Vegan French Toast with Caramelized Bananas

Amazing vegan and gluten-free French toast! Made with almond milk, pureed banana, and chia seeds. Serve with easy caramelized bananas and maple syrup!
Ingredients

For the French toast:
  • 1 cup (240ml) unsweetened almond or macadamia milk (strained if homemade)
  • 1 ripe medium banana
  • 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup, plus more to serve
  • 1 teaspoon natural vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon white (or black) chia seeds
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1⁄4 teaspoon natural salt
  • 8 slices gluten-free sandwich bread
  • 1⁄4 cup (60ml) coconut oil (in liquid form), plus more as needed

For the caramelized bananas:
  • 2 medium bananas, thickly sliced on the diagonal
  • 1⁄4 cup (37g) coconut sugar
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons coconut oil (in liquid form)
  • Pure maple syrup, to serve

Optional boosters:
  • 1⁄4 cup (60ml) bourbon or rum
  • 2 tablespoons crushed raw pecans or walnuts
  • 1 tablespoon unsweetened dried shredded coconut

Special equipment:
  • Blender
Directions
  • Set the oven to its lowest temperature or the “warm” setting.
  • Make the French toast batter: Combine the milk, banana, maple syrup, vanilla, chia seeds, cinnamon, and salt into your blender and blast on high for about 30 seconds, until well combined. Pour the mixture into a large shallow baking dish and let rest for about 5 minutes to thicken slightly.
  • Soak the bread in the batter: In batches, place slices of the bread in the baking dish and let soak on one side for 8 to 10 seconds. Flip the slices and let soak for another 8 to 10 seconds, until evenly moistened.
  • Cook the French toast: In a medium skillet (that fits two slices of bread) or on a large griddle (that holds all of the slices) over medium heat, warm 1 to 2 tablespoons of coconut oil per two slices of bread. (Resist the urge to use less coconut oil, or the bread won’t get crispy.) Add the bread and fry for 4 to 6 minutes on each side, until golden brown and crispy on the edges; you may need to add more coconut oil after you flip the bread. If cooking in batches, transfer the French toast to a lined baking sheet and place in the oven to keep warm, and repeat to fry the remaining bread, adding more coconut oil to cook each batch.
  • While the last pieces of toast are cooking, make the caramelized bananas. Combine the banana slices and the coconut sugar in a zipper-lock bag, seal, and shake to coat evenly. In a skillet over medium-high heat, warm the coconut oil, add the coated bananas and the bourbon booster (if using), and fry for about 2 minutes on each side until nicely caramelized.
  • To serve: Serve two slices of French toast on each plate, topped with one-quarter of the caramelized bananas, one-quarter of the crushed nut boosters, and one-quarter of the coconut booster. Pass maple syrup at the table.

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