Warm and perfectly spiced, this lightened up Eggnog French Toast Casserole is moist on the inside with a beautiful, crunchy brown sugar and pecan topping.
In all honesty, before developing this recipe, I’d actually never had French toast casserole before. But my sweet mother-in-law (Hi Dorothy!) had it at a brunch awhile back and told me all about it. Then the other day, I had a brilliant thought. Ok, yes, brilliant might be pushing it, but in my pregnant, French toast craving state, it seemed quite brilliant. What if I substituted eggnog for the milk and some of the eggs? A gorgeous combination of nutmeg, cinnamon, brown sugar and pecans. The pecans are actually optional and I included the nutritional information for both but really…. If you’re gonna make this Christmas casserole of eggnog goodness…. You really should include the pecans. They just complete it.
Now a few things before you get started.
1) This recipe makes enough for a small casserole dish. I used a 10x6inch ceramic dish but any small to medium glass or ceramic dish would be fine. It would so incredibly easy to double the recipe and please feel free to, just be aware that the baking time may increase.
2) It’s important to use a French loaf or baguette. Regular wheat bread will get too soggy while the loaf bread is a bit denser and can hold more moisture. I used a multigrain French loaf that was a couple days old. Day old bread is the best for soaking up all that delicious eggnog.
3) Eggnog. First off, this casserole has a very distinct eggnog flavor. So, if you’re not a fan of eggnog or French toast…. This may not be the dish for you. If you are a lover of all things eggnog related (like me) then you will want this for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and maybe even a late night nibble. Because eggnog is so rich be sure to use a light version.
4) My first attempt at this, I added 1/4 cup of sugar to the eggnog and egg mixture and the result was a yummy but EXTREMELY sweet casserole. Honestly, it was too sweet for maple syrup and I REALLY love maple syrup with my French toast. So the next attempt, I left out the sugar and allowed the eggnog and brown sugar topping to sweeten it and it was PERFECT! Great straight out of the oven but even better with a little drizzle of pure maple syrup on top. Ok yes, it’s even awesome cold, straight out of the dish after the kids are in bed. 😉
5) Last but not least, one batch should bake in 40-45 minutes but if you double the batch, the baking time may increase. You want the top to be nice and dry to the touch while the inside is moist but not super wet.
This breakfast delight this perfect enough for company, but is easy enough to make any day of the week. Enjoy!
Light Eggnog French Toast Casserole
Yield: 10 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
1/2 (9 ounce) multigrain French loaf
1 large egg
1 large egg white
2 cups light eggnog
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 tablespoon cold butter
3 tablespoons packed brown sugar
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 cup chopped pecans, optional
Preheat oven 350
Tear (or cut) French loaf into pieces approximately 1 inch long and place in a well greased 10x6 inch casserole dish. (Any small to medium glass or ceramic dish is fine)
In a small bowl, whisk eggnog, egg, egg whites, and nutmeg together.
Pour over bread chunks, lightly pressing any dry pieces down into the eggnog mixture.
As bread soaks up eggnog, you can begin to mix up the topping.
In a small bowl, cut cold butter into the brown sugar until only tiny pieces of sugar coated butter remain.
Mix in spices and pecans.
Sprinkle over casserole and bake for 40-45.
Enjoy plain or with a drizzle of pure maple syrup.
Nutrition Facts Servings 10.0 Amount Per Serving Calories 183 Total Fat 13g Saturated Fat 2g Monounsaturated Fat 2g Polyunsaturated Fat 1g Trans Fat 0g Cholesterol 41mg Sodium 249mg Potassium 26mg Total Carbohydrate 25g Dietary Fiber 1g Sugars 12g Protein 6g
Nutrition Facts Servings 10.0 Amount Per Serving Calories 162 Total Fat 11g Saturated Fat 2g Monounsaturated Fat 1g Polyunsaturated Fat 0g Trans Fat 0g Cholesterol 41mg Sodium 249mg Potassium 26mg Total Carbohydrate 24g Dietary Fiber 1g Sugars 12g Protein 6g