egg mixture better.
- Thick cut – at least 3/4 of an inch thick will produce a lovely custard-like center, along with a caramelized surface.
What toppings to pair with this?
Here’s a fun anecdote – sweet French toast was unheard of in my family. Savory French toast used to be our jam, and I didn’t eat the sweet version until my late teens. But I quickly grew to love classic, sweet French toast, so here are some of my favorite sweet toppings and ideas to pair with this dish.
Sweet topping ideas,
- Maple syrup
- Pancake syrup
- Golden syrup
- Caramel sauce
- Chocolate sauce
- Ripe fruits like berries and banana
- Cooked fruit compotes or coulis like apple, peach, and berry coulis
- Any fruit jam (such as strawberry jam, plum jam, fig jam etc.)
- Whipped cream
- Sweetened ricotta
Savory topping ideas,
- Bacon (which is also delicious along with maple syrup, whipped cream, and fruits)
- Breakfast sausages
- Curries (so this might be controversial, but it’s a delicious choice if you’re so inclined, and I personally love it)
- Fried chicken
How to make Perfect French Toast
All you need to do to make perfect French toast is to cut slices of stale bread, make the egg-milk mixture, dip, and pan fry.
Prepare the bread slices
I like to use thick cut bread to make my perfect French toast (or brioche French toast). I find that sandwich bread soaks up the egg mixture too fast, and you end up with limp, sad French toast. Not good. So, I try to use unsliced bread which I slice myself. Preferably an enriched bread loaf (but crusty sourdough is also very good!).
Every time I make my popular brioche bread, I inevitably end up making French toast! I slice up one loaf and let it get stale for a few days, before using the slices to make the most perfect brioche French toast. I cut up slices that are about 1 inch thick, or at least 3/4 of an inch thick.
Make the egg mixture
Whisk the milk with a little cornstarch. This step is optional, but it helps to create a nice custard-like texture. Add the eggs, sugar, and salt, and whisk until well combined.
Because of the egg whites, the egg mixture may seem “gloopy”. This isn’t really a bad thing, but to make the egg mixture easier to absorb, whisk the mixture until you don’t have that gloopy texture. You will either need to whisk the custard base really well with a balloon mix, or use an immersion blender for a few seconds to achieve this. The resulting egg mixture will be very watery.
You can also add some flavoring to the egg mixture. My favorite is vanilla. You could also add lemon, orange, or almond extract. I also love adding some instant coffee for a lovely flavor twist.
Preheat the pan
I use a large non-stick pan to make French toast (or brioche French toast). This way the bread slices will not stick to the pan. You can use any type of fat in the pan to fry your French toast.
Vegetable oil, olive oil, ghee, butter are all great choices. I like to use a combination of butter and vegetable oil. The butter adds a lot of flavor to the French toast as well. The temperature setting will differ depending on the stove and the pan you use.
Dipping the bread in the egg-milk mixture
The more stale the bread, the quicker it will absorb the egg mixture. I usually count to 5 or 6 (mississippi-lessly), for each side. This will vary depending on how thick or thin your slices are, and how stale the bread is. You want the bread to absorb some of the egg, but not get so soggy that the bread disintegrates when lifted from the egg mix.
Pan fry the bread slices
The temperature of the pan should not be too hot. If it’s too hot, the toast will brown and burn too fast. I usually prefer to cook the bread about 2 – 3 minutes per side for thicker slices of bread. If it browns too fast, I reduce the heat.
You want the surface of the slices to be a caramelized brown color, but the middle to still be soft. If the bread is cooked too quickly, the middle might be too raw. Place the pan fried toast on a wire rack until you’re ready to serve. Perfect French toast will have a golden brown crust, with a soft and slightly custard-like center. You can keep the French toast in a warm oven (200 F / 93 C), so that they stay nice and warm until you’re ready to serve.
Serve with confectioner’s sugar, or a combination of your favorite toppings.
What you need to know about making French toast, if you’re a beginner
French toast can be made with any type of bread, with perfect results. If you only have sandwich bread, that’s A-OK! If all you have is the $1 Italian bread loaf from Walmart, you can just as easily use that to make fantastic French toast. However, if you’re lucky enough to get your hands on brioche or challah, or make your own, that’d be even better! Brioche French toast is deeee-licious.
