Strawberry Cream Cheese French Toast
Strawberry cream cheese French toast is stuffed with a creamy sweet filling and topped with fresh berries, whipped cream, and maple syrup.
The best French toast is golden and crispy on the outside, nice and moist on the inside without being soggy. When you cut into a piece of this stuffed French toast and watch the delicious strawberry cream cheese filling ooze out, well, let’s just say you may find it hard to not lick your plate clean.
About this recipe
This strawberry cream cheese French toast is a special kind of French toast (but still an easy breakfast idea). With that little extra surprise of a creamy filling, these stuffed French toast slices are just kind of spectacular.
Loaded with a delicious cream cheese filling, then soaked in a brown sugar-egg mixture, this recipe for cheesecake flavored French toast is bound to become a family favorite, for special occasions or otherwise. Try it with a mimosa (or a mimosa mocktail), an iced vanilla latte, or a caramel iced coffee.
If this is the kind of breakfast you think you can only order at a restaurant, think again. It is incredibly simple to make this restaurant-style recipe right at home and is a strawberries and cream version of French toast that is perfect for family brunches, breakfast in bed, special birthdays, and absolutely anytime you want.
French toast is a classic brunch item, but unlike a pancake, there is no batter, so it’s all about the bread and the flavor of the egg mixture. Using day-old brioche bread is the BEST bread for French toast. It’s buttery, light, and fluffy, and thick slices of it filled with strawberry cream cheese are basically heaven. When you use day-old bread, it’s just stale enough to soak up the eggs and milk without making the bread soggy.
As you can imagine, they’re decadent enough for dessert too! Try topping them with a scoop of ice cream and a drizzle of chocolate sauce.
What you need
- Brioche Bread – You can slice your own loaf into minimum 1″ thick slices, or get it pre-sliced. Day old bread is best for French toast. If you can’t find brioche, Texas toast will also work for this recipe.
- Strawberry Cream Cheese – Cream cheese that comes in a container is usually pretty spreadable, but you may want to take it out of the fridge ahead of time just to warm it up a bit. It will make for easier piping into the centre of the bread.
- Eggs, Milk, Brown Sugar, and Vanilla Extract: This combination will be used to dip the bread in. It’s slightly sweet and vanilla extract adds warmth and gives it a custardy flavor.
- Optional Topping Ideas – Of course, you can use whatever you like! We love fresh strawberries, powdered sugar, maple syrup, or whipped cream on this French toast.
How to make it
Create a slit in the bottom of each individual slice, about 2 inches. This is why you want thicker slices, so there’s room to fill!
Using a piping bag, fill it with cream cheese and pipe about 1 tablespoon into each slice.
In a medium bowl, beat the eggs, milk, vanilla, and brown sugar together.
Pierce each slice with a fork and use it to hold each piece as you dip. Dunk it into the egg mixture and flip to make sure both sides are coated. Lift it out of the bowl and allow some of the excess to drip off.
Place each slice on a preheated griddle and cook for 3-4 minutes per side until golden brown.
Serve with your favorite toppings and enjoy immediately!
For starters, no matter what bread you end up using, it has to have a few things going for it. One, it needs to be sturdy enough to stand up to the coating. It should be able to absorb some of it without falling apart! Day-old bread, slightly stale, is great for this. You also want thick slices, especially for any recipe with filling. And last, it should be a good-tasting bread. If it tastes off, or if it’s a savory bread flavored with all kinds of herbs, you’re going to want to find something else to use.
Brioche is a great choice, as is Texas toast or your everyday white or whole wheat bread. Sourdough bread can be used and challah or French bread will also result in awesome French toast.
Without it, the coating would be too “eggy.” It adds to the rich moisture and helps the egg mixture coat the bread evenly. Rather than tasting eggs and bread, it gives the French toast a sweet custard flavor. It also allows for easier blending of the added ingredients of vanilla and brown sugar.
French toast doesn’t take long at all. The best way to tell is by looking at the color on the outside. A nice golden brown on both sides is usually a good indication. Cooking on medium to medium-low heat is a good way to ensure the outside doesn’t cook too quickly without the inside catching up.
How to make this French toast your own
- Add a sprinkle of cinnamon into the egg mixture for a little extra warming spice flavor.
- If you can’t get your hands on strawberry cream cheese, make your own filling using plain cream cheese and strawberry sauce or jam.
- A little lemon zest in your fillingis a nice bright citrus note in contrast to all the sweetness. Try topping with 3 ingredient lemon glaze or lemon cream cheese glaze.
- Having trouble filling one slice? Don’t fret, just spread some filling in between two thinner slices and make it like a sandwich!
- Top with all the fresh berries, and not just strawberries! Grab some blueberries, blackberries, and strawberries. Pour on a little maple syrup and whipped cream and you’ve got breakfast fit for dessert! Or, try topping with blueberry sauce.
Make Ahead Ideas
French toast is best enjoyed right away, so it’s a good thing it comes together so quickly. You can store and freeze it for later, but when serving guests, it’s always a nice idea to have a fresh batch ready to go.
If you choose to make a large batch, put cooked French toast on a wire baking rack placed on top of a sheet pan in a warm oven (175-200ºF). This will keep the cooked French toast warm and crispy while you finish cooking the rest.
Cover any leftover slices of toast in plastic wrap or foil and keep in an airtight container. It’s important to keep the moisture in to avoid the bread drying out. To freeze, transfer to a freezer-friendly bag, separating each piece with parchment paper. That way you’re able to take out only what you need.
Allow your French toast to thaw in the fridge overnight and then pop it in the toaster oven or microwave the next morning for a quick and easy breakfast. Reheating may cause it to be slightly soggy due to the filling.
More Berry Recipes
- Strawberry Buttermilk Pancakes
- Naturally Sweetened Raspberry Pancakes
- Sheet Pan Gluten-Free Blueberry Pancakes
- Lemon Blueberry Ricotta Pancakes
- Lemon Raspberry Pancakes
- Red, White, and Blue Fruit Salad
Get the Recipe: Strawberry Cream Cheese French Toast
- 1 loaf (16 oz) brioche bread, sliced
- 1/2 cup strawberry cream cheese (8 tablespoons)
- 3 large eggs
- ⅔ cup whole milk
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Strawberries, powdered sugar, maple syrup, whipped cream, optional toppings
- Preheat griddle to 300ºF.
- Cut a 2-inch slit into the bottom crust of each of the slices of brioche.
- Fill a piping bag with the strawberry cream cheese and pipe approximately 1 tablespoon into each slice of brioche.
- In a medium bowl, beat the eggs, then beat in the milk, vanilla, and brown sugar.
- Dip each slice of brioche into the egg mixture, flipping, to make sure all sides are coated.
- Place each slice on the griddle. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes per side or until golden brown.
- Remove from griddle, top with fresh strawberries, powdered sugar, syrup, and whipped cream, if desired.
- Cook times may vary based on heat of griddle.
- You can use other kinds of bread such as challah, French bread, or Texas toast. As long as it’s thick and can hold the cream cheese, it will work.
- If you choose to make a large batch, put cooked French toast on a wire baking rack placed on top of a sheet pan in a warm oven (175-200ºF). This will keep the cooked French toast warm and crispy while you finish cooking the rest.
- Cover any leftover slices of toast in plastic wrap or foil and keep in an airtight container. It’s important to keep the moisture in to avoid the bread drying out. To freeze, transfer to a freezer-friendly bag, separating each piece with parchment paper.