French toast has been a staple breakfast food for many years. The golden-brown, crunchy treat is both delicious and nutritious.
On top of that; the meal is incredibly easy to make. All you need is a few basic ingredients and good quality bread.
However, with hundreds of types available on the market, it can be difficult to choose just one. So, if you’re wondering which bread is best for French toast, you’ve come to the right place.
Let’s take a look at some of the bread options you can use for your tasty breakfast.
While making French toast is simple, there are a couple of stages to the recipe. The bread will go through many stages before you serve it up.
So, before you go out and buy bread, it’s crucial that you consider a few factors.
First off, you want to make sure that the bread you choose is sturdy. Since you’ll dip the toast in a liquid mixture, it needs to be able to hold its shape.
Other than that, you also need to fry the bread, so it has to handle a fair bit of heat.
That’s why many people decide to use thick bread slices when making French toast.
Other than sturdiness, you also have to look at the texture of the bread. Most of the time, when eating toast, you want fresh, soft bread, right out of the oven.
However, this isn’t the case with French toast.
For the best results, you want stale, dry bread, with little to no crumbs.
This ensures that your toast slices can absorb as much of the batter as possible. On top of that, stale bread is tougher and can hold its shape better.
Since you only use a few ingredients for French toast recipes, each one has to count. For that reason, you want to use tasty, high-quality bread.
Besides that, when you fry up French toast, the sugar in the bread will caramelize and harden. This is what gives your meal the golden-brown crust.
So, you have to keep an eye on the sugar content when choosing bread.
One of the best aspects of French toast is how affordable the meal is. You don’t need any fancy ingredients or top-shelf components.
People just grab what’s already in their pantry and create a flavorful dish.
So, it shouldn’t be a surprise that you can use regular bread to make French toast.
The bread is semi-dense with plenty of tiny air pockets all over the surface. That means it’ll be able to absorb plenty of the batter quickly.
However, regular bread is usually a bit softer than other varieties. For that reason, when you plan on using it, wait until it goes stale.
If you don’t have the time, just pop a few slices in the oven for three to five minutes. This should remove moisture and harden the bread.
Instead of the normal yeast, we use a starter to make sourdough bread. This is a mixture of fermented flour and water that uses wild yeast to rise.
The starter gives the bread a heartiness and tanginess that’s difficult to replicate. That’s why many people prefer using it when making French toast.
They find that the sourness complements the sweetness you get from the caramelization.
Aside from that, sourdough is one of the sturdiest types of bread you can find.
The wild yeast gives it a slightly chewy texture that can handle a lot of moisture. Plus, the bread should have no issues spending a while in a frying pan.
Yes, sourdough makes excellent French toast. However, there are a few rules you have to follow to ensure you make the perfect treat.
First off, it’s important that you buy an entire loaf, as opposed to pre-sliced bread. This gives you the chance to decide the thickness of your toast.
Other than that, you want fluffy sourdough, with many holes inside. That will indicate that the gluten is fully developed, which gives you tougher bread.
Wheat or wholemeal bread is a great option for French toast. That’s mostly because of the ingredients that go into making the loaf.
The main component of this bread is a specific flour, which we make by milling whole wheat grains.
Using this flour changes the physical properties of the loaf.
For starters, the flour contains more fiber. This will toughen up the dough and create sturdy bread.
Plus, it’ll help ease many digestive issues.
Besides that, wheat bread has fewer air bubbles than other varieties. That means the bread will be denser, and easier to handle when wet.
Unfortunately, that’s where the benefits end.
Wholemeal has a distinctive flavor, which will carry through into your French toast.
So, unless you enjoy the nutty, complex taste, this option isn’t for you.
Many of us are familiar with the iconic French baguette. It comes in a long log and has a solid, crispy crust.
Then, when you cut into it, you find a soft center.
You may think that the airy insides make it unsuitable for French toast, but that’s not the case.
Because of the sizable crust, baguettes are durable. They also have a thick crumb, which makes them perfect for soaking up the batter.
On top of that, when you slice the bread, you get a circular cross-section. This is a nice change from the traditional square we usually see with French toast.
Unfortunately, baguettes have a tendency to harden up significantly when dry. So, you may have to soak the bread in the batter for a few extra minutes before you fry it.
Whole grain is similar to wholemeal, but with one major difference. Instead of wheat, we can use any other grain to make the loaf.
That includes oats, barley, and spelt.
Each one of these has three main components: germ, endosperm, and bran.
The germ is the inner core of the grain and contains all the nutrients and vitamins. Around the core, you’ll find the endosperm layer, which contains starch and proteins.
Finally, the outside shell, or bran, is a fibrous layer with many minerals.
We mill all these components together to make whole-grain flour.
Together, these will strengthen the bread and give it a fine crumb. On top of that, the fiber stiffens the loaf and gives it a solid shell.
That makes this one of the healthiest and most durable options on our list.
Unlike the other loaves on our list, we make brioche with enriched dough. That means it has a higher concentration of sugar, dairy, and fat.
As you can imagine, that makes for a much more complex flavor profile. First off, the fat gives the bread a soft, airy center.
Next, the dairy adds quite a bit of volume and creates a dark crust. Then, the sugar will caramelize in the bread as it bakes in the oven.
In the end, you have a tender loaf with a rich, buttery aftertaste.
Add to that the creamy French toast mixture, and you have the ideal breakfast.
In addition, when you fry the bread, you’ll caramelize the sugar even further. This will give you a hard shell with a crispy crunch.
In a pinch, you can use frozen bread to make French toast, but you’ll need to prep the slices first.
When you freeze bread, the water inside will solidify. As the liquid turns to ice, it’ll expand and fill all the tiny air pockets.
While this will keep the bread fresh for longer, it’ll decrease how much batter it can soak up.
So, if you want to use frozen loaves, you’ll have to create new crevices. To do that, you can use a knife with a pointy tip.
Poke a few holes in the bread, making sure you leave about half an inch between each one. This should leave behind pockets for the batter to flow.
You also have to make sure that the pan you use to fry the French toast is piping hot. The extra heat will ensure that all the excess water in the bread evaporates.
As you can guess by the name, we use potatoes to make this loaf.
We make normal bread dough, then mix in a batch of fresh mashed potatoes. This doesn’t affect the flavor, but it’ll change the texture.
The added starch from the vegetable will produce a light, tender center, with a thick crumb. That makes an amazing vessel to absorb plenty of the French toast mixture.
In addition, the outside is firm, with a slight crunch, that won’t break apart when you heat it up.
However, the bread will also be a little chewy. Even after you fry it up, you may find yourself wrestling to break off a bite.
Figuring out what bread is best for French toast can be a little tricky. You need to find a loaf with excellent sturdiness, stale texture, and plenty of flavor.
This gives you many options to choose from. That includes sourdough, brioche, and whole-grain bread.
Other excellent options are wholemeal, French bread, and regular bread.
You can even use frozen bread in a pinch.
I have a bachelor’s degree in Film/Video/Media Studies, as well as an associates degree in Communications. I began producing videos and musical recordings nearly 15 years ago. I am a guitarist and bassist in Southwest MI and have been in a few different bands since 2009, and in 2012 I began building custom guitars and basses in my home workshop as well. When I’m home, I love spending time with my three pets (a dog, cat, and snake) and gardening in my backyard.