For best results, always adjust the recipe to the type of bread that you’re using. Thinner bread needs less soaking time in the egg mixture.
The egg mixture itself is super flexible. If you added too much milk, don’t worry. As a rule of thumb, I use 1/4 – 1/3 cup of milk per 1 large egg, plus 1/4 tsp cornstarch. So adjust the ingredients to get that ratio.
Adjust the cook time depending on the bread as well. Thicker bread slices will obviously cook slower than thinner slices. Plus, the more egg mixture that is absorbed by the bread, the cook time will also be longer, compared to slices that were just superficially coated with the egg mixture. On my stove, I use the medium heat setting, but it could be different on your stove.
Use the first slice to gauge how long to soak the bread. But if you do soak the bread slices for too long and they break apart, you could try baking them into a bread pudding!
Why I love this recipe
I love eggs and egg recipes. So this brioche French toast is another flavorful way to incorporate eggs in my breakfast/brunch.
This is also such a versatile recipe. It’s also one of the first things I learned to make, mostly because it’s so easy and hard to mess up.
I can make French toast with cheap breads for a quick treat if I’m in the mood (think French toast roll ups), or use a rich bread to make super comforting French toast as well.
Plus, it makes for the best breakfast, brunch, or even dinner! 🙂
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5 from 1 vote
Classic French Toast Recipe
Author: Dini K.
Yield: 8 slices of French toast
Cuisine: American, Canadian, North American
This Perfect French Toast recipe is easy, versatile, and adaptable. Soft and custardy in the center, and caramelized on the outside, this recipe will guarantee perfect results!
EASY – This recipe is very easy and versatile. Perfect for beginners. It's also a great way to use up stale bread.
US based cup, teaspoon, tablespoon measurements.Common Measurement Conversions.
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
- 4 large eggs see recipe notes
- 1 – 1 ⅓ cup milk see recipe notes
- ⅓ – ½ cup sugar
- Generous pinch of salt
- 1 tsp cinnamon optional
- ½ tsp ground nutmeg optional
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 8 thick slices of stale brioche bread about ¾ – 1 inch thick (see recipe notes for choice of bread)
- Butter and/or oil for frying
- Maple syrup
- Whipped cream or yogurt
In a shallow dish, whisk together the eggs, milk, sugar, salt, vanilla, and spices (if using). Whisk until the eggs have no “gloopy” texture. You could also place the ingredients in a jug and use an immersion blender for a few seconds to mix the eggs well.
Slice a stale loaf of brioche bread into 1 inch thick slices. If you’re using my brioche recipe, note that I can slice one loaf into 6 – 7 slices (not including the edges).
Preheat a large non-stick skillet or griddle over medium heat (or medium high if your stove doesn't run too hot).
When the pan is hot, soak one slice of bread in the egg-milk mixture. Dip one side in the mixture and keep it immersed for about 3 – 5 seconds (depends on how stale and/or thick the slices are).
Flip over the bread slice, and immerse the other side for the same length of time.
Remove the slice from the egg mix, and allow excess egg mixture to drip back into the dish.
Place some butter and/or oil in the skillet. I like to add about 1 tbsp of butter for 2 slices of bread.
Once the butter is melted, and the pan is hot, place the bread slices in the pan. Make sure the pan isn’t over-crowded, so that the bread slices achieve proper caramelization.
Cook the bread slices for about 3 – 4 minutes on the first side. Flip over, and cook the other side for another 3 – 4 minutes, with a little more butter.
Once both sides of your French toast have caramelized and cooked properly, place the toast on a wire rack (until you have cooked all of your French toast). Repeat this process with the remaining slices of bread.
Serve the French toast warm with whipped cream, fruits, and maple syrup.
Tips & Tricks
1 egg per serving (which is usually 2 thick slices of bread).
Use ¼ – ⅓ cup milk per egg.
Note about choice of bread
You can also use challah, milk bread, sourdough bread, Texas toast, or croissantsfor this.
