Peaches and Cream French Toast~ Make Ahead Breakfast

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I find it important to send the family off for the day with their tummies filled with good food.  It sets the tone for the day.  Unfortunately, more often than not lately, they have their tummies filled with cold cereal.  But with a bit of planning, I will change this.  And this is how I plan to start the change.



Peaches and Cream French Toast is an absolute favorite with my children and husband.  As with most make ahead breakfast recipes, this comes from my favorite bed and breakfast cookbook, Recipes From the Watson House.  Most of the recipes call for the dish to be assembled the night before and placed in the refrigerator, then cooked in the morning.

All though it is a family favorite, I do have to admit I would prefer it without the peaches.  I am just not a cooked fruit fan {unless the fruit is berries}.  With that said, I do eat this picking around the peaches and just love it.  I think one day I will cook this without the peaches and serve the cooked creamy toast with fresh peaches.  But, the whole reason for making this dish is to send the family off with their tummies filled with goodness and feeling peachy.

A sweet caramel made of melted butter and brown sugar is topped with sliced peaches.


Add cubed French bread and pieces of cream cheese.


Then pour a creamy mixture of eggs, half-n-half and vanilla over top.


Cover the dish, all the bread and cream swimming in the creamy sauce atop the ooey~gooey caramel, and refrigerate til morning.


You can hire a little helper.  I pay mine with bread crumbs.


Once cooked, the top gets crunchy. . .


But when you take a piece, the inside is all gooey goodness.



Peaches and Cream French Toast
1/2 c butter
1 c brown sugar
2 tbsp reserved juice from canned peaches
1 29 oz can of peaches, drained
1 French baguette, cubed
8 oz cream cheese, cut into small pieces
12 eggs
1 1/2 c half-n-half
1 tsp vanilla

Heat butter, sugar and peach juice in saucepan until bubbly.  Pour into a 13x9 inch casserole dish.  Scatter peach slices over caramel sauce.  Top with bread cubes then pieces of cream cheese.  Place eggs, half-n-half, and vanilla in blender; blend to combine.  Pour egg mixture over bread and cream cheese.  Cover and refrigerate at least an hour but preferably overnight.  Bake, uncovered, in 350F oven for 50-60 minutes.


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65 comments:

  1. What a delicious idea for french toast. I have a sweet treat linky party going on at my blog till Monday night and I'd love it if you'd come by and link your french toast up. http://sweet-as-sugar-cookies.blogspot.com/2012/01/sweets-for-saturday-51.html

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  2. Oh, thanks. Sorry I didn't get this until Monday afternoon. But I will look for your other link up parties.

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  3. That looks reallllllyyyyy good!

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  4. I will have to try this! yummo!

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    Replies
    1. It's a favorite in our house and such an easy one to make when you have company, too.

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    2. This sounds awesome,want to try it on my family but I am curious whether it is any good leftover. This seems like a lot of food for us.

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    3. Actually, it is quite good reheated. Just cover with foil and reheat on 350 for about 20 minutes. Or, just cover with a napkin and reheat in microwave.

      I like to use this for when we have company, but also just for a nice breakfast for family. We do have some left over when it is just for our family (most of the time) and we reheat it with great success.

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  5. can I use 1% milk in place of half and half?

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    1. I have not tried it, but it wold probably work, maybe the final dish would not be as thick. I don't think it would ruin the dish though.

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  6. Thanks Sheila. I ended up getting the half and half called for in the recipe. It turned out just like the picture. It was not as sweet as I expected. Still good, but I think I would like to add more of the caramel mixture next time to make it a little sweeter. Maybe a drizzle of maple syrup on top? Or possibly sweetened condensed milk instead of half and half? Any suggestions?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Maybe just take the peach juice {from draining the peaches} and make a syrup. Melt about 2 tbsp of butter, whisk in a tbsp of flour then stir in the peach juice. Drizzle that over top of the baked dish just before serving. Though, maple syrup would be simple and tasty!

