The holiday season is a time for joy, celebration, and, of course, delicious food. With the rush of gift-wrapping and decorating, an easy yet festive breakfast option is a must. Enter the Christmas Breakfast Casserole, a dish that’s as delightful to eat as it is simple to prepare. Imagine a casserole that’s a perfect blend of gooey cheese, flaky croissants, savory ham, and colorful peppers. It’s not only a feast for the eyes but also a treat for the taste buds.
Why Is Resting Time Crucial for Christmas Breakfast Casserole?
When it comes to this casserole, patience is key. Allowing it to rest for an hour in the fridge lets the croissants absorb the egg mixture, resulting in a richer, more cohesive dish. This step transforms your casserole from just good to absolutely amazing. And if you’re a planner, feel free to let it sit for up to four hours. This resting time is what elevates the casserole to a holiday-worthy breakfast.
Can You Make a Vegetarian Christmas Breakfast Casserole?
Absolutely! This casserole is as versatile as it is delicious. Simply skip the ham and you still have a scrumptious, cheesy casserole that everyone, including non-meat eaters, can enjoy. The rich cheese and egg base, combined with the flaky croissants and colorful peppers, ensures that no one will miss the meat.
How to Prepare Christmas Breakfast Casserole Ahead of Time?
Prepping ahead is a game-changer during the busy holiday season. You can assemble this casserole up to 4 hours before baking. To save even more time, cook the ham, onion, and bell peppers a day in advance. This means less stress and more time to enjoy the festivities on Christmas morning.
How Long Do Leftovers Last?
Leftovers (if there are any!) can be enjoyed within 2 days. This makes the Christmas Breakfast Casserole a gift that keeps on giving. Imagine waking up the day after Christmas to a ready-made, delicious breakfast!
Can Bacon Replace Ham in the Casserole?
Definitely! Bacon adds a smoky depth of flavor that’s just as delicious as ham. You might want to adjust the salt, though, as bacon tends to be saltier. Whether you choose bacon or ham, you’re in for a treat that’s sure to become a holiday tradition.
What Are the Ingredients for the Perfect Christmas Breakfast Casserole?
Gather your ingredients, and let’s create a holiday masterpiece! You’ll need olive oil, deli ham (or bacon), onion, red and green bell peppers, salt, pepper, fresh thyme, croissants, milk, half-and-half, hot sauce, eggs, white cheddar cheese, and pepper jack cheese. Each component adds its unique flavor, coming together in a symphony of taste that epitomizes the spirit of Christmas.
How to Assemble and Bake the Casserole?
Start by cooking the ham, onions, and peppers in olive oil, then layer them with croissant pieces in a baking dish. Whisk together milk, half-and-half, hot sauce, eggs, and cheese, and pour over the croissants. After its rest in the fridge, bake until golden and puffy. The result? A warm, comforting casserole that’s the perfect start to a festive day.
Remember, this Christmas Breakfast Casserole isn’t just a dish; it’s a celebration on a plate, bringing together the flavors and colors of the season in every bite. Happy holidays and happy cooking!
Christmas Breakfast Casserole Recipe
Ingredients in Order:
- 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
- 8 Ounces Diced Deli Ham
- 1 Diced Medium Onion
- 1 Diced Red Bell Pepper
- 1 Diced Green Bell Pepper
- 1 Teaspoon Kosher Salt
- 1/2 Teaspoon Black Pepper
- 1 Teaspoon Chopped Fresh Thyme
- 6 Croissants, cut into 1 1/2 to 2-inch pieces
- 1 Cup Milk
- 3/4 Cup Half-and-Half
- 1 Teaspoon Hot Sauce
- 5 Large Eggs
- 2 Cups Divided Grated White Cheddar Cheese
- 1 Cup Divided Grated Pepper Jack Cheese
Nutritional Information: Available upon request.
- Begin by heating 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet over a medium-high flame. Toss in the diced ham, onion, and bell peppers. Stirring frequently, cook until the vegetables are tender, typically taking about 8 to 10 minutes. Sprinkle in the salt, pepper, and thyme, cooking for an additional minute. Once done, set the skillet aside to allow it to cool down a bit.
- Take a 13-by-9-inch baking dish and brush it with the remaining tablespoon of olive oil. Layer in the croissant pieces, followed by the ham and vegetable mixture. Gently mix them to ensure even distribution.
- In a separate medium-sized bowl, whisk together milk, half-and-half, hot sauce, and eggs. Incorporate half of both types of cheese into this mixture. Gently pour this over the croissants, ensuring the liquid mix soaks the bread evenly. For best results, cover and let it chill in the refrigerator for at least an hour, or up to 4 hours.
- Preheating your oven to 350°F is the next step. Take the casserole out of the fridge and let it sit at room temperature for about 15 minutes. Press down the croissants with a spatula to make sure they’re fully soaked in the egg mixture.
- Sprinkle the remaining cheese over the casserole. Bake it until you see it puff up and turn a lovely golden brown, with the cheese bubbling and melted, roughly 45 minutes. Let the casserole rest for about 15 minutes before serving.
Enjoy this delectable and easy-to-make dish, perfect for brunches, family gatherings, or a cozy weekend breakfast!