Pound Cake French Toast with Chestnut Syrup

I love a good group brunch. In my family, that’s how we celebrate Christmas morning. All 40 of us get together and enjoy quiche, muffins, cookies, and of course, mimosas. I’m now 26 and I look forward to this simple brunch every Christmas, but this year, I want to jazz it up a bit. We usually have everything pre-made and assembled the morning of, and I wanted to create a recipe that can also be easily made on Christmas morning! But, I think this pound cake French toast with chestnut syrup has a little more flare than blueberry muffins 🙂

Why pound cake? Well, the holidays are all about indulgence, plus, you can buy a really great pre-made pound cake at the grocery store, which is a major time saver. I also love a good buttery vanilla poundcake. I was originally just going to pair this French toast with a raspberry jam, but then I stumbled upon chestnut purée at the grocery store, and I knew I had to bring the “chestnuts roasting on an open fire” vibes to this dish. It’s winter and holiday season after all! So, I decided to use the store-bought chestnut purée and combine it with sugar, butter, water and vanilla to create a delicious, creamy syrup to drizzle on top. I then paired it with berries and pomegranate seeds for that final touch, and of course let it snow powdered sugar on top of the French toast.

I love this because it’s creative, it’s easy, and it’s great for groups. It doesn’t hurt that its also beautiful! I do want to note that I used vanilla pound cake because I love it, but you can use gingerbread poundcake, or olive oil cake, or any other kind of cake-bread. Just make sure it’s firm enough to French toast-ify.

a beautiful platter of golden brown pound cake french toast with an assortment of berries and chestnut syrup drizzled on top
a beautiful platter of golden brown pound cake french toast with an assortment of berries and chestnut syrup drizzled on top

Pound Cake French Toast with Chestnut Syrup

Buttery pound cake French toast with a homemade chestnut syrup. This is an easy dish for large groups, or just for you and a friend! You can buy pre-made pound cake from the store, as well as chestnut purée to make your life easy. Oh, and you can make this syrup days ahead!
Course Appetizer, Breakfast
Cuisine American, French


1 Cup Chestnut Syrup (make ahead or in real time)

  • 1/2 cup chestnut purée
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar *can sub for dark
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp salt can add more to taste

French toast

  • 1 pound cake pre-made from the store, or if you make it yourself, use 8-10 slices for this recipe
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup whole milk
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp nutmeg
  • 2 tbsp butter salted or unsalted
  • Pomegranate seeds for garnish
  • Blueberries for garnish
  • Raspberries for garnish


Chestnut Syrup

  • Heat a sauce pan over medium high heat. Add the chestnut purée, butter, brown sugar, vanilla extract, salt, and half of the water. Whisk together until the chestnut purée is not clumpy, and a smooth liquid forms.
  • Add the rest of the water and continue to whisk for 3-5 minutes, until a syrup is formed.
  • Pour into a jar and let it come to room temperature before refrigerating. If you are using it right away, just let it sit at room temperature, then pour on top of the French toast to serve. If you are storing it, heat the syrup in a sauce pan before drizzling it on top of the French toast in the morning.

Pound Cake French Toast

  • Slice the pound cake into 1-inch slices.
  • Whisk together eggs, milk, vanilla, cinnamon and nutmeg until smooth.
  • Heat 1 tbsp of butter onto a skillet at medium heat until it melts.
  • Dip one slice of pound cake into the egg mixture, until fully coated. Place it directly onto the hot skillet. Repeat with as many slices that you can fit onto the skillet. Flip after 2-3 minutes, until the side touching the skillet is golden brown. Cook on the other side for another 2-3 minutes, and remove from the heat.
  • Re-butter the skillet with the remaining tablespoon. Repeat with the rest of the pound cake.
  • Plate the French toast in a line, which each slice slightly resting on top of the other. Assemble berries on the side.
  • Dust lightly with confectioners sugar, until your heart is content.
  • Drizzle chestnut syrup on top and serve immediately.
Keyword chestnut syrup, easter brunch recipe, easy christmas brunch, easy christmas morning dish, easy holiday brunch dishes, holiday breakfast, holiday breakfast recipe, mothers day brunch recipe, pound cake french toast, pound cake french toast with chestnut syrup

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