Apple French Toast Bake

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Plates and pan of our simple Apple French Toast Bake recipe

Wow, I don’t even know where to start with this french toast…

It was inspired by my Pumpkin French Toast Bake.
It is perfect for fall.
It is INSANELY delicious – crispy, tender, gooey, satisfying.
It’s packed with cinnamon-sugar apples.
It requires just 7 ingredients.
It can be made in 1 morning – no overnight soaking involved.

That was a mouthful but seriously, you NEED this french toast in your life!

Bowl of whole grain bread cubes for making our Apple French Toast Bake recipe

It starts with day old wheat bread cut into cubes and left out to dry. Use my recipe for 7-ingredient wheat bread for a from-scratch experience. Otherwise, any crusty bread will do.

Whole and halved fresh apples for making Apple French Toast

Next, 2 tart and 2 sweet apples for a nice sweet-tart balance.

Cubed whole grain bread and egg mixture in a baking pan

Now we soak, just as long as it takes to saute the apples. That’s plenty of time to let the bread cubes get all marinated in eggy goodness.

Pan of Cinnamon Apples for making our Apple French Toast Bake

The apples are so simple! Just saute with a little butter, cinnamon, and brown sugar until tender. That’s it. I could’ve eaten this whole pan, no lie.

Pan of our Apple Cinnamon French Toast Bake

Apple Cinnamon French Toast Bake for a simple and delicious breakfast

Oh man, look how delicious and eggy and crusty and apple-stuffed this french toast is! Does it get any better for a healthy fall breakfast?

Plate with a slice of our Apple Cinnamon French Toast Bake

Drizzling maple syrup onto a slice of our Cinnamon Apple French Toast Bake

Bring on the syrup, PLEASE.

Plate with a slice of Baked Apple French Toast with maple syrup

Pan of our Apple French Toast Bake recipe with some slices removed

This french toast bake is literally the fall breakfast of my dreams. It feeds a crowd! And it’s:

Easy
Wholesome
Loaded with cinnamon + apples
Tender in the inside
Crusty on the outside
& Perfect topped with more apples and maple syrup

I think I died and went to heaven devouring my slice.

Plates with slices of Cinnamon Apple French Toast Bake for breakfast

I think you get the point. MAKE THIS FRENCH TOAST! It has my food blogger guaranteed stamp of approval on it. If you don’t like it, you’re crazy. It’s as simple as that. Happy fall everybody!

Grabby a bite of ooey-gooey Apple French Toast

Apple French Toast Bake

7-ingredient french toast bake with cinnamon apples. Crispy, tender, full of delicious fall flavor.
Author Minimalist Baker
Print
Plate with a slice of Apple French Toast Baked and maple syrup
4.81 from 31 votes
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Servings 8
Course Breakfast
Cuisine Vegetarian
Freezer Friendly No
Does it keep? 1-2 Days

Ingredients

  • 6-8 cups day-old whole grain bread (cubed*)
  • 7 large eggs
  • 2 cups milk (I used lightly sweetened vanilla almond milk)
  • 3/4 tsp cinnamon (divided)
  • 4 medium apples (cored, peeled, and sliced into wedges*)
  • 2 Tbsp butter (I used Earth Balance)
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar (divided)

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 C) and grease a 9x13 baking pan (adjust number or size of pan if altering batch size).
  • Add bread cubes to the baking pan - enough to generously cover the bottom and up about 1.5 inches. You don't want to see any bare spots on the pan, but you also don't want there to be bread overflowing out of the dish.
  • In a mixing bowl whisk the eggs, milk, and 2/3 of the cinnamon (1/2 tsp as original recipe is written). Pour over the bread and use your hands or the back of a wooden spoon to push the bread down to soak up the liquid. If you end up having too much bread after pouring on the liquid, just pick a few out. Alternatively, if you have too much liquid, add more bread cubes. (see photo)
  • To a large skillet over medium-low heat, add the apples and butter. Sprinkle with remaining 1/3 of the cinnamon (1/4 tsp as original recipe is written), stir and cover to steam for a bit. When they start to get tender - about 4-5 minutes - remove cover and sprinkle with 2-3 Tbsp brown sugar (this will depend on preference and whether you used sweet or tart apples // amounts as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size). Continue cooking with cover off until tender and slightly caramelized. You don't want them to get mushy so be careful not to keep the cover on for too long. Remove from heat to cool slightly.
  • Check the bread to make sure all pieces are getting well soaked. If any cubes are dry on top, flip them over with your hands to ensure all pieces are wet. Sprinkle top with remaining brown sugar - about 1/4 cup (as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size).
  • Next spoon 3/4 of the apples over the top of the bread and push them down into the cracks with your fingers. If a few slices are sitting on top, that's OK (see photo).
  • Bake on a center rack for 45 minutes to 1 hour. You'll know when it's done because the bread and apples will be golden brown and the egg mixture will no longer be wet. Stick a fork down in the center to check - if it's still jiggly or wet, bake for another 5-10 minutes.
  • Remove from oven and serve immediately. Top each slice with any remaining sautéed apples and maple syrup. Store leftovers in a covered container in the fridge for up to a couple of days and reheat in the microwave; though this dish is best when fresh.

