I always knew I wanted Christmas Morning Breakfast to be a really big deal in my house. You know, once The Husband and I started a family and painfully began melding our individual traditions into a smorgasbord of our own sweet M Family traditions. Thankfully, this was one tradition we could easily agree on!
Among the many delicious dishes that flooded our table Christmas morning, I would venture to guess that the Eggnog Soaked French Toast Casserole was the family favorite all around. It's a really simple and sinfully delicious recipe that I adapted from Paula Deen's Baked French Toast Casserole.
Feeds 6 with leftovers. Don't forget you'll want to make this casserole the night before and refrigerate it overnight.
What You'll Need:
- 3 loaves of Pepperidge Farm Swirl Bread. You can substitute French or Challah bread for this recipe although for Christmas morning, I chose to spice and sweeten things up a bit with the swirl breads. I went with 2 loaves of Raisin Cinnamon Swirl and 1 loaf of Cinnamon and Brown Sugar Swirl.
- 9 large eggs
- 1 1/2c half and half
- 1/2c eggnog. You can substitute an additional 1/2c of eggnog for the 1/2c half and half mentioned above. I was afraid it would be overwhelmingly noggy but it wasn't! I will certainly add more eggnog next time!
- 1c whole milk
- 2 shakes vanilla
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon light brown sugar and additional brown sugar to crumble over the top of the casserole prior to cooking
- 3 shakes ground cinnamon
- 3 shakes ground nutmeg
- Dash of salt
- Maple syrup for serving
- Whipped cream for serving
What You'll Do!:
1. Generously butter your 9x13 casserole dish
2. Cut or tear your slices of bread into halves. Assemble and layer them in the casserole dish in 2-3 layers. I used a slightly larger casserole dish and ended up with 2 layers and then a small 3rd layer in the center. Be sure to overlap the slices.
3. In a medium mixing bowl, combine all ingredients except maple syrup, whipped cream and extra brown sugar and blend thoroughly. You do not need a hand mixer for this- I just used a large whisk. Do not over whisk.
4. Pour mixture over bread slices and be sure to evenly coat every slice. Spoon mixture between slices if you need you. use the back of a spoon to press down on the slices to ensure maximum delicious coverage.
5. Cover with foil and refrigerate overnight.
The next morning:
1. Preheat oven to 350*
2. Sprinkle light brown sugar over the top of your casserole.
3. Bake for 40 minutes or until puffy and light golden brown.
4. Top with whipped cream, maple syrup and serve!