Breakfast for Dinner: Ricotta & Spinach Stuffed French Toast

stuffed french toast

Another recipe from Love and Olive Oil‘s Breakfast for Dinner cookbook!  I have not made a recipe out of this book yet that I did not like (and so many more to try).  There are some seriously delicious dishes, both sweet and savory.  The turkey and goat cheese monte cristo has already become a go-to meal at our house and a favorite of the Husband.  We also really enjoyed the mint chocolate chip pancakes from this book, but this is a treat that will only be enjoyed once in awhile – they are really rich!

This French toast was really tasty.  The lemony ricotta filling with the spinach tasted even better using my homemade ricotta cheese!  In addition to dinner, this would be an excellent choice for brunch.

If you want a chance to get a copy of this book for yourself, head on over to Seasonal Potluck.  Betsy and I are giving away numerous cookbooks in our online auction raising money for Share our Strength’s No Kid Hungry.  It is a great cause, and you may get a little something extra for your generosity too!

Italian Stuffed French Toast, adapted from Breakfast for Dinner, makes 8 slices

  • 4 TBS olive oil, divided
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
  • 4 c. fresh baby spinach (about 6-oz.)
  • 1/2 c. whole-milk ricotta cheese
  • 1/4 c. grated parmesan cheese
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 loaf soft french bread, cut into 8 slices 1-1/2 inches thick
  • 3 egg
  • 1/2 c. whole milk
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 c. marinara sauce (store-bought, or see recipe below)
  1. Heat 2 TBS of the olive oil in a frying pan over medium heat. Add the minced garlic, and saute for 30 seconds, then add the spinach, and saute, stirring, until it has all wilted, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool, then coarsely chop.
  2. In a medium bowl, stir together the chopped spinach, ricotta, Parmesan  lemon zest, basil, and oregano until evenly mixed. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  3. In a small baking dish, whisk together eggs, milk, garlic powder, and 1/4 tsp salt. Use a serrated knife to cut a slit into each piece of bread, and then use the knife to stuff 2 TBS of filling into each slit. Heat the remaining 2 TBS olive oil in the frying pan. One at a time, dip each slice of bread into the egg mixture for 30 seconds on each side. Add to the frying pan, but don’t overcrowd the slices. Cook for 3 minutes on each side. Serve with warm marinara sauce.

Easy Marinara, makes 2 cups

  • 2 TBS olive oil
  • 1/2 medium yellow onion, peeled and diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
  • 1 15-oz can of diced tomatoes
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1/4 tsp dried oregano
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  1. Heat oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add onion, and saute for 3 minutes, or until onion has softened, stirring occasionally. Add garlic and cook for 1 minute longer. Add tomatoes, 1/4 c. of water, basil, and oregano. Let simmer for 20 minutes, or until sauce has thickened slightly, stirring occasionally. Season to taste with salt and pepper before serving.
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