You can't beat a classic! This vegan French toast tastes like the stuff you grew up eating, but it's totally eggless and dairy-free. Grab some maple syrup and dig in!
If you're a sweet breakfast type of person like me, then you probably want a good classic French toast recipe in your back pocket. But if you're vegan that means eggs and dairy, the two main ingredients in French toast, are off the table.
But fear not! Believe it or not, vegan French toast is really easy to make. It's not as complicated as you may think! You don't actually need eggs, you just need the right batter so you can dip your bread and grill it. That's really all there is to it.
There are actually a LOT of things you can use to make an egg-free, dairy-free French toast batter. It's not actually that important what the batter is made of. Bananas work, tofu works, even chickpea flour works! I've tried them all, and shared recipes for a bunch of variations.
But I've yet to post a recipe for super simple, easy vegan French toast that tastes like the non-vegan stuff you grew up eating. Until today, anyhow!
This recipe uses a super simple mixture of pantry staples, along with a few surprising seasonings to create a mixture that's about as close to the eggy mixture we all grew up dipping our French toast in. And because of that, it tastes just like regular French toast!
Ingredients You'll Need
- Coconut milk. I recommend using the full-fat variety, from a can. This is about the richest and creamiest non-dairy milk you can get, although you can substitute with light coconut milk, coconut milk from a carton, or even another type of non-dairy milk if necessary.
- Non-dairy milk. Use something other than coconut milk. In fact, just about anything other than coconut milk will work, as long as it's unsweetened and unflavored. Try soy milk, almond milk, or cashew milk. Check out my guide to dairy-free milks if you need help figuring out what to use.
- Cornstarch. This ingredient is essential! It will cause your batter to congeal when cooked, giving it an eggy texture.
- Nutritional yeast flakes. Look for these in the natural foods section of your supermarket.
- Maple syrup.
- Vanilla extract.
- Kala namak. This is a type salt with a high sulfur content, so it gives things an eggy flavor. It's optional, but give it a try if you can find it. Try Indian markets or online.
- Vegan butter. Look for this near the regular butter at your supermarket. Try brands like Earth Balance or Miyoko's.
- Bread. Use something thick and crusty, and slightly stale if possible! The batter is more liquidy than conventional French toast batter, so delicate bread could easily fall apart. A sturdy French or sourdough bread works perfect!
Tip: Feel free to adjust the seasonings to your liking. Prefer sweeter French toast? Up the maple syrup! Like a little extra eggy flavor? Use more kala namak! Got some fun spices on hand? Throw them in! Nutmeg, cloves, and cardamom would all be delicious.
How It's Made
The following is a detailed photo tutorial on how to make this dish. Scroll all the way down if you'd like to skip right to the recipe!
- Mix your batter up: whisk the coconut milk, non-dairy milk, cornstarch, nutritional yeast, maple syrup, vanilla, cinnamon, and kala namak (if using) together in a bowl.
Tip: Feel free to play with the consistency of the batter by using less cornstarch for a lighter batter, more cornstarch (or even a bit of flour) for thicker batter.
- Grab a bread slice and dip both sides in the batter. I don't recommend submerging the bread in the batter — it will get soggy fast! Just dip each side until it's completely coated.
- Heat up some vegan butter in a nonstick skillet.
- Once the butter is melted and bubbling, place your dipped bread slice in the skillet. You can grill multiple slices at once if they'll fit.
- Cook the bread for a few minutes, then carefully flip it.
- Cook the bread slice for a few minutes on the opposite side. It's done when both sides are lightly browned (or as browned as you like) and crispy.
Tip: I like to take a spoon and dribble some batter around the edges of my French toast while it's cooking. It mimics those eggy clusters that sometimes cling to the edges of non-vegan French toast.
Tip: One of the challenges to making great plant-based French toast is its tendency to stick to the pan. Use a really good nonstick surface, like cast iron, and make sure it's nice and hot before placing the bread in it. I also find it helps to take a spatula and loosen the bread from the cooking surface after the first minute or so of cooking.
Tip: One of the challenges to making great vegan French toast is its tendency to stick to the pan. Use a really good nonstick surface, like cast iron, and make sure it's nice and hot before placing the bread in it. I also find it helps to take a spatula and loosen the bread from the cooking surface after the first minute or so of cooking.
I like to serve my French toast with some vegan butter and a drizzle of maple syrup.
Leftovers & Storage
Store leftover vegan French toast in a sealed bag or container in the fridge for up to 3 days, or in the freezer for up to 3 months. Reheat it in a 400°F oven until hot.
Frequently Asked Questions
I think so! Try using your favorite gluten-free bread. I haven't tested this myself, but I can't see why it wouldn't work.
The nutritional yeast adds a touch of savory flavor. Think about it: traditional French toast is made with eggs. Eggs are savory! You won't notice the nooch, and it's not strictly required, but it will make your toast taste more authentic.
Absolutely! Just use a square-ish bread (but preferably one that's still pretty sturdy), cut the crust off each slice, and cut it into three strips before dipping and frying.
More Vegan Breakfast Recipes
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Classic Vegan French Toast
You can't beat a classic! This vegan French toast tastes like the stuff you grew up eating, but is made with absolutely no eggs or dairy. Grab some maple syrup and dig in!
- ½ cup full fat coconut milk
- ½ cup unsweetened soy or almond milk
- ¼ cup cornstarch
- 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast flakes
- 1 ½ teaspoons maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon kala namak
- 2 tablespoons vegan butter, or as needed
- 4 to 6 thick crusty bread slices (slightly stale bread works great)
Whisk the coconut milk, soy or almond milk, cornstarch, nutritional yeast, maple syrup, cinnamon, vanilla, and kala namak together in a medium bowl.
Melt about a tablespoon of vegan butter in a nonstick skillet set over medium heat.
Dip one side of a bread slice into the batter, then flip and dip to coat the other side. Be careful not to oversaturate it, or it could fall apart.
Transfer the bread slice to the hot pan. You can dip a few more slices and cook them at the same time, as long as you don't crowd the pan.
Cook the French toast for about 5 minutes, until lightly browned on the bottom, then flip and cook about 5 minutes more.
Transfer the cooked French toast slices to a place as they finish cooking.
Repeat until all of the bread and batter have been used, adding butter or to the skillet between batches.
Serve with maple syrup, vegan butter, and any of your favorite toppings.