Sweet matzo brei recipe is the French toast of Passover: crumbled matzo soaked in milky, delicious eggy custard, fried and served with a generous sprinkle of cinnamon sugar. Serve with syrup for a little sweet treat!
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When it comes to breakfast, I am a creature of habit. Now, my husband will vehemently disagree, saying I like to change my breakfasts all the time - but that is patently not true (and seeing as how you're here on my blog rather than on his, I guess you're stuck with my opinion).
I have my tried and true favorite breakfast recipes. Russian cheese pancakes (or syrniki) when I want something low carb. Shakshuka for when I miss the Middle East. Russian pancakes (oladushki) for when my kids crave something sweet. Blintzes when I am feeling elegant. And during nearly every day of Passover, we eat savory matzah brei.
But a girl needs some variety. And when my kids' clamoring for something sweet combined with my desire for matzah brei for breakfast, this Passover sweet matzo brei was born.
What does matzo brei mean?
Matzo brei (also spelled matza brei, matzah brei, or simply fried matza) is a dish that is commonly eaten during the Jewish holiday of Passover. It is a classic Jewish comfort food that is made from matzo crackers that are softened in water, then mixed with beaten eggs and fried in butter until golden brown.
The word "brei" means "fried" in Yiddish, and so the dish is a combination of matzo and fried eggs. It is often served for breakfast or brunch and can be enjoyed in a variety of ways.
Sweet Vs. Savory Matza Brei
In the battle of savory versus sweet matza brei, who will reign supreme?
Matzo brei can be made both sweet and savory, depending on your taste preferences.
Savory matzo brei is usually cooked with scrambled eggs, onions, and sometimes even cheese. The recipe requires you to fry pieces of matzo in butter until they are crispy, then add the eggs and other ingredients.
On the other hand, sweet matzo brei incorporates sweet components such as sugar, powdered sugar, and cinnamon, to create a delicious and sweet dish. It's the Jewish, Kosher-for-Passover answer to French toast: matzo that has been soaked in a milky custard and then topped with even more sweet flavorings.
If you're feeling particularly funky, you can also add fruits like apples to enhance the flavor of matzo brei French toast. Sweet matzo brei is cooked using the same method as savory matzo brei, but the toppings are different.
Overall, both versions of matzo brei are equally delicious and satisfying - and the answer to the sweet versus savory matzo brei conundrum will likely get resolved based on what mood you're in!
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
Even if you don't have much of a sweet tooth, I just know you're going to love this preparation of fried matza!
This sweet matzo brei recipe is:
- perfect for Passover
- great way to use leftover matzo crackers
- sure to satisfy your sweet tooth
- my kids' favorite Passover breakfast
- Super easy to make - in just 10 minutes, you can have a delicious, hearty dish on the table
- Versatile - see my sweet matzo French toast variations below for more ideas!
Tips for Making the Perfect Matzo Brei
While it's a simple dish to make, there are a few tips to ensure your sweet matzo brei is perfect:
- Don't oversoak! You only need to wet your matzo sheets in water for a few seconds to soften them. Leaving them too long will make them mushy and frankly gross.
- Don't add the sugar to the egg mix - it will make it sticky and prone to burning.
- Serve hot - dessert matzo brei is best enjoyed piping hot from the pan!
In order to make a delicious matzo brei, there are several ingredients that you will need:
- matzo sheets - store-bought or homemade matzo, preferably at least 1 day old.
- granulated sugar - feel free to use brown sugar for a more luxurious feel
- unsalted butter - you can also use a vegan butter substitute
- vanilla extract, optional
How to Make Passover French Toast
To start, immerse the matzo crackers in a large bowl or casserole dish filled with cold water for 20-30 seconds (20 seconds for gluten-free matzo).
Next, break the matzo into small pieces, around 1-2 inches in size, and then transfer them to a large bowl or casserole dish.
Melt the butter in a nonstick skillet over medium heat.
Whisk together the eggs, milk, ½ teaspoon cinnamon, and vanilla (if using), in a shallow bowl or pie pan.
Pour the egg mixture on top of the matzo pieces. Mix well to combine, making sure to coat both sides of the bread.
Pour the matzo pieces with the egg custard in the frying pan and cook, stirring often, until slightly golden brown, about 2-3 minutes.
In a small bowl, whisk together sugar and remaining cinnamon.
Transfer fried matza brei to a large platter. Sprinkle cinnamon sugar over matzo brei.
Matzo brei is best had warm right out of the pan. Serve the sweet matzo brei immediately with maple syrup or honey and enjoy!
Here are other ways to satisfy your sweet tooth with this easy Passover French toast preparation:
Apple Cinnamon Matzo Brei - top your matzo brei with my caramelized apples toppings. You'll love the combination of crunchy matzo with the tender apples and warm cinnamon spice!
Add some raisins or nuts for extra flavor or use a different fruit if you prefer.
Sour cherry matzo brei - my favorite way to enjoy this breakfast is with a dollop of sour cream and some homemade jam. My sour cherry sauce is my favorite by far, though you can try it with any of my jams!
Vanilla matzo brei - add 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract to the milk mixture.
Absolutely! Just use gluten free matzo sheets. Take care not to oversoak them, as they are more brittle and fragile than regular matzo sheets.
You can make the custard mixture ahead of time, but don't soak the matzo in advance as it will crumble it too much and turn it into mush.
More Passover Recipes:
Sweet matzo brei recipe (Passover French Toast)
- Begin by filling a large bowl or casserole dish with cold water and submerging the matzo crackers in it for 20-30 seconds (if using gluten-free matzo, 20 seconds are enough).
- Break matzo into small pieces or about 1-2 inches. Transfer to a large bowl or casserole dish.
- Whisk together the eggs, milk, ½ teaspoon cinnamon, and vanilla (if using), in a shallow bowl or pie pan.
- Melt the butter in a nonstick frying pan over medium heat.
- Pour the egg mixture on top of the matzo pieces. Mix well to combine, making sure to coat both sides of the bread. Place the matzo pieces with the custard in the frying pan and cook, stirring often, until slightly golden brown, about 2-3 minutes.
- In a small bowl, whisk together sugar and remaining cinnamon.
- Transfer to a large platter. Sprinkle cinnamon sugar over matzo brei.
- Serve the sweet matzo brei with maple syrup or honey and enjoy!