Basic French Toast

Basic French Toast
The Spruce
  • Total: 10 mins
  • Prep: 5 mins
  • Cook: 5 mins
  • Yield: 4 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
211 Calories
11g Fat
14g Carbs
13g Protein
See Full Nutritional Guidelines Hide Full Nutritional Guidelines
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4 servings
Amount per serving
Calories 211
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 11g 14%
Saturated Fat 5g 24%
Cholesterol 244mg 81%
Sodium 262mg 11%
Total Carbohydrate 14g 5%
Dietary Fiber 1g 2%
Protein 13g
Calcium 207mg 16%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

This is a delicious, basic French toast recipe made with eggs, milk, and bread. Serve this popular breakfast dish with butter and maple syrup. Round out a delicious savory and sweet brunch menu with bacon or sausage. Fruit or berries are delicious alternatives, too.

French toast is very easy: Soak thick slices of bread in an egg and milk batter then fry them to crisp up the outside and cook the egg custard center. It cooks fast and is a great way to use up stale bread. This recipe uses just a few basic ingredients you likely have in the kitchen already and it freezes incredibly well, so it's economical too.

Add a little sugar to sweeten the egg batter if you like, or add cinnamon and vanilla extract for a comforting twist. For a richer French toast, use thick slices of brioche bread or challah, along with whole milk, light cream, or half-and-half. Or make a French toast dessert with sturdy slices of pound cake!

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Ingredients

  • 4 large eggs
  • Optional: 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 dash salt
  • 1 cup milk
  • 8 to 10 slices bread (preferably stale or day-old)

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Basic French Toast Ingredients
    The Spruce
  2. Break the eggs into a wide, shallow bowl or pie plate and beat them lightly with a fork or whisk.

    basic french toast
    The Spruce
  3. Stir the sugar, salt, and milk into the beaten eggs.

  4. Coat a skillet or griddle with a thin layer of butter, shortening, or oil. Place it over medium-low heat.

  5. Place the bread slices, one at a time, into the bowl or plate. Let the bread soak up the egg mixture for a few seconds and then carefully turn to coat the other side. Coat only as many slices as you will be cooking at one time to prevent soggy French toast. 

    basic french toast
    The Spruce
  6. Transfer the egg-coated bread slices to the hot skillet or griddle. Heat slowly until bottom is golden brown. Turn and brown the other side.

    cook french toast
     The Spruce
  7. Serve French toast hot with butter and syrup, or your preferred toppings. Enjoy!

    French Toast
    The Spruce

Tips

  • Use thick slices of bread and soak it just long enough to absorb the egg mixture, but not so long that it becomes saturated.
  • If you're serving the French toast all at once, keep slices warm in the oven set on the 200 F or "warm" setting while you make subsequent batches.

Recipe Variations

  • Add an extra teaspoon or two of sugar, 1 teaspoon of vanilla, and a teaspoon of cinnamon to the egg mixture for cinnamon-spiced French toast.
  • Use part light cream, half-and-half, or heavy cream to create a silkier, richer egg batter.
  • For a change of pace, use toppings instead of syrup for your French toast. Powdered sugar, chocolate chips or nuts, berries, or a streusel mixture or fruit compote are just a few tasty alternatives.
  • Up your French toast game and make pain perdu. Meaning "lost bread," this French-influenced New Orleans recipe uses allspice, cinnamon, and vanilla, with thick French baguette slices.

Why Does French Toast Taste Too Eggy?

To create the classic custard taste that makes French toast great, the ratio of eggs to milk is important. If the balance is off and you include too many eggs or not enough milk, the finished French toast will have a scrambled egg-like flavor. When scaling this recipe up or down, keep in mind that you need 1/4 cup of milk for every egg.

Why Is Stale Bread Best for French Toast?

Beyond getting the soaked bread into the frying pan right away, using dry, stale bread is key to avoiding soggy French toast. Fresh bread already has a good deal of moisture, but the drier a bread is, the more room it has to soak up the egg custard. If you only have fresh bread that's still soft, dry it out before soaking it in the batter. You don't want to toast it, though. Instead, lay slices on a baking sheet and place it in the oven at 275 F for just about 10 minutes, or until the center is dry.

How to Freeze French Toast

Did you know you can freeze French toast? Make big batches and freeze French toast for easy breakfasts: Arrange the cooked and cooled French toast on a baking sheet, freeze for 1 hour, then transfer to freezer bags and seal. It will keep for up to two months. Reheat the French toast in the toaster or skillet.