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Millie Peartree’s Baked Strawberry French Toast Will Please the Whole Family

published Jul 27, 2021
Baked Strawberry French Toast
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Credit: Christopher Broe

French toast — golden brown, chewy, and cinnamon-y sweet — is lovely. But it’s even better (and easier to make) when you bake it in a casserole dish and serve everyone at once. Millie Peartree, a soul food chef and comfort food pro, shared her recipe for Baked Strawberry French Toast, which combines fresh sliced strawberries, luxurious eggy custard, and light fluffy challah bread into an amazingly simple yet sophisticated breakfast upgrade. The baking dish also doubles as a storage and reheating vessel. Too easy!

Chef Millie’s original recipe uses chocolate, but as an occasional heartburn sufferer herself, she knows that chocolate can be a trigger for other sufferers. So she often makes heartburn-friendly swaps in the kitchen or counts on PEPCID AC® Max for fast-acting heartburn relief. To help heartburn sufferers avoid the discomfort that comes from eating trigger foods, she made one simple adjustment here that’s every bit as tasty as the original. Strawberries do the trick beautifully, and to show how easy it is to make a dish heartburn-friendly, Chef Millie came to the studio to prepare her Baked Strawberry French Toast and share the power of heartburn-friendly swaps.

Enjoy Comfort Food Comfortably

For additional insight, Chef Millie brought along Dr. Samantha Nazareth, a gastroenterology specialist who regularly helps people treat their heartburn. Together, Chef Millie and Dr. Nazareth gave a refresher on trigger ingredients and how to cook around them. And because Chef Millie appreciates the occasional indulgence, she knows she can just reach for PEPCID AC® Max when heartburn does arise. PEPCID AC® Max starts working in as little as 15 minutes and controls acid all day or all night*, so it never hurts to keep it handy.

Credit: Christopher Broe
Use product only as directed.

See how Chef Millie puts together her inventive twist on a breakfast classic, and leave with some quick tips for making any dish more heartburn-friendly.

Baked Strawberry French Toast

Prep time 10 minutes

Cook time 40 minutes to 45 minutes

Serves 6 to 8

Nutritional Info


  • Cooking spray or butter, for coating the pan

  • 16 ounces

    unsliced day-old challah or sourdough bread

  • 12 ounces

    fresh or thawed frozen strawberries

  • 2 teaspoons plus 1 teaspoon

    ground cinnamon, divided

  • 1 tablespoon

    granulated sugar

  • 8

    large eggs

  • 1

    medium orange (optional)

  • 2 cups

    whole milk

  • 3/4 cup

    maple syrup

  • 1/2 cup

    heavy cream

  • 1/2 teaspoon

    kosher salt


  1. Arrange a rack in the middle of the oven and heat the oven to 350ºF. Coat a 9x13-inch baking dish with cooking spray or butter.

  2. Cut 16 ounces challah or sourdough bread into 1-inch cubes (about 10 cups). Trim and dice 12 ounces strawberries into 1/2-inch pieces (about 2 cups). Stir 1 teaspoon of the ground cinnamon and 1 tablespoon granulated sugar together in a small bowl.

  3. Place 8 large eggs in a large bowl and whisk until frothy. Finely grate the zest of 1 medium orange (about 1 tablespoon) into the bowl if desired. Add the remaining 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon, 2 cups whole milk, 3/4 cup maple syrup, 1/2 cup heavy cream, and 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, and whisk until combined.

  4. Add the bread and strawberries and gently stir until evenly coated. Pour into the baking dish and spread into an even layer. Sprinkle with the cinnamon-sugar mixture.

  5. Bake until the top and edges are golden brown and the custard is set, 40 to 45 minutes.

Recipe Notes

Recipe copyright © 2021 by Millie Peartree. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

*Based on 9-hour acid control studies during the day and 12-hour acid control studies during the night. Acid control does not imply symptom relief.