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May 16, 2008 05:49 AM

Making French Toast For a Crowd

I need a few ideas for making a sort of "hangover brunch" for a group of about 20. I'd like some things that I can do ahead of time so I am not doing a lot of the cooking that actual morning. Initially I'm thinking of a quiche, some sort of fruit salad, morning cocktails & a french toast dish that I can assemble the night before & just bake in the morning. Anyone have any ideas?

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  1. make the creme brulee french toast recipe at You prepaer it the night before and just pop it in the oven that morning. Richie

    2 Replies
    1. re: javaandjazz

      Totally agree with javaandjazz. I actually made the recipe last Sunday(Mother's Day) ofr the first time, and it was so easy to prepare, and sooo delicious. We all loved it.
      Let us know what you do make, and how it goes.

      1. re: bxgirl

        Jumping in a bit late here to third the Creme Brulee French Toast. Didn't realize it was on Epicurious. I discovered it in the big yellow Gourmet book and make it whenever I have overnight guests. I love being able to prep the night before and just stick it in the oven the next morning and I've yet to find anyone who doesn't love it.

      1. re: byrd

        I can second this paula deen recipe, I make this dish quite often when I'm doing brunch for a crowd. It is soooo good, but you don't need additional syrup at the end because it kind of makes its own. I don't even want to think about how bad it must be for you, but it will certainly get eaten up with a crowd.

      2. You can make a baked croque monsieur. It has ham and cheese but you can easily leave those out (as well as the other savory elements).

        I add a little maple syrup to the egg mixture.

        1. Ina Garten has two recipes for breakfast bread pudding - essentially bread or croissants soaked in a custard of eggs and milk, and then baked. Same taste as french toast, but all you have to do is put the pre-made dish (can do it the night before) into the oven before breakfast time.

          1. Thanks-Does the bread in those recipes come out soggy? I tried something like that before (the Paula Deen recipe) & had to turn the oven way up at the end to crisp evreything up a bit.

            1 Reply
            1. re: Teraesa22

              I didn't have a problem with the top recipe made with challah bread (I have not made the one with croissants).

              I think the best way to prevent sogginess is to keep the depth of the casserole to a minimum. Pick a dish that is wider and more shallow (use two separate smaller dishes if you dont have the size you need). This way the eggs and bread will easily cook all the way through, and you wont end up with soggy or undercooked eggs in the middle.

              You could also add an extra egg or reduce the amount of half and half or milk. It also helps if you are using a dryer or older bread, vs a very soft fresh baked one that wont soak up as much of the custard.