Vegan french toast casserole is an easy-to-make morning breakfast! Pieces of french bread are covered in a homemade vegan custard, topped with a candied pecan crumble and baked to perfection! Enjoy this baked french toast right away or refrigerate it overnight and bake it the next morning. Holiday brunch will win over the whole family with this recipe!
Weekend mornings call for more than a simple slice of hummus avocado toast. And, around here I like to keep brunch fresh and fun for the family which means we’re constantly trying new recipes like my blueberry breakfast cake.
A few weekends ago I was on the search for an indulgent morning sweet for the upcoming holidays.
This vegan french toast casserole definitely nailed it!
The soft french-toast-like inside and the crispy sugary-crumble top had the family requesting this breakfast bake be added to the weekend morning rotation!
How to make french toast casserole
Baked french toast casserole is easy to make!
There's no standing over the stovetop flipping each piece of soggy bread. Instead, everything is dumped into a casserole dish and baked.
Prepping the custard
Start by preparing the custard so it has time to thicken up.
Measure out the non-dairy milk in a large 4-cup glass measuring cup or medium bowl. Whisk-in the remaining custard ingredients until everything is well combined. Set the mixture aside and cube the bread.
Cube the bread and prep the topping
To easily cube the french bread, cut the loaf into about 1-inch thick slices. From there, cut the slices into 1-inch cubes as pictured.
To prepare the sweet pecan topping, mix the flour and sugar together in a small bowl. Cut in the oil until it’s well dispersed, then mix in the chopped pecans.
How to assemble and bake the casserole
Add the cubed bread to your oiled baking dish. Give the custard one last whisk then slowly and evenly pour it over the bread as pictured above. Allow the mix to rest for 10-15 minutes.
Then, sprinkle the pecan crumble over the top.
Bake the french toast casserole at 350ºF for 40-50 minutes. Remove it from the oven and allow it to cool for 10-15 minutes before serving.
Top with powdered sugar and serve with maple syrup for a decadent morning treat!
What kind of bread can I use?
Any 1-pound loaf of bread will work for this french toast bake. You can use french bread, sourdough, ciabatta, Italian bread, etc.
I tested this recipe using French, Italian, and sourdough bread. My personal favorite was the sourdough. The slight tang of the bread perfectly balanced out the sweetness of the casserole.
Can this recipe be made ahead of time?
For an overnight french toast casserole, prep the custard and bread. Store them separately in the fridge.
The next morning, remove the bread and custard from the fridge. Prepare the topping and assemble the casserole.
Ways to enhance this vegan breakfast casserole
For a simple breakfast, top the baked french toast with powdered sugar and maple syrup.
Or, use this recipe as a base to create your favorite flavored french toast casserole. Mix in fresh fruit, dried fruit, or nuts!
Try one of these suggestions:
- diced apple
- dried cranberries
- extra pecans
- chopped walnuts
- chocolate chips
Tips for making vegan french toast casserole
- To keep the ingredients separate for an overnight night bake, store the bread cubes in a resealable bag and the custard (minus the cornstarch) covered the in the fridge. The next morning whisk the cornstarch into the custard and proceed with the remaining steps.
- For a seasonal baked french toast, swap out the cinnamon for pumpkin spice.
- Omit the pecans for a nut-free version.
- I added flaxseed for a bit of nutrition, but I know not everyone has it available. So, the flaxseed can easily be replaced with an extra ½ Tablespoon cornstarch (for a total of 3 Tablespoons).
MORE VEGAN BREAKFAST FAVORITES
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Vegan French Toast Casserole
Vegan french toast casserole is an easy-to-make morning breakfast! Pieces of french bread are covered in a homemade vegan custard, topped with a candied pecan crumble and baked to perfection! Enjoy right away or refrigerate overnight.
- 1 lb loaf of french bread
- 2 and ⅓ cup non-dairy milk
- ⅓ cup coconut sugar
- 2 and ½ Tablespoons cornstarch
- 2 Tablespoons ground flax seed
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon Himalayan pink salt
Pecan topping (optional)
- ½ cup pecans, chopped
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- ⅓ cup coconut sugar
- 2 Tablespoons coconut oil
- Whisk together the custard ingredients and set aside for 15 minutes.
- In the meantime, cube the bread. Cut the loaf into 1-inch slices then cut the slices into one-inch cubes.
- Add the cubed bread to an oiled 7x11-inch baking dish. Evenly pour the custard over the bread and set aside for about 15 minutes.
- Prep the pecan topping while the bread soaks. Mix the sugar and flour together in a medium bowl. Use a fork or pastry cutter to cut in the oil, then mix in the chopped pecans.
- Sprinkle the pecan crumble across the top of the casserole.
- Bake uncovered at 350ºF for 40-50 minutes. Remove the casserole from the oven and allow it to cool for 10 minutes before serving.
- Dust with optional powdered sugar and serve with maple syrup.
- To make this recipe ahead-- prep the custard and bread. Store them separately in the fridge. The next morning, remove the bread and custard from the fridge. Prepare the topping and assemble the casserole.
- To make the casserole without ground flaxseed-- replace the flaxseed with an extra ½ Tablespoon cornstarch (for a total of 3 Tablespoons cornstarch).