Notes

*Try gluten-free bread to keep this recipe gluten-free, though I didn't try it myself and can't guarantee the results.
*Depending on the kind of bread you use, the amount of bread will vary. The important thing is to add enough bread to generously cover the bottom of the pan, plus a little for height. For me, that was 7 or 8 cups.
*I used 2 tart and 2 sweet apples for a good mix of sweet and tart.
*Nutrition information is a rough estimate.

Nutrition (1 of 8 servings)

Serving: 1 g Calories: 226 Carbohydrates: 33 g Protein: 7.5 g Fat: 7.7 g Saturated Fat: 3 g Sodium: 232 mg Fiber: 3.2 g Sugar: 20 g

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  1. Green Bay gal says

    I made this twice and all I can say is that if I were ordering off a menu, this would be my pick! And it’s easy enough to make at home. Only changes I made were that I used the bread I had on hand, which was a rustic white. I added vanilla and salted caramel whiskey to the liquid and I sprinkled walnut pieces on top before baking. To die for!

  2. Amy says

    Super good! My husband made this for me as a birthday breakfast. He used regular cow milk. We halfed the recipe using two eggs and it was super moist!!!

  3. Frannie says

    We’re vegan so I substituted flax eggs for the chicken eggs in this recipe. It came out pretty good; I just accidentally didn’t add enough sweetener so it wasn’t very sweet.

    • Dana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Thanks for sharing! Yes, it can be made overnight! I’d say prep up until baking, cover, refrigerate, and then add to the oven in the morning!

  4. Patsy says

    Has anyone tried this using flax eggs instead of chicken eggs? I love the sound of this recipe and I’ve always been able to make your recipes work for me. Thought I’d inquire about the flax egg sub before test-driving for myself!

  5. Rachel says

    Thanks for this! I have loved all of your recipes and this one is exactly what I needed! I didn’t have any tart apples so just used a dusting of sugar at the end. Also I used a loaf of gluten free bread. It worked out great though I probably needed another quarter of a loaf as I think I had a little too much liquid. That said everyone raved and enjoyed it! (Oh, I made this last night and baked it this morning for a quick brunch food).

  6. Lyrica LaBelle says

    Made this, loved it. Easy and adaptable. I used a leftover loaf of homemade no-knead wheat bread, added raisins, and served it in bowls with a splash of milk and syrup (so just like a traditional bread pudding). Everyone gobbled it up and asked for more. Thanks for a great recipe!

  7. Amy says

    I made this recipe this morning and it was delicious! My three year old, 8 month old, husband and I all loved it. My three year old helped me rip bread to use which he enjoyed too! I used a bit less sugar and it was still amazing. I can see this being a Christmas morning breakfast in the future.

  8. Ana says

    I have been looking for dishes to make for my campers (work at a summer camp). There are about 40 servings I need to make. This looks phenomenal!! I plan on making this for them and making it in one of those really big disposal pans (around 17 in x 12 inch pan). Should I triple or quadruple this recipe?

    • Support @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Ana! That is quite a large crowd you’ll be feeding! I would recommend at least multiplying the recipe by 5 for that many people as the current measurements serve 8. Good luck!

      • Ana says

        Thanks. Do you know about make ahead? Since I’m cooking for so many people, doing it the morning of will be pretty difficult. Or do you suggest baking the day before and the day of, pop it in the oven to warm it up?

          • Ana Sherrell says

            one last question..I swear ha. do you think this recipe will be just as good if I diced the apples and put it in the bread mixture so I dont have to worry about cooking the apples separately? and what about the bread? it won’t be stale so do I just bake them for a short amount time to crisp them up a little.

          • Support @ Minimalist Baker says

            Hi Ana! I think that could work, but you’ll want to make sure the apples still get cooked through. You could experiment with cooking the diced apples in a greased pan in the oven first, pulling the pan out and adding all of the other ingredients. If you give it a try, report back on how it goes!

