Overnight Blueberry French Toast Casserole Recipe

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Overnight Blueberry French Toast Casserole Recipe- the textures and flavors take this recipe to the next level! The perfect balance of rich, creamy custard, the sweetness of blueberries, and a hint of citrus soaked up by the challah bread result in a moist and tender texture baked to golden brown perfection! Don’t forget the warm homemade blueberry sauce drizzled over the top!

You’ll also love my Fresh Fruit Salad and Egg and Potato Casserole

slice of best blueberry french toast casserole on a plate with a fork. blueberry syrup over the top of the casserole.
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Best Blueberry French Toast Casserole

The perfect make-ahead recipe for Easter, Christmas morning, Mother’s Day brunch, or any special occasion. A breakfast recipe that will make everyone jump out of bed!

  • Moist and Tender Bread: The bread cubes, soaked overnight in the egg mixture, absorb the liquid, resulting in a moist and tender texture similar to bread pudding.
  • Creamy Layers: The cream cheese mixture or mascarpone forms creamy layers between the bread, creating pockets of richness that contrast with the softness of the soaked bread.
  • Crispy Top: The casserole develops a yummiest golden-brown, slightly crispy top during baking, contrasting the softer interior.
  • Juicy Burst from Blueberries: The blueberries, whether fresh or frozen, add juicy bursts of sweetness and a subtle tartness, creating pockets of flavor throughout the casserole.
  • Optional Blueberry Sauce: If using homemade blueberry sauce, it adds a smooth and slightly thickened texture with whole blueberries, offering a fruity and syrupy drizzle.

I made this for a holiday brunch, and it was a big hit! Everyone, including the kids, gave it rave reviews!

How to make best blueberry french toast casserole step-by-step instructions: casserole after baking.

Simple Ingredients

ingredients for recipe.

French Toast Casserole

  • Bread (Challah bread, Brioche bread, Sourdough bread, or French bread): Choose your preferred bread for the base. Challah adds a sweet and eggy flavor, brioche brings richness, sourdough adds a tangy twist, and French bread provides a classic touch. Great with most leftover bread or stale bread!
  • Cream Cheese or Mascarpone: Adds a creamy and indulgent texture to the casserole. Cream cheese is tangy, while mascarpone contributes a smoother, milder flavor.
  • Blueberries (Fresh or Frozen): A key ingredient, juicy blueberries add bursts of sweetness and vibrant color to the dish. They complement the creaminess of the cheese and the richness of the bread.
  • Fresh Eggs: Bind the casserole, providing structure and a custard-like consistency. Eggs contribute to the overall richness of the dish.
  • Milk: Creates a creamy and smooth texture in the egg mixture, enhancing the moisture and flavor of the casserole. I prefer whole milk.
  • Vanilla Extract: Infuses a warm and sweet aroma, adding depth to the overall flavor profile of the dish.
  • Lemon Zest: Provides a citrusy and refreshing element, brightening up the flavor of the casserole. It complements the sweetness of the blueberries.
  • Pure Maple Syrup: Adds a natural and complex sweetness to the dish. Real maple syrup provides a richer flavor compared to artificial syrups.
ingredients for the blueberry syrup.

Easy Blueberry Sauce (optional):

  • Blueberries (Fresh or Frozen): A key ingredient, juicy blueberries add bursts of sweetness and vibrant color to the thick sauce.
  • Granulated White Sugar: Sweetens the sauce, balancing the tartness of the blueberries.
  • Cornstarch: Acts as a thickening agent for the sauce, giving it a luscious consistency.
  • Water: Forms the base of the sauce, creating a liquid medium for the blueberries to cook in.
  • Lemon Juice: Adds a tangy brightness to the sauce.
  • Butter: Contributes richness and a velvety finish to the blueberry sauce.

See the recipe card for quantities.

How to Make French Toast Casserole

The overnight soak lets you do most of the work the night before, making it perfect for a stress-free breakfast or brunch. See the printable recipe card for full instrcutions.

