Chocolate French Toast with Panera Bread

I’m back (already?!) with another post for Panera Bread!  I know, two posts in one day – try not to faint.  It’s a rare occurrence, but my schedule has been a little crazy lately and it just worked out as such.

Whenever I’m out and about I like to stop by Panera Bread for a couple of artisan loaves; usually the Asiago Cheese and Three Seed Sour Dough.  One variety that I had not tried before was Country White French Miche (a Panera employee kindly corrected me).   I knew if it was comparable to the quality of the other breads they bake, it would be fantastic.  And it is!  Even a small slice seems enormous, which makes it perfect for hearty sandwiches. It is also perfect for the recipe I have to share with you today.

What could be better than Chocolate French Toast?  I really love this recipe.  It’s easy, indulgent, and makes breakfast feel like a special occasion.  I will certainly be making this next time we have overnight guests.

Before I close, I’d like to take a moment to point you in the direction of some great resources.  Panera bread has a fabulous instructional baking video at The Baker’s Table for Asiago Strata (mmm, delish!).  While there, you may want to check out another video that talks about the fresh ingredients they use. I’ve been noticing certain changes to their menu that seems more accommodating to health conscious consumers.  That makes me really proud of the direction Panera Bread is headed. It’s nice to know there’s something for everyone.

Me?  I’ll be at the pastry case.

Find more about Panera Bread on Facebook and Twitter.

Chocolate French Toast

Serves 4-6                                                                                                                 [click to print]

10 slices Panera Bread Country Miche

1/4 cup cocoa powder

1/4 cup hot water

5 large eggs

3/4 cup heavy cream

1 cup milk

1/4 cup sugar

1 tsp vanilla

1/2 tsp salt

12 oz. semisweet chocolate chopped, or semisweet chocolate chips

 Prepared butter flavored pancake syrup

In a small bowl, dissolve cocoa powder in hot water. Whisk until blended; set aside.

In shallow pan (such as a 1 1/4 quart baking dish) whisk together eggs, cream, milk, sugar, vanilla and salt.  Add chocolate cocoa mixture; whisk again until incorporated.

Melt a small piece of butter in a 12″ non-stick pan over medium high heat.  Dip 2 bread pieces in egg mixture (turning if necessary) and place in pan.  Turn pieces after about 2-3 minutes and cover one piece with chopped chocolate or chips.  Place the other piece of bread on top of the chocolate covered piece, creating a sandwich.  Heat until chocolate has melted.  Repeat process with remaining pieces.  Serve with butter flavored pancake syrup.

DISCLOSURE: The writing and recipe in this post is for Panera Bread‘s blog project.  They have compensated me for my time and expenses; my opinions are my own.

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angela raylene
angela raylene
10 years ago

Whyyyyyy must you torture me so? 😉

Audra
Audra
10 years ago

Heather- what is the tip that you used for the whipped cream? Thanks! Also thanks so much for checking out my blog! 🙂

Sandi
Sandi
10 years ago

I manage a Panera Bread in Dallas, and it's so fun to see how many food bloggers blog about us! This looks delicious, by the way! I will definitely be grabbing some bread from work and trying it.

PS: Our cinnamon raisin bread makes a freaking awesome bread pudding. :o)

Dalreen D.
Dalreen D.
10 years ago

Oh my! I need to treat myself to this next Friday!! Thanks for the recipe and delicious photos!

k
k
10 years ago

Nice recipe 🙂 …are you getting paid by them? Because there's nothing special about their chemical-filled products, that's for sure…

Rituparna
Rituparna
10 years ago

This could definitely breakfast 2mrw morning.

Su-yin
Su-yin
10 years ago

Oh my. Amazing french toast. I'm thinking I should make a 'lazy' version… with Nutella. 😉

Kim
Kim
10 years ago

Yummy, these french toats looks perfect to me!

Lindsay @ The Lean Green Bean
Lindsay @ The Lean Green Bean
10 years ago

whoa girl, you just took delicious looking photos to a whole new level!

Anonymous
Anonymous
10 years ago

oh my gosh!!! how many Weight Watchers points is that!!!! looks incredible!!! LOVE…PATTI B.

Heather Baird
Heather Baird
10 years ago

Thanks all – Audra, the tip comes from Bake it Pretty… It is the giant french tip – you can find it here.

http://www.bakeitpretty.com/item_306/French-Giant-Pastry-Tip.htm

Lynn
Lynn
10 years ago

Oh! This looks amazing!

My Barbarian Table
My Barbarian Table
10 years ago

This is unbelievable! just brilliant!
Leila

Anonymous
Anonymous
10 years ago

OMG that is beautiful.

Laura H.
Laura H.
10 years ago

This looks ah-mazing! I might just make it my 2nd breakfast this morning. 🙂

Anonymous
Anonymous
10 years ago

This is beautiful…straight up beautiful. That's what I call breakfast for champions!

alyce
alyce
10 years ago

Decadent!

Meg Luby
Meg Luby
10 years ago

my gosh. heather- youre an all star 🙂
-meg
@ http://www.clutzycooking.blogspot.com

Unknown
Unknown
10 years ago

I would never mind you posting everyday! ha, what a drop dead gorgeous dish..and so decadent for a special occasion breakfast…or dinner!

