Skip the café queue and make brunch at home this weekend. This croissant French toast bake is croissants soaked in a vanilla and cinnamon custard then baked until the tops are crunchy and the inside is soft and delectable.

Buttery, fluffy croissants are perfect for this baked French toast. Golden and crispy on top with the addition of some crunchy sugar and almonds, this luxurious dessert is absolutely effortless! It can also be made ahead and it’s one seriously special breakfast treat.

Effortless, you say? Simply whisk together eggs and a few basic ingredients and add croissants. Let it rest for a bit then add the toppings and bake. Enjoy it with ice cream or whipped cream, maple syrup and fresh berries and you’ll be in brekky heaven.

They’re divine topped with these macerated strawberries.

Top down view of croissant french toast casserole.
A slice of french toast casserole on a spatula.

What does it taste like?

Croissant French toast casserole has the buttery flavour of croissants, combined with a maple, vanilla and cinnamon spiked custard. You could almost call this a croissant bread pudding being the same process of combining bread (in this case croissants) with a silky custard.

Texturally speaking, the tops and edges have a glorious crunch while the inside is soft but not soggy!

Ingredients / Substitutions

Detailed quantities and instructions in the recipe card below.

Ingredients for croissant french toast.

Ingredient notes

You’ll want day-old or slightly stale croissants for this recipe. Try to get good quality, medium sized croissants with nice defined layers as opposed to the bready ones that you’ll often find pre-packed. I get mine from a supermarket bakery but any bakery croissants will generally be perfect.

I use large eggs in all my cooking and make sure to use full fat milk and cream in this.

To serve

I go all out and serve these with a dusting of icing sugar (powdered sugar), fresh raspberries, vanilla ice cream and maple syrup. You can use other fresh fruits too. All kinds of berries (blueberries, strawberries, blackberries) work great or even some cinnamon apples. Yum!

Substitutions

  • Spices: Feel free to add other spices like nutmeg, cloves or even pumpkin spice (for my US readers).
  • Nuts: Any nuts can be used in place of the almonds, just make sure they’re chopped up. Pecans and walnuts work wonderfully.
  • Flavouring: I often add a teaspoon of orange zest to the custard to give it a little zesty zing.
  • Croissants: You can swap these for thick slices of challah or brioche too.
  • Filling: Try spreading cream cheese and jam (or just jam) inside the croissants before adding to the custard. Maybe use Nutella instead or scatter over some chocolate chips before baking.

How to make a French toast casserole (step-by-step)

Detailed quantities and instructions in the recipe card below.

A collage showing how to make croissant french toast casserole.

Making French toast is incredibly easy and, in fact, this croissant French toast casserole is even easier.

  1. Whisk: Just whisk together the custard,
  2. Bathe the croissants in the custard, making sure to press them right in to soak it all up,
  3. Rest it for one hour or overnight,
  4. Bake: Top with crunchy sugar and almonds then bake until golden and crunchy.

That’s right! This French toast bake can sit in the fridge overnight, then go into the oven first thing in the morning making it the perfect luxurious, make-ahead breakfast. It’s fantastic for special occasions like birthdays, mother’s day, Easter or the holidays. What a wonderful way to start Christmas morning.

Yield and storage

This French toast bake recipe makes enough for 8 serves.

Leftovers can be stored, wrapped in plastic wrap, in the fridge for 2 days. You can freeze it for up to 2 months too and it’s easiest if you portion it before freezing.

A slice of french toast casserole on a small plate.

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Top down view of croissant french toast casserole with ice cream and berries.

Croissant French Toast Casserole

5 from 2 ratings
With this croissant French toast casserole, you can wake up to an irresistible breakfast that’s very quick and easy to make. Crunchy and soft but definitely not soggy, have a leisurely breakfast at home.

Ingredients

  • 8 day-old croissants
  • 5 large eggs
  • ¾ cup whole milk (full cream milk) (180ml)
  • ½ cup thickened cream (heavy cream) (125ml)
  • ¼ cup pure maple syrup (60ml)
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt

OPTIONAL TOPPING

  • 2 teaspoons demerara sugar (turbinado sugar)
  • 3 teaspoons flaked almonds

TO SERVE

  • Ice cream, maple syrup and fresh berries

Equipment

Instructions
 

  • Grease a large casserole dish with butter and set aside.
  • Cut the croissants through the middle so you have two end pieces.
  • In a large bowl, beat together the eggs, milk, cream, maple syrup, sugar, vanilla, cinnamon and salt until smooth.
  • Pour the egg mixture into the prepared dish then add the croissants and give them a good mix around to soak up the custard. Make sure the tops of the croissants are facing up and there’s bits of croissant sticking up here and there. These bits get nice and crispy.
  • Place in the fridge for 60 minutes to soak (or overnight, covered, if time permits). (notes)
  • Take the dish out of the fridge and preheat the oven to 180C (160C fan) / 350F).
  • Sprinkle over the demerara sugar and the almonds.
  • Bake 45-50 minutes until the croissants are golden on top.
  • Please take a moment to leave a comment & rating. It's appreciated and so helpful.

Notes

  1. Don’t skip the resting time. Giving the croissants at least 1 hour to rest will allow them to soak up more of the custard which actually makes for a fluffier, soft result and it stops it from tasting eggy.
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