This Croissant Baked French Toast has been sponsored by California Giant Berry Farms. As always, all opinions expressed are my own.
I can hardly believe that a year as passed since I started my Brand Ambassadorship with California Giant Berry Farms. 2017 has flown by, and what a delicious year it has been!
Today, I have the perfect recipe for your holiday breakfast and brunch menu: berry-studded Croissant Baked French Toast. This decadent French toast casserole combines buttery, flaky croissants with a rich spiced custard, and sweet, juicy strawberries and blueberries.
But, wait, there’s more! For an adults-only add on, I like to serve this baked French toast with a drizzle of rum-spiked maple syrup. It’s the perfect finishing touch for a breakfast that has “holiday” written all over it!
Baked French Toast with Blueberries and Strawberries
Berries are such a great way to bring color and flavor to a variety of dishes throughout the year, and especially during the holiday season. Even at the beginning of December, the non-GMO strawberries I picked up from Cal Giant were picture-perfect. Isn’t their vibrant color festive?
I’m constantly adding berries to my breakfast recipes, from pancakes and waffles, to French toast, yogurt parfaits, and porridge. In this Baked French Toast recipe, I utilize fresh berries twice, layering them between the custard-soaked croissants and scattering them on top of the casserole.
As the French toast bakes, the berries will plump and intensify their flavor. If you have especially juicy berries, like Cal Giant’s, a few will burst, creating a sweet, jammy consistency around the edges of the casserole. So. Good.
Making Overnight Baked French Toast with Croissants
Baked French Toast can be made with just about any bread you love, from French bread to brioche, and even a Christmas panettone. I love to use croissants for an ultra-luxe breakfast treat.
As tempting as it is to eat croissants when they’re brought home fresh from the bakery, it’s best to use day-old croissants in this recipe. They’ll soak up the custard better and yield a better textured, puffed French toast that isn’t too soggy.
This Baked French Toast casserole can be fully assembled the night before serving and baked in the morning. It’s perfect for an effortless Christmas morning breakfast. Just take it out of the refrigerator 30 minutes before baking and pop it in the oven while you and your family are opening presents.
More recipes featuring California Giant Berry Farms:
Baked French Toast with Croissants and Berries
- 8 large croissants , cut in half lengthwise
- 2 cups half and half or whole milk
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 6 large eggs
- 1/2 cup light brown sugar , lightly packed
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup strawberries , cut into 3/4- to 1-inch pieces
- 1 cup blueberries
- powdered sugar , for dusting baked casserole
- lightly-sweetened whipped cream , for serving (optional)
Rum Maple Syrup
- 1 cup pure maple syrup
- 1 tablespoon dark rum, optional
Make the French Toast
- Butter a 4-quart casserole dish. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together half and half (or milk), vanilla, eggs, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Dip croissant halves into mixture until fully coated.
- Arrange croissants into prepared casserole, overlapping. Pour the remaining milk and egg mixture over the casserole, gently pressing to absorb.
- Tuck about 3/4 cup (total) of strawberries and blueberries between the croissant layers. Sprinkle the remaining berries over the top of the casserole. Cover the dish with plastic wrap (or the lid, if using a lidded baker), and refrigerate for at least 2 and up to 8 hours.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Remove casserole from the refrigerator 30 minutes before baking and let stand at room temperature. If you used plastic wrap, uncover, and discard wrap.
- Bake 30 minutes, covered with foil or the baking pan lid. Remove cover and bake an additional 15-20 minutes, until puffed and golden. Let stand at room temperature for 10 minutes. Dust with powdered sugar, cut into wedges, and serve with whipped cream and/or maple syrup.
Make the Rum Maple Syrup
- Warm maple syrup. Stir in rum and drizzle over baked french toast wedges.