  9. Betty says

    Just made this recipe with a day old gluten free baguette and coconut milk (I am dairy and gluten free)- delicious!! I could have let it soak longer since my bread was dry, but I liked the crispy parts. Thanks for a great recipe!

  10. LisaZ says

    This was amazing! I used half a loaf of sour dough casalinga I had lying around. Only 6 eggs but it didn’t seem to matter. I also used green apples for tang and topped it all off with maple syrup and coconut yogurt. Best weekend breakfast ever! Thankyou for this fantastic recipe!

  11. Monique says

    Hello!
    I would love to try this recipe, but are vegan, so my question is:
    *What could i replace the 7 eggs with?*
    Anyone’s thoughts are welcomed!!

    Thank you :)

  12. Spencer says

    I second this recipe. I halved and baked it in a pie plate–since I don’t have the specified bakeware–with the inedibly sour sourdough bread I messed up a couple of days before and it turned out wonderful and delicious anyway. You can’t go wrong with this recipe. I was a little discouraged from cooking due to my messed up bread but this recipe brought back my confidence. Thank you!

  13. Angela says

    Can any of the recipe be made the night before and refrigerated? So we can just pop in the oven in the morning?

  14. Madeleine says

    Hey there! Super excited to try this tomorrow! Just one question: can I use a dark bottomed roasting pan instead of a glass one? Let me know thanks!!

  15. Cw says

    Dumb qu. Does it have to be a loaf of baked bread (like a real baked goods loaf?) or can I use some old processed/sliced bread in a bag like dempsters whole wheat bread… I know it is should be a proper loaf that’s stale… Just wondering! As I have all the other ingredients on hand!

  16. Emma says

    This sounds amazing! Would love to make it for Mother’s Day this weekend. How long do I keep the bread out for? What do you mean by a day old? Thanks!!

  17. Chris W says

    Wow!! This recipe looks amazing. I have a brunch to attend tomorrow and need to bring something. I think I’m going to try this, but I’m going to use Trader Joes Cinnamon Swirl bread. I would say that I should cut back on the cinnamon in the recipe, since there is so much already in the bread. Any thoughts anyone?? Thanks for your help…. I’ll let you know the outcome and feedback!!

  18. Kylie says

    This recipe is gold. I made it for the second time today. My husband and 9 year old love it.

    Today I added extra apples & added a crumble oat topping. It was amazing and I dont even need syrup.

  19. Chantal says

    I use this recipe as my base inspiration. Made several version with berries, pear, eggnog etc. I made this all the time for brunch and everyone asks for my Recipe (and i give you credit every time :-) ). Kids love it and i made it for dinner sometimes the night before and just bake it when i come home.

    Goes to show you… Good food with natural ingredients is all we need. We are not vegan or anything like that. We are just foodies and live REAL food! This recipe is awesome!

  20. Ruth says

    I am looking for a recipe for brunch that uses eggs and apples.
    I read that it needs to be served immediately does this mean
    it would not be very good (15 minutes) to where I am taking it
    and I should keep looking?

  21. Dalila says

    This one is a keeper for sure! I made it for me and and a few friends and i lOVED IT.
    We tried it with some melted chocolate (which was amazing), and also tried it with some almond butter (not as good) – but really, it was good even just by itself.

  22. Lizbee says

    Hello!
    We did try it with gluten-free bread and it worked marvelously! We used Whole Foods’ Prairie bread, which is found in the freezer section. We used a whole loaf; because it is very naturally crumbly when it thaws, if not toasted, so we just let it thaw.

    It’s incredible!
    Thank you for posting this fun recipe!

  23. David Haupt says

    Its in the oven as we speak ex ept i added a rolled oats and cinnamon topping right before putting in the oven. Smells GREAT in here (making breakfast for my very pregnant wife) i think shes gonna LOVE IT

  24. Kirsten says

    Coconut milk and coconut oil were great substitutes! Love having a baked Saturday breakfast option instead of having to stand at the stove and flip triple batches of pancakes or French toast for our family of four.

    • SingaDiva says

      It’s in the oven & I can’t wait! 30 minutes more & I’ll update :)
      Used wholemeal & milk bread (as I didn’t think of halving the recipe).
      Thanks for the inspiration, Dana!

  25. Ash says

    I have made this 4 times now! It is SO quick and easy to make. Sometimes I leave the apples out (usually only because I had none on hand lol) and it still tastes incredible. I have experimented with substituting different fruits in and I am happy to report that apple & peach, apple & apricot, apple, peach & strawberry all work wonderfully.

  26. Scooter Scudder says

    I just put this in the oven. I didn’t have apples, so I substituted fresh bananas (not sautéed) and hopefully in 1 hour, I can wake my wife with a day before mother’s day breakfast in bed. I am going to sprinkle chopped thick cut bacon on top.

