Vegan French toast is our take on a classic breakfast dish loved worldwide for its simplicity, texture, and taste.
Thick slices of bread are soaked in an egg-free batter with non-dairy milk, vanilla, and sugar, then cooked on a pan with some vegan butter until golden brown and crispy outside and soft and silky inside.
Top vegan french toast with maple syrup and fresh berries and enjoy as a delicious breakfast to share with your loved ones.
Table of Contents
Dietary Note: this recipe is suitable for a vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free diet.
What is Vegan French Toast?
Just like for our vegan pancakes, vegan crepes with hazelnut spread, and vegan donuts, we developed this eggless french toast recipe to recreate flavors and textures of the original so that people who are not vegan will love it.
We made this choice because we want you to be able to make this with the simplest ingredients that are easy to find in most supermarkets.
Uh, by the way! Did you know that French toast, despite its name, is not originally from France?
Believe it or not, French toast has been around since the Roman Empire and appears in recipe manuscripts from the 5th century AD.
Like in the modern recipe, the Romans used to soak the bread in a batter of egg and milk, then fry it in butter.
They called this celebratory sweet treat “Pan Dulcis,” or sweet bread. We find that stuff fascinating, but we are food geeks, after all! 😅
Ingredients & Substitutions for Vegan French Toast
Quantities are in the recipe box at the bottom of the page.
French toast should be crisp on the outside but soft, moist, and silky inside.
To achieve this, you need bread with a soft but dense crumb and a relatively thick slice (1 inch or 2.5 cm) to absorb the batter slowly but fully and keep its shape once soaked.
Sandwich bread is too soft, but if that’s the only thing you have, go ahead and use that.
We recommend getting a loaf of rustic white bread or leftover vegan brioche.
It could be an Italian rustic bread loaf or a thick ciabatta bread. Sourdough could work, too, as long as the crust is not too hard.
It helps if it’s a day old and a little dry, but it doesn’t have to be. Fresh bread will do if that’s all you have.
To make gluten-free French toast, substitute gluten-free bread for wheat bread.
We use almond milk for vegan French toast as we love its naturally sweet flavor and mild almond aroma.
Substitute any other plant milk for almond milk. You can try soy milk, cashew milk, hazelnut milk, rice milk, and oat milk. They all work perfectly, so pick your favorite.
We use brown sugar.
Substitute coconut sugar, palm sugar, vegan white sugar, maple syrup, or agave syrup for brown sugar.
We slightly prefer vegan French toast with sugar rather than syrups because the sugar slightly caramelizes, improving the texture of the toast.
We use all-purpose flour.
Substitute white whole wheat flour or spelt flour for all-purpose flour.
You can also use chickpea flour and cornstarch as gluten-free flour alternatives.
Chickpea or garbanzo bean flour will add an eggy flavor and texture.
Spices & Aromas
You can pick your favorite spices and aromas and customize this vegan French toast recipe to your liking.
Remember that when making vegan recipes, since there are no eggs or butter, you’ll need to add more spices to make up for the flavor loss.
As a base, we recommend:
- Vanilla extract
- Ground nutmeg
Optional spices you can add are:
- Pumpkin pie spice mix
- Ground cloves
We recommend adding a pinch of sea salt or kosher salt.
You’ll need some vegan fat to cook the French toast.
We recommend vegan butter or coconut oil melted in the pan before adding the toast.
You can top your vegan French toast with anything you like. We recommend:
- fresh berries and fruit
- hazelnut spread
- a quick strawberry jam with chia seeds
- peanut butter
- crushed nuts
- vegan butter
- 100% pure maple syrup
- powdered sugar
- vegan whipped cream
Note: we tried adding nutritional yeast or black salt (Kala Namak) to add that eggy flavor, but in the end, we much prefer French toast without them. Also, there’s no need for ground flaxseeds or flax eggs unless you want to add a teaspoon for nutritional reasons.
How to make vegan French toast
US cups + grams measurements in the recipe box at the bottom of the page.
Prepare the bread
You’ll need 6 slices of sturdy bread. We cut a one-day-old rustic white bread loaf into slices of 1 inch or 2.5 cm thick.
If you don’t have one-day-old bread, you can use fresh bread. Keep in mind that it’ll soak faster.
Make the batter
In a shallow dish that is large enough to fit two slices of bread, add 1½ cups of almond milk, 4 tablespoons of sugar, 4 tablespoons of all-purpose flour, 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract, 1 teaspoon of cinnamon, some grated nutmeg, and a pinch of salt.
Tip: We use an oven dish, but you can always use a large bowl.
Whisk to combine. This is the custard-like mix to dip the bread in.
Cook the bread
In a nonstick frying pan or skillet, melt a tablespoon of vegan butter.
While the pan warms up, soak two slices of bread in the liquid. Soaking time depends on how old the bread is and on the type of bread.
In our case, we soak it for a good minute on both sides until the batter gets deep into the bread. Give the bread a good squeeze so that it absorbs even more liquid.