Calories: 473kcal (24%)Carbohydrates: 53g (18%)Protein: 15g (30%)Fat: 22g (34%)Saturated Fat: 12g (75%)Polyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 289mg (96%)Sodium: 409mg (18%)Potassium: 148mg (4%)Fiber: 1g (4%)Sugar: 20g (22%)Vitamin A: 938IU (19%)Vitamin C: 1mg (1%)Calcium: 139mg (14%)Iron: 2mg (11%)
“This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition data is gathered primarily from the USDA Food Composition Database, whenever available, or otherwise other online calculators.”
Course:Breakfast, Brunch, Desserts
Cuisine:American, Canadian, North American
Keyword:Breakfast, Brunch, Easy Breakfasts, Easy brunch, Eggs, French Toast
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What is the trick to making good French toast? ›
- 01 of 07. Think beyond basic bread. ...
- 02 of 07. Cut thick slices and give them a hearty soaking. ...
- 03 of 07. Jazz up your egg-milk batter. ...
- 04 of 07. Rethink your maple syrup. ...
- 05 of 07. Think beyond maple syrup. ...
- 06 of 07. Use a non-stick pan. ...
- 07 of 07. Don't skip butter.
A basic rule of thumb is about 1/4 cup of milk and one egg per two-slice serving—and if you want to avoid that "scrambled" taste, use only the yolks of some or all of the eggs.What is the most common mistake in making French toast? ›
- Adding too much dairy and sugar to the custard. Don't go overboard with the dairy. ...
- Not mixing the custard thoroughly. ...
- Not choosing the right bread. ...
- Under-soaking the bread. ...
- Using too much heat or not enough. ...
- Not preheating the pan. ...
- Only using butter.
Aim for medium-low heat so that the inside can cook and the outside will still get golden-brown and nicely caramelized. Follow this tip: Heat your griddle or frying pan to medium-low before cooking the French toast so it's perfectly cooked on both the outside and inside.How do you make the perfect toast? ›
Place sliced bread on an ungreased baking sheet. Broil bread for 1 minute, or until golden brown, then flip and broil for another 20-30 seconds. Watch carefully so you don't burn the toast! Top with butter, jam, or any other favorite topping!Why do you add eggs to French toast? ›
Most French toast recipes will use eggs to do this. Eggs are great at it. The proteins in eggs solidify upon heating, firming up the liquids in the bread. What's more, egg adds fats for richness and they are don't 'hide' flavors.How much milk should I add per egg? ›
Adding milk or plain water to scrambled eggs is an optional step that affects the texture of your finished dish. For creamy scrambled eggs, you'll add up to 1 tablespoon of milk for every egg. For fluffy scrambled eggs, you'll add up to 1 tablespoon of water for every egg.Why doesn't my French toast get crispy? ›
It may have been too fresh. This is one of those recipes where stale, dry bread is better. Fresh bread will get too soggy the moment you dip it into your custard. So, give your fresh bread a few hours to a day before using it for French toast.Is it better to use milk or half and half for French toast? ›
Half-and-half or cream will make a richer custard than whole or skim milk. You can also use non-dairy milks such as almond and coconut. Go one step further and flavor your basic milk-and-egg custard with vanilla extract, cinnamon, or cardamom; sweeten it with sugar or syrup, or even add juice or liqueur to the mix.What is the original French toast? ›
According to a collection of recipes from the early 5th century AD, the dish we now know as French toast existed as early as the age of the Roman Empire. In their style of French toast, called Pan Dulcis, Romans would soak bread in a milk and egg mixture, then fry it in oil or butter.
