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Chunky French Toast with Caramel Syrup

Chunky French Toast & Caramel Syrup | www.somethingswankycom

Yesterday I told you a little about my recent trip to Utah and how I’ve officially dubbed this week “My Favorite Utah Foods Week!” (seriously, don’t miss yesterday’s Pralines & Cream Fudge recipe!)

This Chunky French Toast may very well be my favorite recipe to come out of Utah EVER. Kneaders Bakery and Cafe will always be firmly rooted in my heart as a special eating place during my time in Utah. I frequented their tables often with roommates, visiting family and friends, and eventually my husband and daughter over the 7 years I lived there.

And the ONLY thing I ever ordered was their Chunky French Toast.

True story.

I mean, I’ve picked off of other people’s plates and tasted some of the other food on the menu (and actually made my first non-french-toast order last weekend since the breakfast menu isn’t an option at 7pm). But nothing holds a candle to Kneaders french toast. Nothing! Ask anyone.

The chunky cinnamon bread and the caramel syrup give this breakfast dish it’s signature and much-loved taste. And, aside from a little (optional) bread making, the recipe could not be simpler!

Chunky French Toast & Caramel Syrup | www.somethingswankycom

This recipe comes directly from the source– Kneaders! I love it when restaurants are willing to give up their recipes so we can make them at home (especially when home is 2,000 miles away).

One thing to note about this recipe: the bread. Kneaders says to use their own Chunky Cinnamon Bread for the french toast. The problem is, I don’t have a Kneaders near by, and I bet a lot of you don’t either. So I’ll be providing my own recipe below for the bread.

Since the french toast is a let-sit-overnight-bake-in-the-morning kind of recipe, I suggest baking the bread earlier in the day so it’s firm enough for slicing by night. Or you can simply use your favorite thick-sliced, cinnamon-y, bakery-bought bread instead (which makes this recipe ridiculously easy).

We use this recipe for special occasions in our house, and it’s a great way to celebrate a big day or to simply say “I love you!” I hope you enjoy it as much as we have :)

Chunky French Toast with Caramel Syrup

Ingredients

    Overnight French Toast:
  • 1 loaf (8 slices) thick-sliced cinnamon bread (recipe below),
  • 8 eggs
  • 3 c. milk
  • 1 T. brown sugar
  • 3/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 T. vanilla
  • 2 T. butter
  • Caramel Syrup:
  • 1 c. brown sugar
  • 1 c. heavy whipping cream
  • 1 c. Light corn syrup

Instructions

    Making the French Toast:
  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF.
  2. Grease a 9x13 baking dish. Place the bread slices flat in the baking dish.
  3. Mix all remaining ingredients, reserving the butter and pour over the bread.
  4. Cut butter into pieces and dot over the top. Refrigerate over night or at least 1 hour.
  5. Bake 45 - 50 minutes.
  6. Making the Caramel Syrup:
  7. Whisk together all ingredients over medium heat in a 2 quart saucepan until sugar is dissolved and mixture is warmed through. Some separation is normal during cooling-- simply stir before pouring if necessary.

Notes

Recipe Source: 4Utah.com

http://www.somethingswanky.com/chunky-french-toast-caramel-syrup/

Chunky Cinnamon Bread

Yield: 8 thick slices

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp active or instant dry yeast
  • 1 cup warm water (think warm bath water)
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 cup cinnamon sugar (1 cup sugar + 1 tbsp cinnamon) for coating

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 365ºF. Prepare 9x5x3 loaf pan by lining it with parchment paper or foil and greasing with non-stick cooking spray.
  2. Pour the warm water into a 2-cup bowl or measuring cup.
  3. Sprinkle the yeast over top. Then sprinkle the sugar over the yeast, and drizzle the oil over as well. This should cause the yeast to sink in the water and then begin to foam. Let rest for 5-10 minutes until very foamy (this is proofing the yeast).
  4. Add the flour and salt to a large bowl (I use a stand mixer and dough hook for this, but feel free to do it by hand). Pour the liquid into the bowl and stir the until the dough forms. Continue to knead for about 5 minutes until dough is elastic.
  5. Cover and let rise until doubled in size (I place my bowl on a heating pad to speed up rise time).
  6. Punch the dough down and start pinching off golf-ball sized pieces of dough. Roll the dough balls in the cinnamon sugar and place each one in the loaf pan until pan is 3/4 full*.
  7. Bake for 30 minutes. The top should be golden brown and the center should be somewhat firm when gently pressed (shouldn't feel doughy).
  8. Let cool in pan for 15 minute before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

