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Sense & Edibility's Bananas Foster French Toast

Bananas Foster French Toast Casserole

Use day-old challah or brioche bread to ensure the best result. Although dark rum is preferred, white rum is an acceptable substitute. See notes for make ahead instructions.
Special Equipment Needed:
Course Mornings
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 35 minutes
Servings 8 servings


  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 1 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • pinch of kosher salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla bean paste
  • 1/4 cup dark rum
  • 1 cup chopped pecans optional
  • 3 ripe bananas sliced 1/8" thick lengthwise
  • 1 loaf challah or brioche bread sliced 1" thick
  • 3 whole eggs
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 1/2 cup half and half
  • 1 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla bean paste
  • 1 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp orange zest optional

Optional toppings:

  • confectioner's sugar
  • syrup
  • fresh berries


  • In a large sauté pan, melt the butter over med heat. Add the brown sugar, cinnamon and salt and whisk until the sugar has dissolved. Next, add the vanilla paste and the rum, whisking carefully as the mixture will begin to bubble. Now, stir in the nuts. Remove from heat and set aside.
  • Spray a 9"x13" casserole dish lightly with cooking spray. Arrange the banana slices in a single decorative layer. If you have excess slices, arrange them against the sides of the pan. Carefully, pour the sugar mixture over the bananas; making sure to cover them completely. Cover the bananas with the bread slices.
  • Prepare the custard by whisking together, in a large bowl, the eggs and yolk, half and half, cream, sugar, vanilla, spices, salt and orange zest. Whisk for at least 3 minutes to ensure the sugar has dissolved. Pour the mixture over the bread. Cover the pan with aluminum foil. Allow the bread to soak for 10 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, bring a pot of water to boil and preheat your oven to 350°F. Once the water has boiled, and your oven is heated, place the casserole dish in a larger pan and fill the outer pan halfway with boiling water. Carefully, place the pan into the oven centered on the rack. Bake for 1 hour.
  • After an hour, carefully remove the foil and allow the casserole to bake for an additional 10 minutes to brown the top. Remove from the oven and allow to cool, in the water bath, for 10-15 min. Take the casserole dish from the water bath and serve, or allow to cool for 10 minutes more and carefully invert onto a larger platter if you wish to display the topping.
  • Serve topped with powdered sugar and maple syrup, or with whipped cream and fresh berries. Enjoy!


To make ahead:
Prepare the topping and add the bread, as directed. Pour the custard over the bread and cover the pan with aluminum foil. Refrigerate overnight. Bring to room temperature before baking. Alternatively, you can preheat the oven with the pan inside the oven to bring it to temperature. Avoid placing a cold glass or ceramic baking dish into a hot oven, as the extreme change in temperature will cause the dish to shatter. Bake as directed.