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Vanilla-Bourbon French Toast Recipe

It's still a sweet way to start your day that won't leave you in a sugar crash afterward.
Vanilla-Bourbon French Toast RecipeMitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

In France, French toast is called pain perdu—"lost bread," a nod to the fact that the dish works best with stale bread. More importantly, pain perdu isn't served at breakfast, but rather as a dessert, a reminder that this dish is traditionally soaked in sugar and cream. This version forgoes cream for milk, and a deluge of sugar for vanilla and a slug of bourbon. It's still a pretty decadent French toast recipe to start your day, but at least you won't need a nap afterward. (But you can take one anyway if you want to, we won't tell!)

Nutrition: 330 calories, 8 g fat (3 g saturated), 44 g carbs

Serves 4

You'll Need

4 eggs
1 1⁄2 cups 2% milk
1⁄4 cup bourbon
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 Tbsp sugar
1⁄4 tsp ground nutmeg
1 loaf day-old country bread, preferably whole wheat, cut into 8 slices
Butter for the pan
Maple or agave syrup for serving

How to Make It

  1. Preheat the oven to 225°F.
  2. Combine the eggs, milk, bourbon, vanilla, sugar, and nutmeg in a shallow baking dish and whisk to combine.
  3. Soak each slice of bread for 30 seconds, turning once, before cooking.
  4. Heat a large cast-iron skillet or nonstick pan over medium heat.
  5. Melt a small pat of butter in the pan, enough to coat the surface.
  6. Add 2 to 4 slices of the soaked bread and cook for about 3 minutes, until a deep brown crust forms.
  7. Flip the bread and continue cooking for another 2 to 3 minutes, until golden brown and firm
    to the touch.
  8. Keep the cooked French toast in the oven while you work through the rest of the batch.
  9. Serve with warm syrup and a dusting of powdered sugar, if you like.

Eat This Tip

While we've managed to take most of the sting out of the French toast, it's still by definition a carb-heavy breakfast. But by increasing your fiber intake, you can blunt the impact on your blood sugar levels. Try replacing the syrup with any of the following:

  • Sliced bananas, either raw or caramelized in a pan over medium heat for a few minutes
  • Raw strawberries with powdered sugar
  • Blueberries cooked for 15 minutes with a spoonful of water and sugar

RELATED: 100+ healthy breakfast ideas that help you lose weight and stay slim.

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