You’ll only need a few seconds of soaking if you have softer bread, like sandwich bread.
Make sure the bread absorbs the liquid without getting mushy and falling apart.
Transfer the bread to the hot pan and cook on medium to low heat until golden brown and crisp, then turn around and do the same on the other side.
It should take 2 to 4 minutes, depending on the type of bread.
You can add as much bread as you can fit on the pan. If the pan gets too dry, then add more vegan butter.
Ultimately, you want the bread to be brown and crisp outside and soft and silky inside.
Transfer the toasted bread to a plate and repeat till you run out of bread, wiping the pan clean with kitchen paper and adding more vegan butter between batches.
Tip: Keep the vegan French toast warm in a slightly warm oven while you finish cooking the other slices.
Arrange a slice of bread on a plate, add a piece of vegan butter on top, and dust with powdered sugar.
Then, arrange the second slice of French toast on top of the other slice sideways. Add another knob of butter and the powdered sugar.
Finally, add a generous drizzle of 100% pure maple syrup, a few blueberries, and raspberries on top, and enjoy.
It’s crunchy on the outside, warm and silky on the inside, and with a cozy cinnamon-nutmeg aroma.
Make it yours
You can make this recipe yours by using your favorite toppings. Don’t have maple syrup? Top this recipe with jam or hazelnut spread.
Don’t have berries? You can use a sliced banana.
To make gluten-free French toast, substitute cornstarch for the flour and gluten-free bread for white bread.
French toast has existed since the Roman Empire and appears in recipe manuscripts from the 5th Century AD.
What? Did the Romans celebrate Sunday breakfast so decadently?
We don’t know for sure, but we know that, like with modern French toast, they would soak stale bread in a batter of egg and milk, then fry it in butter. The name of this dish was “Pan Dulcis” or sweet bread.
A few centuries later, through the Middle Ages in Europe, french toast became more out of necessity.
During the dark ages, food was scarce, and people would reuse all they had, including stale bread. They would moisten it with whatever they had, add eggs if available, and then fry it up.
This dish was called different things in different countries. In France, for instance, the name was “pain perdu” or lost bread.
One explanation is that french toast, like french fries, has nothing to do with France but comes from the old Irish language, where the verb “to French” means to slice.
And so french fries means sliced fries, and french toast means sliced toast.
Storage & Make Ahead
Make ahead: Vegan French toast is best enjoyed warm after cooking. Leftovers don’t keep well, so we don’t recommend making it in advance.
However, you can prepare the batter in advance and keep it in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
Refrigerator: Leftovers don’t keep well, but if you have some, you can store them in an airtight container in the fridge for 24 hours.
Reheat them on a frying pan with a knob of vegan butter.
Freezer: this recipe is not suitable for freezing.
More Sweet Breakfast Recipes
- Vegan apple muffins
- Vegan pumpkin muffins or pumpkin bread
- Vegan zucchini muffins
- Vegan banana muffins or banana zucchini bread
- Vegan blueberry muffins or blueberry pound cake
- Vegan lemon muffins or lemon cake
- Vegan oat flour muffins or oat pancakes
Love this vegan French toast recipe? Then try our other favorite brunch recipes:
- Vegan crepes
- Vegan banana bread
- Vegan pancakes
- Bircher muesli with apples, raisins, and almonds.
- Vegan brioche bread
- Vegan frittata with chickpea flour and zucchini.
- Tofu scramble served on toast and sliced avocado.
- Chickpea frittata muffins
For many more breakfast ideas, check out our breakfast category page.
Vegan french toast
- 1½ cups almond milk or any other non-dairy milk
- 4 tablespoons brown sugar
- 4 tablespoons all-purpose flour or cornstarch
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 pinch salt
- 6 slices rustic white bread cut into 1 inch or 2.5 cm thick slices
- 2 tablespoons vegan butter or more if needed
- 1 knob vegan butter
- 1 drizzle maple syrup or powdered sugar or both
- 1 handful mixed berries raspberries, blueberries, blackberries, strawberries
- Prepare 6 slices rustic white bread, cut 1 inch or 2.5 cm thick.
- In an oven dish, add 1½ cups almond milk, 4 tablespoons brown sugar, 4 tablespoons all-purpose flour, 2 teaspoons vanilla extract, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg, and 1 pinch salt.Whisk to combine.
- In a frying pan, melt 2 tablespoons vegan butter.While the pan warms up, soak two slices of bread in the batter until the bread absorbs the liquid, but without getting mushy and falling apart.Tip: Soaking time varies from a few seconds for sandwich bread to a minute or two for one-day old crusty bread.
- Cook on the hot pan on medium to low heat for 2 – 3 minutes, or until golden brown and crisp.Turn it around and do the same on the other side. Add more butter if the pan gets dry.Tip: Keep the vegan French toast warm in a slightly warm oven while you finish cooking the other slices.
- Serve each slice with 1 knob vegan butter, 1 drizzle maple syrup, and a 1 handful mixed berries.