  27. Cat says

    If I wanted to make this the night before shoudl I do everything except bake it? Or assemble in the morning and bake?
    Thanks – looks so good!

  28. Elizabeth says

    I just made this! I wanted a different French toast casserole recipe but just thought of it this morning so I needed something that didn’t need overnight prep. I found this and happened to have apples on hand as well. It was absolutely delicious!! I served it with some bacon to complete the meal. My daughter and I thank you! Will definitely be making again!

  29. Andrea says

    This was delicious!!! My only sub was using regular french bread instead of the whole grain since I’m not a fan. I made it for a Christmas brunch and everyone raved about it :)

  30. Kirsten Veneziano says

    This is so delicious! I cut the recipe in half (4 eggs with 1 cup of milk) and used leftover Egg Twist Thanksgiving Dinner Rolls.

  31. Ruth says

    My husband made this with gluten free bread and splenda brown sugar blend. It was wonderful. Tasty and didn’t bother my stomach!!

  32. nik says

    Thanks for the recipe. It is a great one to get kids involved with cooking. Our 3 year old gathered the apples and bread. Our 6 year old cut apples and whisked. The whole family enjoyed a delicious brekky!

  33. Jen says

    This was amazing! Made this and added nutmeg and cloves and halved the brown sugar. I also used GF bread and it came out wonderful! Making this recipe again, for sure.

  34. Kayla says

    Made this for my ridiculously fussy boyfriend, & he adored it
    You have officially impressed me
    Thanks for your wonderful recipes, lets see what I can get him to eat next :P

  35. charmaine says

    I use a similiar recipe like yours and I love it. Every grocery shopping day, a loaf of bread becomes smashed by my children. I use this recipe to keep from wasting a loaf of bread. Wonderful!

  36. Tremi W. says

    JUST made this, and thus….I took a lil trip to heaven! ;) My roommate and I both LOVED this! Thanks for the recipe!!

  37. Michelle says

    I halved this recipe and also your pumpkin French toast dish for my family today and everyone loved both, with this one edging out the pumpkin one a bit in votes :). The only thing different, by mistake, was I made it the night before, without the apple mixture. It turned out less crunchy than I imagine it would have if made right then. Still, it was DELICIOUS!!!! Thank you for your amazing recipes!!!

  38. Laura says

    My boyfriend and I made this. I think we fell more in love eating this amazing spiced dessert-in-disguise. So simple and totally worth the wait to bake – the house smelled like heaven!

  39. Jill says

    I have made the pumpkin French today bake, yum! I think I’ll make this one Sunday, I’m tossing around the idea of adding a crumble on top. (like Apple crisp!) I like that texture difference.

  40. Rosanna says

    We have been trapped inside the house for 60+ hours due to an ice storm in North Texas, and I was scavenging for breakfast options with what was available in the house, since getting to the grocery store isn’t an option. I did substitute a homemade attempt at brown sugar (white sugar with honey and syrup), that definitely took a little of the taste out, I’m sure.. thanks for this — the whole family LOVED it!!

    even my notoriously picky eater of a son, who didn’t even need the slightest of cajoling to try it. SOOOOOOOO yummy! thanks again!

  41. runinguy says

    Google brought me to this site, and I’m glad it did! I first made this recipe with too much liquid and it turned out more like a quiche than a semi-crispy french toast, which is good too, but I’m about to try it again and my goal is to be a bit more true to the recipe and get that crispy top layer.

    One nice addition I’ll comment on was the brown-sugar-and-brandy syrup I made after cooking the apples. Just deglaze the remaining apple bits with some more brown sugar and brandy. This substituted nicely for traditional maple syrup.

    Thanks Dana and John for the nice recipe, and the nice site!

  42. Avra-Sha Faohla says

    Yum! I just made this. My bread wasn’t stale and I didn’t feel like waiting until tomorrow, so I’m sure it was supposed to be crispier, but it still tasted great! I used less sugar than called for and ate it without syrup, and I still think it had sufficient sweetness.

    Also, I quartered the recipe (yes, I used 1 3/4 eggs) because I was just making it for myself. I filled up a quarter section of a 9 x 13 pan, using aluminum foil as my walls, and it cooked in a half hour. So if anyone wants to know if you can make a smaller recipe . . . it worked for me.

    Thanks for sharing!

    • Kirsten Veneziano says

      What a great idea, make individuals. I can see doing this in ramekins with some powdered sugar sprinkled on top as a desert.