- For flaxseed meal, which isn't as fine as ground flaxseed, use up to 3 Tablespoons.
- If the custard is too thick to pour, slowly whisk in more non-dairy milk to thin it out.
- You can use a 9x9-inch dish, but the custard is dispersed better in a bigger dish.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 9 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 248Total Fat: 7gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 1mgSodium: 313mgCarbohydrates: 39gFiber: 3gSugar: 11gProtein: 7g
**Nutritional info is provided as an estimate based on the ingredients I used and for convenience and as a courtesy only.**
Hi! I tried making this recipe but it came out tasting very salty and not good. When I tried the custard before adding the cornstarch it tasted fine, but after was when the taste changed drastically. What do you recommend? Can I use less cornstarch, like a teaspoon?
Hi Kayla! Sure, you can try using less cornstarch (1/2 to 1 Tablespoon), but the custard may not thicken up as well.
I realized I accidentally used baking soda instead.. oops! I am definitely going to try this recipe again using the correct ingredients and I’m sure it will be great. Sorry!
No worries, I had a feeling that could be the problem. Hopefully your next try will be a success! Enjoy Kayla!
This was delicious! You would never know it’s a vegan casserole. I’m making this at our next family Thanksgiving gathering. Thank you!
That's awesome, Tiffany! I'm so glad it was a hit!
I have made this several times and each time it is great! I use all the bread heals that I save from sandwich loaves. I accidentally left the topping mixture in the food processor too long and made more of a cookie dough like paste, but it was amazing! Baked up nice and crunchy. I like this recipe because it helps me feed a bunch of kids and uses up my stash of bread heals. Thank you so much for posting this.
That's wonderful to hear!! What a great idea using the bread ends!
Hello, this recipe looks perfect to bring to an Easter Brunch this Sunday. Would upping the recipe to 1 and 1/2 fit better in a 9x13 pan or just as is? I want to make sure there is enough but not overflowing as we have to travel an hour from home.
Yes, increasing the recipe to 1 and 1/2 will fit better in a 9x13-inch dish. Enjoy! Happy Easter!
Thank you same to you!!
I made this casserole a few months ago and it was Delicious. I don't eat a lot of bread but I had some Potato Buns that needed to be used in something so that's what I used and they worked great.I'm about to make it again. Thank you for a Delicious and easy recipe.
That's wonderful to hear!! I'm glad you enjoyed the recipe!
Want to make this for a potluck—how could I double it? I have a nice large baking dish (maybe 13-14” circumference). Would that work? Any other tips? Sorry and thank you! Looks delish!
Yes, a 9x13" dish or a round 13-14" dish will work for a double batch. Everything else should be fine to double. Enjoy!
What kind of milk did you use in your recipe, almond, coconut? Please advise and thank you!
I used unsweetened, plain almond milk.
Lidia Le Francois
Does the topping have to have more sugar? There's already sugar in the custard part. Can I reduce the sugar? Thank you.
For a less sweet casserole, reduce the sugar in the custard. For a less sweet topping, leave off the topping and add chopped nuts instead.
Can I use a 9x13 pan?
Yes, a 9x13 pan will work. The difference will be the thickness of the casserole. Also, it may require less time to cook.
Can you use chia seeds instead of flaxseeds to make this casserole?
Yes, chia seeds can be used as a substitution. Enjoy!
Wow, this was delicious! I used a blend of full fat coconut milk and unsweetened soymilk for the custard and walnuts for the topping. The recipe makes the perfect amount of custard, and the crunchy caramelized topping was so good! I appreciated that it wasn't overly sweet. I served it with mixed berry sauce, cinnamon apples, vegan whipped topping, and maple syrup. Thank you for a wonderful recipe!
I'm so glad you enjoyed the recipe! :)
Marlena this looks fabulous! I am going to make this for Christmas morning, I have one question though. I see you say it can be made ahead of time overnight, so my question is, is there a specific reason you dont just pour it over the night before? Just curious because Ive made a few overnight french toast recipes and they all have you pour it and store it Thanks!
Sure you can do that.
This looks so good, and I’d love to make it for Christmas breakfast. Is it possible to use regular sugar instead of coconut sugar?
Absolutely! An equal amount of regular sugar can be used instead.
This was delicious and so easy! I used Italian bread, and it was perfect. My casserole did come out the slightest bit soggy at the bottom, but my bread chunks were a bit large. I suggest making sure the chunks are 1"x1" or maybe using a larger dish to get maximum crunch surface.
Thanks so much for the recipe!
Another option is to add the bread cubes to a lidded bowl or sealable bag, then pour the custard in and give it a shake. (The key is to evenly cover each bread cube with the custard) Transfer the cubes to the baking dish leaving behind any extra liquid.
I made this tonight after long anticipating and was very sad that it turned out soggy too. I even cooked it a bit longer but that didn’t help. Flavor was good, just soggy.
First off I'm new to this site and I must say I will be coming back!
I want to make this french toast casserole and while I normally make my plant milks I haven't really felt like it as of lately but I do have canned coconut milk. Can it be used for this receipe or will it be too thick? Maybe I can add water to lighten it up? Also I've seen others use silken tofu. Have you ever tried?
Hi Jessi! Canned coconut milk is a good replacement. I have not tried silken tofu yet. Let us know how it turns out! :)