You’ve got to admit it: they’re cute. These individual bites of not-quite-muffins and not-quite-French-toast are almost too good to be true.
Not only are they scrumptious, but they work on your schedule. Throw them together tonight and bake them tomorrow morning for an easy warm breakfast. They also reheat well, so you can make a batch this weekend and have them for breakfast all week long.
Whatever your breakfast situation, these French toast muffins are up to the challenge.
My secret weapon for French toast has always been cinnamon. Not some fairy dusting of cinnamon, but a full-on downpour.
Since cinnamon and apple go so well and this recipe lends itself well to add-ins, I also like to put little bits of apple in the mix. A few dabs of melted butter on top and a generous sprinkling of coarse sugar on top also yields a sweet crunch.
Soak the bread in the French toast batter for at least four hours, or overnight. You can make and bake them on the same day if you're an early riser, or you could let them rest overnight and bake them the next morning.
Either way, once baked, they keep, refrigerated, for two to three days, or they can be frozen for up to a one month. Reheat in the oven or microwave.
For more information on which apple varieties are best for baking, check out our Guide to Apples.
Apple-Cinnamon French Toast Muffins
Any apple will work for this recipe, so pick a favorite!
- 1 loaf country-style bread (1 pound loaf)
- 5 large eggs
- 2 cups whole or 2% milk
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 4 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1 to 2 apples, cored and cut into 1/4-inch dice (1 1/2 cups diced)
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 5 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon turbinado sugar or sugar in the raw, divided
- Maple syrup, to serve (optional)
- Special equipment:
- 2 12-cup muffin pans
Slice the bread into cubes:
Use a serrated bread knife to cut the bread into small 1/2-inch bread cubes. You can leave the crusts on or remove them, as you prefer. Measure out 9 cups of bread cubes; you may not need the entire loaf.
Make the French toast batter:
In a large bowl, whisk the eggs, milk, vanilla and cinnamon together until well blended. Add the 9 cups of bread cubes. With a large spoon, stir well to coat the bread with the batter.
Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 4 hours, or overnight:
Stir from time to time to help the bread absorb the custard.
When ready to bake the muffins, heat the oven to 350F
Stir the diced apples into the bread and custard mixture.
Line and fill the muffin cups:
Line 16 of the muffin cups with a double layer of muffin papers, splitting the batch between two muffin pans. Spray the muffin papers with a little cooking spray. Fill each muffin cup with about 1/2 cup of the filling, mounding slightly to form a peak.
Top with sugar just before baking:
With a pastry brush, dab the melted butter over the tops of the muffins and sprinkle each muffin with 1 teaspoon of the turbinado sugar.
Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until golden:
Let the muffins cool for 10 minutes in the muffin tin, and serve warm with maple syrup to drizzle over top, if desired. (Refrigerate leftovers for several days, or freeze them for up to one month, and reheat in the oven or microwave.)