Boysenberry & Bacon Stuffed French Toast Casserole

You know how almost everyone has a make-ahead breakfast casserole that they use for Christmas? Well, I have two. So there. Typically I like to do a sweet one and a savory one but really that makes enough for about 20 people for breakfast and there will be all of FOUR of us here this year. Two of the four eat about 2 bites of non-cereal/non-frozen waffle breakfasts on the best day so two casseroles might be a little over the top, don’t you think?

I really thought that I had done an excellent job of prepping my children for spending all holidays with me for their entire life. When you have sons, you know from an early age that the day will come that they will meet a girl and build a life with another woman…. Well, I told my boys from the time they were very young that they really could only date orphans. I figured that way I wouldn’t have to share them, nor would I have to share my grandchildren. Pure brilliant genius, don’t you think? But guess what? These grown kids listen only marginally better than their young brothers. 

My oldest son recently became engaged to a girl of his own picking and she is not an orphan so sharing seems to be in my future. If I didn’t love her so much, I’d be mad but seriously she is the kind of girl you would dream up and clone for your own sons if you could.  So even though they won’t be here for Christmas, they will be here the following week and I’ll make both of these for them - as long as it is before January 1 when my diet starts and this time I really mean it!

Boysenberry and Bacon Stuffed French Toast
Recipe by Michelle’s Dinner Bell
1 lb bacon
1 lb French bread, sliced 
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 cup seedless boysenberry preserves 
2 tbs butter
6 large eggs
2 cups half-and-half
1/2 cup milk
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla 
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
Pinch of salt
Fresh or frozen boysenberries and syrup to serve

  1. Cook bacon until crisp. Drain and set aside. Or if you live in my house, hide it from your family or else they’ll inhale it and there will be none for the French toast.
  2. In small bowl, combine cream cheese and boysenberry preserves.  Chop bacon into bite-sized pieces. Slice French bread into 1 inch slices.  Spread half of the slices with cream cheese mixture and sprinkle with bacon. Top with bread to make sandwiches and then cut into cubes.
  3. Arrange sandwich cubes in a generously buttered 9 by 13-inch baking dish.  In a large bowl, combine the eggs, half-and-half, milk, sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt and whisk until well-blended. Pour mixture over the sandwiches, making sure all are coated. Cover with foil and refrigerate overnight.
  4. When ready to bake, allow casserole to come up to room temperature. Preheat oven to 350 and bake for 40-45 minutes.
  5. Let casserole rest for about 10 minutes before cutting. Serve with boysenberries and syrup. Heck, it’s Christmas, get out the whipped cream!


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