Do you use butter or oil for French toast? ›
As you cook the French toast, bits of that nutty brown-butter flavor slowly develop — much slower than they would if you cooked with just butter alone — so the the French toast has time to cook evenly without burning. A neutral oil, like canola, is the way to go since it won't disrupt the flavor of the butter.How long should French toast soak? ›
Whisk together eggs, cream, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt in a medium bowl; set aside. Place bread in a shallow baking dish large enough to hold bread slices in a single layer. Pour egg mixture over bread; soak 10 minutes. Turn slices over; soak until soaked through, about 10 minutes more.Should French toast be crispy or soggy? ›
The ideal French toast is browned and crispy on the outside and creamy on the inside. It is not dry and it is not soggy.How do I know when my French toast is ready? ›
"You know when your French toast is done when the center is set and doesn't have a runny consistency once cut," Oliveira says. If you're cooking a thinner French toast or omitted eggs from your soaking liquid, a quick pan-fry will do the trick, with 3 to 6 minutes on each side.Should I cover French toast when cooking? ›
Melt 2 tablespoons of butter, uncover the French toast and then slowly pour the melted butter over the top, trying to cover most of the bread slices. Scatter the cinnamon sugar over the bread, and then bake, uncovered, until the tips of the bread are golden brown and the bread looks puffed, about 10 minutes.Why is my french toast soggy? ›
French toast goes soggy if you've used too thin, fresh, and flimsy a slice of bread. Other causes are too much milk in the custard, skim milk, and soaking the bread for too long. French toast will also be soggy if it's fried at too high a heat, searing the outside and leaving the center underdone.How much butter do you put on toast? ›
The magic number is 1 and 1/2 tablespoons. This will allow for an even, thick coat of butter across your toast, melting in without making it soggy.What kind of bread is best for French toast? ›
The top three choices of bread to use for French Toast are Brioche, French Baguette, and Challah. All of these options will yield a wonderful French Toast but we have to give the most stars to Brioche. Trust me, Brioche truly makes the best tasting French Toast.Why do you add milk to French toast? ›
Why add milk to eggs for French toast? French toast needs liquid to soften the bread, as well as something to 'bind' the ingredients. The milk is part of the batter or custard for soaking the bread slices--whole milk and eggs are the key ingredients for a rich custard.Why does my French toast turn out eggy? ›
You're adding too much milk or too few egg yolks: Eggs and milk are the essential components of the custard base that gives French toast its tender richness—but get their ratio off and you'll wind up with undercooked slices that have an unpleasantly savory “scrambled eggs” flavor.
What is French toast batter made of? ›
- 6 thick slices of bread (about 1 inch thick)
- 2 tbsp butter.
- 1 cup milk.
- 5 eggs.
- 1 ½ tsp vanilla extract.
- 1 tbsp cinnamon.
Save the Milk for Your Coffee Mug
You can stop if you are in the habit of adding milk or cream while whisking eggs—now. Milk won't make eggs creamier, fluffier, or stretch the dish out. The milk dilutes the eggs' flavor, making them rubbery, colorless, and similar to what you would find at a school cafeteria.
As Eat This, Not That explains, the fat in the milk contributes to a firmer texture, so if you want your eggs to be as fluffy as possible, plain water is the way to go.What should be the time gap between egg and milk? ›
Thus, if you are actually seeking to build a strong body and improve overall health it is best to consume cooked eggs and milk, but make sure if you want to avoid any issues with digestion and gut health, then it is suggested to keep a gap of an hour between the consumption of two types of protein.How do you make extra crispy toast? ›
The easiest option is to put the oven on low, and place your toast inside. Put it on a rack so that the air can circulate all around it, letting it 'breathe'. This will prevent any moisture from forming underneath it, which will make it go soggy.How do you make French bread crispy? ›
Wrap the loaf tightly with aluminum foil, place it on the middle rack of a cold oven, and set the temperature to 300 degrees. After about 30 minutes (15 to 20 minutes for small or narrow loaves like baguettes), remove the foil and return the loaf to the oven for about 5 more minutes to crisp up the crust.How do you make French toast not soggy after baking? ›
How to keep French Toast from getting soggy? To keep French Toast from getting soggy lightly toast the bread before soaking and don't soak the bread too long in the custard.Can I use coffee creamer instead of milk for French toast? ›
If you don't have vanilla coffee creamer you can substitute with another flavor of creamer, plain heavy cream, half & half or even milk, although the flavor will change slightly. Be sure to slice bread a full inch thick-if it is too thin you'll get floppy, soggy toast!Should I use fresh or stale bread for French toast? ›
French toast is traditionally made with day-old bread because it prevents waste and because slightly stale slices absorb the custard-like mixture better than fresh ones.What do English call French toast? ›
The British call french toast “eggy bread," “gypsy bread" or “french-fried bread." And sometimes they serve it with ketchup.
