Can you use stale bread for French toast?


  • 8 bread slices
  • 4 large eggs
  • 23 tablespoon (9.9 mL) of milk
  • 1 teaspoon (4.9 mL) of vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon (2.6 grams) of cinnamon
  • ¼ cup (32 grams) of flour (optional)
  • ¼ cup (32 grams) of sugar (optional)
  • ¼ teaspoon (1.4 grams) of salt (optional)
  • Butter or non-stick spray

Makes 4-8 servings


Step by step instructions

1 Gather the ingredients for the custard mixture. In a separate bowl (like a pie plate or a shallow dish), mix the eggs, heavy cream.

Add the cinnamon, vanilla extract, and a pinch of salt. Mix well using a fork or a hand beater.

2  Cut the bread into thick slices (but skip this

2 Cut the bread into thick slices (but skip this process if you’re using the Texas bread as I did in this recipe) and place in the custard mixture.

Soak well on both sides for about 1 minute, allowing the egg mixture to absorb the bread.

3  Place 2 cups of cornflakes in a resealable zipl

3 Place 2 cups of cornflakes in a resealable ziplock and crush the flakes with a rolling pin until coarse meals form.

Transfer to a pie plate or a bowl and add the sugar & cinnamon. (You can skip adding sugar if you’re using sugar-coated cornflakes).

4  After that, place the soaked white bread in the

4 After that, place the soaked white bread in the cornflakes mixture bowl and coat well on both sides. Now, you can start heating the skillet or the griddle. Spray some oil and place a pat of butter.

5 Once the butter starts sizzling, you can put the bread and allow it to cook for a few minutes on each side until golden brown.

After all the bread slices have been browned in the griddle or skillet, transfer them to a cookie sheet for the next step.

6 Place in the oven and bake to 350°F (or 150°C) for about 5-6 minutes. We do this extra step to make sure that we cooked any egg that didn’t brown on the sides and to crisp up the topping as well.

Tips For Making The Best French Toast

  • This recipe calls for stale sourdough. Bread that is 2 or 3 days old is perfect!
  • Slice the bread nice and thick. I cut my bread roughly 2.5cm/1 inch thick.
  • Leave it to soak. This sourdough will need more of a soak than regular bread because it’s thicker.
  • Use real butter. Cook the eggy bread in butter to get the gorgeous golden brown colour! I always use real butter, the salted Irish kind!
  • Always check stale bread. Always check for mould, if you see any mould at all do not use it!
  • Keep them warm in the oven. I can get about 2 -3 slices of bread on my skillet, depending on the size of your skillet you will have to cook these in batches. So I keep them warm in the oven until they are all cooked and I’m ready to serve them. Place the cooked toast on a baking tray in a warm oven. 90C/195F should keep them warm.

What You’ll Need

  • Stale Sourdough – two-day or three-day-old sourdough is perfect for this.
  • Eggs – four free-range eggs are perfect for making enough for 4 people.
  • Milk and cream – to make this french toast nice and rich I add full-fat milk and a little double/heavy cream
  • Spices – cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla are perfect for this dish
  • Butter – this really is the best thing to cook your French toast in!

What to Serve with French Toast

This easy french toast recipe pairs well with almost any breakfast side. A few of my favorite sides to serve with this homemade french toast include:

Double Dipped French Toast (Recipe)


4.96 from 23 votes

Here's a foolproof way to get this crunchy, Double Dipped French Toast hot off the griddle and bursting with cinnamon flavor.Servings: 4 peopleCalleighAuthor: Calleigh

How to Store French Toast

Let your leftover French toast cool completely, then place it in an airtight container (such as a zip-top bag or a reusable storage container). Store it in the fridge for about one to three days. 

4 Tips for Making Perfect French Toast Every Time

Try these tricks for making the best French toast.

  1. Don't use fresh bread. French toast is a great way to use up bread that's gone stale. If you're craving French toast and only have fresh bread, don't despair. You can dry out fresh bread in the oven. Arrange slices on a baking sheet and place in the oven at 275 degrees Fahrenheit while you prep the rest of the ingredients.
  2. Use brioche. The best bread for making classic French toast is brioche. It has a rich, eggy flavor and relatively tight crumb that soaks up all of the custard without becoming soggy. Challah, also an egg bread, is another great choice. Sandwich bread, such as pain de mie or a Pullman loaf, is another good option, but avoid sliced white bread, since the slices are often too thin to yield fluffy French toast.
  3. Serve French toast immediately. Avoid soggy French toast by serving it as soon as it’s ready. If you aren’t able to do so, keep French toast warm (or reheat it) in a low oven.
  4. Make French toast with half-and-half. For the richest, most delicious French toast, use equal parts whole milk and heavy cream. Store-bought half-and-half sometimes contains other ingredients, so it's best to make your own.

The best bread for French Toast

Buttery brioche is my bread of choice – pictured in the photos. It’s a total shameless indulgence, a copycat of  trendy local bistros that charge a small fortune.

