As a child, my siblings and I would usually have a quick breakfast of sugary cereal before school. But on the weekends, we would wake to the cinnamon-y smell of my mother cooking a homemade breakfast on the stove. Her go-to was sourdough French toast. The summertime was the best for French toast because we would top it with loads of fresh strawberries and blueberries. It was the tastiest way to start the weekend.
I remember fighting with my siblings over who got the last slice. And as I got older, my mom would let me help make the sourdough French toast.
When I became a teenager, I saw weekends as an opportunity for extra sleep. I would sleep in half the day and miss breakfast time with my mom. No more berry-topped sourdough French toast for me.
When I became a mom myself, I asked about the recipe again. My mom carefully wrote it down on a cute little recipe card. The recipe became a weekend staple in my family again.
And now, my grandchildren get to enjoy my mom’s sourdough French toast when they visit on weekend mornings. It’s just as big of a hit with them as it was for me.
What Makes Sourdough French Toast Unique and Tasty
French toast is a classic breakfast recipe for many families. It’s simple, the toppings are customizable, and it is made with ingredients that most people already have on hand.
Typically, French toast is made with brioche bread, but sourdough also pairs nicely with the flavors of the batter. If you’re not a fan of sweet breakfasts, sourdough is a better alternative than brioche. Also, sourdough bread soaks up much of the batter, giving a crispy texture on the outside and a lovely creamy texture on the inside. French toast made with sourdough is fluffy, light, and full of flavor.
It is said that sourdough bread is healthier than other types of bread! And topping it with fruit is a great way to make sure children are getting some nutrients.
I love this recipe because it is fairly quick to make just like this snack! The process is not complicated, so I love to have my grandchildren help out (if they wake up early enough!). Together, we can make enough for everyone to get their fill within half an hour.
My mother always made this recipe with her homemade sourdough bread, but store-brought is fine.
This recipe will yield 10-12 slices, or about a whole loaf of bread. I find myself eating two or three slices. As my grandchildren grow, they have definitely upped the number of slices they eat! On occasion, I have doubled this recipe and gone through two loafs of bread.
Is this recipe vegan/ gluten-free?
This recipe is not intentionally vegan, but it can easily be tweaked to make it vegan. Most sourdough bread is made without animal products. Just be sure to check the label before buying, or you can even make your own loaf at home. For the batter, replace the cow milk for your preferred nondairy milk and swamp the chicken eggs with your favorite vegan egg replacer. If using vanilla flavored almond, oat, or soy milk, you may not need to use any additional vanilla extract from the recipe. And don’t forget to grease the frying pan with a vegan butter.
This recipe is also not intentionally gluten-free. However, the recipe can be substituted with gluten-free sourdough bread and gluten-free flour without difficulty.
Can I use frozen berries?
There’s nothing like fresh fruit, but frozen berries will do just fine in a pinch. Frozen berries can be warmed easily in the microwave prior to serving.
How can I store leftovers?
Properly sealed leftovers will keep in the refrigerator for a couple of days. Reheat in a toaster, toaster oven, or on the stove.
Sourdough French toast can also be frozen. After cooling, transfer the slices to a baking sheet and freeze for an hour. Then seal the slices in a freezer bag or container. Microwave for about a minute for a quick breakfast on busy mornings. Leftover French toast is good up to 3 months in the freezer.
Preparation and Kitchen Equipment Needed
The lovely part about this recipe (besides how good it tastes!) is that it requires minimal preparation and equipment. You will need a medium to large bowl for the batter. I prefer a bowl wide enough to dip one whole slice of bread in at a time, which allows it to be evenly coated in the batter. You will also need a frying pan or griddle. I prefer to use a larger one so that many bread slices can be cooking at once.
The pan can be greased and set on the stove before beginning the batter. This way, the pan will be heated enough by the time the ingredients are mixed together and the first slice has been properly soaked.
I recommend setting up an assembly line of sorts on the counter before beginning to fry the bread. I like to set out a plate with the slices of sourdough bread, then the bowl of batter, then the frying pan on the stove, and then the severing plate on the other side of the stove. This way the French toast can be moved from one place to the next seamlessly. I like to place the bowl of batter as close to the frying pan as possible to avoid mess.
You may also want to hold the bread slice above the bowl of batter so that the excess can drip down before moving it to the frying pan.
This recipe can easily be tag-teamed if you want to involve children or a second hand. One person can dip the bread in the batter while another watches the stove, turning the bread when needed.
Sourdough French Toast
- 10 slices sourdough bread
- 1 1/2 cup milk
- 1/4 cup flour
- 3 pieces eggs
- 1 pinch salt
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- butter or cooking oil for frying pan
- blueberries or strawberries, optional
- Prep the batter. Measure flour into a bowl. Add the milk slowly while whisking. Whisk in the salt, eggs, cinnamon, vanilla extract and sugar until the batter is smooth.
- Take a slice of bread and dunk it into the batter. Allow it to soak for four to five minutes. Coat the batter evenly on both sides.
- Transfer the battered bread slice to a greased griddle or frying pan over medium heat. Cook on both sides until golden brown, about three minutes.
- Transfer the cooked French toast to a serving plate. Repeat with all slices of bread. Serve with berries and maple syrup if desired and enjoy!