This baked Brioche French Toast Casserole is the ultimate easy brunch or breakfast dish. It's simple to prepare in only a matter of minutes and with just a few basic ingredients. It makes for a dreamy start to your day.
Do you love Brioche French Toast? Then you're going to love this easy brioche recipe too! Buttery soft brioche bread is soaked in a sweet custard mixture then layered in a dish, sprinkled with crunchy sugar, and baked.
The result is nostalgic, comforting, and downright delicious. I add fresh orange zest and juice to the custard which adds a gorgeous sweet citrus note to the dish.
❓What's Brioche French Toast?
Originating from France, French Toast is made using day-old or 'stale' baguette bread that's dipped into a sweetened egg and milk mixture. Each individual slice is fried in butter and served for breakfast.
Just like my Grandmother used to make, it's a fantastic way to use leftover bread. But step it up a notch and make it with delicious, buttery-rich brioche bread. The flavour profile is unreal!
Today, in this Brioche Casserole, we've taken the favourite components of French Toast in taste but modified the method to make it less hands-on and more time efficient. Win-win in my book!
🌟 Why You'll Love This Recipe
- Uses basic ingredients. All thte ingredients are basic pantry or fridge staples.
- Minimal effort for impressive results. You need just five minutes and one bowl to prepare this recipe. It's as easy as it comes.
- Make ahead. This dish actually benefits from time spent in the fridge as it builds on the flavour profile. Put it together the night before, refrigerate then wake up to an incredible tasting brioche bread french toast breakfast.
- Perfect for those special occasions. Think Easter brunch, Mother's Day, Christmas morning, birthdays ... you get my drift. Make it special with this French Toast Brioche Casserole.
🧾 Ingredients Needed
Whilst the list of ingredients is undeniably simple, here's a note on a few ingredients worth mentioning and any substitutions applicable.
- Brioche bread - Use store-bought for ease, unless you want a baking project, then making your own brioche loaf can be extremely rewarding.
- Milk - I prefer whole milk as the higher fat content adds flavour and richness. You can substitute for plant-based milk such as almond or oat, but the taste will change slightly.
- Orange zest and juice - This is totally optional to include in the sweet custard, but the subtle sweet citrus pop is beautiful against the buttery brioche flavour.
The options on how to create different flavour variations are endless with a base dish like this. Different ways of flavouring the custard to what toppings to serve the Baked French Toast Casserole will all make a huge difference.
- Chocolate Orange Brioche French Toast Casserole: Add twice as much orange into the custard for a real citrus punch. Sprinkle 1 cup of chopped chocolate over the brioche toast before baking for the ultimately melted chocolate puddles.
- Blackberry Brioche French Toast Casserole: Addin a dollop of easy homemade blackberry jam in-between each slice of bread before baking. This will be the most incredible mashup of french toast and toast and jam!
- Coffee Brioche French Toast Casserole: Add 2 tablespoons of espresso powder to a ¼ cup of boiling water and mix until dissolved. Add this to the custard mixture for the best french toast casserole. Coffee and french toast- um yes, please!
- Earl Grey Brioche French Toast Casserole: Take inspiration from my Earl Grey French Toast and infuse the milk with earl grey tea leaves. That bergamot floral taste is sensational!
- Cinnamon Brioche French Toast Casserole. Add one to two teaspoons of ground cinnamon to the custard. Add more dusted over the top once baked. The familiar warmth of this spice is like a hug from your Grandma!
👩🏻🍳 How to Make
In this section, I can't wait to show you just how simple it is to make this baked french toast casserole.
I make it by layering slices of brioche bread, but I'll also give you some pointers if you prefer to cube the bread.
*Be sure to see the recipe card below for the full ingredients list & instructions!*
Prepare the Bread
STEP 1. Slice the brioche bread into 1.5 cm (0.6 inch) slices. You want to aim for about 12 to 14 slices to fill the baking dish. Then cut each slice into half diagonally so that you end up with triangles (Images 1 & 2).
TIP: You can also cut the bread into 2.5cm (1 inch) cubes.
Look out for the next tip when assembling the casserole.
Make the Custard
STEP 2. Whisk all ingredients. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk the eggs well (Image 3). Add the remaining ingredients, sugar, orange zest, orange juice, vanilla extract, salt and milk, and whisk well together (Images 4 & 5).
STEP 3. Prepare a (22 x 13cm) 9x13 inch casserole dish by greasing butter all over the base and sides. You'll have too much - just dollop the remainder around the base of the dish.
STEP 4. Dip bread and place in casserole dish. Fully submerge each piece of bread into the egg custard mixture and place them into the casserole dish (Images 6 & 7). Line them up with the triangle point facing up.
Pour any remaining custard mixture over the brioche (Image 8).