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    2. kathy Timm8:53 PM

      Try Paula Deens Butterscoth bread pudding. Absolutely the BEST!!! Afterall this is a bread pudding and not French toast.

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    3. It's certainly not a traditional French toast, and I think this is not as much like a bread pudding because it doesn't all mesh into one texture.

      I'm certain Paula's recipe is fabulous though I stick with my favorite bread pudding recipe {pics aren't great but trust me, this pudding is out of this world}. The vanilla sauce is soooooo goood. It would make a great addition to this peaches and cream French toast.

      http://aliceandthemockturtle.blogspot.com/2009/04/old-fashioned-bread-pudding-with.html

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  7. Anonymous8:20 AM

    I made this but I cut the recipe in half. I then added a sprinkle of cinnamon and changed the half and half to 1 can of sweetened condensed milk.

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    Replies
    1. Good ideas! It's a great recipe to cut in half since it makes such a large amount. Cinnamon sounds like the perfect addition and I'm certain the milk made a nice thick syrup!

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  8. Anonymous12:41 AM

    What else could I use other than peaches? Thank you:)

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    Replies
    1. Any fruit would work but especially berries and pears. Is there an allergy or just a preference issue? I'm not a huge fan of canned fruit so sometimes this is made with fresh fruit~ strawberries, sliced apples, or frozen cherries.

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  9. Anonymous8:47 AM

    Mine is about to go into the oven now. I used 3/4 cup sweetened condensed and 3/4 cup half and half. I'm also adding about a cup of fresh blueberries. I love peaches and blueberries together!! I'll let you know how it turns out in a while;)

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    Replies
    1. Sounds superb! I just got back from the store where there were some gorgeous fresh peaches; I bet paired with some fresh blueberries they would make a great treat for a Sunday breakfast.

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  10. Anonymous2:53 PM

    Just not a fan of peaches.. thanks for the tip I will try a batch of mixed berries and strawberries and see how it turns out.. thank you:)

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    1. Let us know how you like it, please!

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  11. It really does take a DOZEN eggs???! That just sounds like a LOT OF EGGS! I am so gonna try this, and I don't cook. Thanks for sharing.

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    1. Yes, it does. It is a great dish for company or a large family. I guess you can half it {as a reader commented above} for a smaller portion.

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  12. Made this for my coworkers & it was gone in less than an hour. I will be making it again, very soon, only this time with pears. Thank you!

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    Replies
    1. Makes me think that I should put this on the teacher breakfast menu for the school year!

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  13. Anonymous8:12 AM

    This looks like it makes a great dessert!!!

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    Replies
    1. It is very similar to a cobbler. Add a scoop of ice cream!

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  14. Anonymous12:54 PM

    I think I'm going to make this for our coffee hour at church on Sunday. It sounds delicious!

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    1. I'm certain it will be a hit!

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  15. Mine was a little soggy so I put it back into the oven. .not sure what I did wrong

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    1. A couple of things:
      Did you assemble the night before cooking?
      Did you layer it as in the recipe, with bread on top?
      There should be a bubbly mixture at the bottom of the casserole after it is cooked, but it shouldn't be soggy. Did you leave it covered while cooking? It shouldn't be covered. Let me know and I'll try to trouble shoot it with you.

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    2. Anonymous11:37 AM

      I did mine the night before and baked uncovered. The bottom was all juice?

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    3. Hello! Sorry for the late response as I have been vacationing. I'm not certain why it was all juice. I do get a syrup in the bottom of mine but it is just enough to keep the bread nice and moist after it is served.

      Two things~
      1. Did you use fresh or frozen or canned peaches? If canned, you need to drain all the juices. If frozen, you may want to defrost and drain before cooking. If fresh, sounds delicious but not certain how it would affect the juice content. Perhaps stir the fresh peaches with a bit of cornstarch {1 tsp} before layering.

      2. See notes as in the above response to the comment. Don't cover while cooking perhaps.

      Hope this helps!

