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Vegan Lemon Raspberry French Toast Bake

Vegan Lemon Raspberry French Toast Bake

Crisp on the top with a soft, custardy bottom, this vegan French toast bake is infused with lemon and fresh raspberries. Make it the night before an effortless and beautiful brunch!

I love how brunch is so much more celebratory than a regular breakfast. Even though it’s only a couple of hours past breakfast time, no one raises an eyebrow if a cake or a mimosa makes it’s way onto the table. But the one thing amiss is if you’re in charge of making said brunch, you don’t get to sleep in like everyone else. That is, unless your work has been done ahead of time.

Cue: Overnight Lemon Raspberry French Toast. While this baked French toast can be assembled and sit for an hour before baking, it’s totally fine hanging out in the fridge overnight. This makes the morning so relaxed for everyone! Just pull the French toast out of the fridge while the oven preheats, put on the coffee and everyone gets to chill.

The other thing I love about this dish is that there’s very little mess made during the prep work. Sure, I’ve made things the night before feeling all smug about how great the morning is going to be. But my kitchen was literally hit with every possible dirty dish. This of course means I still get shorted on shut eye because I’m putting my house back together before guests arrive in the morning. Not with this one – a blender and the baking dish are the bulk of your needs here.

For years, I’ve made a Crème Brulée French Toast casserole. When I adopted a vegan diet, I veganized the recipe and so we still enjoy it during the holidays. I’ve used the same base ingredients for the custard. (I.e. the custard powder and silken tofu which replaces the egg and milk mixture in non-vegan French toast.) But instead of a sugary bottom, I decided to dress it up in another way. I added the freshness of lemon and complimented it with colorful, sweet raspberries.

The result is a pretty, easy and flavorful French toast all made in one dish. Arranging the slices of bread in a way that they overlap, encourages the top bits to get crisp. At the same time, the custard soaks and sets the bottoms. It’s so good! I don’t add a lot of sugar to this recipe, just enough for some caramelization to happen. I think it’s nice to get the sweetness once you top things off with maple syrup at serving time. And besides, the berries offer their own perfect sweetness, too.

Overnight Vegan Lemon Raspberry French Toast served on a white plate and being drizzled with maple syrup

Tips for Perfect Vegan French Toast:

  • use a really nice loaf of bread. You can use French bread, vegan challah, or vegan brioche.
  • I have been using the same custard powder my mom used to buy when we were kids. It’s accidentally vegan and it’s awesome. It’s called Bird’s and you can get it in most grocery stores, and on line. This isn’t sponsored in anyway, but I think it adds a lot to the dish. I’ve tried some other brands of vegan custard powders but haven’t found one that tastes as much as traditional custard as Bird’s.
  • the lemon juice and zest are key players here, so if either is left out, the dish won’t taste as (you guessed it) lemony.
  • the tofu for this recipe is called silken. I have found that dessert tofu is similar, but don’t substitute with regular tofu. The silken variety is…well, silky. It’s very mild with almost no actual tofu flavor. It’s perfect for times like this when we’re trying to get a rich custard quality without eggs.
  • you can use whatever plant-based milk you like, but I’d avoid strong flavors like flax and watery varieties like rice milk. My go-to is soy.
Flatlay of a single serving of Overnight Vegan Lemon Raspberry French toast served with vegan cream, fresh raspberries and maple syrup.

Overnight Vegan Lemon Raspberry French Toast Bake

Crisp on top with a soft, custardy bottom, this French toast bake is infused with lemon and fresh raspberries. Make it the night before an effortless and beautiful brunch!
4.75 from 8 votes
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Course: Breakfast, Brunch
Cuisine: American, Vegan
Keyword: Overnight French Toast, Vegan French Toast
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 8
Calories: 150kcal
Author: Bronwyn


  • 1 large loaf of French bread
  • 2 cups plant-based milk
  • 349 g pkg of silken-tofu, drained
  • ¼ cup vegan custard powder
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 3 tbsp lemon juice
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 pint fresh raspberries, plus more for serving if desired
  • confectioner's sugar for garnish
  • coconut whip and maple syrup, to serve


  • Lightly grease a 13" x 9" baking dish. Slice the loaf of bread into thick slices, about 3/4"-1".
  • Combine the plant-based milk, tofu, custard powder, sugar, vanilla extract, lemon juice and lemon zest in a blender. Blend on high until smooth, scraping down the sides as needed.
  • Pour half of the custard mixture into the prepared baking dish. Soak each piece of bread in the mixture for about 30 seconds and then flip soaking for another 30 seconds. Arrange the slices of bread in the baking dish so they overlap a bit, placing a few raspberries in between each piece. Pour the rest of the custard mixture over the top. Sprinkle more raspberries over the top, saving some for serving if desired. Cover with foil or plastic wrap and refrigerate for an hour or overnight.
  • When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 375°F. While it's preheating, take the casserole out of the fridge, remove the cover and place it on the counter (especially important if you're using glassware, we don't want it breaking with a rapid temperature change.)
  • Bake for 30-35 minutes. The top should be crisp and golden, and the custard should be set. Top with more fresh raspberries, a dusting of confectioner's sugar and/or maple syrup, to serve.

