Croissant French Toast Bake seems like your favorite French toast bake at first glance; delicious bread soaked in a creamy, sweet custard with refreshing, bright berries woven in between and scattered on top, baked until golden and tender and served with a sugary, smoky rum syrup! But with just one small change, it becomes a new dish entirely! Buttery, flaky croissants as the bread element add a new dimension to the already dessert-like breakfast! Croissant French Toast Bake is an oldie but a goodie, kicked up a couple notches!

Ingredients

For the French toast:

  • butter, to taste, for greasing the baking dish
  • 2 cups half-and-half or whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 6 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 8 large croissants, cut in half lengthwise
  • 1 cup strawberries, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 cup blueberries

For the topping:

  • powdered sugar, to taste, for topping
  • 1 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon dark rum
  • lightly sweetened whipped cream, optional, to taste, store-bought or homemade, for serving

Directions

Step 1 –Grease a 4-5-quart rectangular or oval baking dish with the butter.

Step 2 –In a large bowl, add the half-and-half, the vanilla, the eggs, the brown sugar, the cinnamon, the nutmeg, and the salt and whisk to combine.

Step 3 –Dip the croissant halves into the egg mixture until fully coated.

Step 4 –Arrange the croissants into the prepared casserole dish, overlapping them as needed so all of them are partially exposed.

Step 5 –Pour the remaining egg mixture over the casserole, gently pressing the croissants down to absorb.

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Step 6 –Tuck about 3/4 cup of the strawberries and 3/4 cup of the blueberries between the croissant layers.

Step 7 –Sprinkle the remaining strawberries and the remaining blueberries over the top of the casserole.

Step 8 –Cover the dish with plastic wrap and refrigerate it for at least 2 and up to 8 hours.

Step 9 –Transfer the casserole from the refrigerator 30 minutes before baking and let it stand at room temperature. Discard the plastic wrap.

Step 10 –Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Step 11 –Cover the casserole dish with foil and bake for about 30 minutes.

Step 12 –Uncover the dish and bake until puffed and golden, about 15-20 minutes.

Step 13 –Let the casserole stand for 10 minutes.

Step 14 –Dust the casserole with the powdered sugar.

Step 15 –In a small saucepan over medium-low heat, warm the maple syrup.

Step 16 –Add the rum to the syrup and stir to combine.

Step 17 –Serve topped with the rum-maple syrup and the whipped cream.