What is the difference between French toast and eggy bread? ›
Want to know the difference between Eggy Bread and French Toast? Eggy Bread tends to be savoury and French Toast sweet. For Eggy Bread, think bacon or a fried egg as the filling, whilst French Toast tends to be berries with maple syrup or honey. You're winning either way!What does French toast called in France? ›
One of our favorite staples is pain perdu, or “lost bread,” which is the name for French toast in France. The French name pain perdu perhaps refers to how the fresh breads in France quickly become stale – or lost.How do you make French toast not taste eggy? ›
Egg whites are known for giving French toast the eggy taste that you're experiencing. If you don't like French toast that tastes eggy, it might be best to use egg yolks instead. You see, egg whites have sulfur compounds that give French toast an eggy taste.What happens if you use oil instead of butter in bread? ›
Butter is considered a solid fat because it is solid at room temperature and oil is considered a liquid fat because it's liquid at room temperature. Because of this, you can't rely on oil to provide any leavening help in baked goods, which can result in a denser texture.Which butter is best for toast? ›
Salted butter is great for spreading on breads, pastries and even vegetables. Gordon recommends taking a little salted butter (or making your own with unsalted butter topped with sea salt crystals) and spreading it on radishes in the spring.What temperature should French toast be cooked at? ›
Cooking French toast in a skillet or griddle can get messy, but it's worth it! Preheat a nonstick griddle to 375° on your stovetop (or heat skillet over medium heat), lightly oiling or buttering if desired.Why doesn't my French toast have flavor? ›
Dry out your bread
The problem is stale bread is often bland and likely won't soak up as much custard, according to Food Hacks. You can dry out your bread by baking slices at a low heat, but make sure not to toast them too much.
Up to 24 Hours: Prepare the French toast batter and place it into an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours.How long should I heat French toast? ›
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease a baking sheet with non-stick spray. Arrange the French toast slices in a single layer on the baking sheet, leaving 1/2 inch of space in between. Reheat for 6 to 8 minutes, flipping the toasts over halfway through.How do I get my French toast to not be soggy? ›
How to keep French Toast from getting soggy? To keep French Toast from getting soggy lightly toast the bread before soaking and don't soak the bread too long in the custard.
How do I make my toast more crispy? ›
The easiest option is to put the oven on low, and place your toast inside. Put it on a rack so that the air can circulate all around it, letting it 'breathe'. This will prevent any moisture from forming underneath it, which will make it go soggy.What should the consistency of French toast be? ›
The ideal French toast is browned and crispy on the outside and creamy on the inside. It is not dry and it is not soggy.Why is my French toast so eggy? ›
You're adding too much milk or too few egg yolks: Eggs and milk are the essential components of the custard base that gives French toast its tender richness—but get their ratio off and you'll wind up with undercooked slices that have an unpleasantly savory “scrambled eggs” flavor.When should I flip my French toast? ›
Let the slices cook for a couple minutes and then gently lift the edge of one slice with a spatula. Let the color of your French toast tell you when to flip. When mostly golden brown, flip and then cook the other side until browned.Should you let bread dry out for French toast? ›
Ideally, the bread should be slightly stale. A drier bread will soak up all the custard. Bread can be left out with the wrapper open the day before cooking. If you find yourself in a pinch, dry your bread slices in a 275°F oven for 10 minutes before soaking them in the custard.What is the best bread to use for French toast? ›
The top three choices of bread to use for French Toast are Brioche, French Baguette, and Challah. All of these options will yield a wonderful French Toast but we have to give the most stars to Brioche. Trust me, Brioche truly makes the best tasting French Toast.Should you toast bread before making French toast? ›
Always toast your bread. This will prevent your French toast from becoming soggy later on. Also, don't leave your slices soaking in the custard too long! Over-soaking French toast slices in your custard makes it soggy.