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Overnight French Toast Breakfast Casserole

You’ll love this delicious French Toast Breakfast Casserole. It’s a great way to use up bread that’s past its prime, it comes together in a snap, and it’s a HUGE hit with my family. Throw it together the at night before you go to bed, pop it the oven when you roll out of bread, and a half hour later, breakfast is served! You’re welcome.

Overnight French Toast Breakfast Casserole

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Overnight French Toast Breakfast Casserole

The other day, I cooked a double batch of artisan bread and it didn’t turn out that great. I didn’t want to throw it out, so instead, I turned part of it into yummy garlic bread, fed some to my kids {who don’t know better…}, and then used the rest to make this delicious French Toast Breakfast Casserole! If you’ve got bread to use up too, I highly recommend this recipe. It’s quick, easy, and really tasty. It’s not that nutritious, but everything in moderation right?! I adapted the recipe I found here.

delicious overnight French Toast Casserole

Let’s make this Overnight French Toast Breakfast Casserole

The great thing about this casserole is that you can either bake it immediately after assembly, or you can cover and refrigerate over the night. Both options have their merit. If you’re organized the evening before, assembling at night is a great way to simplify busy mornings. But if you want to make it and cook it right away in the morning, that works too! Totally your call.

cut the bread into thick slices for overnight french toast casserole

To start, slice up a loaf of old bread into thick slices – around 1″ thick. Stale bread really works best in this recipe. It might sound strange, but I promise it’s the truth.

melt butter and add sugar
Melt butter and add sugar, then put the butter/sugar mix on the bottom of a 9×13 inch pan. place the bread in the pan on top of the butter.

dredge bread in egg mixture
Combine eggs, milk, vanilla, and cinnamon in a medium sized bowl. Then pour egg mixture over bread and make sure to dredge the bread through the mixture. Now you can do one of two things. You can bake at 350 for 30 minutes. Or, you can cover and refrigerate overnight then bake in the morning.


Yield: 6

French Toast Breakfast Casserole

French Toast Breakfast Casserole
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar {I use raw sugar}
  • 1 loaf old bread, cut into 1" thick pieces {I used homemade whole wheat artisan bread}
  • 8 eggs
  • 1 cup whole milk, or your choice of percent
  • 1 TBS vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 chopped pecans

Instructions

  1. Combine butter and brown sugar and pour it in the bottom of a 9x13 baking dish.
  2. Layer the bread on top, overlapping if necessary.
  3. Mix the eggs, milk, vanilla, and cinnamon and pour over the bread.
  4. Sprinkle nuts on top.
  5. Cover the baking dish and chill overnight.
  6. In the morning, preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  7. Bake the casserole for 30 minutes or until bubbly and brown.
  8. Let stand for 5-10 minutes.
  9. Serve with maple sugar or favorite syrup {if you'd like - I thought it was great as is, but my hubs and kids liked the extra syrup}.
  10. Enjoy!

Looking for more yummy breakfast ideas? Try these!

Bacon Wrapped Egg, Spinach, & Cheese Muffins (freeze very well!)

Eggy Breakfast Muffins (these also freeze very well!)

15 Slow Cooker Breakfast Ideas to Simplify Busy Mornings

Green Smoothies for the Freezer

This french toast breakfast casserole is absolutely delicious! Assemble it at night before you go to bed and pop it in the oven in the morning! YUM!!

 

Special Morning Celebrations #DeliciousPairings #CBias

We had a lot to celebrate this weekend! My husband is a veteran so we had to celebrate that. And we also celebrated two birthdays – my son who turned 7 today and my daughter who will turn 5 on December 26th. We chose to celebrate the two birthdays together because it’s so hard to fit everything in. Life gets so busy this time of the year. And our almost 5 year old has never had a dedicated family birthday party like the rest of our kids get.

We started the celebrations early with special breakfasts. I needed to find breakfast items for kids and adults so we hit Sam’s Club the other day. My kiddos bug me all the time to buy them bakery items but I usually refuse. I thought letting them actually choose a pre-made baked good would be a great way to celebrate.

Finding one they thought they would like was not hard – a box of Artisan Fresh Mini Cinnamon Rolls was the winner. And that smile warmed my heart. 🙂

The veteran in the family prefers coffee {and so do I}. So we looked for a nice coffee for him. The Starbucks Holiday Blend description appealed to me – “spicy & sweet with hints of comfort & joy.” Who can’t use more comfort and joy in their life? We normally buy whole coffee beans, but I guess it’s hard to get that comfort and joy in just beans…so the ground coffee won and into the cart it went. Since I am a pretty frugal shopper, I almost always buy coffee in bulk. The price really can’t be beat, and I’m not worried about keeping it fresh because we go through it so fast.

Until today I thought it was a good idea to store coffee in the freezer to keep it fresh. However, I just learned the freezer is NOT a good place to store coffee because as a porous item, it can easily absorb any odors that may linger in your freezer. Shrimp coffee, anyone? YUCK!! Instead, just make sure to store any coffee you won’t use in 2 weeks in an airtight container and keep it at room temperature in a cool, dry, dark place.

This weekend, we put all the deliciousness to the test.

First, we heated the cinnamon rolls in the oven. And as I suspected, they were a HUGE hit – a wonderful combination of sticky and sweet. I loved that they were small. Perfect for little hands {as well as smaller portions}.

The weather was so gorgeous this weekend {temperatures in the high 60s and low 70s} that we got to enjoy breakfast outside – UNHEARD of for November in Iowa.

