Made with Panettone bread, this special Christmas Morning Baked French Toast is both simple to make and full of sweet holiday flavors.
Ribbons, bows, scrapes of colorful wrapping paper and open boxes scatter the floor accompanied with joyful sounds of little ones running around. The last thing I want to do on a cozy Christmas morning is spend an hour or more cooking breakfast. Yet, I still want a special meal for a such a magical morning. Naturally, Panettone for a Christmas Morning Baked French Toast is the perfect solution for any holiday morning. A soft and fluffy baked French toast filled with candied citrus, raisins, vanilla, spicy cinnamon, and a sweet crispy top that can be baking in the oven as I enjoy time with family and not over a stove is one of the best gifts!
Every holiday since childhood, I have had a single Panettone bread and it wouldn't be Christmas without it. If you are not familiar with Panettone bread, it is a traditional sweet Italian bread with candied citrus and raisins. Usually, this is perfectly paired with a morning coffee, but as my two girls came into the picture I needed a simple, hands off Christmas morning breakfast. I knew I wanted to make this Panettone bread part of their holiday memories too. So I decided to make French toast with the Panettone bread and then decided to make it an overnight baked French toast. Simple enough and full of sweet citrus flavor and cozy cinnamon notes. An easy win win for the holidays!
- The holiday flavor of this baked French toast comes from Panettone bread. This can be purchased at most grocery stores or usually Whole Foods and even Costco. If you can't find it in your area, check out the link above.
- If you use more Panettone bread then increase the amount milk and cream you use by half a cup.
- This baked French toast can be assembled ahead of time and refrigerated overnight or bake immediately.
- If you bake the French toast immediately, the cook time will be lower and closer to 30-40 minutes.
- Set the oven to pre heat as soon as you wake up in the morning and pop the French toast in the oven while you spend time with your family on your holiday morning!
- Serve with whipped cream or make it even more special with a homemade whipped cream! Check out my simple homemade whipped cream here.
- Turn on some Christmas music in the background and pair the French toast with hot chocolate or coffee and maybe some bacon or ham for fun cozy morning.
Ingredients for Christmas Morning Baked French Toast
- Panettone 16-24 oz
- Heavy Cream
- Brown Sugar
The Cozy Details
Gather all of your ingredients the night before you wish to bake this french toast. (If you plan on baking immediately then you will want to do all of the steps below at once.)
Open the Panettone and peel off the outer wrapper. You will want to slice the Panettone vertically but similar to a pizza slice. This provides the best visual appeal for the baked french toast.
Arrange the slices into a greased baking dish (I used an 8x8 similar to this baking dish) with the inner sides of the bread facing up. If not all of the pieces fit into the baking dish then just cut them into smaller pieces. Set aside.
Next, in a medium size bowl, combine the milk, heavy cream, eggs, cinnamon, and vanilla. Stir to combine.
Pour over the milk and egg mixture onto the bread. Gently press down the bread to make sure most of the pieces of bread are being soaked into the mixture.
At this stage you can either cover the baking dish and place into the refrigerator or proceed to the next step if you are baking the french toast immediately.
Once you are ready to bake the french toast, sprinkle on the brown sugar across the top of the bread. Then take the butter and make thin slices to dot along the top of the brown sugar.
Place into an over at 350 degrees and bake for 35-45 minutes until golden and the center does not wiggle and feel firm.
Serve when slightly cooled with whipped cream and perhaps a side of bacon while you enjoy a cozy winter morning!
- Panettone (16 oz)
- 1 Cup of Milk
- ½ Cup of Heavy Cream
- 5 Eggs
- 1 teaspoon Vanilla
- 1 teaspoon Cinnamon
- ½ Cup Brown Sugar
- 2 tablespoon Butter (sliced)
- Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Grease a baking dish.
- Slice the panettone into vertical slices about an inch thick. (Similar to slicing a pizza)
- In a medium size bow, mix the milk, heavy cream, eggs, vanilla, and cinnamon.
- Stir to combine.
- In a greased baking dish, arrange the panettone slices so that they are overlapping slightly.
- Pour over the egg and milk mixture onto the panettone slices in the baking dish.
- Either cover and keep overnight in the refrigerator or bake immediately.
- Before baking sprinkle the brown sugar over the top of the french toast and then dot on the sliced butter.
- Bake in the oven for about 35-45 minutes until the center is firm and does not wiggle.
This can be made the night before and then baked in the morning uncovered or bake immediately.
If baking immediately the time in the oven will be between 30-40 minutes. Bake time from overnight in the oven is longer, between 40-45 minutes.
Serve with fresh whip cream, maple syrup and fruit!