The Single Best Way to Make French Toast

Adding this one special ingredient will completely transform this classic breakfast dish!

Growing up, breakfast at my house was always simple during the school week. Slices of toast with peanut butter or a bowl of cereal would usually suffice. But Saturday mornings, however, were a completely different story. My mom would get up and make some kind of lavish breakfast. Usually it was pancakes, but sometimes if we were lucky, she would whip up her French toast recipe. I would help my mom whisk together the eggs and milk, dip the leftover bread we had from our school sandwiches that week, and watch as she would fry them on the pan.

I may not be able to experience those special mornings at home as often, but I sure do love to wake up and make a plate of French toast on a Saturday morning, especially using the few tricks I've picked up over the years.

My secret for scrumptious French toast

So what makes my French toast recipe different from the kind I grew up with? A little bit of added vanilla extract! This small amount of added flavor turns the French toast from a slice of simple eggy bread into a delectable meal to wake up to. Ever since I started adding vanilla extract to my French toast recipe, I never looked back. I would absolutely consider it the single best way to make French toast.

Use any bread you like

The best thing about this recipe is how versatile it can be. You can make French toast with whatever bread you have on hand. You can try it with simple sliced sandwich bread, or my personal favorite, slices of a leftover crusty French baguette or an Italian loaf from dinner the night before. For this example, I actually used a leftover semolina bread loaf which had some sesame seeds sprinkled on top—a unique added touch to this French toast recipe.

Once you have your bread picked out, here's how to make French toast for an easy brunch at home.

French Toast Recipe

french toast on a blue plate
Kiersten Hickman/Eat This, Not That!

Makes 4 servings

Ingredients

2 eggs
1/2 cup milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
8 slices crusty bread
1/4 cup sugar
1 tbsp cinnamon
Butter (about 1 tbsp)

How to Make It

1

Whisk together the wet ingredients

whisking eggs and milk for french toast
Kiersten Hickman/Eat This, Not That!

Whisk together the eggs, milk, and vanilla extract in a bowl. Make sure the bowl is big enough to dip the bread. I like to use a flatter bowl for this—like a shallow pasta bowl—to make it easier for dipping the bread.

2

Dip the bread

dipping sliced bread into egg mixture
Kiersten Hickman/Eat This, Not That!

I like to use leftover crusty bread that I have for French toast, but any bread will work for this recipe. This is also a great way to use up stale bread if you have any!

3

Cook on each side for 2-3 minutes

flipping french toast in a pan
Kiersten Hickman/Eat This, Not That!

Heat up a skillet over medium heat, and melt some butter on the pan. You won't need much—just enough to coat the bottom. Transfer the dipped bread to the pan and cook on each side for 2 to 3 minutes, or until the side is toasted and golden brown.

Repeat this step until you have cooked all of the bread.

4

Sprinkle with cinnamon sugar, add syrup

pouring syrup on french toast
Kiersten Hickman/Eat This, Not That!

Move the French toast to a plate and sprinkle. Mix together the sugar and the cinnamon, then sprinkle it on top of the bread. You may not use all of the cinnamon sugar for this recipe—that's okay! Save it for the next time you make French toast.

Full French Toast Recipe

  1. Whisk together the eggs, milk, and vanilla extract.
  2. Heat up a skillet over medium heat. Melt a small amount of butter on the pan to coat it.
  3. Dip in the slices of bread to the egg mixture. Make sure it's covered on both sides.
  4. Transfer the dipped bread to the pan. Cook on each side for 2-3 minutes, until each side is toasty and golden brown.
  5. Mix together the sugar and cinnamon. Sprinkle some cinnamon sugar on top of the toast. Serve with your desired toppings.

RELATED: The easy way to make healthier comfort foods.

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Kiersten Hickman
Kiersten Hickman is a senior editor at Eat This, Not That!, specializing in recipe development, food, and diet coverage. Read more
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