Sunday, April 10, 2016

Cinnamon French Toast Bake

I've always loved breakfast, but I have not always loved french toast. It can so easily go horribly wrong. Too eggy, to mushy, too dry, too much whole wheat bread... (That is my husband's complaint). 

This Cinnamon French Toast Bake is pretty perfect though. Low maintenance and surprisingly easy to make, it is delicious! Fluffy, not overly sweet. Cinnamonny, sticky, tender, and plain yummy. When it came out of the oven I was like, "Babe! Come eat the most amazing breakfast I've ever made!" And all my kids came running to the kitchen, smiling, not fighting, dressed in clean clothes, beds made and bedrooms clean, saying, "Mom! You are the best mom in the whole world and we'll never argue with each other again!" (Ok, that is a bit of a fib, but it really was a delicious morning. If you want to have the Spirit with you in the morning, make this stuff.)

At Christmastime my neighborhood had a family breakfast potluck and my friend brought the most amazing French Toast bake. It was warm, and cinnamony, and kind of coconutty. I loved it, and had thirds because I was full of the Christmas Spirit. I wanted to try make it on my own, but put I it off because I realized the Christmas Spirit had recently taken the form of 5 extra pounds.

But then videos on Facebook were popping up for a French Toast Bake, and it reminded me of that holiday breakfast in December. I was going to do make that! Now, I just needed an excuse to make it. Last weekend was the General Conference for our Church, which means we spend 2 days in our jammies watching inspirational talks and amazing music. We try to make that weekend feel special so that our kids will recognize its importance and have good feelings about Conference. So, Cinnamon French Toast Bake was the perfect way to start our Saturday conference marathon.

All the recipes I found called for a 9x13 and served 12. I thought that would be way too much, so my recipe is about half that size. My family ate the whole thing. No left overs. So this is perfect amount for 6 people (4 kids, 2 adults). I served it with eggs and fruit. It was also the perfect amount so that I didn't need to eat more of the left overs. 

I've been trying to be more conscientious about our sugar intake, which sounds ridiculous when the foundation of this recipe is cinnamon roll dough. But, hear me out! All the recipes I found called for 1 cup of maple syrup in the egg mixture, plus the icing, and more syrup and powdered sugar on top. Don't get me wrong, I love sweet. But seriously, 1 cup of syrup is 800 calories! 

Buh-bye syrup! You are a condiment, not the staff of life! Well, my family didn't miss it, and I bet you won't either. I mean, we put it on top of the French Toast, not too much. The best part is that now we can say this is a lightened up Cinnamon French Toast Bake. Less guilt means more room for breakfast, my friends. 

Cinnamon French Toast Bake

  • 1 12.4 oz tube refrigerated cinnamon rolls, with icing 
  • 4 eggs, beaten
  • 2 tbs butter, melted
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup coconut milk (or heavy cream)
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Pour melted butter into 9x9 glass baking dish.
  2. Open rolls, Set aside icing. Cut rolls into pieces, about 8 per roll. Place in baking dish.
  3. Whisk together eggs, vanilla, cinnamon, and coconut milk. Pour evenly over cinnamon rolls.
  4. Bake until golden brown, about 20 minutes. Let cool for 5 minutes. Drizzle icing over french toast. 
  5. Serve and top with maple syrup.

Bake the bread. Share the slices. 

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