Cashew-Chai French Toast Casserole

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Lightened-up cashew-chai French toast casserole smells amazing and tastes (and smells!) incredible! Put it together the night before you want to bake it, making for a super easy morning – perfect for Christmas!
Cashew-Chai French Toast Casserole (Overnight French Toast)

For the past few months, I’ve been seeing recipe after recipe using cashew milk. And I’ll admit it, I was jealous. Where were they all getting cashew milk that was cheap enough to drink? I’ve only ever known it to be part of a juice cleanse and those are definitely not affordable.

Finally, I found it, right there next to the coconut milk I buy every week: Silk cashew milk. I brought some home and took a tentative taste, not fully knowing what to expect. It was thick and creamy, and definitely tasted strongly of cashews. I bought the unsweetened version; with a little honey stirred in and cinnamon dusted over the top, it’s just as delicious as the cashew milk I was familiar with.

Cashew-Chai French Toast Casserole (Overnight French Toast)

I’m not sure why, but the idea of making French toast casserole with the cashew milk immediately jumped into my head. I love traditional French toast casserole (also known as baked French toast), but it’s typically loaded with eggs, cream, and enough sugar to make you jittery all day long. So, I lightened it up!

I scrapped the traditional custard and made one with cashew milk, bananas, and chia seeds. I cut way back on the sugar and used agave nectar instead of the corn syrup most recipes call for. Since I love warm spices with cashews, I infused the milk with chai and added lots of cinnamon and cardamom. (I think the cashew milk would also be delicious in my one-pot shrimp and udon bowls.)

My lightened up French toast casserole still has more calories than my typical breakfasts do, but it’s great for a special occasion! PS – I used regular butter, but if you use dairy-free butter the casserole would also be vegan.

Cashew-Chai French Toast Casserole (Overnight French Toast)

Cashew-Chai French Toast Casserole

Cashew-Chai French Toast Casserole

Yield: 6
Prep Time: 8 hours
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 8 hours 30 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 loaf (16 ounces) Italian bread
  • 2 cups Silk unsweetened cashew milk
  • 3 bags chai tea
  • 2 bananas
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons chia seeds
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom

For the Topping:

  • 4 Tablespoons butter or dairy-free butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar (packed)
  • 2 tablespoon light agave nectar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/3 cup cashews, roughly chopped

Instructions

  1. Cut the bread into 1-inch pieces; place in a large mixing bowl.
  2. In a saucepan, bring the cashew milk to a simmer. Remove from heat and add the tea bags. Let the tea steep for 5 minutes, then discard the bags. Transfer the cashew milk to a blender. Add the banana, brown sugar, chia seeds, vanilla, and spiced; blend until smooth. Pour the liquid over the bread; turn to coat.
  3. Transfer the bread and any extra liquid to a 9x13-inch casserole dish. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
  4. The next morning, heat the oven to 350ºF.
  5. In a small bowl, combine the butter, brown sugar, agave, and spices; mix with a form until the mixture is crumbly. Stir in the cashews. Spread the topping over the uncovered casserole.
  6. Bake 30 minutes, or until puffed and golden brown.
Nutrition Information

Amount Per Serving Calories 450Total Fat 17gCholesterol 12mgFiber 5.3gProtein 10.1g

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This conversation is sponsored by Silk. The opinions and text are all mine.

Cashew-Chai French Toast Casserole 4
By on December 22nd, 2014

About Lauren

Hi, I'm Lauren! I'm a certified plant-based cook and enthusiastic omnivore who loves looking for creative ways to make weeknight meals more nutritious. I'm the author of Heathy Eating One Pot Cookbook and Healthy Meal Prep Slow Cooker Cookbook.

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