Italian-Style Stuffed French Toast

  • Yield 8 servings

A twist on the classic French toast, made with savory garlic bread toast and spinach ricotta filling.

Italian-Style Stuffed French Toast
Courtesy of Quirk Books

We love this recipe. It's like a big, hearty, family-style meal all in one deliciously stuffed package.


Ricotta Filling:
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
4 cups loosely packed fresh baby spinach
1/2 cup whole-milk ricotta cheese
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon rind (from 1 small lemon)
1 tablespoon chopped fresh or 1 teaspoon dried basil
1 tablespoon chopped fresh or 1 teaspoon dried oregano
Salt and pepper
French Toast:
1 loaf soft French bread, cut into 8 (1 1/2-inch-thick) slices
2 large eggs
1/2 cup whole milk
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 cup jarred marinara sauce


  1. To prepare the filling, heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add spinach and cook until wilted, 1 to 2 minutes. Let cool, then coarsely chop.
  2. Combine chopped spinach mixture, ricotta, Parmesan, lemon zest, basil and oregano in a bowl. Add salt and pepper.
  3. To prepare the French toast, cut a horizontal pocket in the side of each slice of bread, using a serrated knife. Fill with 1 to 2 tablespoons of filling and press closed.
  4. Whisk together eggs, milk, salt and garlic powder in a shallow baking dish. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Quickly dip bread, one piece at a time, into egg mixture, flipping to coat both sides. Add to hot oil. Repeat with 2 to 3 more slices, taking care not to overload pan. Cook 3 minutes per side, or until golden brown. Repeat with remaining slices, adding more oil as needed. Transfer to plates, spoon warm marinara sauce over top, and serve.

Reprinted with permission from Breakfast for Dinner by Lindsay Landis and Taylor Hackbarth (Quirk Books, 2013).



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