Start your weekend stress-free with this delicious pumpkin French toast.

I always enjoy something special on the weekend, and serving this excellent Sunday breakfast to my family is what family love is all about to me.

Pumpkin French Toast with Brown Sugar Sauce

This is a bread pudding made with all the ingredients I use to make my French toast. However, I assemble it the night before and bake it in the morning.

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I love knowing that breakfast is done, and I only have to set up the table, make some bacon if I so choose, and prepare the Brown Sugar sauce at the last minute.

Fall breakfast at its best!

In this Article

Choosing your bread for your baked French toast

Not all breads are alike; some work better than others for bread puddings.

White breads are soft and more absorbent, while crusty breads can add a chewy texture.

Sweet breads and egg breads add a custardy texture to your dish.

Dense breads, such as multigrain, are not ideal as they do not absorb much liquid and become dry after baking.

Here are a few helpful tips for the ingredients needed

This is a short introduction. It includes essential items that you may already have in your pantry. Please read the recipe for complete instructions.

Brioche bread – Rich in flavor and spongeous to absorb the custard-like cream.

Extra large eggs – Please bring them to room temperature before using them.

Canned Pumpkin – A small can will suffice. The pumpkin puree should not be sweetened or seasoned.

Brown and granulated sugar – Brown sugar is used with this recipe’s French toast casserole portion and for the Brown sugar sauce. The granulated sugar is only used with the Egg mixture of the French toast.

Vanilla extract – Uplift the sauce by adding a layer of flavor.

Homemade Pumpkin pie spice – nothing says fall baking like pumpkin pie spice, the perfect combination of ground cinnamon, ground cloves, and ground nutmeg.

Unsalted butter – I always use unsalted butter in my cooking or baking to control the amount of sodium. Salted butter not only adds too much salt to your dish, but it changes the flavor.

Heavy cream – penetrates the brioche and fills it with this beautiful custard.

Bourbon – my personal choice; however, you can use Whiskey, Dark rum, Cognac or Brandy

Pumpkin French Toast with Brown Sugar Sauce

Pumpkin Pie Spice

You can either use store-bought or, if you have lots of baking during this time of year, make a jar of homemade.

Either way, here is my recipe:

Makes ⅓ of a cup or 16 teaspoons

  • 3 tablespoons ground cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons ground nutmeg
  • 1 ½ teaspoons ground allspice
  • 1 ½ teaspoons ground cloves

Combine all the above spices in a small bowl. Mix well and store in a glass airtight container.

Homemade Pumpkin Pie Spice

Equipment you will need

Bread knife – Serrated makes slicing bread so much easier

Ovenproof 3 quarts rectangle baking dish – Make sure your dish is glass or porcelain. You want all your bread to fit comfortably and not go overboard while baking.

KitchenAid stand-alone mixer – is my tool of preference as it does all the work and it is easy to clean.

Small saucepan – used to make the brown sugar sauce. Ensure it has a heavy bottom so the heat will be distributed evenly.

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Baking tips and how to make this pumpkin French toast with Brown sugar sauce

Before baking, I always recommend having all your ingredients ready and at room temperature.

  • Cut your brioche bread into cubes and place them in the buttered ovenproof 3-quart rectangle baking dish. Press down and even out the cubes.
  • Meanwhile, whisk together the eggs, heavy cream, sugars, homemade pumpkin pie spice, and canned pumpkin in a large bowl until the sugar has melted and all the ingredients are well incorporated.
  • Add the liquid to the bread. Press down on the bread to let every brioche cubes absorb the egg mixture.
  • Cover tightly with plastic wrap and place in your refrigerator for up to 24 hours.

If time is not on your side, you can prepare this French toast early in the morning, and instead of 24 hours, you can let it soak and rest for a minimum of 4 hours.

Yes, it will be soft and delicious, but the longer it rests, the better, the softer it will be.

Ready to bake

Bring your dish to room temperature, and if you are using a glass or ceramic dish, you do not want to crack in the hot oven.

Preheat the oven to 350F and bake for about 50 to 60 minutes.

Sprinkle granulated sugar over your baking dish. This step is optional.

You want to have a beautiful golden brown crust. The bread will puff up when baking.

Brown sugar sauce

While your French toast is in the oven, you can make the sauce so it will be at the perfect temperature when you are ready to enjoy it.

  • Melt the butter over medium-high heat. Make sure it does not boil.
  • Add the brown sugar and the heavy cream and stir until you feel all the sugar has melted.
  • Away from the heat, add the vanilla extract and the Bourbon. Stir slowly and well to incorporate it all.

You can stop at the vanilla and omit the Bourbon if you have little ones.

Pumpkin French Toast with Brown Sugar Sauce

Serving your Baked Pumpkin French Toast

As you know, we eat with our eyes, and the presentation makes us drool.

I have served this dish two ways.

The first presentation is to cut a perfect square slice, place it on a dish, pour over the brown sugar sauce, and with an optional dollop of Chantilly.

My second presentation is also perfect for the little one, as I served it in a ramekin. Pour the sauce over it, or maple syrup and add the dollop of Chantilly.