Nutrition Info:

Calories: 150kcal | Carbohydrates: 22g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 2mg | Sodium: 184mg | Potassium: 319mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 365IU | Vitamin C: 24mg | Calcium: 159mg | Iron: 1.6mg
Did you make this recipe?Tag @crumbs.and.caramel on Instagram!

Recipe Rating

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Wednesday 10th of May 2023

Hi! Do you think this would work if you cubed the bread instead of slicing it?

Bronwyn Fraser | Crumbs & Caramel

Monday 15th of May 2023

Hi Kristine, yes - I have had readers report success in cubing the bread instead of using sliced bread. While I haven't tested it, I would suggest not making the cubes too tiny - I'd be concerned about the ones on the bottom disintegrating. I'd aim for at least 1"(2.5 cm) cubes (stale might be best, too.) Would love to hear back how it goes! Enjoy! ~ Bronwyn


Saturday 8th of May 2021

I loved how simple this was to whip up 🙂 Made it for mother’s Day, it brought the whole family together and my mum really enjoyed it! “It’s like bread and butter pudding and lemon drizzle cake had a baby,” my sister said. I thought it might be very wet and gooey because there was so much custard, but it actually had a nice balance of crisp and eggy elements.

I had a question about raspberries because I used blueberries instead (which still worked though they don’t pack the same punch). Do you think this could be made with frozen/thawed raspberries? Fresh raspberries are beyond my budget but frozen ones are a staple in our house!

Crumbs & Caramel

Wednesday 12th of May 2021

Hi Hannah, I am so happy that this French toast was an enjoyable part of your family's Mother's Day celebration! To your question, I haven't tested the recipe with thawed raspberries. I think they may make the French toast a bit wet with all the juices they release. I would suggest assembling the whole bake the night before as instructed but leave out the raspberries. I haven't tested this yet, but I would try: In the morning once the oven is preheated, toss the still frozen raspberries with 2 tsp of cornstarch, and then gently lift the pieces of softened bread with a spatula, tuck in the berries here and there and then bake. You may need to bake it an extra 5 minutes or so. If you give this a go, I'd love to hear back! Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment! ~ Bronwyn

Cate B

Wednesday 1st of January 2020

Hi. I made your recipe for New Year's Brunch today. The flavors were great (I have a Meyer lemon tree). It was a bit too soggy on the lower half of the bread for most of my friends’ taste. They suggested I try stale bread next time. I also thought maybe drizzing less of the 2nd half of the custard mix on top. My grocery didn't have custard powder, I used Ghirardelli white chocolate vanilla pudding mix--- that was the closest I could get. I loved it. Served with warm maple syrup, no powdered sugar. Will post on IG! Thank you! Looking forward to trying some of your savory recipes.

Crumbs & Caramel

Sunday 5th of January 2020

Hi Cate, Thanks so much for your feedback! The Ghirardelli white chocolate vanilla pudding mix sounds amazing! In the effort to help trouble shoot re: the sogginess: I'm wondering if there's less cornstarch in the pudding mix compared with the custard powder which might explain the sogginess? Pudding mix often has added sugar (not sure if yours did?) - if it did and 1/3 cup of it was used, it wouldn't have the same amount of thickening power as 1/3 cup of the custard powder. The custard powder I've used is almost all cornstarch (with only some salt, flavor and color). That said, the base is similar to bread pudding/custard so there's the matter of personal preference, too. I'm so glad you loved it though, and I hope you enjoy the savory recipes you might try here on my blog! Thanks again, ~Bronwyn :)

Debra Berke

Wednesday 21st of August 2019

Where can I buy custard powder?

Crumbs & Caramel

Wednesday 21st of August 2019

Hi Debra! I use Bird's Custard Powder which is accidentally vegan. It's available in most large grocery stores in the pudding section. It's also available on Amazon. It's great prepared on it's own, as well as in dishes like this. Hope you enjoy it! ~Bronwyn


Monday 13th of May 2019

Question! Should the bread be stale? I know some French toast recipes call for stale bread. Also should you press the tofu?

Crumbs & Caramel

Monday 13th of May 2019

Hi Abby! I've used stale and fresh but haven't noticed much difference when baking it this way. As for the tofu, it can't be pressed. Silken tofu is very soft and silky, not the kind you'd be able to dice and fry intact. You can find it in the shelf- stable section at the grocery store in tetra-pacs. You can also get it on Amazon. If you have trouble finding it, let me know and I'll get you a link :)

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