Milk Bar’s French Toast Muffins
I love this delectable Christina Tosi recipe for “French Toast Muffins” for so many reasons:
- It lets you make a load of “French toast” in one fell swoop.
- It is a genius use of all those odds and ends of various bread loaves on the verge of freezer-burn at home.
- It’s easy enough for kiddos to do, making it an ideal way to spoil mom with breakfast in bed on Mother’s Day. In fact, it’s featured in the “Milk Bar: Kids Only” cookbook (Clarkson Potter, 2020), of which I received a review copy.
Her creations at Milk Bar are beloved for their nostalgic effervescence and joyous kid-like appeal. So, a cookbook like this is a natural. It’s sure to entice kids into the kitchen with recipes such as “Coco Cabana Cereal Squares,” “Compost Pancakes,” “Donut Shakes,” and “Corn Dog Waffles.”
She even instructs how to judge if baked goods are done, by employing cocktail umbrella toothpicks to demonstrate, as well as trouble-shoots problems such as cupcakes or muffins sinking in the middle (You’re opening and closing the oven too much.).
For “French Toast Muffins,” you rip up bread slices into small pieces “as if you were feeding ducks in the park.” (One of the best recipe directions I’ve ever read, by the way.)
The bread chunks get soaked in a blend of beaten eggs, milk, brown sugar, vanilla extract, cinnamon, salt and a little bit of flour. Then, the chunky mixture gets divided up into muffin tins.
When they emerge from the oven, the French toast muffins are delightfully crispy all over their craggy edges, and custardy within.
The original recipe calls for using sliced white bread. I actually ended up using a mix of brioche and whole wheat bread, which worked just great. So, feel free to use whatever bread you have on hand or want to use up.
It’s almost like a sweet version of Thanksgiving stuffing, but in cute individual portions. You could probably add a few dried cherries or fresh blueberries or a little bit of chopped nuts to the soaked bread chunks before baking, if you wanted to jazz up the French toast muffins even more.
Serve when they’re still warm, dolloped with butter, drizzled with maple syrup, and garnished with fresh fruit, if you like.
This is one easy and clever recipe you just have to try — no matter what your age.
French Toast Muffins
3/4 cup milk
1/3 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
6 slices white bread (or a mix of whatever breads you like)
Prep: Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray 6 cups of a muffin pan (no liners required!).
Whisk: In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, brown sugar, flour, vanilla, cinnamon, and salt until well combined.
Rip It: Tear the bread slices into 1-inch pieces, as if you were feeding ducks in the park, and submerge them in the egg mixture. Make sure they are fully coated.
Scoop: Using a measuring cup, scoop 1/3 cup of the batter into each of the 6 prepared cups in the muffin pan. The batter will be almost level with the top edge of the cup (but it shouldn’t go over!). Look through and make sure the gooey bread pieces are divided as evenly as possible among the muffin cups — move some around if you need to.
Bake: Bake the muffins at 375 degrees for 25 minutes. Add a couple more minutes if you like your French toast a little toastier! Double-check that you set your timer for these muffins; it will be hard to tell visually when they are ready. With oven mitts, take the muffin pan out of the oven.
Serve: Let the muffins cool for 2 minutes, then pop them out of the pan and serve warm on plates, with the butter and maple syrup.
They are best eaten fresh out of the oven. Bake and eat these babes immediately — they aren’t as awesome on day 2.
Adapted from “Milk Bar: Kids Only” by Christina Tosi
Another Fun Recipe From Christina Tosi: Chinese Sausage Foccacia