Make-Ahead Crème Brûlée French Toast: An exquisite, caramelly overnight breakfast casserole that will thrill even the pickiest palate!

Anytime you need to make a good impression, serve this gooey French toast casserole. It’s a breeze to prepare and everyone will be begging you for the recipe!!

Crème Brûlée French Toast on a round plate with fruit and a red handled fork

Crème Brûlée French Toast

Today’s #Sunday Supper theme is budget friendly dinners.  Breakfast for dinner is nothing new, so why not expand beyond the usual eggs, pancakes, and waffles to an elegant French toast casserole. This make ahead creme brulee French toast has been one of my go-to brunch recipes for over a decade. I’ve made it for birthday gatherings, teacher breakfasts, and when out of town family comes for a visit. If you love creme brulee, give this exquisite, make ahead breakfast recipe a try!

Like with many tasty, make ahead breakfast casseroles, the prep is done the day before, all you need to do in the morning is brew the coffee and fry up some bacon and, voilà, you have a splendid, inexpensive meal. It’s perfect for breakfast, brunch and/or dinner, and as a bonus, it’s an entrée and dessert all in one!

Syrup pouring over a slice of Crème Brûlée French Toast

Perfect for Caramel Lovers!

This poofs up magically in the oven but falls almost immediately.  But, no worries. This exquisite, out of this world overnight casserole will wow even the pickiest customers. Well, maybe not everyone as my hubby recently told me he’s not a huge fan of strata and other make-ahead breakfast dishes. Gasp. Hard to fathom, isn’t it?

But if you love caramel, this is a legitimate way to get your fix first thing in the morning. I hope you’ll give it a shot the next time you have out of town visitors or for Father’s Day, Easter, Christmas morning or anytime you feel like treating your family to a special breakfast.

Tips for Making Crème Brûlée French Toast

This is a super simple make-ahead breakfast casserole, but a couple of tips will help make it perfect!

  • Choose a sturdy bread. If it’s too delicate, it will turn to mush when the custard is absorbed.
  • I like buying brioche or challah. Grainy or whole wheat bread would work, but I don’t recommend them as the presentation and mouthfeel won’t be as lovely.
  • Refrigerating overnight is recommended, but if you’re short on time, a couple of hours will probably be OK. You want to make sure the bread soaks up as much custard as possible.
  • PRO-Tip: I like to add some Grand Marnier to the custard for a boost of flavor. Did you know that alcohol is a flavor enhancer? It will evaporate during the baking process so it’s OK to serve this dish to children.
  • I like eating my French toast with berries and a dusting of powdered sugar instead of maple syrup. But feel free to use whatever topping your family enjoys!
  • Make sure to flip over slices of this creme brulee french toast to serve so the caramelly sauce is on top!

More Breakfast Casseroles You’ll Love:

Creme Brulee French toast topped with syrup on a small white plate

More Make-Ahead Breakfast Casseroles:

Whether it’s an ordinary Sunday breakfast or Mother’s Day or Easter brunch, a make-ahead breakfast casserole recipe comes in very handy. The prep work is done the night before so the special day can be enjoyed!

Creme Brulee French Toast - an exquisite, make ahead breakfast casserole!

Crème Brûlée French Toast

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Yield 4 servings

An exquisite, caramelly breakfast casserole! Adapted from Epicurious. I found this recipe when my youngest was in kindergarten. And now he's in grad school. It is a classic!


  • 1/2 stick butter
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon corn syrup
  • A half loaf of brioche or challah bread
  • 3 eggs
  • 3/4 cup half and half
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 teaspoons Grand Marnier, optional (just add another teaspoon of vanilla if you omit the Grand Marnier)
  • Pinch of salt


  1. In a saucepan, melt the butter with brown sugar and corn syrup, stirring till smooth and sugar is dissolved. Pour into a 9 x 9-inch baking dish. Cut one-inch slices of bread and arrange in one layer over caramel, cutting a slice if needed to cover completely.
  2. Whisk together eggs, then add half and half, vanilla, Grand Marnier (if using) and a pinch of salt. Pour over bread, then cover and refrigerate overnight.
  3. The next morning, bring French toast out of the fridge and allow to sit at room temperature about an hour. Preheat oven to 350º. Bake, covered, till puffed and golden, about 25-30 minutes.
  4. To serve, flip slices so caramel layer is on top. Serve with berries and real maple syrup if desired.


Easily doubles. Use a 9 x 13 dish and bake for 35-40 minutes.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 492Total Fat: 28gSaturated Fat: 16gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 250mgSodium: 415mgCarbohydrates: 51gFiber: 1gSugar: 32gProtein: 11g


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