How to make best blueberry french toast casserole step-by-step instructions: mixing the eggs and lemon zest in a bowl with a whisk.

Make the custard with eggs and lemon zest for flavor.

How to make best blueberry french toast casserole step-by-step instructions: adding milk to egg mixture.

Add milk or heavy cream to create a rich custard base.

Layer the bread, blueberries, and cream cheese into the baking dish.

How to make best blueberry french toast casserole step-by-step instructions: cubed bread in casserole pan with cream cheese and blueberries.

Pour the custard on top and let it rest overnight.

How to make best blueberry french toast casserole step-by-step instructions: casserole before baking.

Bake in the oven and enjoy! This overnight breakfast casserole is baked to perfection, creating a warm and comforting dish perfect for cozy mornings or leisurely weekend breakfasts.

How to Make Homemade Blueberry Sauce

how to make blueberry pancake syrup recipe: add cornstarch, sugar, and water to a pan and mix.

Heat water and cornstarch in a pot. This helps thicken the sauce.

how to make blueberry pancake syrup recipe: add blueberries and cook until thick. Add butter at the end of cooking.

Add the blueberries and cook until they burst. Add the butter at the very end.

Substitutions

  • Bread: Substitute Challah with brioche, sourdough, French bread, or any other sturdy, day-old bread you have on hand.
  • Cream Cheese or Mascarpone: Replace cream cheese with softened ricotta or cottage cheese for a different texture.
  • Blueberries: Experiment with other berries such as raspberries, blackberries, or a mixed berry blend.
  • Milk: Substitute regular milk with almond milk, soy milk, coconut milk, or any non-dairy alternative for lactose-free or vegan preferences.
How to make best blueberry french toast casserole step-by-step instructions: close up of baked casserole recipe.

Variations

  • Cinnamon Swirl: Mix ground cinnamon and a bit of brown sugar into the egg mixture for a warm and comforting flavor. You can also create a cinnamon swirl by layering cinnamon sugar between the bread cubes.
  • Coconut Paradise: Sprinkle shredded coconut between the layers for a tropical touch. You can also use coconut milk instead of regular milk for an extra coconut flavor.
finished blueberry french toast casserole with a serving spoon holding up a slice.

Equipment

How to Store

Store leftover breakfast casserole in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2-3 days.

slice of best blueberry french toast casserole on a plate with a fork.

Top tips

  • Stale Bread: Use slightly stale or day-old bread for better absorption of the custard, resulting in a creamier texture.
  • Uniform Cubes: Cut the bread into uniform cubes to ensure even soaking and baking.
  • Room Temperature Ingredients: Allow cream cheese and eggs to come to room temperature for smoother incorporation.
  • Press Down on Bread: When pouring the egg mixture over the bread, press down a few times to help the bread soak up the liquid evenly.
  • Overnight Refrigeration: Refrigerate the casserole for at least 4 hours or overnight to allow the bread to absorb flavors and maintain a moist texture.
bite taken out of the blueberry french toast casserole with a fork on the plate.

FAQ

What’s the best bread for French toast casserole?

The best bread for French Toast Casserole is thick, sturdy, and has a slightly dry or stale texture to absorb the custard mixture effectively. For example, Challah bread, brioche bread, sourdough, or French or Italian bread all work well. It’s important to use bread that can absorb the custard without falling apart, resulting in a moist and flavorful casserole.

Does it have to rest overnight?

While overnight refrigeration is an important step for optimal flavor and texture, you can let it sit for at least 4-6 hours before baking.

Can I use frozen blueberries?

Yes, both fresh and frozen blueberries work well in this recipe. If using frozen blueberries, there’s no need to thaw them before incorporating them into the casserole.

What if I don’t have “stale bread”?

If the bread isn’t stale, it will absorb all the liquid too fast. This results in a very long cooking time and a mushy interior. Here’s a shortcut for making “stale” bread: Spread the bread cubes on a lined baking sheet and toast in a 300°F (149°C) oven for about 10 minutes. Let it cool, and proceed with the recipe!

