Apple Cinnamon French Toast
This light and fluffy apple cinnamon French toast is the perfect healthy recipe for a hearty weekend brunch! Complete with a warm sweet apple-cinnamon topping, this French toast is sure to be a crowd-pleasing dish the whole family will love.
Although I’ve named this recipe apple cinnamon French toast, it’s just French toast with an apple cinnamon topping but, hey, who’s checking?! This apple French toast is a wonderful recipe for a weekend brunch or a special occasion, plus, it also stores very well in the fridge or freezer if you want to make a batch ahead of time and quickly reheat it on busy weekday mornings.
Ingredients for Apple Cinnamon Fresh Toast
This recipe is made much like regular French toast with the addition of apples and ground cinnamon. Here’s what you’ll need:
- Bread: In my opinion, a good French toast recipe is all about the bread, which is why I suggest a brioche or French bread to help ensure your French toast is extra fluffy (and French!). If you can’t find brioche bread, sourdough, challah, French, or plain old, day-old real food white bread will work just fine.
- Eggs: Eggs are one of the essential components of the custard base that gives French toast its rich and tender interior and crispy exterior, and they add a little protein to the dish too!
- Milk: Milk is the second component of the custard mixture used for soaking French toast. Nailing the egg-to-milk ratio is key as too much milk will leave you with soggy French toast. I recommend using regular milk but you could use non-dairy milk if needed, almond milk would work best.
- Cinnamon: Because you can’t make apple cinnamon French toast without cinnamon!
- Vanilla: For an extra splash of flavor and sweetness.
- Apples: While any apple will work in an apple topping for French toast, McIntosh, Cortland, Braeburn, Honeycrisp, and Gala apples work particularly well. If possible, use fresh, seasonal apples for ultimate flavor.
- Butter: To get the French toast nice and crispy and brown the apples to caramelized perfection.
- Brown Sugar: To create a sweet and sticky sauce for the caramelized apples.
- Maple Syrup: For drizzling!
How to Make It:
Prepare the milk and egg mixture. In a large bowl, combine the large eggs, milk, cinnamon, and vanilla in a bowl and whisk until well combined.
Soak the bread. Add the bread to the egg mixture, one slice at a time, to ensure each slice is well coated.
Cook the French Toast. Add each slice of bread, one at a time, to a hot pan with melted butter and cook, flipping once, until golden brown on both sides. Make sure your pan is hot enough before adding the bread to ensure it browns well and gets crispy when it hits the pan.
Prepare the apple cinnamon topping. While the slices of French toast are cooking, prepare the brown sugar apple cinnamon topping. Add the sliced apples to a pan to cook with butter, cinnamon, and brown sugar until sweet and sticky!
Serve warm and enjoy! Once everything is ready, serve the French toast with a generous portion of the apple cinnamon topping and a drizzle of maple syrup.
How to Make Apple Topping for French Toast
While cinnamon French toast is tasty on its own, making an apple cinnamon topping for French toast really takes the fall flavors to the next level and adds a bit of fiber at the same time! Here’s how to make it:
- Core and slice the apples into thin wedges, cubes, or bite-size pieces. You can remove the skin if you like but I like to keep it on for extra fiber.
- Warm butter in a pan until golden and bubbling and then add apple slices.
- As the apples begin to cook, sprinkle with ground cinnamon, and flip and toss them in the melted butter to ensure they cook on all sides.
- When the apples begin to soften, reduce the heat, add brown sugar, and continue to cook until it melts and caramelizes the apples. If the mixture gets too sticky, you can add splashes of water to loosen it up.
Not only does this apple topping go well on French toast but it also pairs well with pancakes, on oatmeal, or mixed into yogurt. You can also make a big batch and store it in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 5 days so it’s ready to add fall flavor to your breakfast whenever you need it!