So in my opinion, the best bread is:

  1. Brioche – my first choice, hands down the most indulgent;

  2. Challah is also excellent – similar texture to Brioche but not as buttery;

  3. Good ole’ white sandwich bread;

  4. Other plain white breads – even rolls and baguette cut into slices (see my Mini French Toast recipe);

  5. Crusty artisan breads (sourdough etc). I personally don’t favour the sourdough flavour in my French toast, but I know some people love it!

The secret to really good french toast

The secret to the best french toast is letting it soak longer than you think. You want the bread to be saturated with the custard so that the inside of the bread is creamy and not dry.

The second secret is cooking over medium to medium

The second secret is cooking over medium to medium low heat then finishing on medium high. Starting on medium or medium low ensures that the custard-y insides cook all the way through and finishing on medium high gives it a golden brown and crisp caramelized crust.

Best Toppings for French Toast

The classic topping for French toast is butter and maple syrup (or pancake syrup), but feel free to get creative with these toppings. Choose one or mix and match.

  • Chocolate chips
  • Ripe banana slices
  • Fresh berries like strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries
  • Whipped cream
  • Lemon curd
  • Chocolate-hazelnut spread
  • Cinnamon sugar
  • Apple butter

French Toast Additions

  • Powdered Sugar: Many people love to sprinkle powdered sugar over their French toast! Personally I think there’s is plenty enough sugar in the maple syrup, so I don’t bother with adding more.
  • Orange zest and Triple Sec: One of my favorite variations, the idea for which I picked up from The Silver Palate Cookbook 20-some odd years ago, is to add some orange zest and a bit of Triple Sec orange liqueur to the batter for extra zing.

Elise Bauer

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4. Dip the bread in the egg mixture

Take your slices of bread (or your sandwich) and place in your shallow dish to coat it with the custard. Turn it in the mixture once so that both sides get an ample coat. This can be a quick process to avoid any sogginess, though some recipes do opt for a longer soak in the fridge. (In that case, you may want to double your custard mixture, since the bread will soak up more. And be sure to use stale, sturdy slices!)

How to make french toast

  1. Make the custard. In a shallow bowl, whisk together eggs, cream, milk, and a bit of sugar, making sure the eggs are completely incorporated.
  2. Soak the bread. Take your bread and soak it in the custard mix, flipping once.
  3. Pan-fry. Add the soaked bread to a hot pan and cook, flipping once, until golden brown and crispy.
  4. Top and enjoy. Finish it off with butter, syrup, powdered sugar, and fruit and enjoy immediately!


Instructions Checklist
  • Whisk milk, eggs, vanilla, cinnamon, and salt together in a shallow bowl.


  • Lightly butter a griddle and heat over medium-high heat.

  • Dunk bread in the egg mixture, soaking both sides. Transfer to the hot skillet and cook until golden, 3 to 4 minutes per side. Serve hot.

What Are the Origins of French Toast?

French toast isn't actually French: The first recipe for French toast comes from the first-century Roman cookbook Apicius. During Roman times, the bread dish was sweetened with honey. Throughout the Middle Ages, French toast was known in both France and English-speaking regions as pain perdu, or “lost bread,” a reference to the dish's ability to use bread no longer at its peak. The term “French toast” was first used around the seventeenth century, but it referred to something slightly different than it does today: toasted bread slices soaked in a mixture of wine, sugar, and orange juice.

Classic French Toast Ingredients

Classic french toast requires just a handful of pantry staples to make, which is why it’s so important that you buy high-quality ingredients. Here’s what goes into this homemade french toast recipe:

  • French bread, brioche or sourdough bread – good hearty, fresh bread is key to great French toast.
  • Milk – I prefer whole milk but any of the others will work if you just substitute with an extra tablespoon or two of cream.
  • Cream – most french toast recipes just use milk but the addition of cream really sets this recipe apart. It makes it nice and rich.
  • Eggs – I find four to be the perfect amount, just enough to set without being overbearing.
  • Cinnamon – a must for classic french toast! It adds that nostalgic, deliciously spiced flavor we crave.
  • Sugar – only a little is needed here since a lot of the sweetness will come form the syrup.
  • Vanilla – this adds a lot of flavor to an otherwise neutral custard mix.
  • Butter – needed for greasing the griddle.
  • Maple syrup – splurge with real maple syrup. Or try it with coconut syrup or blueberry syrup.

6. Top the French toast with maple syrup (or anyth

6. Top the French toast with maple syrup (or anything you please)

Maple syrup, honey, sweetened yogurt, jam, powdered sugar—all of these things are good for topping French toast. Alternatively, however, you can go the savory route and give your French toast a sprinkle of grated cheese on top as soon as you flip it in the skillet. (I like Gruyère, but any meltable cheese will do; try cheddar, Monterey Jack, mozzarella, or Fontina.) The cheese should melt within the final three minutes of frying; you'll start to melt the moment you taste it.


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