Strawberry Cheesecake French Toast as served at Mercado La Carreta in Old San Juan, Puerto Rico, as seen on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives, season 35.
Recipe courtesy of Mercado La Carreta

Strawberry Cheesecake Stuffed French Toast with Strawberry Syrup

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  • Level: Advanced
  • Total: 3 hr
  • Active: 1 hr
  • Yield: 4 servings


Graham Cracker Crust:

NY Cheesecake:

Strawberry Syrup:

French Toast:

For Serving:


  1. For the crust: Grind the cookies into a powder in a food processor, then add the granulated and brown sugars and butter. Mix until completely incorporated.
  2. For the cheesecake: Preheat the oven to 250 degrees F. Add the cream cheese to a mixing bowl and beat to soften. Add the granulated sugar and beat until incorporated. Add the sour cream, vanilla and salt and mix until incorporated. Add the eggs one by one until they are all incorporated. Spray 2 cheesecake pans with nonstick spray. Divide the crust as the base of the cheesecake in both pans. Then add the cheesecake mixture on top of both crusts. Place in a water bath so the water reaches the middle of the pan and bake for 2 hours.
  3. For the strawberry syrup: Add the strawberries and granulated sugar to a heatproof mixing bowl and cover. Add the mixing bowl to a water bath and bake for 45 minutes. Strain the strawberry liquid into a bowl. Reserve the strawberries for another use. Put the strawberry liquid bowl in an ice bath and add the guar gum. Mix it for 30 seconds.
  4. For the french toast: In a mixing bowl, mix the milk, granulated sugar, cinnamon, vanilla, salt and eggs.
  5. Make a small incision with a paring knife in the bottom part of the brioche bread slices. Insert 2 ounces of the cheesecake inside each bread slice and cover the cheesecake up with a piece of the bread. Reserve the graham crumbs for plating.
  6. Preheat a griddle to medium heat. Dip each slice into the egg mixture and put onto the griddle. Cook until toasted and golden brown on both sides.
  7. Cut the French toast in half and then place them on a plate with the fresh strawberries, strawberry syrup, graham crumbs and a dusting of confectioners’ sugar.