Let me start by saying this is NOT your regular French toast, but in a very good delicious way. A French toast that was toasted on pan first, the finished off in the oven. The result is a crunchy toasty bread dipped in custard and topped with sliced cinnamon Apple. How does that sounds to you? Different, right? Not so traditional French toast, but exciting and delicious. So why not?
Last year for Fall, I made a Baked Pumpkin French Toast with Pecan Crumble. From that day on that I took my first bite, I immediately knew I will be making this over and over again. And I was right, since then I had made this several times already with different variations. There was immediately a follow up last December when I made my Eggnog French Toast. Same idea, different variation.
This time around, another variation is coming your way. We are making Baked Apple French Toast with Walnut Crumble. Trust me when I say this, it’s delicious! The bread is nicely toasted and the cinnamon Apple and pecan crumble on top taste so good. It’s got good flavor and lots of different texture going on in every bite. The bread is nice and toasty, the Apple soft and flavorful, and the topping is sweet and crunchy. I love every layer of this French Toast. I hope you will give this a chance.
How is This Different from Regular French Toast?
First, this has been twice cook. First is by cooking it on your top just to get the bread nicely browned and then it is transferred into the oven to finish it off and to make it crunchy. The cooking on stove top will somehow release the moisture from the bread and will make the bread nicely browned so it doesn’t get soggy. The baking makes the French toast texture crunchy and this is very important so you end up with a nice toasty and crunchy French toast. Plus baking helps the crumble toppings to dry up and become crunchy which add a really great texture to the French toast. Both steps are important, so do not skip either so you get the same result as what I have in the photo, and of course the taste.
Great for Make-Ahead and Freezing
This baked french toast is great for make-ahead breakfast. This saved me a LOT of times in several occasion. A great breakfast, snack or even dessert option when you are in a hurry. To freeze, make sure to cool the bread completely after taking out from the oven. Once completely cooled down, wrap each bread with aluminum foil or plastic wrap. Put in a ziplock bag and freeze for up to 1 month. When ready to eat, simply pop into the pre-heated 300F oven and bake for 10 -15 minutes just enough to crisp it. You can also use a toaster to toast it.
- 2 pieces sliced loaf Bread (White, Whole Wheat or any Sweet Breads that are few days old)
- 2 tablespoon Milk (any milk will do)
- 1 Egg
- 1 tablespoon Brown or White Sugar (or any desired sweetener)
- 1/2 teaspoon Vanilla Extract – optional
Cinnamon Apple Ingredients:
- 2 Apple (I Used Granny Smith)
- 1 tablespoon Butter
- 1/8 teaspoon Cinnamon Powder
- 1/8 teaspoon Salt
- 1 tablespoon Honey
Crumble Toppings Ingredients:
- Oil Spray for greasing the pan
- 2 tablespoon Butter – melted
- 1 tablespoon granulated Sugar
- 1 tablespoon Brown Sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon Salt
- 1/8 teaspoon Cinnamon Powder
- 2 tablespoon All-Purpose Flour
- 3 tablespoon chopped Pecan or Walnut
- Walnut – can be substituted with Walnut or Almonds
- Oil Spray – can be substituted with melted butter
- Cinnamon – can be substituted with Nutmeg or All-Spice
- Pre-heat the oven to 350F.
- Cook the Apple: Peel and cut the Apple in thin wedges. In a heated pan, add butter and wait for it to melt. Add cinnamon powder, salt, honey and lemon juice. Cook each side for about 5 minutes.
- Custard Mixture: Mix milk, egg, cinnamon powder, salt, brown sugar and vanilla extract. Stir until the sugar is dissolved.
- Make the Pecan Crumble: Melt the butter. Add granulated sugar, brown sugar and salt. Mix until combined. Add flour and chopped walnut and mix again. You should end up with a thick nut crumble. Set aside in the refrigerator to chill.
- Dip the Bread: Dip the sliced bread in the egg and milk mixture until fully coated. I like using square pan when dipping the bread, but you can use any bowl you have that is good enough to submerge the bread without deforming the shape. Dip the bread for about 5 seconds just to both sides of the bread. Do not soak for too long (unless using an old bread) to avoid the bread getting soggy, you just want the bread to be wet with the custard mixture.
- Toast the Bread: Spray a heated non-stick pan with oil or grease with butter. Do NOT put a lot of oil or butter and make sure the pan is hot before putting down the bread. Cook each side of the bread for 5 minutes in medium heat. This will help the bread to have a nice crunchy stable bottom. Very carefully lift away from the pan and transfer in a parchment lined baking pan.
- Arrange Sliced Apple on Top: Divide the cinnamon Apple on top of the sliced bread
- Top with Pecan Crumble: Take the crumble out from the refrigerator. By this time, it will be hard and clump, use your fingers to crumble the mixture again. Sprinkle the pecan crumble on top of the 2 slices of bread. Slightly press to make the crumble stick to the bread.
- Bake the Bread: Bake the bread for 17 minutes. The bottom and sides of the bread will get even crunchier, as well as the crumble topping. Let cool for at least 5 minutes to give time for the bread to get even crunchier and stable for cutting.
- Serve: Dust top with icing sugar. Cut diagonally and transfer in a plate. Serve with some sliced Apple on the side or top.
- If using older bread, dip the bread longer to wet the bread. If using a brand new bread, dip and lift as soon as the bread is wet.
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