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  16. Where did you get your cookbook from? I looked online and could not find it. Thanks, Lana

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    1. I bought the cookbook from the bed and breakfast about 15 years ago. In the back of the cookbook is a note for ordering more. I know they have changed ownership. Look them up online and contact them to see if they still have the recipe books. It is Inn at Poplar Corner on Chincoteague Island, VA. I don't think it will work, but the phone number listed in the cookbook is 757-336-1564.

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    2. Anonymous12:05 PM

      Hey Lana! I work at the Chincoteague Chamber of Commerce on Chincoteague Island. The Watson House is still in business and their phone number is as Sheila said....757-336-1564. You can also email Bob Mabin at watsonhouse@verizon.net. Hope this helps! Lea Ann

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    3. Wow! Thank you for the update!

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  17. Made this for breakfast this morning. It was good! I added some sprinkled cinnamon to the top. I think next time I will mix the cream cheese in. I didn't like how there were just chunks in there. Oh, and add more peaches! :) The caramel stuff on the bottom was yummy!

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  18. Just had this for breakfast today. Super duper easy to make. I baked half the recipe. I did not taste the peaches at all. Might try with apple pie filling next time.

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    1. When I first started to make this, I used canned peaches that were packed in their own juice which really helped the peach flavor. Now it is difficult to find peaches in their own juice. I think if someone really wants a more intense peach flavor he could use peach nectar when making the sauce and perhaps sub for some of the half'n'half. Happy you found it easy to make!

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  19. Making this for a brunch-y dish for my mom and I today! (I know, we're gonna have a LOT of leftovers, but it sounded too good to pass up!) I've had a similar dish before, but it didn't have fruit in it, so I think this one will be really good! The only change I made to the recipe is I used a loaf of homemade sourdough bread that was getting too dry for anything else :). It's in my oven now and I can't wait to try it!

    Oh, I noticed a few commenters saying that they might double the caramel mixture to make it sweeter -- DON'T. I mean, find a way to make it sweeter if you need to, but I once doubled the caramel in the other (non-fruit) caramel french toast bake that I make and it is too much for the pan to hold -- the caramel bubbled all over my oven and set the fire alarms off! Not good eats at all!

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    1. Thanks for the advice on the caramel. I should note in the post that I do often place casseroles on a foil lined cookie sheet just in case it may bubble over in cooking.

      The sourdough bread sounds like a good idea to offset some of the sweetness. I know some comments have mentioned having this sweeter, but it is really sweet in my opinion and I like a sweet~sour combo.

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    2. I've learned my lesson and now always cook these things on a cookie sheet ;)... you only have to learn that lesson once! The sourdough bread made it *fantastic*, though I have to admit -- I probably could have done without the peaches. I should have known because I'm just not that much of a peach fan. But I still enjoyed it and just picked out the fruit *laugh*. I did think with the sourdough bread, it needed a little more sweetness, but I got that in the form of a little bit of sugar free maple syrup. It was a great casserole -- definitely will make it again!

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    3. Some other comments have been about using maple syrup to sweeten it a bit more.

      I'm not a huge peach fan either but am interested in trying it with another fruit, maybe frozen cherries.

      Glad it was a winning recipe for you!

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  20. Anonymous1:00 AM

    I would like to make this for the college group at church Sunday, there are 30-40 kids. I would like to put this in a large lasagna tin.(the kind at Costco) How much of this recipe would I need to fill this size pan? Would that be enough? Thanks

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    1. I'm not certain of the pan size you are looking at, but hope this will help. A 9x13 pan serves about 12 {give or take 3 in my guestimating}. If you want to serve 30-40 kids, I'd make three batches. A 9x13 pan is about 14 cups so you need a pan that accommodates 42 cups or about 10 quarts.

      The pans usually tell you. If not, just calculate the volume this way: 9x13x2= 234 sq inches. Find the pan you want to use and multiply the lengthxwidthxheight (less a lip for expansion) and see if that equals the volume of the 9x13 multiplied by 3. Hope it goes well!