Pumpkin French Toast with Brown Sugar Sauce

Substitutions

White bread, sweet egg bread, and Challah are the perfect substitutions to the brioche bread.

Bourbon can be replaced with whiskey, rum, Madeira, brandy or Cognac. Of course, if children enjoy this pumpkin French toast, you may want to make the same sauce for them, omitting the alcohol.

Storage instruction

This fantastic pumpkin French toast stores beautifully for several days in the refrigerator,

Cover tightly with plastic wrap. Before doing so, it must be at room temperature and placed in the refrigerator.

The brown sugar sauce can also be stored in an air-tight glass container for several days.

Bring back to room temperature and enjoy.

Pumpkin French Toast with Brown Sugar Sauce

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between canned pumpkin and pumpkin puree?

They are the same thing. The term is often used interchangeably in recipes. YOu may also see the team solid-pack pumpkin, which means the same thing. All those terms mean 100% steamed and pureed pumpkin, with no extras added.

Can I substitute canned pumpkin for pumpkin puree?

Yes, you can substitute it.

Can I eat canned pumpkin without cooking it?

Yes, you can. The pumpkin is already cooked via steaming. You can eat it straight out of the can. However, it will taste better baked and with some seasoning.

Baked Pumpkin French Toast with Brown Sugar Sauce

5 from 34 votes
Pumpkin French Toast with Brown Sugar Sauce
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Overnight Resting: 1 day
Total Time: 1 day 1 hour 5 minutes
Servings: 8 people
Start your weekend stress-free with this delicious pumpkin French toast.

Ingredients 

PUMPKIN FRENCH TOAST

  • 1 Brioche bread, sliced into 3/4 inch thick cubed
  • 8 eggs, extra large
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin
  • cup granulated sugar
  • cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon Homemade Pumpkin Pie Spice
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • unsalted butter, to butter the ovenproof dish

OPTIONAL

  • granulated sugar

BROWN SUGAR SAUCE

  • ½ cup unsalted butter
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • ¼ cup Bourbon
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract

Instructions

PUMPKIN FRENCH TOAST

  • Cut the Brioche bread (or Challah loaf) into cubes. Butter an ovenproof 3-quart rectangle baking dish.
    Pumpkin French Toast with Brown Sugar Sauce
  • Whisk together the eggs, heavy cream, sugars, canned pumpkin, pumpkin spice, vanilla extract, and salt in a large bowl.
  • Place the cubed bread cubes in the baking dish.
    Pour the egg mixture over it and press down the cubes. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator overnight, or let it sit until all the cream is absorbed.
    Pumpkin French Toast with Brown Sugar Sauce
  • Remove from the refrigerator and bring back to room temperature. Preheat the oven to 350℉ degrees.
    Pumpkin French Toast with Brown Sugar Sauce
  • Place in the hot oven and cook for 50 minutes. The top will be golden, and it will evenly puff up.

OPTIONAL

  • Sprinkle granulated sugar over your pumpkin French toast for added sweetness and crunchiness before placing it in the oven.

BROWN SUGAR SAUCE

  • Meanwhile, prepare the brown sugar sauce by melting ½ cup butter in a small saucepan over medium-high heat.
  • Add brown sugar and ½ cup heavy cream; stir to dissolve the sugar. Remove from heat.
  • Stir in Bourbon and vanilla.
  • Serve warm Pumpkin French toast with sauce over it.

Notes

Homemade Pumpkin Pie Spice
Makes ⅓ of a cup or 16 teaspoons
3 tablespoons ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons ground ginger
2 teaspoons ground nutmeg
1 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cloves
Combine all the above spices in a small bowl. Mix well and store in a glass airtight container.
Serving your Pumpkin French Toast
As you know, we eat with our eyes, and the presentation makes us drool.
I have served this dish two ways.
The first presentation is to cut a perfect square slice, place it on a dish, pour over the brown sugar sauce, and with an optional dollop of Chantilly.
My second presentation is also perfect for the little one, as I served it in a ramekin. Pour the sauce over it and add the dollop of Chantilly.
Substitutions
White bread, sweet egg bread, and Challah are the perfect substitutions to the brioche bread.
Bourbon can be replaced with whiskey, rum, Madeira, brandy or Cognac. Of course, if children enjoy this pumpkin French toast, you may want to make the same sauce for them, omitting the alcohol.
Storage instruction
This fantastic pumpkin French toast stores beautifully for several days in the refrigerator,
Cover tightly with plastic wrap. Before doing so, it must be at room temperature and placed in the refrigerator.
The brown sugar sauce can also be stored in an air-tight glass container for several days.
Bring back to room temperature and enjoy.
 

Nutrition

Calories: 540kcal | Carbohydrates: 36g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 40g | Saturated Fat: 24g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 11g | Trans Fat: 0.5g | Cholesterol: 270mg | Sodium: 163mg | Potassium: 222mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 34g | Vitamin A: 6344IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 100mg | Iron: 1mg

Giangi’s Kitchen provides nutritional information, but these figures should be considered estimates, as a registered dietician does not calculate them.

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