Tips for the Best French Toast
Don’t cut the bread too thin/thick. The ideal thickness for a slice of French toast is 3/4″ to 1″ thick; this is thin enough to soak up custard but still thick enough to get a crispy exterior when cooked. If using thinner, pre-sliced bread you will need to adjust the soaking time and cooking time accordingly.
Be sure to mix the custard thoroughly. Ensure that the eggs and milk are well incorporated before soaking the bread, you want to avoid globs of egg whites separating from the milk and cooking onto the French Toast.
Don’t under/over soak the French. Under-soaking the bread will result in dense and dry French toast, while over-soaking it will result in soggy French toast.
Not pre-heating the pan. The pan should be hot, and the butter should be melted before adding the bread. Ensuring the pan is hot enough will ensure the custard starts to cook immediately, giving the French toast that golden, crispy exterior we all love.
Add toppings or ultimate flavor! While French toast is delicious on its own (I mean, it’s bread, eggs, milk, and butter, what’s not to love?), adding toppings to your French toast, like this apple cinnamon topping, is a great way to add seasonal flavor.
Storage and Reheating
- To Store: Allow to cool completely and then refrigerate in an airtight container or in a baking dish covered with aluminum foil or plastic wrap avoid, to prevent it from drying out, for 4-5 days.
- To Freeze: Place slices of French toast in an airtight container or plastic bag, separating layers with pieces of parchment paper or wax paper to avoid sticking, and freeze for up to 3 months.
- To Reheat: Preheat the oven to 400°F, place slices of French toast on a baking sheet or in a large baking dish in single layers, and warm in the oven for 8 minutes, flipping the slices halfway through. Single portions can also be reheated in a toaster oven following the same method. If you want to reheat the French toast from frozen, follow the same instructions but extend the bake time to 15-20 minutes until the bread is completely warmed through, you can also turn on the broiler for a minute to crisp up the sides once it’s thawed and warmed. Although you can reheat the French toast in the microwave for 1-2 minutes if needed, it is not recommended as it will create a soggy texture.
More Healthy French Toast Recipes:Print
This cinnamon French toast with apple cinnamon topping is perfect for a weekend brunch or make-ahead weekday breakfast.
- 8 bread slices, French, brioche, or white, 1/2″ thick
- 3 eggs
- 1 cup milk
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon, divided
- 1 pinch salt
- 2 apples, diced or sliced
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 3 tablespoons brown sugar
- Butter, to cook
- Maple syrup, to serve
- Begin by preparing the apple cinnamon topping. In a small pan or saucepan, melt butter, then add diced apples and 3/4 teaspoon of the cinnamon, and cook on medium heat for 3-5 minutes until apples are tender. Once tender, add brown sugar, and 1/2 tablespoon of water, stir to combine and allow to cook for an additional 1-2 minutes. If the mixture gets too “sticky” simply add another splash of water to loosen it up. Once cooked, remove from the heat, and set aside.
- While the apple topping is cooking, in a large baking dish, add eggs, milk, vanilla extract, the remaining 1/4 teaspoon of the cinnamon, and a pinch of salt, and whisk until well combined and smooth.
- Add sliced bread to the baking dish, completely submerging each slice in the mixture, flipping the bread to carefully coat each side, then lift the bread out of the mixture and allow any excess to drip off. This may need to be done in batches depending on how large your baking dish and pan are.
- In a large skillet or pan over medium heat, melt a small knob of butter. Add slices of coated bread to the pan and cook for 2-3 minutes per side until golden brown, repeat until all slices are cooked. You can keep cooked slices in the oven at 200°F to keep them warm while you finish up the slices of remaining bread.
- Once cooked, serve French toast immediately with apple topping, additional maple syrup, and/or a sprinkle of powdered sugar as desired.
- Serving Size: 2 slices
- Calories: 327 calories
- Sugar: 21 grams
- Fat: 10 grams
- Carbohydrates: 50 grams
- Fiber: 4 grams
- Protein: 10 grams
Keywords: apple french toast, apple cinnamon topping for french toast