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    2. Oh, and you'll need to adjust cooking time for a larger quantity, probably by 20 minutes or a bit more. With adding more cooking time, you may want to cover the top with foil for the additional time at the end.

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  21. Anonymous1:32 AM

    Thanks Sheila for the recommendation on the pan situation. One more question if I can't find peaches in their natural juices will it be fine to have them in that sweet syrup? Maybe rinse them.....If I can find fresh blueberries I would like to add them in. :)

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    1. I don't think you need to rinse them; maybe just cut the brown sugar to 3/4 cup. Blue berries sound great with this! Hope it all turns out terrific.

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    2. Anonymous1:24 AM

      Hi Sheila, Sorry to bother you with more questions. I found fresh blueberries frozen in my freezer. Do I put these on top of the peaches or on top with the cream cheese? Thanks :)

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    3. No bother. I would mix them in with the peaches and no need to defrost. They are actually much easier to work with frozen.

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  22. I used Costco Kirkland brand sliced peaches that come in a 24oz jar. These are yellow cling peaches in an extra light syrup. The sweetness was perfect. There was about 1/4 inch of semi-transparent thin liquid in the bottom of the dish. Is this normal? If not, what do you think caused it....Thanks...Jon

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    1. Those are the peaches I prefer to use! Yes, the liquid is normal; I usually scoop some up and pour it over the top of individual servings. You could also turn the whole dish onto a rectangular serving platter and let the syrup run over top and the crusty bread soak in it.

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  23. Donna8:29 AM

    Can you use cinnamon bread in place of the French baguette?

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    1. Yes, Donna, I think you could. I would toast it though to get it crusty and ready to absorb the juices from the fruit and the syrup.

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  24. Anonymous10:29 AM

    I halved the recipe, used a ciabatta baguette as it's what I had, and added 1/4 tsp cinnamon. I also made a syrup out of the reserved juices, orange juice and cornstarch. It was delicious! I make a similar blueberry one so the peaches were a nice change. My sister suggested I just add some blueberries to this one from now on. Very simple recipe, thanks!

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  25. Anonymous3:45 AM

    I just put mine in the fridge. I don't like hot fruit with any sort of pastry like dish either but my mom insisted so I pureed a few and put them in the batter. I hope it turns out!

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    1. I hope it was delicious!

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  26. Anonymous12:56 AM

    HI! This looks delish and I am planning on making it for brunch at my moms' group. I do have a question. When you say baguette do you mean those long skinny breads? I mean as opposed to french bread which is shorter but wider? I love baguette, but never thought of using it in a sweet dish like this? Do you like to use baguette because of the crispiness? Also, I'm a nervous cook (especially when cooking for others than my own family) how do I know when it is done? Is there a poke test or something?

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    1. Hello! Don't be nervous; this should be quite a hit for your group. Yes, I do mean the long, thinner bread. It is drier so it absorbs the liquids thus flavors while sitting over night and during cooking. There is not a poke test, but the dish should be a golden color, not burnt but really golden. Allow it to sit for about 15 minutes before enjoying; it can be longer just not straight out of the oven. It will cool slightly and set nicely. There will be some syrup in the bottom of the dish; this can be ladled over each serving if desired.

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  27. Anonymous1:26 PM

    Hello Sheila with the adorable helper!!! I am going to make this recipe this weekend, however I will have some buttermilk left over from another recipe...do you see any harm in subbing buttermilk for the half and half?

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    1. He is adorable, isn't he!
      I'm not sure about the buttermilk. I use it in baking but not with so many eggs. It might separate a bit. Also, half-n-half thickens a tad with the heat and I don 't think the buttermilk does.
      If you try it, please let me know how it works. Then we all benefit from your experiment!

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  28. please, I want to know what`s half and half!!

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    1. It is equal parts whole milk and cream. You can make it or buy it in the dairy section near with milk and creamer.

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I would love to have your input~