Notes

*DO NOT FILL THE DISH TO THE TOP WITH DOUGH! It will burn on the outside and be doughy on the inside. Only fill the dish 3/4 full. You may have a little dough left over.

http://www.somethingswanky.com/chunky-french-toast-caramel-syrup/

Don’t miss a bite!

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Be sure to pin some of my other favorite breakfasts!

Red Velvet Banana Bread

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Homemade Cinnamon Rolls

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Homemade Krispy Kreme Donuts

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More delicious breakfast ideas from my friends:

Chocolate Swirl Zucchini Bread

Cinnamon Roll Bread

Orange Poppyseed Bread

Ashton Swank

Ashton is the owner and author of Something Swanky. Although first and foremost a wife and mother, she considers herself an online entrepreneur, freelance writer and photographer, and brand ambassador. Her focus is in food styling, food photography and recipe development.

15 comments on “Chunky French Toast with Caramel Syrup”

  1. Okay, so this recipe is awesome and it makes me want to fly back to Utah for breakfast. Let’s do it!

  2. Awww, no breakfast for dinner? That’s my favorite dinner of all time! I haven’t tried making french toast with really thick bread, but that sounds amazing. Sometimes those thin slices just turn too soft and soggy, especially with how much syrup I like to drizzle on top. ;) You take such gorgeous photos too; they really look divine!

  3. So THIS is the french toast you were talking about. YUM! I wish they served breakfast all day long!

  4. This looks incredible!!! That’s awesome that Kneaders shares the recipe and bravo to you for making it! Gorgeous shots with the syrup and the pour shot. Pinned!

  5. It’s true. I have never been to Kneaders in the morning and seen anyone order anything besides this French Toast. I don’t even know why they bother putting anything else on the menu. (PS I lived in Utah for 7 years too! Bless your little heart for getting us this recipe. You are pretty much awesome.)

  6. Wow! That syrup. The bread! This looks amazing. Pinned.

  7. oh how i wish they served breakfast for dinner, I guess this means i have to go back

  8. Okay, now I am REALLY regretting that it was closed on Sunday! This French Toast looks amazing…how long until the next SLC conference again?

  9. This looks amazing! I just have one question: Do you bake the french toast in the mixture or drain it before baking it? I baked it in the mixture and it seemed a bit soggy, but maybe it’s supposed to be? I was just wondering! Thanks! :)

    • The idea is that the bread is so thick that it easily soaks it all up… so maybe your bread wasn’t thick enough? Which is actually ok (to use thinner bread), but you wouldn’t want to use all of the egg/milk mixture in that case. Did you use store bought bread or the bread from this recipe?

    • Thanks for your reply Ashton! :) I did use the bread from the recipe and it got super thick after soaking up a lot of the mixture overnight, but there was still about a good 1/2 inch or so of mixture left in the 9×13 baking dish when I baked it. Maybe next time I will try cutting the egg-mixture in half and see how it turns out! The flavor was phenomenal though! I could probably just eat the bread all by itself. ;)

  10. I make this a lot (it’s a favorite for Christmas Morning) and I don’t pour the mixture over the top. I did that the first time and it was a soggy mess. Now, I just do a quick dip (it’s amazing how much it absorbs in that quick dip!) with each piece before putting it on the pan, then discard the remaining egg mixture. So good!

  11. Oh, and parchment is a must!

    • Wendy- Do you use parchment to bake the French toast or just the bread? Or both, maybe? I’m trying to avoid soggy French toast and will probably do the same as you with just dipping the bread into the egg mixture.

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