Yummy!! The two year old gobbled the cinnamon rolls up like everyone else.

And the coffee? My husband is huge Starbucks fan. Since we live in the sticks, we don’t have a Starbucks location nearby, but every time we travel to a new big city, he always brings home one of their mugs for his collection and a bag of coffee for me. The mug he has in the below picture is his fav – he got it on a recent trip to the very first Starbucks in Seattle! We don’t always drink Starbucks coffee, but we do always drink our coffee out of their mugs! But I so love the treat of picking up a cup of Starbucks when we are out and about. I’m sooo happy that picking up a bag in bulk is a frugal way to drink more Starbucks.

And the veteran? Well, he thoroughly enjoyed everything, too. It really lived up to be #DeliciousPairings! He thought the coffee had just the right amount of comfort and joy in it – but pairing the coffee with the cinnamon rolls made his morning even more joyous. I normally put half and half in my coffee and I was surprised that eating a super sweet cinnamon roll while drinking the coffee make my coffee seem sweet without any additions. I could taste the pumpkin and cinnamon pairings in the coffee and I was really surprised about that! Everyone was thrilled with my decision to buy pre-made baked goods. {I really do need to master the art of sweet baking}. I can’t wait to try this coffee with a wonderful piece of pumpkin pie, though. I think it will be perfect for that.

My only regret? I should have bought two bags. This coffee isn’t going to last long. It’s just that good.

If you’d like to try this coffee too, Sam’s Club will open at 7am on Black Friday and will greet members with free Starbucks Holiday Blend coffee and Artisan Fresh pastries (while supplies last).

How do you make celebrations special? And did YOU know not to store coffee in the freezer?

Disclosure: I am a member of the Collective Bias® Social Fabric® Community. This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias™. #CBias #SocialFabric. All opinions are my own

Homemade Toaster Waffles & Grain Mill Wagon Challenge {plus 6 more breakfasts to make ahead of time}

I recently joined forces with the Grain Mill Wagon Challenge to help people experience freshly milled flours! I make all my own breads and use 95% freshly milled flour in my recipes. I’ve been grinding my own flour since 2005 and love it! I thought this Challenge would be a fabulous way to share wonderful recipes with you, my fabulous readers!

Since I’m gearing up for Back2School, the first recipe I’m sharing with the Grain Mill Wagon Challenge is for Homemade Toaster Waffles. I quadruple this recipe so we can eat some on cooking day and also freezer quite a few. When we’re ready to eat them after they’ve been frozen, I just pop them in the toaster and we enjoy!

If you’re looking for more breakfast recipes that can be frozen ahead of time for easy mornings, here are some of my favs!

Eggy Breakfast Muffins – these unique muffins combine flour, meat, cheese, and veg. They are delightful and a favorite of my 8 year old.

Homemade Monkey Bread -this is a fun treat. Normal people buy frozen bread dough at the store and make this recipe with pre-packaged bread. I’m not normal, though, and make my own. 😉

Chocolate Chip Banana Bread – this is another fabulous recipe and is my father-in-law’s favorite. I also quadruple this recipe so I have extras to freeze.

Mix & Match Muffin Packets – I learned this trick from LifeAsMom! Instead of just making one batch of muffins, I whip up 4 or 5 extra packets of the dried ingredients. When we want hot, fresh muffins, I take a packet out of my freezer, add oil, mix-ins, and milk, and we enjoy!

Buttermilk Pancakes – Another easy recipe to double and then freeze. These also heat up very nicely in the toaster.

Scone Packets – This is very similar to the muffin packets, except it’s scones! We love scones at my house and having the dry ingredients already mixed together saves me time on busy mornings.

Don’t forget to find the recipe for Toaster Waffles at the Grain Mill Challenge. Do you have a favorite breakfast recipe that can be made ahead of time and frozen? Please leave a link in the comments, if so! I’m always on the prowl for new ideas!

 

Apple Pancake Rings

Apple Pancake Rings

http://beta.abc.go.com/shows/the-chew/recipes/Carla-Hall-Fried-Apple-Pancake-Rings

I found this idea for Apple Pancake Rings on Pinterest and decided to give it a try! The original recipe is here and it claimed to be easy so I was all for it…

Of course, in my typical style, I couldn’t use the original recipe because it calls for Bisquick which I don’t buy…so I improvised.

First, I made my own buttermilk pancake batter using freshly ground hard white wheat flour. Then, I cored the apples with the handy dandy Pampered Chef Apple Corer that I never use and cut them into slices:

Apple Pancake Rings

Then, using a toothpick as the recipe specifies, I dipped the pancakes into the batter and fried them in my cast iron skillet because I don’t have a griddle. I need a griddle. The first batch looked awful:

Apple Pancake Rings

I would NOT call this an easy process. Maybe I’m challenged as a cook, or perhaps you really DO have to use Bisquick, or maybe I just don’t have the right kitchen tools…anyhow, what I finally got to work (marginally), was to really lower the temperature and heavily grease my pan. When I put the dipped apple rings in the pan, the batter spread into the center. I let it cook for a few minutes and then cleaned out the center with a toothpick. The last few I made looked ok, but let me tell you, they are fabulous!! (But I think they would be better peeled as well as cored and sliced). Here’s what we finally got:

Apple Pancake Rings

I’m going to keep practicing and see if I can’t get some to look like Carla Hall’s (but without the Bisquick)!

I’m linking up to Ultimate Recipe Swap and Frugal Food Thursday.