An easy homemade baked french toast casserole with a cinnamon and sugar topping. This breakfast casserole is a family favorite that you can make ahead and refrigerate overnight or bake now.

baked french toast with syrup

French toast is one of my favorite weekend breakfasts. With this easy french toast casserole recipe, you can enjoy french toast for breakfast without all of the work of flipping slices of french toast at the stove.

I love this homemade french toast recipe because it feels like I’m eating dessert for breakfast, even when I make this with healthier ingredients. As this french toast casserole bakes, the cinnamon-sugar top caramelizes and gets slightly crispy, while the inside of the french toast casserole stays soft. The bread is soaked in a custard that is flavored with cinnamon, vanilla extract and maple syrup. Everyone at the table will be asking for seconds!

slice of french toast casserole

This baked french toast casserole is quick and simple to make. You can prep this make ahead breakfast casserole the night before and refrigerate it overnight. This french toast bake is perfect for holiday breakfasts and brunches because it can be completely assembled the day before. The best part is how amazing your kitchen will smell as your breakfast bakes in the oven!

If you don’t want to prep this baked french toast the night before, you can assemble and bake it right away. I recommend letting the casserole sit for 20 to 30 minutes before baking so that the custard can soak into the bread. The bread won’t absorb as much of the custard as it would overnight, but it will still be delicious.

What kind of bread is best for french toast casserole?

There are quite a few options when it comes to the best bread for french toast. I like to use a loaf of crusty whole grain french bread, both for nutrition and flavor. You can also use crusty white french bread, challah, brioche or ciabatta. I do not recommend using sandwich bread or other thin sliced bread.

It is best to use day old bread that has dried out a little to add some crunch.

How to make overnight french toast casserole

Start by cutting the bread into 1-inch cubes and putting it in a 13×9-inch baking dish. Arrange the bread so that it is in a mostly even layer. It does not need to be perfect.

Next, you’ll make the custard. I like to mix the french toast batter in a large batter bowl for easy pouring. You can also make it in a large bowl and use a small measuring cup to pour it over the bread.

Whisk together eggs, milk, pure maple syrup (or brown sugar), cinnamon, vanilla, and salt. Pour the custard over the bread in the baking dish, doing your best to pour it evenly over all of the bread cubes.

Finally, you will make the buttery cinnamon-sugar topping for your french toast casserole. To do this, combine melted butter, brown sugar (or pure maple syrup) and cinnamon. Pour the topping evenly over the top of the casserole.

Cover the casserole and refrigerate it for at least 20 minutes and up to one day before baking. The baking instructions for this oven baked french toast, as well as the full recipe with ingredient amounts and instructions, can be found in the recipe card at the end of this post.

french toast in a dish with slice missing

Healthier ingredients

French toast casserole is a special occasion breakfast that usually isn’t very healthy. I like to make my baked french toast a little bit healthier with these easy ingredient swaps:

  • Use whole wheat french bread instead of white bread.
  • Use pure maple syrup instead of brown sugar. Pure maple syrup is an unrefined sweetener. Overall we aren’t adding too much sugar to this recipe, only 3 tablespoons in the full casserole.
  • I use real butter and whole milk in this recipe and like the richness that these real food ingredients provide.

Tips for making baked french toast

  • You can save extra french bread in your freezer and use it to make french toast casserole. Whenever you are left with part of a loaf of french bread, cut it into 1-inch cubes and store the bread cubes in a gallon-size zip-top bag in your freezer. When the bag is full, use the bread in this recipe. You do not need to thaw the bread cubes.
  • You can assemble this casserole the night before, refrigerate, and bake it in the morning. If you want to bake your casserole right away, let the custard soak into the bread for 20-30 minutes before baking.
  • Leftover baked french toast casserole reheats well. Reheat in the microwave, or in the oven at 350° F, covered, until warm.
  • Serve your french toast casserole with pure maple syrup and other toppings as desired. I enjoy this with pecans or sliced almonds and fresh berries or banana.

pouring syrup onto a serving

More Favorite Brunch Recipes

baked french toast casserole with syrup
4.95 from 17 ratings

Baked French Toast Casserole

Servings: 8 servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
This easy homemade baked french toast casserole has a soft custard soaked center and a crisp cinnamon-sugar topping. This breakfast casserole is a family favorite that you can make ahead and refrigerate overnight or bake now.


  • 1 loaf day old French bread, whole wheat, brioche, challah, or ciabatta, cut into 1-inch cubes (about 10 cups of bread cubes)
  • 6 large eggs
  • 2 ¼ cups milk, I used whole milk
  • 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup, or light brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon salt


  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 tablespoons light brown sugar, or pure maple syrup
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon


  • Lightly spray a 9x13-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Place the bread cubes in an even layer in the dish.
  • In a large bowl or large liquid measuring cup, whisk together the eggs, milk, 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup or brown sugar, cinnamon, vanilla and salt. Pour the mixture evenly over the bread in the dish.
  • To make the topping: In a small bowl, whisk together the melted butter, 2 tablespoons brown sugar (or maple syrup) and cinnamon. Drizzle over the casserole.
  • At this point, you can refrigerate the casserole overnight (covered) and bake in the morning, or let it rest for 20-30 minutes (in the refrigerator) and then bake right away.
  • When you are ready to bake the casserole, preheat the oven to 350° F. Cover the dish with foil and bake for 35 minutes. Uncover and bake for 10-20 minutes more, until the top is lightly browned and the casserole is set. Serve with fresh fruit and maple syrup, as desired.
Serving: 1/8 casserole, Calories: 317kcal, Carbohydrates: 39g, Protein: 12g, Fat: 13g, Saturated Fat: 6g, Cholesterol: 162mg, Sodium: 377mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 9g
Nutrition information is an estimate.
Cuisine: American
Course: Breakfast
Tried this recipe?Mention @kristines_kitchen on Instagram or tag #kristineskitchenblog.


This site contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase through these links, I may receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you. Thank you for supporting Kristine's Kitchen!