Looking for other recipes? Try these:

What to serve with Blueberry French Toast Casserole?

These are my favorite dishes to serve with this easy overnight casserole recipe:

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cover photo.

Best Blueberry French Toast Casserole Recipe

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5 from 3 reviews

Overnight Blueberry French Toast Casserole Recipe- the textures and flavors take this recipe to the next level! The perfect balance of rich, creamy custard, the sweetness of blueberries, and a hint of citrus soaked up by the challah bread result in a moist and tender texture baked to golden brown perfection!

  • Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes (pluss chilling time)
  • Yield: 12 servings 1x

Ingredients

Units Scale

Blueberry French Toast Casserole:

  • 12 slices (about 1 pound, or 1 loaf), day old* Challah bread (brioche, sourdough, or French bread also work) cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 2 8ounce packages of cream cheese (or mascarpone cheese)
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries
  • 12 large eggs
  • 2 cups milk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • Zest of 1 lemon (optional)
  • 1/2 cup real maple syrup

Homemade Blueberry Sauce (optional):

  • 3/4 cup granulated white sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 cup fresh blueberries
  • 1 tablespoon butter

Instructions

Blueberry French Toast Casserole:

Prepare the Night Before:

  1. Spray a 9×13-inch baking dish with nonstick spray.
  2. Cut the bread into 1-inch pieces and place half in the prepared baking dish.
  3. Cut the cream cheese (or mascarpone) into cubes or scoop with a small cookie scoop, placing on top of the bread. Sprinkle the blueberries over the cream cheese and top with the remaining bread cubes.
  4. In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, vanilla extract, lemon zest (if using), and maple syrup until well combined.
  5. Pour the egg mixture evenly over the bread cubes.
  6. Cover the dish with plastic wrap, press down with your hands a few times to ensure the bread absorbs the liquid, and refrigerate for 6 hours, or overnight.

The next morning: 

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Remove the pan from the fridge 1/2 hour before baking.
    Remove the plastic wrap and cover the dish with foil.
  2. Bake for 30 minutes, then remove the foil and bake for an additional 25 to 30 minutes, or until the center is set and the top is golden brown. Once the casserole is done, let it cool for a few minutes before slicing into individual portions. Drizzle with the homemade blueberry sauce or warm maple syrup before serving. Optional: Garnish with additional fresh blueberries and a dusting of powdered sugar.

Blueberry Sauce

  • In a medium saucepan, whisk together the sugar and cornstarch. Add the water and bring to a boil over medium heat. Keep stirring and boil for about 3 minutes. Stir in the blueberries and reduce heat to low. Simmer for about 10 minutes or until the blueberries pop and the mixture thickens. Stir in the butter until melted, and the sauce is glossy.

Notes

*if the bread isn’t a bit stale in will absorb all the liquid too fast. This results in a very long cooking time and a mushy interior. Here’s a shortcut for making “stale” bread: Spread the bread cubes on a lined baking sheet and toast in a 300°F (149°C) oven for about 10 minutes. Let cool and proceed with the recipe!

  • Author: Elena Davis
  • Prep Time: 15 min + chilling time
  • Cook Time: 60 minutes
  • Category: Sweet
  • Method: American
  • Cuisine: American

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About Elena

My dream is to share delicious wholesome recipes that you will share around the table with all your loved ones. The memories surrounded by food are the heart and soul of CucinaByElena.

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7 Comments

  1. I made this recipe for Mother’s Day brunch for our family. It was delicious! It was super quick and easy to make which is a plus when you don’t have a lot of time! My family loved this so much! Let’s just say there were no leftovers! Thank you for the incredible recipe Elena!♥️






  2. This was delightful! I requested this for my Mother’s Day brunch and it was so good! I loved the tart flavors of the blueberries and lemon together. Such a fresh taste.
    We did have to cook it an extra 20 minutes for it to set, but worth the wait! Thank you for the treat of a recipe 🙂






    1. You are welcome! I am happy you loved it so much! Yes, the cooking time might vary just a bit depending on the bread used.