I go in phases with cereal – sometimes I’m a cereal monster and take care of an entire box within a few days. But sometimes I go a month or two without buying a box…usually because I know I lack that little thing called ‘self control’ around it…it’s just so good! I love the crunchiness of it in the milk at the beginning and then how it gets just a little bit soggy towards the end, depending on how fast you eat it. And by the end of a bowl, I’m craving that crunchiness again, so I load up on another bowl. It’s a vicious cycle, I’m telling you.
Since I have portion control issues when it comes to cereal and milk (it also takes a LOT of cereal to fill me up), I like to eat it dry as a snack or make it into cereal bars. So when Post cereals wanted a group of bloggers to create recipes using their cereal I was more than excited. My first idea was to make regular french toast coated in Post’s Honey Bunches of Oats, but let’s face it – making french toast can be a little tedious and who doesn’t love a breakfast casserole that can be made ahead of time and popped in the oven in the morning? So french toast casserole, it was!
This french toast casserole is incredible. I decided to jazz it up with a cream cheese filling with blueberries and orange zest along with orange zest in the egg mixture and the pairing is so delicious. The orange flavoring isn’t overpowering, and adds just a bit of freshness to the custardy casserole. Of course, the crunchy topping made with Honey Bunches of Oats was my favorite part. I’m always a sucker for crunchy crumble toppings and this one is no exception. The flakes and clusters from the Honey Bunches of Oats were just enough sweetness and crunch to go with the french toast, but not so much that it took away from it.
This recipe is also part of Walgreens and Post Cereal promoting American Heart Month and while it may seem indulgent, I cut down on a lot of the fat and calories you might find in other french toast casserole recipes. First, instead of using heavy cream for the egg mixture, I used low-fat milk, which cuts down on a ton of saturated fat. I decreased the amount of sugar compared to a typical french toast casserole (Paula Deen has a recipe with over 1 cup!) and added some blueberries to it for some antioxidants. You could also use whole grain bread here if you’d like, but since it was the weekend I was feeling extra indulgent and used a french baguette 😉
Since Walgreens and Post Cereal graciously sponsored this post, I would encourage all of you to stop by your local Walgreens to pick up your next box of Post Cereal!