Anonymous
Anonymous
10 years ago

Oh my, you know, I don't think I've actually ever had chocolate french toast. This is a must try!

Spike
Spike
10 years ago

so decadent! i love it

Lili
Lili
10 years ago

OMGoodness I've never seen a more delectable recipe for french toast. I would love to sink my fork into all those layers of chocolatey yum! xo ~Lili

Chef Shallot
Chef Shallot
10 years ago

Impresionante, espectacular!!!

Jessica @ How Sweet
Jessica @ How Sweet
10 years ago

Absolutely sinful and divine!

not.drew
not.drew
10 years ago

Hi, I work for Panera and would like for your readers to known that it's called "Country Miche". All bread of this particular shape is called miche, the "flavour" being that of a rustic white bread. (In our store, the 3 diagonally-cut bread tops indicate French Miche, virtually identical to Country.) If they go into the cafe and ask for "country white", they may be inundated with questions to isolate which bread they want. (Loaf or miche? Slice? Think or thick? Etc.) So they want a country miche thin sliced. 🙂

Heather Baird
Heather Baird
10 years ago

Thank you not.drew!

I asked for country white and was handed this loaf. Thank you for the clarification!! This is certainly helpful to both me and my readers.

-Heather

Sarah G
Sarah G
10 years ago

Your desserts are truly works of art. I can only hope to have such a beautiful blog and amazing talent one day. Thanks for the inspiration!

Sarah G from Springfield, MO

Sue
Sue
10 years ago

I've had a grilled chocolate sandwich before, but never as French toast…even better! A must try!

Chic Boutique Tour
Chic Boutique Tour
10 years ago

Looks yummy and so easy to make!

Kat @ Cupcake Kat
Kat @ Cupcake Kat
10 years ago

This looks so wonderfully decadent. I'm sure it tastes great

kristina
kristina
10 years ago

That looks insanely delicious. Insane in the most wonderful way!

Marly
Marly
10 years ago

I don't know what to say except – you are amazing! I agree with Kristina – this looks insanely delicious. I imagine if I started my day with this I would be in a sugar, cocoa induced stupor the rest of the day…but oh, what a stupor that would be! Completely worth it!

Taylor
Taylor
10 years ago

Wow this looks absolutely amazing! Great Photos as well! Thanks for sharing!

Melissa @IWasBornToCook
Melissa @IWasBornToCook
10 years ago

Looks incredible!

Jenn {Cookies Cupcakes and Cardio}
Jenn {Cookies Cupcakes and Cardio}
10 years ago

Since I am in my fat pants already, I don't think my waistline can handle this post! It looks so delectable….I will be making this for a special someone soon. YUM!

Anonymous
Anonymous
10 years ago

Oh my GOD, this looks DIVINE!

Ms. Tuesday
Ms. Tuesday
10 years ago

Usually your beautiful photos are what inspire me to try a recipe but this time I was sold by the title alone! amazing!

cookies and cups
cookies and cups
10 years ago

I have never been so in awe of french toast in all my days. seriously, how do you do this to me?

Calogero
Calogero
10 years ago
Lot-O-Choc
Lot-O-Choc
10 years ago

Now this looks like one delicious breakfast! Packed full of tasty goodness!

Unknown
Unknown
10 years ago

Bookmarked! If those pictures don't entice someone, who knows what would!

How did you get involved with Panera, btw?

ann
ann
10 years ago

Wow, this chocolate French toast looks incredible! I love Panera's bread.

Irvin
Irvin
10 years ago

Delightful as usual! I almost never got to Panera as the only one in San Francisco is not very convenient to me and I tend to go to local artisan bakeries here in SF (perhaps that's why they haven't gotten a foothold here in SF yet, as their are wonderful artisan bakeries around the city already). That said, I do have a soft spot for them as they originated out of St. Louis (where they are still known there as "St. Louis Bread Company"). I have fond memories of going there for bread or a sandwich. And your chocolate french… Read more »

Jessi @ Quirky Cookery
Jessi @ Quirky Cookery
10 years ago

Oh my, that looks simply divine. Pass me a fork?

Unknown
Unknown
10 years ago

Oh my word! this is going to have to be made soon!

Calogero
Calogero
10 years ago
Susan
Susan
10 years ago

AB FAB!! This looks so yummy. I'm ready for a breakfast party. The French also like pain de chocolate. I may have goofed up the spelling but it's basically chocolate bread. I'm thinking about trying to make some, especially after your post on chocolate French toast.Do you have any good recipes for chocolate bread or croissants?

Cassie
Cassie
10 years ago

What could be better than chocolate french toast? Nutella french toast… yum!

Erika Beth, the Messy Chef
Erika Beth, the Messy Chef
10 years ago

This looks amazing! I used to go to Panera all the time when I was in undergrad. Too bad there aren't any by me here in NYC. They could give Europan and Hot and Crusty a run for their money.

naomi
naomi
10 years ago

I love that you stacked this high like cake! Chocolate inbetween-someone pick up, so I can make this-STAT!