Enjoy this easy brown sugar French toast recipe for a delicious, comforting weekend treat. These thick slices are light and fluffy inside with sweet, caramelized edges. Top with maple syrup, powdered sugar and fresh berries for the perfect brunch. And it's ready in just 20 minutes!
Whenever our son is home from school, I keep French toast on repeat. It's definitely a family favorite! Now that our kids are older, nothing starts early except for the warm aroma wafting through the house for Sunday brunch or on Christmas morning.
And if you’re looking for more delicious breakfast ideas and brunch recipes, check out our cheesy veggie and ham casserole, strawberry shortcake buttermilk waffles and poached eggs with garlicky mushrooms!
Why You’ll Love this French Toast Recipe
- Warm and cozy breakfast comfort food!
- Brown sugar adds extra caramelization.
- Budget friendly using basic ingredients.
- Easily customizable.
- Can be prepped ahead and ready in 20 minutes.
- Leaves soggy French toast a thing of the past!😉
See the recipe card below for exact measurements.
- Challah bread
- Large eggs
- Whole milk
- Brown sugar
- Cinnamon and nutmeg
- Vanilla extract
- Butter and vegetable oil
- Pinch of salt
- Best Bread: Thick slices of brioche, pullman’s loaf (Texas toast), French bread or croissants are great substitutes for the challah. Leftover banana bread would also be yummy.
- Dairy: I like using whole milk for French toast, but you can sub in half-n-half or add some heavy cream to the mixture for extra richness.
- Shape: Cut your bread slices into 1 ½-inch strips to make French toast sticks the whole family will love.
- Gluten free: You can always use a hearty gluten free bread if you prefer.
- Dairy free: Replace the whole milk with an unsweetened plant-based milk.
We prefer using a frying pan or griddle over baked French toast to get those nice crispy edges the oven can’t quite do. But if you’re strapped for time in the morning, try this overnight French toast casserole.
Make Egg Mixture: In a shallow dish or large bowl, combine eggs, milk, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla extract. Whisk together until well blended.
Prepare Skillet: Heat a large cast iron skillet or griddle over medium heat. Add a tablespoon each of butter and vegetable oil. Let the butter melt completely.
Start Dipping: Dip both sides of 2-3 slices of bread in the egg mixture (I flip them quickly so they don’t get soggy). Let any excess egg drip off the bread and place into heated pan.
Cook the slices of bread 3-4 minutes per side until golden brown.
Keep Warm: Transfer cooked slices on a baking sheet with a wire rack and place in the oven preheated to 250 degrees F to keep warm. You could also place them on a large plate and tent with aluminum foil.
Repeat cooking process with remaining slices of bread. When ready, serve with maple syrup, dust with powdered sugar and add fresh berries on the side. Enjoy!
- Stale bread yields the best results when it comes to French toast. Super fresh bread will end up super soggy.
- Thickness of your slices should be right around 1 inch for the best turnout.
- Temperature of your skillet or griddle should not go over medium heat. You want to give the bread enough time to cook inside without burning on the outside.
- To make ahead prepare the egg mixture the night before. Simply cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate. And you can leave the bread slices out overnight to dry. The next morning you’ll be ready to go.😊
What to Serve with French Toast
Maple syrup, powdered sugar and fresh fruit always come to mind when digging into French toast. Here are some other topping ideas along with ways to round out your brunch menu.
- Softened butter
- Whipped cream
- Chopped nuts
- Chocolate chips
- PB & J
- Prosciutto and Gruyere Brioche Muffins
- Spinach Asparagus and Leek Frittata
- Mini Crab Quiches
- Breakfast sausage, bacon or ham
- Yogurt and granola
Brown Sugar French Toast FAQs
Common mistakes in making French toast include adding too much dairy to the custard mixture. When there’s too much milk the bread won’t cook and will end up soggy. You’ll also likely have a soggy result when using thin slices of bread. Make sure they’re ¾- to 1-inch thick.
French toast is all about the bread and custard it’s dipped into. It’s best to use hearty loaves such as challah, brioche or Texas toast. And jazz up the custard mixture with warm spices like, cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice.
Your French toast may not get crispy when using really fresh bread. You want your bread to be at least a day old when making French toast. Alternatively, you can dry out fresh bread by baking the slices for 10 minutes in a 275-degree oven.
It’s best to use a combination of butter with a neutral oil so you get that browned buttery flavor without the butter burning.
Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge up to 5 days. Reheat in a toaster that can hold thick slices or in a skillet over medium heat until warmed through. You can also put them in an air fryer for a few minutes or microwave.
More Easy Breakfast Recipes
Brown Sugar French Toast
- 5 large eggs
- ¾ cup whole milk
- 3 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 ½ teaspoons cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
- 4 tablespoons butter, divided
- 1 loaf challah bread, cut into 1-inch slices
- Pinch of salt
- 4 tablespoons vegetable oil (or other neutral oil)
- In a shallow casserole dish, whisk together the eggs, milk, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla extract until well combined.
- Heat a large cast iron skillet or griddle over medium heat. Add a tablespoon of butter and vegetable oil. Let the butter melt completely.
- Dip both sides of 2-3 slices of bread in the egg mixture (I flip them quickly so they don’t get soggy). Let any excess egg drip off the bread and place into heated pan.
- Cook the French toast 3-4 minutes per side until golden brown.
- Transfer cooked slices on a baking sheet with a wire rack and place in the oven preheated to 250 degrees F to keep warm. You could also place them on a large plate and tent with aluminum foil.
- Repeat cooking process with remaining slices of bread. When ready, serve the French toast with maple syrup, dust with powdered sugar and add fresh berries on the side. Enjoy!