Raspberry Cream Cheese Stuffed French Toast

I have been craving stuffed French toast for a couple weeks now. The last time I had it was July 2010 in Chicago, when my aunt treated me to brunch. I can’t remember the name of the restaurant – it is all just one fancy, sweet, vague French toast memory.

After coming to the realization that the time was right to make this happen, the second step was deciding what to stuff the French toast with. After a couple days of thinking and taking polls I was all but set on a friend’s suggestion of apple pie filling, when I came across this adaptation of an original recipe on Pioneer Woman’s Tasty Kitchen site. Decision made.

Typically, stuffed French toast seems to be made either by creating a sort of sandwich, or by cutting a pocket in the bread. I went with the latter as it seemed like more fun.

To create the pocket, start with a 2-inch thick slice of French bread. I had some kind of block and couldn’t bring myself to slice the bread that thick, but don’t be like me! Go for it! The bigger the slice, the easier it is to fill it.

Create a pocket by making a deep slice from the top of the bread with a paring knife.

The next step is raspberry jam mixed with cream cheese, and fresh raspberries. In the words of Ina Garten, how bad could that be?

The beauty of this recipe is that you can choose any kind of fruit you like (I selected raspberries because they were available and on sale).

The process is simple – fill the pockets with the cream cheese mixture and berries, soak in a cinnamony egg base, fry on sizzling butter, and enjoy. Powdered sugar was more than sufficient for us – no need for syrup with this recipe.

I don’t know if I’ve said it yet…this was SO GOOD. It is now one of my favorite recipes, and I will definitely be making it in the future! I hope you do too!

Raspberry Cream Cheese Stuffed French Toast

Recipe adapted from Tasty Kitchen, elements used from both Version 1 and Version 2

Serves 5

1 loaf French bread (I used two to make sure I could cut from the thick middle part of the loaf)
6 tablespoons raspberry fruit spread
8 oz package cream cheese, at room temperature
Approx 1 cup raspberries (you may have leftovers)
1 tablespoon sugar
2 eggs
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1/2 cup skim milk
2 tablespoons butter
powdered sugar

Cut the bread into slices, approximately 2 inches thick. Make a long, deep cut into the middle of the bread slice, entering from the top.

Sprinkle the raspberries with sugar, and allow them to sit while you mix the filling. Combine the fruit spread and cream cheese – I used the hand mixer to create a sort of “whipped” cream cheese. Spoon filling and sweetened berries into the bread pocket. Try and seal the edges if possible.

Combine the eggs, cinnamon and milk.

Heat up your griddle or skillet. Once hot, add butter and let it melt.

Soak each side of the stuffed toast in the egg mixture, about 30 seconds on each side. Fry the french toast, about three minutes on each side (or until golden brown). You can try and give the edges a little heat as well, as the bread is very thick.

Cut the stuffed French toast in half, and garnish with powdered sugar and more raspberries, if desired. Enjoy!

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