Overnight Oven-Baked French Toast
The last time I made this recipe, I used a loaf of cinnamon raisin walnut bread from Thom’s Bread, an artisanal bread stand at Lancaster Central Market. It was delicious, although any sturdy bread that will hold up to an overnight soak in the egg mixture may be used.

Yield: 4-6 servings


  • 1 (16-ounce) loaf French, raisin or other hearty bread, sliced into 3/4 to 1-inch-thick pieces
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons real maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt


  1. Spread one side of each bread slice with butter and arrange, butter side up, in an ungreased, 13×9-inch pan. (If desired, you may first cut the bread slices in half on the diagonal. Depending on the exact number and shape of slices, you may need to put a few of the slices in a smaller second pan so they fit in one layer.)
  2. In a medium-size bowl, whisk together the remaining ingredients and pour over the bread.
  3. Cover the pan, and refrigerate for at least four hours or overnight.
  4. When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Remove the bread from the pan, allowing any excess egg mixture to drip off, and place on a well-greased baking sheet.
  5. Bake for 25-30 minutes, flipping after 15-20 minutes, or until golden and slightly crusty. Depending on your oven and the thickness of the bread slices, a few extra minutes may be necessary to cook through middle.
  6. Serve with powdered sugar or maple syrup, as desired.


  • Leftovers are terrific toasted. If you don’t have time for baking in the morning, prep the toast the morning before and cook later in the day. Cool, store in the fridge, and gently reheat in the oven or toaster oven. Cooked French toast freezes well, too, and may be popped in the toaster for a speedy breakfast.
  • For those with a gluten-free family member or guest, I recommend Udi’s white bread as a great option that’s widely available. You can prepare an extra half or quarter recipe, if needed, or simply syphon off a bit of the egg mixture from the main batch. Just make sure to soak and bake the gluten-free bread in separate pans.

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