TIP: If you've cut the brioche bread into cubes, place all the cubes into the greased baking dish and pour over all the custard. Mix together and push the bread cubes into the custard so that all the bread is soaked through.
Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes, then sprinkle the raw sugar over the top (Image 9). The sugar gives a lovely textural crunch on top which sits in contrast to the soft insides of the custard-soaked bread. The extra sugar is optional if you prefer to omit it.
TIP: Turn into Overnight Brioche French Toast Bake by covering the baking dish with plastic wrap and refrigerating until the morning.
When ready to bake, let the dish sit at room temperature for 30 minutes if you can, so that you aren't baking from the cold. Tip: set the coarse sugar to one side and sprinkle it over the top the next morning so that it remains crunchy.
STEP 5. Bake the Brioche Casserole for 25-30 minutes at 165C (340F) until lightly golden (Images 10 & 11).
TIP: Reduced oven temp
I prefer a slightly reduced temperature to the normal 180C (350F), as I find the top browns too quickly and the custard inside the bread doesn't cook through.
🥣 How To Serve
This french toast with brioche bread is best served warm. I love to drizzle it with maple syrup and then serve it with a spoonful of sweetened chantilly cream, some fresh berries, and a dusting of ground cinnamon.
You could also serve it with butter, your favourite fruit compote, such as my delicious spiced pear compote, some melted chocolate, or salted caramel sauce. Even crispy bacon would sit superbly alongside this dish. Anything goes!
💭 Recipe Pro Tips
- Use day-old bread. If your bread is freshly baked, it will be soft and fluffy which when dipped in the custard, can fall apart. Use day-old/'stale bread' or toast the slices before cutting them into triangles.
- Let the bread. I thoroughly recommend this step to allow the flavours to infuse together and the custard to fully soak through the bread. But if you don't have the time then it will still taste delicious.
- Enjoy warm. Warm out of the oven is the best way to serve your baked french toast.
📋 Recipe FAQs
Brioche bread, being an enriched bread made with eggs, milk, and butter, is more flavourful, slightly sweet, and much fluffier than other types of bread.
Other good bread options are baguette, challah bread, sourdough bread, and white loaf. If they are soft when fresh, then it's best to leave them for a day or so to dry out. That way you'll avoid having soggy french toast.
Absolutely! That's why it's such a brilliant dish for the holidays and special occasions. Imagine waking up and popping this dish in the oven with no extra faff. Make it the night before, wrap the dish in plastic wrap, and refrigerate until the next morning. It's as simple as that!
There are two common reasons for soggy Baked French Toast. Either the bread was too 'fresh' when soaking in the custard mixture. It's best to use old bread or lightly toast the slices to dry them out. Or the oven was at too high a temperature so the exterior of the French Toast Bakes cooked quicker than the middle which remained soggy and uncooked.
❄️ Storage and Freezer Instructions
To store: Cover the baking dish in plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Reheat in a warm oven or microwave.
To freeze: This Brioche French Toast Casserole can absolutely be frozen! Make the casserole as per the method in a freezer-safe baking dish. Wrap the dish well in plastic wrap and aluminum foil and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before baking.
🍞 More Breakfast Recipes
If you tried this Baked Brioche French Toast Casserole Recipe or any other recipe on my website, please please leave a 🌟 star rating and let me know how you go in the 📝 comments below. I love hearing from you!
Baked Brioche French Toast Casserole Recipe
- 1 brioche bread loaf (500g), thickly sliced
- 4 large eggs
- 50 g light brown sugar
- 1 zest of a large orange
- 80 ml orange juice
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon fine salt
- 1½ cups milk
- 30 g butter
- 12 g coarse sugar (demerara sugar)
- Slice the brioche bread into 1.5 cm (0.6 inch) slices. You'll need about 12 to 14 slices. Then cut each slice into half diagonally so that you end up with triangles
- Make the custard. Add the eggs into a medium-sized bowl and whisk well. Add in the sugar, orange zest and juice, vanilla extract, salt, and milk and whisk until well combined.
- Prepare a (22 x 13cm) 9x13 inch casserole dish by greasing butter all over the base and sides. You'll have too much - just dollop the remainder around the base of the dish.
- Dip bread and place in casserole dish. Fully submerge each piece of bread into the egg custard mixture and place into the casserole dish. Line them up with the triangle point facing up. Pour any remaining custard mixture over the brioche.Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes, then sprinkle the coarse sugar over the top.
- Bake the Brioche Casserole for 25-30 minutes at 165C (340F) until lightly golden. Remove from the oven, let stand for 10 minutes before serving warm. Make sure to drizzle in maple syrup!
All recipes are developed and tested in Metric grams. I strongly recommend that you bake using digital scales for a more accurate result. I have provided a conversion to US customary in the recipe but please note that I haven’t tested using this method.