  43. Alesha Haley says

    I found your site through pinterest.. and OMG I have been drooling over your pictures for hours! HAHA your recipes are amazing.. and your food photography is soooooo good!! I def want to invest in a nice camera. LOVE LOVE LOVE your blog :)

    • Dana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Ah, thanks so much Alesha! So glad to hear it. If you need any recommendations for cameras let me know. Otherwise, be sure to check out our camera bag page and or food photography e-course! They’re packed with everything we know. Cheers!

  44. Sarah Glenn says

    I just want to say how much I love this site! Everything I’ve made so far has been easy and delicious. I’m trying to feed my family as few processed foods as possible, and your recipes are really helping.

  45. Amy Tran says

    can this be prepped overnight without sacrificing flavor & taste??
    i have a toddler & baby & even though this recipe is simple enough, it would be so much better if i could just pop it into the oven in the morning!!

    thanks!

    love your site!

    • Dana @ Minimalist Baker says

      I think it should be fine but no guarantees as I haven’t tried it myself! Perhaps you could make a half batch to test so you don’t waste too many ingredients if it doesn’t turn out? My only concern is that it may get a little too moist…Hope that helps!

      • amyt. says

        it does help – thanks!
        i’m not gonna risk it & will follow your instructions verbatim!
        curious though & since you’re way more knowledgeable than i am in this cooking realm, maybe you can shed some light for me… how come there are french toast bakes that you can soak overnight without becoming too soggy – in fact, they taste better doing so — but then others might become too soggy? the recipes tend to be very similar.

        • Dana @ Minimalist Baker says

          I think it has to do with the mix-ins and certainly what kind/how stale your bread is. But honestly I’m not sure. I think most recipes would work either way, but after trying this recipe which WASN’T soaked overnight, I much preferred it to soaked as the bread was a tad bit crispier and the overall dish was just as flavorful. Good luck and happy french toasting!

    • Ingrid says

      Hi Amy,

      I have a toddler and a baby too (2.5 and 6 mths) but had some leftover bread and so I thought I’d try this out for my hubby to take with him on a business trip and for my toddler to have a quick something ready to go before her first day of preschool so I didn’t have to cook.

      I made it the night before and it took me around four times as long due to having to do things for my children, so the apples were left on the stove for way too long and the bread was soaked for way too long too, but it turned out just fine. I left it out on the counter overnight to cool (would have refrigerated it if I’d finished baking it a bit earlier) and in the morning we just reheated it in the microwave and it was lovely, perhaps not as good as oven fresh but very do-able in advance too. I also added raisins to mine for some extra fruit.

      Hope that helps!

  46. Kelzee Tibbetts says

    I’ve made lots of your recipes, but this one was so good that I couldn’t help but comment (and also to look at the pictures again and relive the experience)! It’s just insanely easy to make, and includes some of the best flavors this time of the year has to offer. Between the two of us, we polished off a pan (albeit, a slightly scaled down pan…) in no time. Can’t wait to make it again! Thanks!

    • Dana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Yay! Thanks so much for sharing Kelzee. This was one of my favorite french toast recipes by far. Glad you enjoyed it!

  47. Mary-Clay @ Cooking with the King says

    I actually just posted a pumpkin baked french toast on my blog. This apple one looks great, too! Baked French toast is always a win in my book.

    • Dana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Yay! Thanks so much for sharing Leanne. My first success story with this dish. Let the fall fun begin!

  48. Jess says

    Love how simple and delicous this looks, Dana. And great that it’s made with whole grain bread – love that it seems so special-occasiony but is really quite healthy!

  49. Alexe @ Keys to the Cucina says

    This looks amazing and I love how simple it is, definitely something I can make with ingredients I already have on hand!

  50. Abbie @ Needs Salt says

    Oh my gosh. I’m in love. This looks absolutely incredible.
    I’ve never tried a french toast bake before, but this one looks drop-dead gorgeous.
    Those sauteed apples…. gah.
    Pinning!

  51. Stephanie @ Girl Versus Dough says

    This is SO happening next weekend. And probably every weekend after that until winter. And even then…

  52. Ashley says

    Did somebody say French toast??? My fav. :) I just made an apple snack cake that should probably be French toasted tomorrow. mmm

  53. Vicki @ WITK says

    This looks like a great Sunday morning breakfast! Maybe a smaller batch since it’s just two of us in my house!

  54. Tieghan Gerard says

    So pretty, so delicious, so awesome!! I have been dreaming about that pumpkin french toast bake, but now I have TWO to make! These guys looks so good and they are perfect for the holidays!

  55. Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar says

    Oh man!! Your pumpkin french toast bake was AWESOME, so I can only imagine how good this must be. Loooove it!